Mammograms Pick Up Swelling Related To The Covid-19 Vaccine Study Says

When she found a lump in her left breast during a routine self-check, Boston primary care physician Dr. Devon Quasha knew exactly what to do. She immediately scheduled a diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound at Massachusetts General Hospital for early January.

Quasha didn’t notice much of a reaction to the vaccine at first, but a couple of days before her appointment her left arm began to hurt.
Tender, swollen lumps developed under her left armpit, along with a large swelling above her collarbone — all areas where there are lymph nodes, the body’s filters for germs.
“You have lymph nodes above and below your collarbone,” Quasha said. “You don’t want to feel those. It was scary when I felt it.”
Lymph nodes contain immune cells that help fight invaders. That’s why it made sense to Quasha that the nodes were reacting to the vaccine, building antibodies as they were designed to do. But she couldn’t be sure.
The swelling was only on the left side where she had gotten the shot — the same side as the worrisome lump. Was it a reaction to the vaccine or another sign of breast cancer?

‘It was like a wildfire’

After the ultrasound, Quasha’s radiologist was concerned. She told Quasha she considered the lump she had felt in her breast to be of little significance, but the lymph nodes that showed up as white blobs on her mammogram were another matter. In non-pandemic times, that finding would set off alarm bells, requiring the need for further investigation, even an immediate biopsy.
Yet Quasha had just had the vaccine. After talking it over with her, Quasha said her doctor decided not to do a biopsy at that time. Instead she told Quasha to come back for a follow-up ultrasound in six weeks.

“I cannot tell you how many women are showing nodes on mammograms and people thought it was going to be not that common,” said Lehman, who is also a professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School.
Tales of unnecessary biopsies spurred the patient care committee of the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) to put out an advisory in January: Ask your patients about their Covid-19 status, and record the date and which arm received the vaccine. Consider that before automatically scheduling a biopsy.
“We wanted to advocate that women don’t always need to have a biopsy,” said Dr. Lars Grimm, associate professor of radiology at Duke University School of Medicine and one of the authors of the SBI advisory. “Because oftentimes the default if you see swollen lymph nodes in a patient would actually be to recommend doing a biopsy.”
Mass General’s Lehman agreed. “When you hear hoofbeats, don’t think zebra,” she said. “If a woman had a vaccine in the arm on the same side, and the lymph nodes are swollen, this is a normal biological response. It’s totally expected. It just doesn’t make sense to start imaging.”
That does not mean that women who wish to be sure about their cancer status cannot have a biopsy, Grimm stressed. “You actually have some women who want to biopsy,” he said. “You might tell them, ‘Hey, I think this is due to your Covid vaccine, and I’m sure that it’s going to resolve in a few weeks on its own and you’re going to be fine.’ But that patient tells you, ‘I’m not going to be comfortable waiting, I want to know now.’ “

Focus on screening to save lives

For Quasha, the knowledge that many women were experiencing the same type of reaction to the vaccine was a welcome relief from worry. After a discussion with her doctor, she said she no longer needs the follow-up screening. “I was very reassured,” Quasha said. “The point here is that there are a number of side effects from the vaccine which are not dangerous but can sometimes increase patient anxiety.”
Instead of bringing women back in for an unnecessary ultrasound, radiology centers should be focused on scheduling women who have missed or are overdue on their mammogram, Lehman said.
“We need to take care of the large percentage of women who didn’t get screened because of the shutdowns during Covid,” she said. “At Mass General alone, we failed to screen 15,000 women because of Covid, and we’re still trying to get them back in.
“This isn’t where I need to start doing axillary ultrasounds, because someone had a vaccine and the node swelled. It’s just not being practical or pragmatic or putting our patient’s needs first,” she said. It’s not just breast cancer, Lehman stressed. Lymph nodes in other parts of the body are also reacting to the Covid-19 vaccines, causing people with other forms of cancer to undergo unnecessary procedures.
“There have been some false scares and some unnecessary biopsies because people didn’t think to ask, and they assume that the node was the cancer coming back,” she said.

What to do?

To avoid unnecessary worry, SBI recommends women schedule any routine, annual breast screening before getting the Covid-19 vaccine. If a woman has already had the vaccine, or is soon scheduled to do so, the society suggests waiting at least four to six weeks after the second dose before scheduling your appointment.
At Mass General, Lehman and her team have gone a step further. They are screening all women regardless of vaccine status, but telling those with no history of cancer that any swelling in the lymph nodes that might be connected to a Covid-19 vaccine is benign — meaning not cancerous.
“This follows the American College of Radiology recommendations that if you have a known inflammatory cause you can say it’s benign,” said Lehman, who recently published a paper on the hospital’s procedures.
“If their concern is a swelling or tenderness after the vaccine in their armpit, we suggest that they wait four to six weeks, talk to their doctor, and if it persists, then we have them come in to do an evaluation of it,” she said.
Whatever you do, experts stress, don’t skip getting your breast cancer screening when it is recommended. A study published Tuesday in the journal Radiology that followed over half a million women made the point clearly: Women who skip even one scheduled mammography screening before they are diagnosed with breast cancer have a significantly higher risk of dying. In fact, the risk of having a fatal breast cancer within 10 years of diagnosis was 50% lower for women who had regular breast screenings, the study said.

