Safe handling at home of medications and waste

safe handlingWhether your cancer treatment is oral or intravenous, some medications may be harmful to those who live with you. Limiting exposure of other people to your pills and body fluids is your best bet to keeping everyone safe, even if the effect would be minimal.

Keeping prescription medication away from others sounds simple, but cancer therapy can be complex. Here are some general tips to ensure a safe home environment: Continue reading

Managing hot flashes in cancer

hot flashes and cancerHot flashes are annoying and bothersome. They interrupt activities of daily living, and depending on their severity and frequency, can greatly impact a person’s quality of life. In cancer patients, they can affect both men and women undergoing cancer treatment.

Hot flashes are described as an intense heat sensation that involves flushing and sweating of the face and trunk. They can affect 34% – 80% of breast and prostate cancer patients. Continue reading

Co-caregiving when cancer strikes twice

John and Madeline Poster

John and Madeline Poster

In the restaurant, John and Madeline Poster are relaxed and having fun bantering about French fries as they eat specialty burgers for lunch. Married for 45 years, the pair has shared many life experiences, including cancer and caregiving. In fact, co-caregiving has helped them learn to enjoy the present, while still looking confidently to the future.

In the 1990s, Madeline underwent a double mastectomy and preventive hysterectomy. When breast cancer returned nearly nine years later, surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy followed. John was Continue reading

Picture perfect – imaging and cancer diagnostics

imaging and cancer diagnosticsRecently I accompanied a family member, newly diagnosed with breast cancer, for a lymphatic mapping appointment in nuclear medicine. Lymphatic mapping is an important tool for imaging and cancer diagnostics; it helps identify the sentinel node before a patient has a sentinel lymph node biopsy. Her mother was at the appointment too.

As we traveled through the halls on B1 at the University of Michigan, she read all the different areas for patient appointments. Interventional radiology, PET Scan, CT Scan, and MRI were among the signs she pointed out to me. She couldn’t believe Continue reading

Nutrition for cancer fatigue

For someone with fatigue as a side effect of cancer treatment, it isn’t just about feeling sleepy and wanting to go to bed a little earlier, says Danielle Karsies, a cancer nutritionist at the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center. It is a bone-weary lack of energy that robs you of the ability to do the things you typically want to do. The following video gives tips on what patients can do to reduce fatigue and improve energy levels.

Take the next step:

  • Learn more from the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center about fatigue as a side effect of cancer.
  • Check out this Thrive story on one patient’s experience with cancer-related fatigue.

U-M CCC dietitians NEWRegistered dietitians who are specially trained in the field of oncology nutrition provide cancer nutrition services at the Comprehensive Cancer Center. They focus on assessing the individual dietary and nutrition needs of each patient and providing practical, scientifically sound assistance.

 

 

Cancer-center-informal-vertical-sig-150x150The 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.

Advance Directives: documents that can speak for you, when you are unable to

advance directivesIf you have been to a hospital, clinic or doctor’s office in the last few years, chances are you’ve been asked if you have an advance directive or durable power of attorney for health care.

You may even have made a mental note to get that taken care of. You might even have completed an advanced directive in the past but have not reviewed it in years and may want to revise.

An advance directive is a thoughtful – as well as legal – document explaining your wishes in case you can’t speak for yourself about medical treatment you may receive in the future. It’s understandable that people put off thinking about Continue reading