Breast size should be considered when positioning a breast cancer patient during radiation therapy, researchers say.
Even at low doses, radiation targeted at breast tumors can also affect nearby organs such as the heart and lungs, so patients are positioned lying face down to protect the heart and lungs as much as possible, the researchers explained.
Many people don't realize that cancer patients are in constant need of blood supplies.
Chemotherapy and radiation treatments for cancer can damage the body's ability to produce healthy blood cells and cause potentially life-threatening conditions. Blood transfusions help provide critical clotting factors, proteins and antibodies.
Dry mouth can be a troubling side effect of radiation therapy, but acupuncture may ease its symptoms, a new study suggests.
Of 339 patients getting radiation for head and neck cancer in the United States and China, those who had acupuncture had fewer symptoms of dry mouth (xerostomia) than those who didn't have acupuncture.
Patients who had fake acupuncture (placebo) had a...
A long-term study comparing two types of radiation treatment for early breast cancer found that accelerated partial breast radiation (APBI) appeared to do as well as standard whole breast radiation for keeping cancer at bay.
The study looked at 10-year recurrence rates. The findings mean the partial breast procedure may offer women another choice for treating early-stage breast cance...
In the largest investigation of its kind, researchers conclude that subjecting prostate cancer patients to radiation therapy immediately after surgery doesn't give them an advantage in staying cancer-free.
The finding stems from a review of four studies that together tracked outcomes for more than 3,500 prostate cancer patients from multiple countries.
A new technique that uses a targeted high dose of radiation seems to prevent recurrence of a potentially deadly heartbeat for at least two years, researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis report.
This irregular rhythm, called ventricular tachycardia (VT), occurs when the heart's lower chambers start to beat uncontrollably fast. Once it starts, it can kill ...
In what might be a major breakthrough, researchers report that high doses of radiation dramatically prolonged survival in men battling an advanced and aggressive form of prostate cancer.
This particular type of cancer occurs when tumors resurface and spread to a number of areas beyond the prostate among patients who were in remission following radiation, surgery or chemotherapy. Gene...
Despite efforts from medical groups to cut down on the overuse of CT scans and MRIs for safety reasons, their use has instead increased, a new study shows.
"Medical imaging is an important part of health care and contributes to accurate disease diagnosis and treatment, but it also can lead to patient harms such as incidental findings, overdiagnosis, anxiety and radiation exposure that...
The treatments that childhood cancer patients receive often save their lives, but they also make survivors prone to heart troubles, a new study finds.
For the study, researchers examined heart disease rates in nearly 7,300 childhood cancer survivors (diagnosed at an average age of 7) and a "control group" of more than 36,000 people without cancer in the province of Ontario, Canada.
Use of risky CT scans during pregnancy has risen significantly in North America in the past two decades, a new study finds.
"It's important to quantify exposure to ionizing radiation because it can cause cancer and birth defects, and should be kept to a minimum, especially during pregnancy," said co-lead author Marilyn Kwan. She's a senior research scientist at Kaiser Permanente North...
Radiation treatment for cancer can damage the heart and blood vessels, increasing the risk for a stroke or heart attack. But a new study suggests cholesterol-lowering drugs can significantly reduce that risk.
The researchers reported that taking statins may lower the risk of a stroke after radiation treatment by 32%.
"Our study demonstrated that statin therapy could be f...
New research should reassure dads-to-be who've had testicular cancer that treatment with radiation or chemotherapy doesn't raise the risk of fathering babies with birth defects.
"Our research set out to investigate whether treatment for the most common cancer among young men leads to a higher risk of fathering a child with a birth defect and we saw no increased risk associated with ca...
Prolonged exposure to low-dose radiation -- like the type emitted by X-ray machines and CT scanners -- can increase the risk of developing high blood pressure, a key contributor to heart disease and stroke, a new study has found.
Researchers examined the health records of more than 22,300 workers at the Mayak Production Association, a large-scale nuclear facility in Russia. The emplo...