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Source: Mammograms pick up swelling related to the Covid-19 vaccine, study says – CNN

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New Technique From Cambridge Cancer Researchers Will Enable More Targeted Tumour Biopsies

Cancer researchers in Cambridge have developed an advanced computing technique using routine medical scans that could enable doctors to take fewer, but more accurate, tumour biopsies.

They have combined CT (computed tomography) scans with ultrasound images to create a visual guide for medics that enables them to use more targeted biopsies to sample the full complexity of a tumour.

One day the technique could even allow clinical biopsies to be replaced with virtual biopsies, to spare patients invasive procedures.

The research was led by Professor Evis Sala, from the Department of Radiology, co-lead of the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre’s advanced cancer imaging programme, who said: “This study provides an important milestone towards precision tissue sampling. We are truly pushing the boundaries in translating cutting-edge research to routine clinical care.”

Most cancer patients undergo one or several biopsies in order to capture their tumour’s heterogeneity – that is the full genetic variety of cells within it.

Understanding this is key for selecting the best treatment, as genetically different cells may respond differently to therapies.

Reducing the number of these biopsies, and ensuring they accurately sample the different cells is therefore crucial, particularly for ovarian cancer patients.

High grade serous ovarian (HGSO) cancer is the most common type of ovarian cancer and referred to as a ‘silent killer’ because its early symptoms can be hard to pick up. Survival rates have not improved much in 20 years.

HGSO tumours also have a high level of heterogeneity – and we know that patients with more genetically-different patches cancer cells tend to have poorer responses to treatment.

Top Stories on Cambridge Independent

Prof Sala leads a multi-disciplinary team of radiologists, physicists, oncologists and computational scientists using innovative computing techniques to reveal tumour heterogeneity from standard medical images.

The new study involved a small group of patients with advanced ovarian cancer, who were due to have ultrasound-guided biopsies prior to starting a course of chemotherapy.

Patients in the study first had a standard CT scan, which uses X-rays and computing to create a 3D image of the tumour, by taking multiple image ‘slices’ through the body.

The process of radiomics, which uses high-powered computing to analyse and extract additional information from the data-rich CT scan images, was then used to identify and map distinct areas and features of the tumour.

The researchers then superimposed the ultrasound image of the tumour and the combined image – which successfully captured the diversity of cancer cells – was used to guide the biopsy procedure.

Co-first author Dr Lucian Beer, from the Department of Radiology and CRUK Cambridge Centre ovarian cancer programme, said: “Our study is a step forward to non-invasively unravel tumour heterogeneity by using standard-of-care CT-based radiomic tumour habitats for ultrasound-guided targeted biopsies.”

Co-first author Paula Martin-Gonzalez, also from the programme, added: “We will now be applying this method in a larger clinical study.”

The study was welcomed by Fiona Barve, 56, a science teacher living near Cambridge, who was diagnosed with stage 4 ovarian cancer in 2017 after visiting her doctor with abdominal pain. She immediately underwent surgery and chemotherapy and has been cancer-free since March 2019.

Fiona, who is now back to teaching three days a week, said: “I was diagnosed at a late stage and I was fortunate my surgery, which I received within four weeks of being diagnosed, and chemotherapy worked for me. I feel lucky to be around.

“When you are first undergoing the diagnosis of cancer, you feel as if you are on a conveyor belt, every part of the journey being extremely stressful. This new enhanced technique will reduce the need for several procedures and allow patients more time to adjust to their circumstances. It will enable more accurate diagnosis with less invasion of the body and mind. This can only be seen as positive progress.”

The feasibility study involved researchers from the Department of Radiology, CRUK Cambridge Institute, Addenbrooke’sl, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and collaborators at Cannon, and was facilitated through the CRUK Cambridge Centre Integrated Cancer Medicine programme.

The progamme’s aim is to revolutionise cancer treatment using the integration of complex patient data from multiple sources – blood tests, biopsies, medical imaging, and genetic tests – to inform and predict the best treatment decisions for each individual.

The study was funded by Cancer Research UK and The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research.

Read more

The breast cancer scan developed by CRUK Cambridge Institute that could replace invasive tissue biopsies

Babraham Institute study of Oxford University’s Covid-19 vaccine underscores importance of second dose

By Paul Brackley

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Phospho Biomedical Animation

Being able to easily track cancer is vital in all stages of the disease. Doctors have long been able to monitor the disease with scans and by taking small tissue samples (biopsies), but now a new technique is becoming available to them: the liquid biopsy, which can deliver a lot of detailed information about a patient’s tumour from a simple blood sample. So how does it work? Inside a tumour, cells are growing at a high rate, but while many cancer cells are growing, some are also dying in a process called apoptosis. As dying cancer cells break up, they release fragments of their DNA. Some of that DNA can get into the blood stream, after which it’s called circulating tumour DNA (or ctDNA). This circulating tumour DNA is ready for scientists to fish out with a simple blood sample. Because of advances in DNA sequencing technology, doctors can pick up on these traces of DNA, and use them to track the mutations present in a cancer. Finding out this information helps doctors keep track of a patient’s tumour and whether treatment is working, or find out early if a new scan or different treatment is needed. For more information, see http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.o…http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.o..

