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Reflections on “Proton beam therapy reduces toxicity, increases survival in some GI cancers”

By: Scot Ackerman, M.D. -- While the current treatment for gastrointestinal cancers is chemoradiation followed by surgical resection, this treatment may increase the risk of toxicity in the cells of critical organs, like the kidneys or the lungs. This is where the benefits of proton therapy come into play.

Artie’s Experience, #3: My first treatment, in a word: Easy

"What about the radiation itself? How would that feel and how long would it take?" Artie tells the reader about his first proton therapy treatment for prostate cancer.

Lifestyle’s Impact on Prostate Cancer Risk: Diet, Exercise, Environment

By: Karen Ambrosio, Oncology Wellness Specialist -- About one man in seven will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime. Diet, lifestyle, environment, and genetics are all risk factors for developing prostate cancer. Studies suggest that nutritional and physical activity interventions, such as those explained below, may improve treatment outcomes and quality of life for men with prostate cancer.

Artie’s Experience, #2: Getting Ready for Proton Treatment

Each patient at Ackerman Cancer Center works with our multidisciplinary healthcare team to develop the treatment plan that is right for them. In this article, Artie discusses his pre-treatment imaging scans and simulations, and he and his wife take a "rehearsal" trip to Ackerman Cancer Center's Jacksonville office.

Can I Continue to Work during Cancer Treatment?

Many patients continue to work while undergoing cancer treatment. There may be financial considerations that make working a necessity, but work can also provide the patient with routine, normalcy, and social connection. Whether or not you will be able to work during cancer treatment depends on a number of factors, including your cancer stage, treatment type, overall health, and the kind of work you do.

Artie’s Experience, #1: Some Background on My Prostate Cancer and Proton Treatment

At age 62, Artie was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He had a successful prostatectomy, but seven years later, his PSA levels began to rise again, meaning there may be residual prostate cancer cells in his body. Here, Artie discusses his plan of action for fighting this recurrence.

Watermelon’s Influence on Cardiovascular Health

By: Karen Ambrosio, Oncology Wellness Specialist -- Watermelon contains about 6 percent sugar and 92 percent water by weight. Despite its high levels of water content, watermelon is a great source of potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin A. Watermelon is a rich natural source of lycopene, a carotenoid that packs a big antioxidant punch and provides its consumer with many potential health benefits.

“Warming Up” the Immune System to Fight Cancer

By: William Peters, M.D., Ph.D. -- Cancer cells frequently use "checkpoints" to hide from our immune systems. These checkpoints trick our bodies into believing that the tumor cells are normal, like our own healthy cells. Several immunotherapy drugs have been developed to stop the tumor checkpoints from working. This helps the immune system "warm up" to find and fight cancer cells over the long-term.

What You Need to Know about the FDA’s New Nutrition Labels

By: Karen Ambrosio, Oncology Wellness Specialist -- Last Friday, May 20, the FDA announced that it will reformulate the well-known Nutrition Facts Labels for packaged food. The agency’s goal is to provide easy-to-read labels to better aid consumers in making healthy food choices.

Go Green for a Long and Healthy Life

Want to live a longer life? Go green, say researchers at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health and at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. The researchers performed a study that surveyed the living arrangements of nearly 109,000 nurses over an eight-year period. As a result of their analysis, they found that women living near the most greenery had a 12 percent lower overall mortality rate than women residing near the lowest levels of greenery.

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