In the last few years, the advice on prostate cancer screening has been very confusing for patients, and front of mind for internists and urologists. It’s a pressing concern because in 2012 there were 28,000 deaths from prostate cancer. However, the best approach to screening is still controversial.
In 2009 and 2012, researchers published key trials on prostate cancer screening, and the results only added to the controversy. A large study done in the United States failed to find a benefit to early prostate cancer detection, whereas a large European study did. However, when I say the European study “did” find a benefit, it wasn’t that reassuring. According to a February issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, the European study found that for every 1,000 men screened, 37 cases of cancer would need to be detected and treated to prevent one death. Continue reading →
by Ross Levy, MD, Chief, Dermatology, Northern Westchester Hospital
As the days lengthen and the temperature climbs, you can’t help but head outdoors for fun in the sun. Before you grab your beach towel, you should take measures to protect your skin. Too much sun is the primary cause of most skin cancers. Despite what you may have heard, there’s no such thing as a healthy tan. Tanning is a sign of skin damages.
Why is sun such a problem? The light contains ultraviolet rays that trigger changes in the DNA of skin cells. Most of the time the body’s immune system tracks down these mutations and repairs them, but occasionally the damage is missed and skin cancer takes hold. The more sun you’re exposed to, the greater your risk. Continue reading →
In 2004, after completing a residency in plastic and reconstructive surgery at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas, I came to Northern Westchester Hospital and the Institute of Aesthetic Surgery for a fellowship in cosmetic surgery. I had a broad base of training in all elements of plastic surgery there, and had also spent time at MD Anderson Cancer Center to study microsurgical reconstruction as well. When I came to the Institute, I learned about a whole different type of breast reconstruction I had never been exposed to before: lumpectomy reconstruction. What I saw was the elegant marriage of two unique specialties blending into one: aesthetic oncology. Continue reading →
Follicular non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (follicular NHL) is the most common of the indolent (slow growing) non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas, and the second most common form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas overall. Low-grade follicular NHL is a slow growing but thus far incurable disease that patients tend to live with for many years.
The major goals of follicular NHL therapy are to reduce lymphoma activity thereby improving disease related symptoms and to prolong complete remissions, while limiting the side effects of therapy wherever possible. Rituximab is a highly targeted, well-tolerated therapy against these lymphomas. Given either alone or together with chemotherapy, it is the current standard of care for these patients. While using rituximab alone has a much lower potential for side effects, the remission rate is lower at approximately 30 – 50%.
I am the local lead investigator of two clinical trials—HOMER and CALGB 50901—being conducted at Northern Westchester Hospital to study a potential new therapy for follicular NHL.
Although not yet studied in follicular NHL, ofatumumab has induced remissions in patients with similar conditions resistant to other medications. Continue reading →
Finally, a Study on the Effects of Diet on the Progression of Prostate Cancer
by Dr. Josh Fink
It would be a huge step forward if, one day, Doctors could tell a man that what he eats directly impacts the progression of his disease. This information might empower our patients to directly affect their health on a daily basis based on their eating habits.
The “MEAL” study (or Men’s Eating and Living), sponsored by the National Cancer Institute, is designed to test whether a high-vegetable diet will lower risk for prostate cancer progression compared to a “standard” diet. The MEAL study is crucial to our understanding of the possible relation between consumption of food/food groups and the progression of prostate cancer.