Collateral Damage Of Covid-19: More Than 200 International Cancer Trials Suspended

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As we continue to treat and discharge patients with Covid-19 from hospitals throughout the US, we are acutely aware of patients avoiding the ER for fear of contracting Covid-19.Messaging that reflects not only the safety but necessity of seeking care in the setting of life threatening conditions is vitally important to assure the health of the American people.

Deaths from heart attacks, strokes and sepsis, reflected in data measuring excess mortality—deaths beyond what we would have solely expected from Covid-19—remind us of the “other” casualties of the pandemic.But other types of casualties from the pandemic include cancer patients, many of whom have not been able to receive necessary surgeries or treatment during the height of the lockdown, along with those who may have not been able to be enrolled in trials using investigational approaches and novel therapies.

“The battle against cancer is formidable even in normal circumstances; Covid-19 adds to this battle by not only predisposing this population to higher morbidity and mortality but has also forced the majority of the cancer institutions in the U.S. to shut down the clinical trials in cancer patients to deal with the present crisis”, said Wasif M. Saif, M.D., Deputy Physician-in-Chief and Medical Director, Northwell Health Cancer Institute, Lake Success, New York,

“I call the Covid-19 pandemic and cancer situation a “two-front war“. The first fight is with cancer — a disease that claims 600,000 lives each year in the U.S. Data from published studies during this pandemic clearly suggests cancer was associated with an increased risk of death of patients three times higher than those without cancer, and also increased intensive care unit admission and ventilation support,” added Saif.

With these issues in mind, there is no doubt that efforts to conduct medical research in just about every discipline has been significantly affected by the pandemic. Certainly, oncology is one area where ongoing research is vital to impacting patient mortality and decisions regarding cutting edge treatments.

In fact, based on findings of a recent study, more than 200 international cancer trials have been suspended as a result of disruption of normal clinical operations globally from Covid-19. The effects were most apparent in the US and in Europe, but also in Asia to some degree, based on the results of the study. The effects of this disruption will likely be incalculable in terms of progress and mortality data that we may see both in the near and long term.

Researchers analyzed data from ClinicalTrials.gov looking specifically at patient enrollment during the critical early months of the pandemic. They used a survey to understand the effects on 36 investigators (between March 23 to April 3) conducting cancer- related clinical trials at various institutions across multiple countries. A separate analysis by a health care data analytics firm, IQVIA, also looked at the factors affecting more than 200 ongoing clinical trials.

Results of the survey demonstrated that 60% of institutions in the US and 86% in Europe are enrolling now enrolling patients at a reduced rate compared to prior to the pandemic. The main factors affecting enrollment, based on survey data, included lack of access to patients themselves during the lockdown, investigator concern related to patient safety, lack of research staff, along with mode of cancer treatment and type of cancer.

At the time of the survey in March to early April of 2020, it was noted that patient enrollment in clinical trials had precipitously declined, particularly in the US and in Europe. In fact, only 20% of institutions in the US and 14 % in Europe resumed enrollment at their pre-pandemic rate. Meanwhile, about 60% of the enrollments in Asia had not changed.

If you look at institutions that continued to conduct trials with reduced enrollment rates, 23% cited patient care and type of cancer therapy encompassing the route of administration, as two of the main considerations adversely affecting patient enrollment. Additional concerns included lack of research or support staff, resources, and well as patient safety. Aside from this, risk vs. benefit was the primary consideration for patients being enrolled in ongoing trials.

Similar trends were also observed in the case of initiating new trials with patient care, type of cancer therapy, and route of administration being the main considerations. Researchers also expressed concern about therapy that required IV administration compared with oral approaches, since oral medications could be taken in the home setting.

In evaluating regulatory and operational challenges related to Covid-19 patients overwhelming healthcare systems, nearly 60% of researchers said that Covid-19 had moderate or high impact leading to delayed or cancelled patient visits, and close to 80% of researchers believed that such protocol irregularities would lead to incomplete records and research.

“The biggest delayed consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic would probably be in delaying cancer drug development, with its own consequences both for the cancer patients as well as for the pharmaceutical industry,” said Saif. Beyond this, financial considerations also come into play in any calculation regarding the toll of the pandemic on cancer clinical trials.

“Sites have to bear the brunt of an ever-changing clinical landscape while tackling potential loss of revenue,” explained Saif. “In clinical research, a major portion of site revenue comes from industry sponsored trials. Payments to sites are based on enrollment, patient visits completed and timely data entry. In many sites, enrollment to studies had to be limited to ensure patient and staff safety.  Concern for safety has also led to the cancellation of many non-essential study procedures. Less recruitment and more cancellations mean less revenue sites will receive.”

The use of alternative technologies to reduce the need for in-person visits for research and evaluation was crucial during the pandemic. Such approaches included telemedicine, but also virtual monitoring of data and study documentation, as well as remote electronic health record access for those conducting patient evaluation and follow-up. Directly shipping drugs to patients as well as avoidance of specific immunosuppressive regimens also constituted ways that researchers altered their approaches to conducting research.

“The Covid-19 pandemic gave all of us a crash course of telehealth and provided a new tool to interact and manage cancer patients,” offered Saif. “But it is important to remember that this is a population who was previously reluctant to digital communication—even in a blizzard, I remember having 80% patients showing up.”

