Multivitamin supplements and cancer: is there a role?

Multivitamin supplements and cancerIt is well known that the appropriate intake of vitamins and minerals is essential to overall health. This is likely the driving force behind the 49% of U.S. adults who are taking at least one dietary supplement. Most people assume that multivitamin supplements are harmless, since they are perceived as natural. But a recent review of the research, which has been well represented in the media, has actually shown that there can be harm with nutrition supplement use in healthy populations.

The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, which bases its recommendations on the Continue reading

Is chronic breast cancer pain “all in your head?”

chronic breast cancer painmCancerPartner sat down recently with Daniel J. Clauw, M.D., a professor of medicine in the Division of Rheumatology and director of the Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research Center, to discuss new research findings about chronic breast cancer pain.

mCancerPartner: Sometimes breast cancer patients feel their physician is suggesting that their pain is “all in their head.” What would you say to that?

Dr. Clauw: Pain is very real. It’s “all in your head” only in the sense that we’re finding many of the triggers for pain actually begin Continue reading

U-M Radiation Oncology’s partnerships bring radiation therapy closer to home

radiation therapyRadiation therapy is often a treatment option for those diagnosed with cancer. Traveling to receive radiation treatment five times a week for six to eight weeks is not always easy or feasible for some patients. Luckily, the University of Michigan’s Radiation Oncology Department has collaborated with community hospitals to help provide this type of treatment closer to home.

The Radiation Oncology Network is a group of seven centers in Michigan that partner with the U-M Radiation Oncology Department to create a network of facilities Continue reading

Improving penile cancer treatment

penile cancerU-M Cancer Center Urologist Jeffrey Montgomery, M.D., M.H.S.A. joins MCancerTalk to bring patients and families an update on the latest innovations in the treatment of penile cancer.

Penile cancer is the least common urologic cancer. It occurs in fewer than one in 100,000 men in the U.S., resulting in about 300 deaths annually. Although the disease is rare, top institutions like Michigan are aggressively pursuing new treatment options to offer patients better outcomes than ever before.

Surgery: then and now

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For one prostate cancer survivor, it’s all about conversation, personal connections

Francis Hafler, surrounded by his daughter Tiffany, son Gabriel and granddaughter Chloe, 12

Francis Hafler, surrounded by his daughter Tiffany, son Gabriel and granddaughter Chloe, 12

“I’m a conversationalist. I just walk up to people and start talking to them,” says Francis Hafler of Detroit.

He starts at the beginning. “I was born in the south in 1950.”

Hafler grew up about two blocks from the water in Pensacola, Fla., where the sand is pure white and the water is emerald green. He was No. 8 of 10 kids – seven boys, three girls. His mother did domestic work and his father worked on a fishing boat and as an ice man. Every Tuesday and Wednesday you could see the Blue Angels from the nearby naval base soaring through the sky.

In 1969, Hafler moved to Michigan to live with a friend. He found work at Ford Motor Co. on the ore carrying ships at the Rouge Factory. He got married and had six kids.

And then cancer hit.

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Not just a feel-good practice: Benefits of yoga to people with cancer

yoga and cancerOver the past years increased attention has been given to the benefits of yoga during and after cancer treatment. Just this April, the Journal of Clinical Oncology published yet another astounding article about how yoga has not only an emotional impact on people affected by cancer but a physical one as well (Kiecolt-Glaser et al., 2014).

The practice of yoga during cancer treatment has been shown to assist with unwanted physical side effects, in particular fatigue and insomnia. This is of particular value since there is little medical intervention available as yet to assist with Continue reading