Women's Cancer News
Sep. 11, 2013

Experts: US cancer care in crisis
Cancer may be the most feared diagnosis, but Americans are getting disorganized care and they’re often not even getting treatment based on the best scientific evidence, a panel of experts reports. It's often too expensive, and the most privileged are getting far better care than people with lower income, minorities, people who live away from big cities and the elderly. And most cancer patients who are doomed to die still wrongly believe they might be cured. And as the baby boomer generation ages, the U.S. is going to be hit with a tsunami of new cancer cases. It's time to get organized, the Institute of Medicine committee says.More

Texas woman with cancer pressuring experimental drug maker for 'compassionate' access
CBS News
An Austin, Texas woman with cancer hopes Twitter can help save her life. It's part of her effort to pressure a pharmaceutical company into giving her an experimental drug. And now the battle is drawing some big-name support. Andrea Sloan, 45, is fighting a seven-year battle against ovarian cancer, and losing. Now Sloan's oncologist says she needs something new. Dr. Charles Levenback, of MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, believes her best hope for survival is an experimental drug — not yet approved by the FDA — called BMN673 — and made by BioMarin Pharmaceuticals. The problem? Sloan can't get into a clinical trial for that drug.More

New concerns on robotic surgeries
The New York Times
In early March 2009, Erin Izumi, a woman in her 30s from Tacoma, Wash., underwent robotically assisted surgery to treat endometriosis. The operation at St. Joseph Medical Center dragged on for nearly 11 hours. Ten days later, Izumi was rushed to an emergency room, where doctors discovered that her colon and rectum had been torn during the operation. She was hospitalized for five weeks, undergoing a series of procedures to repair the damage, including a temporary colostomy, according to her attorney Chris Otorowski.More

Video: Robin Quivers' cancer recovery
ABC News
An ABC News story on radio personality Robin Quivers' recent treatment for endometrial cancer highlights risk-reduction strategies and emphasizes the importance of being treated by a gynecologic oncologist for any gynecologic malignancy.More

Latinas have highest incidence of cervical cancer; groups work to provide information and care
NBC Latino
High-risk HPVs cause virtually all cervical cancers as well as other types of cancers. Though cervical cancer is almost 100 percent preventable, Latinas continue to suffer and die of the disease. They have the highest incidence of cervical cancer among all ethnic/racial groups and the second highest mortality rate after black women.More

Mammograms for younger women may prevent breast cancer deaths
CBS News
Most breast cancer deaths happen to younger women who did not get regular mammogram screenings, new research shows. The findings are a departure from screening guidelines that urge routine mammograms only in older women. The researchers behind the study, which was published in the American Cancer Society's journal, CANCER on Sept. 9, 2013, encouraged more regular screening before the age of 50 to help prevent some of these deaths. Study co-author Dr. Daniel Kopans, a radiologist at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, said in a press release that previous research that downplayed the importance of mammograms was misleading because it didn't look at individual women, instead relying on registry data.More

Researchers use Pap test to detect ovarian and endometrial cancers
Using a highly accepted and widely used Pap test for more than HPV screening may be the diagnostic equivalent of "more bang for the buck." That sort of helpful screening blast may be what researchers at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center discovered when they used cervical fluid obtained during routine Pap tests to run a parallel test for ovarian and endometrial cancers. More

Scientists find new gene linked to ovarian cancer
Medical Xpress
Cancer Research UK scientists have found a gene in mice that could protect against ovarian cancer and, if faulty, may increase the chance of developing the disease, according to research published in Nature. This gene, known as Helq, helps repair any damage to DNA that happens when it is copied as cells multiply. So if the gene is missing or faulty, DNA errors could mount up, increasing the chance of cancer developing.More