Saif further said that “Telehealth can help us to interview but misses the human touch, and most importantly physical examination which in some cases is crucial including measurement of a tumor mass or others.”On the upside, Saif stressed that” it [telehealth] can offer a platform to manage immunocompromised patients and carries the potential to see second-opinions in a quick manner allowing us to save resources at the same time.”

Data from ClinicalTrials.gov noted that more than 200 interventional oncology trials were suspended during the months of March and April—62 suspended during March and 139 suspended during April. Looking at the breakdown of suspended trials, 29 were phase 1, 72 phase II, 11 phase III, with the remainder classified as “other”.

Saif sums it up simply: “ The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we treat cancer and perform cancer trials; first and foremost, we need to carve out a long-term plan to care for our patients in anticipation of another wave of COVID-19 now or in Fall.”

“We not only need to resume the clinical research but gain acceleration urgently to move on with development of cancer drugs simultaneously with treatments for Covid-19,” he offered. “But don’t forget the human factor, “the fear” by the patients and their families to return to cancer centers – we need to reassure that we are a safe facility. This pandemic has forced us to culminate a rationalization basis for cancer services, both diagnostic and therapeutic. Not only institutions were required to develop guidelines under multidisciplinary teams, but many national and governmental organizations also laid out guidelines about who and how to treat.”

“This pandemic not only stretched health systems in terms of constraints related to workforce of health care providers due to their own illness or family members but also threatened to exhaust the assets, including capacity of hospital beds, ventilators, PPE introduced by the financial impact of COVID-19. It is hoped that the effect of this rationalization in cancer care will last long and allow us to analyze and fix the issues of health disparity, such as access to cancer services, socioeconomic and ethnic differences,” concluded Saif.

Going forward, it will be vital to mitigate the impact of future shutdowns on ongoing cancer trials, not to mention basic cancer care and surgeries. This will help to guide us in the future with a clear plan when the next pandemic strikes.

“The current paradigm for clinical trials in the U.S. requires both patient and researcher to be in direct contact with one another—a patient enrolled in a clinical trial receives the cancer care prescribed by the trial at the hospital the researcher is at,” said Miriam A. Knoll, M.D., DABR, a radiation oncologist, and a Forbes healthcare contributor, “With the advent of expanded telehealth coverage across the U.S. due to COVID-19, researchers have an unprecedented opportunity to expand access to clinical trials.”

“The next major hurdle will be how quick the regulatory oversight of trials can be adapted to these new researcher-volunteer relationships, to ensure optimal care, safety, and research integrity,” Knoll added.

Follow me on Twitter. Check out my website.

I am an emergency physician on staff at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, where I have practiced for the past 15 years. I also serve as an adviser and editor to Medscape Emergency Medicine, an educational portal for physicians, and an affiliate of WebMD. My other time is spent with my private house call practice, DR 911, providing medical care to both travelers and residents in Manhattan. I have a keen interest in medical technology and public health education.

Source: https://forbes.com

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Dr. Cardinale B. Smith, Chief Quality Officer for Cancer, shares information cancer patients need to know regarding COVID-19.

How to Think About Your Cancer Care in the Time of COVID-19

Getting the news that you have cancer is overwhelming and frightening. The COVID-19 crisis adds another layer of anxiety. But know this: you can protect yourself from COVID-19 without compromising your cancer treatment. Don’t panic. In the vast majority of cases, a diagnosis of cancer is not an emergency even though it feels like one. There is time to learn about your options and sort out what is right for you.

For now, there will be changes to how we do things. Some of the changes will feel disruptive, but many will lead to better, more patient-centered care. Minimizing your chances of exposure to the virus doesn’t require sacrificing good care.

How you interact with your cancer care team will change during this period.
In keeping with directives to shelter in place, whenever possible, your visits will be by phone or video. In-hospital appointments will be kept to a minimum to reduce your potential for exposure.

Your treatment/screening schedule may change. Your care team will reschedule or delay treatment when it is safe to do so, without compromising the effectiveness of your treatment.

Many oncology societies have issued guidance for care *. Your care team will know best about your particular situation. Your cancer care teams are still at work.

If you are newly diagnosed with invasive cancer

There are safe ways to postpone surgery. Systemic therapies (chemotherapy, hormone therapy, biologics and immuno-oncology treatments) are already a part of cancer care. Starting with that therapy before surgery (neoadjuvant therapy) is a great approach and is not only equally safe but allows us to learn how your tumor responds, if additional treatment will help, and whether aggressive surgical procedures or radiation can be avoided. We use this for breast cancer routinely. Switching the order of therapy helps tailor your treatments to response.

If you are in the middle of chemotherapy treatments, you should continue. Your doctors may take more precautions to support your blood counts. Stay home. Have others grocery shop for you. Your physicians may have you come in less often and have your caregivers/support accompany you by phone/video.

A new precancerous/high risk lesion (Ductal Carcinoma in situ (DCIS), atypical lesions, cervical neoplasia) is not an emergency. Waiting a few months is safe and active surveillance and prevention medications are possible alternatives.

If you are waiting to start radiation, your radiation oncologist will prioritize when to start. For some, waiting up to 12 weeks is safe. Shorter courses of treatment may be appropriate and just as safe.

