Cancer Archive


Cancer concerns from everyday products

Some products people use daily have been associated with increased cancer risks. Examples are aspartame, nonstick cookware, mattresses, cleaning products, and personal care products. While evidence is mixed, most consumer products confer low cancer risks, if any. People who are concerned about exposure to these common products should find alternatives. People can also reduce their overall cancer risks by stopping smoking, avoiding alcohol, exercising, and maintaining a healthy weight.

New guidelines aim to screen millions more for lung cancer

Lung cancer kills more Americans than any other cancer. The latest guidelines from the American Cancer Society aim to reduce deaths by considerably expanding the pool of people who seek annual, low-dose CT lung screening scans.

Quick bursts of activity tied to reduced cancer risks in people who don't exercise

In a 2023 study, people who didn't exercise regularly but accumulated three and a half minutes of vigorous daily activity (such as stair climbing) had a 32% lower risk for developing cancer, compared with non-exercisers who didn't do any vigorous activity.

Early breast cancer survival rates increasing

Death risk from breast cancer that's treated early appears to be falling, according to a large 2023 study. The risk of dying from the cancer within five years dropped from about 14% for women diagnosed in the 1990s to about 5% for women diagnosed between 2010 and 2015.

Screening advice that's not just skin deep

Melanoma kills about 8,000 Americans each year. Most people are at low risk of melanoma and don't need annual skin cancer screenings. People should be screened each year if they have risk factors such as dozens of atypical moles, a family history of melanoma or atypical moles, an earlier skin cancer, certain genetic mutations or predisposition, immune-suppressing therapy after organ transplantation or for inflammatory bowel disease, a history of blistering sunburns, or substantial tanning bed use.

National task force proposes updated breast cancer screening recommendations

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force released updated draft guidelines in May 2023 proposing that women at average risk of breast cancer be screened every other year starting at age 40.

Older women disproportionately diagnosed with advanced cervical cancer

A 2023 study indicates that women 65 and older are diagnosed with advanced cervical cancer more often than younger women, and they have a worse prognosis.

Silent suffering

Survivor's guilt includes strong, persistent feelings of sadness and remorse. Advances in cancer treatment have led to an unprecedented 18 million Americans who are cancer survivors, making survivor's guilt a possible psychological outcome for greater numbers. Survivor's guilt may be more common among people who have survived cancers with high death rates. Strategies to cope include taking time to grieve, seeking support from fellow survivors, and getting counseling to explore underlying contributors to feelings of guilt.

Preventing ovarian cancer: Should women consider removing fallopian tubes?

Ovarian cancer, which claims about 13,000 lives each year, is hard to detect in early stages. Recent guidance from professional groups recommends removing fallopian tubes to help prevent ovarian cancer if women are undergoing gynecologic surgery and are finished with childbearing.

Is snuff really safer than smoking?

The FDA authorized a brand of smokeless tobacco to use language in its advertising claiming that using snuff reduces risk of lung cancer compared to smoking cigarettes. Technically this is true, but it's not the health advantage the product's maker would like consumers to think it is.

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