Being diagnosed with a serious illness is a frightening experience. It is important that you research and educate yourself about your disease and learn to communicate with your medical team. An informed patient gets better results.
The Patient Navigator Blog
Any serious diagnosis thrusts patients and their families into an unfamiliar world of doctors, tests and treatment options. Here are my suggestions as you begin the journey through illness.
Patient navigation and patient advocacy are dynamic and growing professions. This article explores the background and current landscape of patient navigation and advocacy.
The bewildering sensation of too much information, yet not enough knowledge to use it, is the reality for many people faced with a serious illness or condition. How do you decide what to do?
In a new study led by a physician at the Mayo Clinic’s facility in Phoenix and published in the journal Radiology, the investigators determined that the virtual technique was just as effective for patients over age 65 as those aged 50-65.
The Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network (CITN), announces plans to launch their first clinical trials later this year.
Cancer research continues to yield exciting breakthroughs as scientists learn more about the molecular and biological activity of cancer cells. Autophagy is one example.
Only 12% of Americans have proficient health literacy skills, so the majority of adults may have difficulty completing routine health tasks like understanding discharge instructions or diabetes care. There is a strong, independent association between health literacy and health outcomes.
There are multiple problems with regard to pain management in the United States, including a puritanical history that has contempt for suffering and enormous misunderstanding about pain management and addiction.
I received the news last week – two more friends have been diagnosed with breast cancer. I cried. This is the fourth friend in less than two years that has been diagnosed with cancer – a diagnosis that is frightening, life-altering and potentially life-ending. This isn’t fair. Why is this happening? These are all…
Women, in particular, are sometimes reluctant to seek a second opinion. Learn how and when a second opinion can be life-saving.
Every person has the right to fully participate in decisions regarding his or her own health care. This legal doctrine is called the right to informed consent. As a patient or caregiver, you have the right and responsibility to obtain as much information as you need to be able to commit to a course of treatment or testing process.
People who are multiracial are one of the fastest growing demographic groups in the United States. However, despite donor drives and new efforts to utilize social networking to increase the number of donors, they are also the most under-represented in the marrow registry.
People with chronic, unrelenting pain are often told it is “all in their head” and that they should see a psychologist. Palliative care doctors can help.
When her son’s pediatrician said she had never heard of the National Cancer Institute (www.cancer.gov), this young mom was blown away. Should she worry about entrusting her son’s care to a doctor who has never heard of this world-famous institution? Comments invited.
“Cyberchondriacs” spend hours at the computer screen, typing in symptoms, or fears, wading through the results, both accurate and inaccurate, and convincing themselves they have a certain condition. Often, they will print out reams of documentation and present themselves to their doctors, having already diagnosed their “condition” and determined a course of treatment.
A cancer diagnosis is an emotional earthquake, unleashing fear, anger, sadness, confusion and uncertainty. Depression is a condition that affects many cancer patients at one point or another. In fact, up to 1 in 4 people with cancer do have clinical depression. The good news is that clinical depression can be treated.
The March 4, 2010 New York Times included the following article which discussed the emerging profession of health navigators and patient advocates. Take a look. http://tinyurl.com/healthnavigatorNYT
Scientists have mapped specific genes that turn normal healthy cells into cancerous cells through The Cancer Genome Atlas Project (TCGA). Researchers have now developed a more reliable scientific method to identify these genes. As this research is shared around the world, more accessible and effective cancer treatment options are being discovered. The ultimate goal of the TCGA is to create a catalogue of these “defective” genes, thereby offering increased detection, and ultimately, better prevention and treatment of cancer.
Research has shown that dark chocolate improves blood vessel functioning, thus lowering blood pressure, taking stress off your heart and helping your blood circulate more efficiently. Dark chocolate also has antioxidant qualities, which come from flavonoids found in cocoa. So on Valentine’s Day, nothing says “I love you” like some delicious, dark chocolate
The Journal of General Internal Medicine recently released ethical guidelines addressing patient, physician, and caregiver relationships. The medical community is increasingly respecting the role of caregivers and offering guidance on how to develop that relationship.
Access to investigational therapies is a highly debated topic in the medical world. Investigational therapy involves drugs that are being scientifically tested but not yet approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Often these drugs are offered through programs such as “compassionate use programs,” and “expanded access programs” to allow seriously ill patients access…
We all have cancer cells in our bodies. The good news is that, for most of us, our body’s natural defenses know how to defeat these defective, tumor-causing cells, and they never get the chance to grow up into a full-blown cancer. Whether you’ve had cancer or not, any person who wants to improve their chances of avoiding cancer should read Dr. David Servan-Schreiber’s very important book called “Anti-Cancer – A New Way of Life.”
The words “clinical trials” can conjure up images of desperate medical experiments with little hope of success. In reality, medical advances and breakthroughs can and have resulted from clinical trials. Without them, we wouldn’t have many of the treatments we have today.