If you are due for routine cancer screening, don’t go in now for mammograms, lung CT, or repeat imaging for low risk findings. Waiting 3 months will not change your outcome.

If you have recently learned that you are at VERY high risk, because you have inherited a mutation that increases your risk for developing cancer, you can get a video consult, learn about options for risk-reduction and screening, and schedule appropriate screening 3 months out.

If you are a cancer survivor, follow-ups and screening can be safely put off 3 months.

If you have a new mass or a new symptom that worries you, that may be reason to go in for imaging or an exam. Cancer clinics are open to care for you. You can always start with a video-visit.

Why it is important to triage surgical cases – We still need to put the infrastructure in place and scale up the tools we need to take care of everyone safely. This includes COVID testing, personal protective equipment, beds, blood supply, and ventilators in place for safe care of cancer patients in the operating rooms and hospitals. Postponing surgical procedures using multidisciplinary approaches can also allow combined reconstructive cases to proceed safely. If everyone stays home now, we prevent our health care system from being overwhelmed, so emergent and urgent cases can proceed. As COVID testing becomes widely available, we can safely resume surgical procedures, and allow loved ones to be present. When possible, facilities will be separated for COVID and non-COVID related care.

The silver lining is that a crisis drives innovation and patient centered care. We have a strong foundation of science and clinical studies upon which to build, more effective treatments, more options and a better understanding of how to personalize care. We can safely do less for those with very low risk tumors, and more for those that need it. Even without COVID, we should be tailoring treatment to risk, biology, and evolving clinical data. When it is safe to do less, that is actually a benefit. This is a time when acting on such data is particularly important.

Many cancer research studies have been put on hold, but not all, and COVID 19 studies are starting in earnest**. Once the worst of the crisis passes, and COVID testing is in place, we need to safely re-open research studies because finding new and better ways to treat cancer is essential.

If everyone helps to do their part, we will all get through this better as a community, making sure we do what is best for you and everyone going through this incredibly challenging health pandemic.

Stay home, help flatten the curve, and know that we are here for you.

Resources

*Clinical guidance

https://www.asco.org/asco-coronavirus-information/care-individuals-cancer-during-covid-19

https://www.nccn.org/covid-19/

https://www.breastsurgeons.org/management/practice/covid19

https://www.facs.org/covid-19/clinical-guidance/elective-case/colorectal-cancer

https://www.facs.org/covid-19

https://www.ucsfhealth.org/education/breast-care-in-the-time-of-covid-19

**Research guidance

https://www.nih.gov/health-information/coronavirus

https://www.thewisdomstudy.org/

By Dr. Laura Esserman  April 28, 2020 6:30 AM EDT

Source: How to Think About Your Cancer Care in the Time of COVID-19

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Dr. Cardinale B. Smith, Chief Quality Officer for Cancer, shares information cancer patients need to know regarding COVID-19.

These Superfoods Can Stop Cancer, Heart Disease, Obesity, And So Much More

In an age where most of our food options are nutritionally deficient and loaded with fats, salts, and carbs, it’s hard to know exactly what to eat to have that well rounded and healthy diet. Introducing: Superfoods. These foods are naturally grown and loaded with important nutrients and antioxidants that fight against everything from your everyday cold to terminal diseases. If you’re looking to prevent issues like high blood pressure, obesity, high cholesterol, clogged arteries, and diabetes, a healthy diet matters most. Some simple changes to your diet and routine exercise are directly correlated to a longer, happier, and healthier life. Read on about the amazing powers of these superfoods and how they can help you live the kind of life you’ve always wanted!

Oranges

Next time you pass by the fruit section of the grocery store, make sure to pick up some oranges. This fruit not only provides the body with tasty hydration, but is also high in various nutrients, fiber, and Vitamin C. The secret behind the power of oranges is in their high levels of pectin, a soluble fiber that naturally gets rid of the cholesterol found in your body. And if you thought bananas were the only fruit with potassium, think again! Oranges have an extraordinary amount of potassium, which gets all that extra sodium out of your system so that your blood pressure naturally returns to a healthy level. Best of all, the potassium in oranges neutralizes proteins that can scar the development of heart tissue and lead to heart failure.

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Kale

The popularity of kale has grown substantially in recent years, and now it’s difficult to find a supermarket that doesn’t carry it! This is great news if you’re looking to stop the onset of heart disease. Kale has a variety of nutrients that regulate your cardiovascular system which regulate the function of vital organs, including your heart. You might not believe that kale has way more omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and fiber than most other vegetables out there! As an added bonus, it has low calorie and fat content, so if you haven’t been adding kale to your meals already, it’s time to get started!

Kale

Garlic

Garlic is well-known for its ability to repel vampires, but did you know that it has superfood properties that make it a worthy addition to your diet? Garlic has been proven to lower blood pressure and reduce the plaque in your arteries that can lead to heart problems. But wait, there’s more! Garlic can also decrease the number of enzymes that constrict your blood vessels. If you’re not a fan of the taste or lingering smell of garlic, a great alternative is to take a garlic supplement in the form of a pill. Studies show that this method of ingestion reduces the build-up of plaque in the arteries by as much as 50%!

