What you should know about sarcoma

en Español

sarcomaSarcoma is not a well-known cancer. Unlike breast or prostate cancer, many people have never heard of this cancer until they or someone they know is diagnosed. July is Sarcoma Awareness Month, and the following are some facts about this disease.

  • Sarcoma is rare – it accounts for only 1% of all cancers diagnosed in adults.
  • Sarcoma is more common in children and young adults, accounting for approximately 15% of cancers seen in children.
  • Sarcoma commonly occurs in the extremities like the legs and arms, but can also arise in the abdomen and hips.
  • There are two main types of sarcoma: Bone and soft tissue. Soft tissue is the more common, and it can arise in the muscle, cartilage, fat, tendons and nerves.
  • Soft tissue sarcomas are named according to the tissue from which they arise. There are approximately 50 sub-types of sarcoma.
  • Most people that develop sarcoma don’t have a known risk factor, but risk factors include previous radiation therapy, certain genetic syndromes and exposure to dioxins that are used in herbicides and insecticides.
  • Signs and symptoms include a lump on the body that is usually painless, or abdominal pain that doesn’t go away.
  • There is no regular screening that is done for sarcoma like there is for breast, prostate or colon cancer.

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You’re invited to a garden party celebrating women’s health!

women's healthThe Community Outreach Program of the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center has teamed up with the Ann Arbor chapter of The Links, Inc., for a Garden Party celebrating women’s health. This free event takes place Sunday, July 19 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. at the Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor.

Guest speakers include:

  • Sofia Merajver, M.D., Ph.D., of the U-M Breast and Ovarian Risk Evaluation Clinic
  • Aisha Langford, Ph.D., MPH, who will speak on cancer prevention
  • Colleen Greene, senior wellness coordinator at MHealthy, who will speak on what physical activity can do for you.

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Breast density and breast cancer risk

breast density

In Michigan, a new law went into effect on June 1 requiring that mammography service providers inform patients if they have dense breast tissue on screening mammography. Michigan is the 23rd state to enact a law like this. So what exactly is breast density and what does it mean if you have dense breasts?

We talked to Renee Pinsky, M.D., an assistant professor of radiology at the University of Michigan whose specialty is breast imaging. Dr. Pinsky was involved in helping to shape Michigan’s dense breast notification law.

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Testicular cancer: Early detection is key

As I was writing something recently on clinical updates, I came across one type of cancer that is not CAL_testicularcancer2015brought up very often, testicular cancer. I remembered the story a friend of mine shared about her husband, age 30-ish that had been complaining of pain in his testicular region ever since his young daughter jumped on him…OUCH!!

He went for a checkup and sure enough, he had testicular cancer. He underwent surgery, and did not need chemotherapy or other treatment as his cancer was contained in one testicle. This was many, many years ago, and he continues to enjoy his life and functions just fine without any complaints from his wife. We are in our 50s now, thank goodness that he went to get checked out. Continue reading

Budgeting 101: Healthy eating that is easy on the pocketbook

Summer officially starts this week. The warmer temperatures and rain continue to keep things green:SummerVeg15 lush grass, leaves on trees and flowers. Green can also represent money but you don’t need to break your budget to eat healthy. It doesn’t take any extra time to shop wisely or change your staple foods but these very easy strategies can reduce your shopping budget. And with a few minutes of extra planning, you can further reduce your grocery bill.

The following budgeting tips and strategies are divided into categories by the amount of time that each will entail, from no time at all to up to 10 minutes a week. That way, you focus on the changes your schedule will allow.

Minimal time and effort:

Shop satisfied: In other words, shop after a meal and avoid impulse buying due to hunger. Shopping when satisfied allows you to buy only what you need, which will limit your total grocery bill each and every time.

Shop by season: Buying fruit and vegetables that are in season can lead to considerable savings. Check out http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org/whats-in-season-summer for a summer season list. If you want to make a dish with off season fruits or vegetables, canned fruit or frozen vegetables likely would be more budget friendly. Continue reading

Fellowship breakfast series serves up health information for men

fellowship breakfastCalling all men! Where can you go to learn about health topics of special importance to men, and do it in a relaxed, casual environment over a healthful breakfast? If you answered the Men’s Fellowship Breakfast, this is your chance to move to the head of the class.

The Fellowship Breakfast series is sponsored by the Cancer Center’s Community Outreach Program, a trusted source for health information about cancer prevention, screening and early diagnosis.

June is Men’s Health Awareness Month, and the next Men’s Fellowship Breakfast takes place on Saturday, June 13, from 8:30 – 11 a.m. Continue reading