Hartson facing cancer treatment
Ex-footballer John Hartson has recently been diagnosed with testicular cancer which has metastasized to his brain. The 34-year old professional football player was a striker for Wales and used to play in the English Premier League for Arsenal and Celtics but retired last year. He is currently undergoing treatment at Swansea Singleton Hospital.
Frank McCourt had wisdom to look back
The Pulitzer-prize winner frank McCourt died of cancer last Sunday, July 20. The New York-born Irish American author of the acclaimed autobiographical piece Angela’s Ashes was suffering from melanoma. He was 78.
The Beat Lives On
In its summer 2009 issue, CR magazine features reggae legend Bob Marley who died of metastatic melanoma almost 30 years ago. The article reviews what has changed in the field of melanoma treatment and management during the last 3 decades. According to Dr. Vernon K. Sondak, a surgical oncologist and melanoma specialist at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, Fla.
“Most people still don’t think of dark-skinned people as being at risk for skin cancer, and probably even fewer think that a melanoma might occur under a toenail. Still to this day, we have a hard time getting an early diagnosis when it’s a non-classic melanoma, meaning that it is in an unusual location, has an unusual presentation, or is in an unusual patient.”
News from drugmakers
UA pharmacy research shows prescribers miss potentially dangerous drug pairs
Drug-drug interactions can be dangerous and doctors should know what drugs should not be prescribed together. However, a research by the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy revealed that “a very low rate of recognition of these particular interactions [among prescribers] and some of these interactions are very common.” A potentially life-threatening interaction, for example, is between the widely used sildenafil (Viagra) and nitrates (e.g isosorbide mononitrate). The research also revealed that on average, 2.3 medications are prescribed during each doctor visit.
Europe attacks tactics that delay generic drugs
European authorities are attacking tactics by pharmaceutical companies to delay access to generic drugs. The European Commission just completed an 18-month inquiry into the case of several companies and certain “agreements” that may have breached anti-trust laws.
News from the cancer clinics
Dana-Farber is fifth highest ranked cancer center in the country
The US News and World Report has recently released its survey of medical facilities in the US. Once again, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute was ranked top cancer hospital in New England and 5th in the whole of the US. The top 4 places were taken by University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston (no.1), Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York (no. 2), Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore (no. 3) and Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. (no.4)