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Conquering cancer through innovation and collaboration: the year in review

new-year2014 was another year of discovery and innovation at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center as we work toward our goal of conquering cancer. Here are summaries of select clinical, laboratory and population collaborations by Cancer Center members that will benefit cancer patients everywhere:

  • March 25, 2014: 25% of breast cancer survivors report financial decline due to treatment, and the financial impact varied greatly by race. “As oncologists, we are proud of the advances in our ability to cure an increasing proportion of patients diagnosed with breast cancer. But as treatments improve, we must ensure that we do not leave these patients in financial ruin because of our efforts,” says study author Reshma Jagsi, M.D., D.Phil. In a second study, Dr. Jagsi found
    that unemployment was common after breast cancer treatment, and women who had chemotherapy were less likely to be employed four years later.
  • May 21, 2014: Most women who have double mastectomy don’t need it, according to new research from the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center. Recent studies have shown an increase in women with breast cancer choosing this more aggressive surgery, called contralateral prophylactic mastectomy. “Women appear to be using worry over cancer recurrence to choose contralateral prophylactic mastectomy. This does not make sense, because having a non-affected breast removed will not reduce the risk of recurrence in the affected breast,” says study co-author Sarah Hawley, Ph.D.
  • June 3, 2014: Results of a key phase 3 clinical trial will pave the way for potential treatment changes for men with newly diagnosed hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer. “This study provides the longest ever prolongation of life in patients with metastatic hormone sensitive prostate cancer, since hormone therapy was established as the backbone treatment for this stage of disease” says Maha Hussain, M.D., one of the study’s co-authors.
  • October 23, 2014: 62% of colorectal cancer patients report financial burden from treatment. The burden was greatest among patients who received chemotherapy and among younger patients who worked in low-paying jobs. “The financial burden was higher in patients who received chemotherapy – a potentially lifesaving treatment. To ensure that patients can receive all recommended care, we need to recognize the financial burden of cancer and identify patients at risk for financial concerns,” says lead study author Christine M. Veenstra, M.D., M.S.H.P.
  • November 10, 2014: Medicare approved lung cancer screening coverage. Ella Kazerooni, M.D., was on the forefront of national efforts to urge CMS to approve Medicare coverage. “This is a victory for cancer prevention and for the well-being of thousands of Americans at high-risk of lung cancer,” she says. Listen to her discussing CT Lung Cancer Screening here.

Take the next step:

  • Read more about what the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center is doing to conquer cancer.

University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer CenterThe University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s 1,000 doctors, nurses, care givers and researchers are united by one thought: to deliver the highest quality, compassionate care while working to conquer cancer through innovation and collaboration. The center is among the top-ranked national cancer programs, and #1 in Michigan according to U.S. News & World Report. Our multidisciplinary clinics offer one-stop access to teams of specialists for personalized treatment plans, part of the ideal patient care experience. Patients also benefit through access to promising new cancer therapies.