Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Is treatment too aggressive for men with low-risk prostate cancer?

The prostate specific antigen test measures levels of particular
protein in the blood that is a biomarker for prostate cancer.
(Photo courtesy of the Harding Center for Risk Literacy) 
CHICAGO – Most men with low-risk prostate cancer are undergoing aggressive surgeries and radiation therapies despite the significant risk of impotence, and loss of bladder and bowel control, that such treatments carry, a new study shows.

Led by Dr. Yu-Hsuan Shao, Ph.D., of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, researchers analyzed data from the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results System. They found that 44 percent of men with prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels of less than 4.0 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) and 38 percent of those with a PSA between 4.1 ng/ml and 10.0 ng/ml underwent radical prostatectomy, which removes the prostate and nearby lymph nodes.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Avastin for breast cancer now in doubt

An advisory panel of the FDA voted unanimously to
withdraw approval of Avastin for advanced breast cancer.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – July 20, 2010 – An FDA advisory panel recommended today that the approval of Genentech’s Avastin® (bevacizumab) be withdrawn for the treatment of advanced breast cancer. The recommendation came following results of a pair of studies that failed to confirm earlier results.

The recommendation does not affect the status of Avastin for the treatment of lung, colon and brain cancers.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Fish oil linked to lower breast cancer risk

SEATTLE – Cancer Digest – The evidence that fish oil may prevent chronic diseases was given a boost this week with the first study showing that women who took the supplement had a 32 percent lower risk of breast cancer compared to similar women who didn’t.

But don’t go out and start taking omega-3 fatty acid supplements just yet, say the study's authors at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Led by Dr. Emily White of the center’s public health sciences division, the researchers caution that this study needs to be confirmed before people start taking such supplements.