Posts tagged ‘american cancer society’

Exercise has always been regarded beneficial for health and there’s no contradictory argument for that. But researchers at the Siteman Cancer Center at Washington University School of Medicine and Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis have associated exercise with colon cancer.

They have conducted a study which shows that consistent exercise lowers the risk of death by colon cancer. Researchers from the Washington University collaborated with those from American Cancer Society and carefully studied data available from the Cancer Prevention Study II (CPS II) to examine if physical activity was anyhow linked with colon cancer.

The researchers examined the data of more than 150,000 men and women and studied their level of physical activities between the year 1982 and 1997. These were compared with colon cancer diagnoses between 1998 and 2005 and with colon cancer deaths between 1998 and 2006. The study revealed that those who were in the habit of regular exercise for at least 10 years reported lower risk of colon cancer death.

Kathleen Y. Wolin, ScD cites that it’s never too late to start exercising and the study clearly hints at the beneficial aspect of physical activity. Hence, the public need to thoroughly absorb this message for their better well being.

Besides preventing colon cancer death, exercise also curtails the chances of getting afflicted by cardiac diseases, diabetes and other forms of cancer. Even a brisk 30-minute walk will do the body and mind a great deal of good and shall be helpful for the health in the long run.


Getting a routine mammography had been one of the most crucial procedures of detecting breast cancer. But a study conducted recently has found evidence to the contrary. Researchers said that the importance of mammography and its role in reducing the deaths due to breast cancer is much less than thought previously.

The World Health Organization as well as various US authorities had reported that regular mammographies could, in fact, prevent deaths by as much as 25%. A newer study, however, finds that the death rate dropped by only 10% after mammography was introduced in Norway. The results have been published in the New England Journal of Medicine

Dr. Mette Kalager, the leader of the study team stated that they found evidence of the death rate dropping by 8% in women aged 70 and above who did not undergo mammography, receiving similar care to other younger women instead. The results deduce that the benefits of mammography are considerably less, amounting to only 2%.

Dr. Gilbert Welch associated with the ‘Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy’ and Clinical Practice in Lebanon finds the results disappointing, but claims that the screening mammography may have been more beneficial in the past. He emphasized that with more and more new tumors being discovered much earlier as awareness spreads and new methods of treatments come into force, the value of mammography was bound to decrease.  He said that at least 2500 women would have to be screened for 10 years in order to prevent one death due to breast cancer while a 1000 are likely to get false positive indications, with 5 to 15 of them being diagnosed and treated for a condition which would not have been a risk anyway.

Dr. Otis Brawley, the Chief Medical Officer at the American Cancer Society, however, feels that regular mammography screenings form a part of preventive health care for women.  Dr. Joanne Mortimer, an oncologist attached to the City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, Calif says that mammography is likely to contribute more in preventing deaths by breast cancer in the US simply because the country lacks the multidisciplinary government aided health systems which is common place in Norway and other European countries.


A recent study revealed that men above the age of 55 with low scores obtained during the first screening procedure of prostate cancer detection have been found to benefit the least by repetition of the procedure.

The research study results published in ‘Cancer’ showed that for men with the lowest base level of PSA or Prostate Specific Antigen, a total of 24,664 of them would have to be checked and 724 prostate cancer cases treated in order to prevent just one death.  For men with the highest levels of PSA, on the other hand, the figures are much lower with 133 screenings and 60 cancer treatment for preventing a single death from prostate cancer.

The study results are important as they reveal how to screen patients in order to detect the indications of prostate cancer during its early stages. It also takes a look at the ways to avoid false indications, thereby making it possible to avoid a lot of unnecessary tests and treatment procedures. The research also tried to identify the patients for whom an additional screening would be beneficial. The results were based on the PSA levels of the individuals tested.

Otis Brawley, the Chief Medical Officer associated with the American Cancer Society of Atlanta said that the study results hinted that men above the age of 50-55 with low PSA levels are not likely to develop prostate cancers which are harmful or life threatening. He added that they have now realized the futility of intensive screening, especially for men who do not benefit from the treatment.

He also said that a man of 50-55, with low PSA levels can choose to wait for another 5 to 6 years before undergoing another PSA test. It may not be mandatory even then and he has the option of foregoing the additional PSA screening altogether.