Garlic

Chocolate

We have some good news for all you chocolate lovers out there! We all know this sweet treat helps with our mood, but did you know that it also reduces the chance of heart disease and strokes? A new study from Harvard found that people who regularly ingested raw cocoa showed absolutely no signs of hypertension and in fact, their blood pressure reduced! This is because dark chocolate has an antioxidant called flavnols, and eating a small and regular amount can lower blood pressure and lower the chances of heart-related diseases.

Chocolate

Lentils

Lentils are a great superfood already part of many diets around the world. Besides being a great way to add some flavor to salads or other dishes, lentils have tons of great health benefits. This powerful legume reduces the risk of strokes and heart disease. Lentils have high amounts of proteins, potassium, and magnesium, and this combination has been shown to regulate blood pressure, decrease high levels of cholesterol, and eliminate dangerous plaque build-up in blood vessels.

Lentils

Almonds

Who knew that such a tasty nut could boost your IQ? Almonds are a popular snack choice, but did you know their unique mix of nutrients has been shown to increase intelligence and memory? As if that wasn’t reason enough to grab a handful, they also lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes. The reason is that almonds have a high level of plant sterols, which prevent your body from absorbing bad LDL cholesterol that can lead to cardiovascular disease.

Almonds

Pomegranates

Pomegranates are a great addition to salads, smoothies, and shakes. If their great taste wasn’t convincing enough to add it to your pantry, this fantastic superfood harbors an excellent mix of antioxidants that protect the accumulation of plaque on the walls of your arteries. If warding off heart disease isn’t reason enough, scientists have found that the fruit helps prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, strokes, cancer, diabetes, and also helps keep your skin, joints, and liver healthy and in working order! Oh, and pomegranates also help your teeth look great.

Pomegranates

Blueberries

Have you ever found yourself craving… blueberries? This superfood is part of the family of berries that regulate blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and reduce plaque build up in arteries. Each berry is jam-packed with essential nutrients and antioxidants that are so powerful that they stop some types of cancer right in their tracks! Last but not least, they help lower the risk of heart disease. Now that’s what we call a superfruit!

Blueberries

Beets

These purple vegetables are unique in their color and in the high levels of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Unlike other vegetables, they contain B-vitamin folate and betaine. Studies have shown that this colorful addition to salads brings down homocysteine levels in the blood, which reduces the chances of developing heart disease. Moreover, beets have been found to mysteriously strengthen various organs and eliminate the chances of contracting certain forms of cancer.

Beets

Green Tea

Green tea recently became popularized in the West thanks to lattes and other tasty drinks. This herbal drink is a superhero when it comes to the number of antioxidants it contains. Just one cup of green tea can stimulate the reduction of plaque in arteries, lower bad cholesterol levels, and also improve heart regularity and overall health.

Green Tea

Salmon

Salmon has always been a restaurant staple for its fantastic taste, but did you know this type of fish has enough omega-3 fatty acids to stop the onset of heart disease? The combination of nutrients and good fats found in the fish can reduce triglyceride levels, open up closed off blood vessels, and stop the occurrence of blood clots.

Salmon

Turmeric

Turmeric is the best ingredient to enhance the flavor of any kind of curry. This spice has been a part of medical treatments in the East for centuries, but only recently has it entered the diets of those living in other parts of the world. Recently, scientists have isolated the active compound that makes turmeric a superfood. Curcumin, specifically found in turmeric, has been found to block cardiac hypertrophy, also known as heart enlargement. Turmeric also fights against obesity, high blood pressure, and lowers the chances of developing heart disease.

Tumeric

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds taste great in pudding or as an addition to any kind of smoothie. These tiny seeds are among the world’s best superfoods. They’re loaded with protein, antioxidants, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. Better yet, they’re super low in calories! Their combination of nutrients and antioxidants work hard to lower your cholesterol, lower the risk of a plethora of diseases, and keep your heart healthy and strong — no pills necessary!

Chia Seeds

Apples

We’ve all heard the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” That old adage isn’t far from the truth! Apples are a commonly overlooked superfood that have incredible amounts of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. That apple a day lowers blood pressure and reduces the chances of developing heart disease. The best news is that, since there are so many varieties of apples, you’re bound to find one that you like! Or, if you get bored, you can always switch it up for a new tasty flavor.

Apples

Avocados

Avocados are a tasty addition to your meal or snack, any time of day! They are probably the one kind of superfood we could never live without. In addition to being amazingly delicious and versatile, avocados have tons of antioxidants, potassium, and monounsaturated fats. This combination promotes the health of your heart and also reduces the chances of developing heart disease.

Avocadoes

Eggplant

These fantastic purple vegetables are great grilled or baked, as well as in a  cold vegetable dish. They have high amounts of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, flavonoids, and even nasunin! These purple vegetables are your cardiovascular system’s best friend because they increase circulation, lower cholesterol levels, prevent blood clots, and also reduce the risk of heart disease. Your brain might also enjoy your next eggplant dish, too! They help prevent cell membrane damage and ward off cancers in brain tissue.

