Researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center have demonstrated that cancer of the appendix is different than colon cancer, a distinction that could lead to more effective treatments for both diseases. The study by Edward A. Levine, M.D., professor of surgery and chief of the surgical oncology service at Wake Forest Baptist, is the result of gene analysis of cases covering a 10-year period. It appears in the early online edition of the April issue of the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. Cancer of the appendix, which is part of the colon, affects approximately 2, 500 people in the United States annually and has the propensity to spread throughout the peritoneal cavity, the space within the abdomen that contains the intestines, stomach and liver. "Our treatment program, which was the catalyst for this research, is one of the largest worldwide and consists of aggressive surgery coupled with heated chemotherapy placed directly into the abdominal cavity at the time of surgery, " Levine said.
The use of an injectable, clot-preventing drug known as Low Molecular Weight Heparin to treat patients with advanced cancer complicated by blood clots increased steadily between 2000 and 2007, according to a new study published in The Oncologis t, funded by the National Cancer Institute and led by Kaiser Permanente Colorado. However, despite previous research indicating LMWH is the preferred first-line treatment for cancer patients experiencing blood clots, use of LMWH is low compared to another commonly used anticoagulant, warfarin. The study was conducted by a team of Kaiser Permanente researchers from Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Northern California, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Group Health Research Institute. Venous thromboembolism, or blood clots, are common and serious complications in cancer patients.
The new clinical guidelines for the prevention, detection and management of bowel cancer have been published by the Cancer Council Australia. Dr. Cameron Bell, Chair of the Surveillance Colonoscopy Guidelines Working Party, says that the guidelines offer proven information that assists practitioners in deciding when a surveillance colonoscopy is required. He declares: "In the past 10 to 15 years, there have been major changes in thinking about colonoscopy and its effectiveness in reducing bowel cancer deaths. Colonoscopy has its limitations, but high-quality colonoscopies are effective in monitoring patients known to be at high risk of bowel cancer. Those at normal risk are advised to take an FOBT every two years from the age of 50." The guidelines, which were based on a systematic literature review, critical appraisal and broad consultation and approved by the National Health and Medical Research Council, include recommendations on when to repeat colonoscopy after adenomatous polypectomy, after curative resection for colorectal cancer and when patients with inflammatory bowel disease should have a colonoscopy.
A new study led by a doctor from the Mayo Clinic in Arizona in the US, finds that "virtual colonoscopy", known more formally as computerized tomographic CT colonography, is comparable to standard colonoscopy for people aged 65 and over. The American College of Radiology Imaging Network study was published online before print on 23 February in the journal Radiology. The finding clears up a question unanswered by a 2008 New England Journal of Medicine study that suggested virtual coloscopy was as good as standard colonoscopy, but it did not specifically analyze its performance with older patients. Now Dr. C. Daniel Johnson Chair of the Department of Radiology at Mayo Clinic, and colleagues, show that the procedure is not just for younger people. Colonoscopies are procedures that look for signs of pre-cancerous growths or polyps, cancer and other diseases in the large intestine.
Reducing Colorectal Cancer Disparities In Alaska Native Population: March GIE: Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
In recognition of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, GIE: Gastrointestinal Endoscopy has published a special issue for March on colorectal cancer. The issue includes a study describing innovative efforts to increase colorectal cancer screening rates in the Alaska Native population, who experience twice the incidence and death rates from colorectal cancer as does the U.S. white population. As a result of ongoing efforts, statewide Alaska Native colorectal cancer screening rates increased from 29 percent in 2000 to 41 percent in 2005 before the initiation of these efforts and increased to 55 percent in 2010. GIE: Gastrointestinal Endoscopy is the monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE). "The last frontier: innovative efforts to reduce colorectal cancer disparities among the remote Alaska Native population" Among the Alaska Native (AN) population, cancer is the leading cause of death, and colorectal cancer (CRC) is the second leading cause of cancer death.