I could not help thinking about my friend Caroline Dopyera when I was working on this story. She died in 1997 from ovarian cancer, not long after this picture was taken. She was an energetic science writer who came to The News & Observer on a AAAS fellowship and stayed on. This picture was taken … Continue reading Writing about ovarian cancer and missing a friend — and science writer –who died from it.
Two items worth checking out. Robert Weisman's Globe story on technology to address hearing loss. Millions of boomers are now grappling with hearing loss — some of it caused by turning the volume to 11 — prompting companies to develop treatments that improve upon the expensive and often limited-value hearing aids and surgical implants that … Continue reading What? Boston Globe on new approaches to hearing loss
The Dana-Farber young adult cancer program dealt with an important issue at its recent conference -- battle metaphors and cancer. The language used to talk about cancer often focuses on battle words – those who are cured “won” or “survived,” while those who die from cancer “lost” their “fight.” But is cancer really something to … Continue reading In #Boston, young adults do battle with #cancer metaphors
The Globe's play on this story should say something -- Metro front rather than 1A. Malpractice stories are tricky-- serious charges and a response penned by a lawyer, not a doctor. (At 8 a.m., a complete version of the story was lingering on White Coat Notes, outside the paywall.) Note the Brigham's carefully worded statement … Continue reading Globe: BWH surgeon sues BWH over wife’s post-#hysterectomy #cancer diagnosis
Beth Israel CIO John Halamka usually blogs about health information with posts like "The EHR/HIE Interoperability Workgroup," and very occasionally, his life as a vegan or his plan to retire to a small family farm to raise organic vegetables. Today he reports the disturbing news of his wife’s breast cancer. They've decided to document her treatment in real … Continue reading Boston hospital CIO Halamka on his wife’s diagnosis: “We have cancer”
A staff editorial in today's Globe echoes comment made by prominent docs in town: The US Preventative Services Task Force went too far in calling for limits on prostate screening. A better course would be for physicians to talk with their patients about both the uncertainties inherent in the PSA test and the relative innocuousness of … Continue reading Boston Globe editorial: Prostate screening limits “too sweeping”
Fortune/CNN jumps all over Mass health reform …(T)he plans offer lavish subsidies that swell the demand for health care, they do nothing to increase the supply of medical services in a market suffering from shortages of everything from family doctors to nurses to hospital beds. Two years after enacting health-care reform to rein in costs, … Continue reading Health reform and cancer: Mass can’t get either one right?
For some help on how to process the tidal wave of cancer research news coming out of the American Society of Clinical Oncologists meeting, see Nature Network Boston. For an unfiltered view, Twitter is spewing information, including tweets from Dana Farber and Mass General.
In this week’s New Yorker, Malcolm Gladwell uses the history of leukemia drugs to get into a tale of the ongoing search for effective cancer treatments. He followed compound know as elesclomol from a successful Phase 2 studies through several Phase 3 clinical trials. His main character is emeritus Harvard researcher Lan Bo Chen, who co-founded … Continue reading Malcolm Gladwell on Massachusetts cancer research
Walt Bogdanich of the NY Times followed up on reports of radiation overdoses for cancer patients in Florida and Philadelphia. He found horrific medical errors and little oversight. His story ran on Sunday, 1/26. Americans today receive far more medical radiation than ever before. The average lifetime dose of diagnostic radiation has increased sevenfold since … Continue reading When life-saving radiation turns deadly