Eggplant

Broccoli

Broccoli might be one of the most dreaded dinner vegetables for children and teens, but these little green trees are an excellent source of nutrition for your heart. So as an adult, we hope you’ve overcome your dislike for this green giant because it’s an excellent addition to stir-frys, pasta, and sometimes even salads! Broccoli is known to lower cholesterol and keep your blood vessels healthy and strong. This superfood is rich in sulforaphane, which helps with problems related to blood sugar issues.

Brocolli

Carrots

Carrots are a great crunchy snack by themselves or paired with ranch, hummus, or other delicious dips. They are also a food that keeps your heart in tip-top shape, and in fact, can help you see better at night! This orange superfood has high levels of carotenoids and this antioxidant fights against the free radicals that can lead to heart disease. Carrots also have an abundance of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Vitamin C, and a ton of other nutrients as well. This combination of vitamins and nutrients have been studied and seen to fight against the onset of cancer, promote healthy bone growth, and maintain a healthy nervous system.

Carrots

Chicken

Chicken is the first superfood listed that isn’t a fruit or vegetable, and that’s for a very good reason! This amazingly lean meat has less saturated fat and cholesterol than any other red meat. Because of its health benefits compared to red meat, meat eaters often choose baked, stir-fried, or grilled chicken over that cholesterol-dense burger option for dinner.

Chicken

Chickpeas

Chickpeas are much more than the tasty main ingredient of everyone’s favorite side dish: hummus. While small and seemingly innocuous, these little peas are packed with nutrition for your heart. Each one of these little legumes is loaded with potassium, fiber, Vitamin B-6, and Vitamin C. More than any other legume out there, chickpeas use this special combination of nutrients to reduce your chances of developing heart disease.

Chickpeas

Coffee

We have some fantastic news for the coffee drinkers of the world! A new study has shown that coffee actually helps your heart (in addition to being a great start to your day). Moderate coffee intake reduces the risk of heart failure, coronary heart disease, and even stroke! Hold on, I’m getting my french press.

Coffee

Cranberries

Cranberries might be tart on their own, but they’re a staple juice in households around the world, and also a staple Thanksgiving dessert for Americans. These berries are high in antioxidants, and just like blueberries, they reduce the chances of developing heart disease. Regular cranberry intake also reduces the chances of contracting a urinary tract infection and lowers the chances of developing stomach ulcers and cancer.

Cranberries

Figs

Figs are one of the most underrated fruits at the grocery store! Raisins, dates, and figs all contain the essential vitamins and minerals necessary to maintain a healthy heart. This versatile fruit can be eaten raw, cooked, dried, or even in the form of a jam. Figs are high in fiber and calcium, and these two work together to keep your heart healthy and astoundingly reverse the effects of heart disease.

Figs

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds are essential to any diet that doesn’t include fish or nuts. This is because flax seeds are very high in Omega-3 fatty acids which help maintain a healthy heart. Flax seeds can be sprinkled onto smoothies or salads. One tablespoon of these seeds has more estrogen, antioxidants, and other nutrients than many other seeds!

Flax Seeds

Red Hot Chili Peppers

Excuse the comparison, but besides making for a fantastic rock band, this terrifyingly spicy vegetable is, in fact, great for your heart! The tiny terrors contain capsaicin, and this neuropeptide helps lower cholesterol levels and maintain a healthy blood pressure. While they are a great addition to your diet for heart health, it might not be a good idea to ingest them whole, sort of like this guy! If you’re up for the challenge, make sure to have your water ready!

Chilli Pepper

Ginger

If you’re a sushi-lover, we have great news for you! This wonderfully-smelling spice has been linked to maintenance of a healthy heart. You might be surprised to learn that a small daily intake of ginger can lower the risk of developing coronary heart disease and even hypertension. It’s no wonder that this superfood has been a vital part of recipes for centuries.

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Grapefruit

Grapefruit is an exotic fruit in both appearance and taste. The reason for this is because the pink fruit is loaded with nutrition. This delicious fruit has high levels of potassium, lycopene, choline, and vitamin C; now that’s not a combination you see every day! Grapefruit helps keep your heart healthy and is also included in the highly recommended DASH diet. It also helps lower blood pressure.

