Can You Trust Dr. Google?

23 January 2019 A recent New York Times article discussed some of the cautions that cancer patients should be aware of when they turn to “Dr. Google” for advice and information. According to Pew research, close to 85% of US adults are online, and 72% of internet users have searched for health information. The information patients find online can have…

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Medications to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk

15 January 2019 The US Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) has released draft recommendations for the use of medications to reduce the risk of breast cancer development in women who are at increased risk. The draft document, which is open for public comment until February 11, 2019, is an update of their 2013 recommendation – the conclusions are similar, and…

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How Do Patients Feel About the Phrase “Cancer Survivor”

14 January 2019 The article discussed below is behind a paywall. If anyone would like to receive a full copy, please email me: info at drattai dot com and I will be happy to share. The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (founded by a physician who was treated for cancer), the National Cancer Institute, and the American Cancer Society consider…

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Decline in Cancer Deaths

9 January 2019 The American Cancer Society has just published their updated “Cancer Facts and Figures”, documenting cancer incidence and mortality rates. When combined by disease site, cancer death rates have decreased by 27% from 1991-2016, resulting in approximately 2.6 million cancer deaths avoided. From 2007 – 2016, cancer death rates have declined approximately 1.8% per year for men, and…

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Recent Pregnancy and Breast Cancer Risk

19 December 2018 A study recently published in the Annals of Internal Medicine noted that breast cancer risk increases after childbirth, peaking at about 5 years after delivery. The increased risk was seen to persist for over 20 years. The Annals study pooled the results from 15 prospective series. They found that in women with prior pregnancy, who had their…

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SABCS 2018 Updates

12 December 2018 The San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium is the largest medical conference devoted to breast cancer. Held every year in San Antonio, TX, it attracts a large international audience and there are often practice-changing studies. While I was not able to attend the meeting in person, I’ve provided just a few of the studies that caught my attention.…

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Body Fat, BMI, and Breast Cancer

10 December 2018 Being overweight after menopause is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. But a new study suggests that our traditional measure of overweight, the body mass index (BMI) may not tell the whole story. A recent study, published in JAMA Oncology, performed detailed body composition analysis on 3000 women who were of normal BMI. They found…

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Breast Cancer Updates from ASCO 2018

14 August 2018 I was honored to participate in a Sharsheret national webinar, where breast cancer research that had been presented at the June 2018 meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology was reviewed. The webinar video and transcript are linked below. Dr. Sharyn Lewin, a gynecologic oncologist, presented ovarian cancer research updates. Transcript Link Additional Sharsheret Symposia Transcripts DISCLAIMER: Dr.…

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Patient Reported Outcomes and Complication Rates from Post-Mastectomy Reconstruction

24 June 2018 Two studies have recently been published which discuss patient reported outcomes and complication rates after post-mastectomy reconstruction surgery. First a bit of background information on post-mastectomy reconstruction. The most commonly performed type of reconstruction utilizes implants. Often, a temporary tissue expander (TE) is placed by the plastic surgeon at the time of mastectomy. The TE is gradually…

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