When you are fighting cancer, time is of the essence, but new research shows that insurance approvals for lifesaving radiation treatment are often delayed.
The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) surveyed nearly 700 radiation oncologists and found that 93% said prior authorization-related delays by insurance companies affect their patients, while 31% said the avera...
Treating men with low-risk prostate cancer with just one high dose of radiation may be safe and effective, British researchers report.
Therapy for prostate cancer typically involves low-dose radiation given over several days or weeks. Conversely, high-dose radiation is given once through a set of tiny tubes inserted directly into the tumor.
For women with hormone-driven breast cancer, adding radiation to hormone therapy might keep their cancer from coming back for up to a decade, a new study finds.
Breast cancer didn't come back in the same breast for 97.5% of women who had radiation therapy plus hormone therapy compared to just over 92% of women who had hormone therapy alone, the researchers said.
Learning you have a cancer that looks imminently terminal is tough news to swallow.
And new research indicates that when given just one month to live, a significant number of patients still opt for aggressive and often costly interventions, despite little evidence to suggest they'll help.
A study of just over 100,000 patients in the United States found that the urge to under...
Scientists say they have used frozen testicular tissue to achieve the birth of a healthy baby monkey named Grady -- a success they hope to eventually translate to childhood cancer survivors whose treatment has left them infertile.
Infertility is a potential side effect of the chemotherapy and radiation used to treat various can...
Hormonal treatment can help control prostate cancer but may increase a man's risk of depression, a new study by Danish researchers suggests.
Male hormones, such as testosterone, are known to fuel the growth of prostate tumors. So doctors use drugs to reduce hormone production. But that can bring on tough side effects, such as incontinence or impotence.
Deceased people who are cremated after having been treated with radioactive medications might be a health hazard to crematory operators, a new case study shows.
An Arizona crematorium became contaminated with radiation following the cremation of a man who received "radiopharmaceutical" treatment two days before he died, according to a research letter published Feb. 26 in the Journ...
Deep space travel has been shown to harm astronauts' eyes, muscles, hearts and immune systems. Now, new animal research suggests that venturing beyond Earth's protective atmosphere could also damage their gastrointestinal tracts.
"We have documented the effects of deep space radiation on some vital organs, but we believe that similar damage responses may occur in many organs," explain...
Radiation therapy for the most common childhood brain tumor can cause memory problems, new research suggests.
Specifically, it can leave young survivors struggling to create memories of recent personal events, the small study found. But survivors' ability to recall ones that happened before radiation wasn't affected.
"There are some known cognitive effects from radiation tre...
More than half of adults who survived childhood brain and spinal cord cancers don't live fully independent lives, a new study finds.
Researchers at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., assessed more than 300 survivors in areas such as employment, marital status, ability to drive, independent living and need for help with routine or personal care needs.
People with curable cancers who try "complementary therapy" often refuse some part of standard care. And they may die as a result, researchers say.
U.S. cancer patients increasingly use complementary medicine -- a combination of standard care along with therapies that fall outside of mainstream medicine (such as acupuncture or massage). But little is known about the long-term results,...
The United States is ill-prepared to handle the myriad medical emergencies that would be unleashed by a nuclear attack by terrorists, a special report warns.
Instead, the absolute best strategy is to prevent such an attack from happening in the first place, said report author Dr. Robert Gale. He's a blood researcher with Imperial College London in the United Kingdom.
Many breast cancer patients say they've heard scary stories about radiation therapy, but their actual experience is usually better, new research finds.
The study of more than 300 women who underwent breast radiation found that almost half had heard "frightening" stories going into treatment. But only 2 percent ultimately agreed that the stories were true.
Before they go in for an X-ray, CT scan or MRI, patients may have questions about their screening. But new research finds at least one in every five people saying they received no information about their procedures beforehand.
"This is an important finding in today's health care system, where we want more patient engagement and involvement," said lead author Dr. Jay Pahade, an associa...