Grapefruit1

Source: http://www.crowdyfan.com/worldwide/heart-attack-cancer

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In July 2013 Alison Gannett was found to have a deadly baseball-sized malignant cancerous brain tumor in her frontal lobe. After an initial partial surgery, Alison has forgone traditional approaches and instead has used a ketogenic diet, DNA testing, and a new lifestyle to starve the remaining cancer cells and provide health to the rest of her body. Her new goal is to help others customize their diets and lifestyles to either prevent cancer or conquer cancer, and also to start ketogenic cooking camps at their farm. For More Info visit: http://www.lakanto.com/ambassador/ali… How is Monkfruit Sweetener Made: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9Q_T… The Story of Lakanto: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2J0v7… Monk Fruit Recipes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9UfO… _______ “For the last several years I’ve been doing a therapeutic ketogenic diet which is very high levels of fat, two and a half cups of fat a day, nine cups of low glycemic vegetables and I’ve been using that to treat my terminal malignant brain cancer because cancer can only ferment glucose so I deprive it of glucose and give it plenty of fatty acids and it can’t grow or spread or do anything. My name is Allison Gannett and we’re here at Holy Terror farm which is where I live and work. I have many different hats for occupations. I’m a cancer survivor a ketogenic diet coach. I’m a world champion extreme skier and a climate change consultant. In 2013, I started behaving very strangely and one day I almost burned the house down making bacon and at that moment my husband knew that I wasn’t just acting bizarrely—that something was truly wrong. He brought me to the emergency room and they found a baseball-sized tumor in my brain and the diagnosis was terminal malignant brain cancer. They rushed me into surgery and said please sign this paper—I don’t even remember signing the paper nor do I remember them you know telling me the odds of coming out of a brain surgery that severe were not good. They extracted one baseball-sized tumor out of the front of my brain—you can see the little dent my head right here and the scar is actually hidden up here in my hairline—very nice that they can do that these day—and they did miss another tumor right here by my ear. I call him Junior and he is kind of my barometer anytime I want to eat something sugary or carb-y, I think about junior as a little Pacman and it keeps me from ever cheating. So a friend of a friend suggested that I get in touch with Dr. Nasha winters of Optimal Terrain Consulting immediately. She put me on the ketogenic diet. The amazing thing about being on this diet that I never expected is not only is it yummy and delicious but it’s had a lot of interesting side effects that I never expected. My Polycystic Ovarian Disease has completely disappeared in two years. My Hashimoto’s thyroiditis was gone in eighteen months. My breast fibroids were gone in five months and those probably would have turned into [they were worried about] cancer with those. You know, I make recipes of all my favorite foods that I used to like like macaroni and cheese and pizza and ice cream and brownies. I figured out how to make all of those without sugar and Lakanto been key for that for me because it’s the first non-glycemic sweetener that actually tastes good. When my doctor put me on the ketogenic diet, my first thought was what do I eat, you know? how do I get all this fat in my diet and what do I do to replace all the things I love like where’s my ice cream? Where’s my brownies? Where’s my pancakes? And at first I just deprived myself of all that food and that wasn’t very fun. And then I started playing with some recipes and trying some different alternative sweeteners. I grew stevia and yokan and tried flavoring things with those and they were okay but it wasn’t what I remembered. And then my husband was trying all my recipes and he hated everything! He thought all the sweeteners—he was just making horrible faces every time I made ice cream—and then one day I ordered Lakanto on the internet and I made ice cream–vanilla ice cream and I handed it to him and he had this big smile on his face and he was like: “this is the best ice cream I’ve ever had!” I couldn’t believe it! He hadn’t liked anything I’d made in over a year and a half so ever since then we’ve used nothing but. I could have my cake eat it to. Cure my brain cancer and have a brownie and ice cream for lunch every day. I sometimes have ice cream and brownie for breakfast–but I still get my nine cups of veggies in every day. When I help other people with my coaching, to have them use the ketogenic diet for cancer or for Alzheimer’s or diabetes–it has to be delicious for them in the same way. It’s delicious for me so I helped them recreate their favorite recipes and having a sweetener that is palatable, yummy and non glycemic non GMO is so important to me and to them.”

A Low-Fat Diet May Lower the Risk of Dying from Breast Cancer

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Breast cancer treatments have come a long way in recent decades, but understanding how to prevent tumors from forming in the first place has been a major challenge.

In a new study being presented at the annual American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting in Chicago next month, researchers report intriguing evidence that a low-fat diet, similar to the kind doctors recommend for heart health, is also linked to a lower risk of dying from breast cancer.

The study analyzed data from the Women’s Health Initiative, a large trial sponsored by the National Institutes of Health that studies the health effects of hormone therapy, diet and certain supplements on the health of more than 160,000 postmenopausal women. In this trial, researchers led by Dr. Rowan Chlebowski, an investigator at LA Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, focused on a group of nearly 49,000 women who were randomly assigned to follow either a low-fat diet or a control diet for 8.5 years. The low-fat diet group aimed to reduce their fat intake to 20% of their total daily calories and to increase the consumption of fruit, vegetables and grains. None of the women had breast cancer at the start of the study.

After the study ended, the rates of new breast cancers were about the same in the two groups, but women who were diagnosed with breast cancer in the interim had a 35% lower risk of dying from any cause compared to those on the control diet. Even 20 years after the study ended, the women who ate the low-fat diet continued to have a 15% lower mortality risk. And in the longer follow-up data, their risk of dying specifically from breast cancer was 21% lower than that of the women who didn’t change their diet.

“This is a very exciting result for us,” says Chlebowski. “Now we have randomized clinical trial evidence that dietary moderation, which is achievable by many, can have health benefits including reducing risk of death from breast cancer. That’s pretty good; it’s hard not to be happy about that.”

The study is the first to rigorously test a potential factor that could influence deaths from breast cancer. Earlier observational studies did not assign volunteers to specific diets but looked at cancer outcomes depending on what people, on their own, chose to eat. In this study, volunteers were provided with dietary guidelines to follow about what to eat. “Until this study, we lacked any data from a prospective randomized control trial, which is the gold standard, for showing that a dietary approach really does reduce the risk of dying from breast cancer,” says Dr. Neil Iyengar, a medical oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, who was not involved in the study. “Many of us who are proponents of considering diet and exercise in the cancer treatment plan are excited by this trial data because it is the first to show in a very robust way that we can improve outcomes and prevent cancer-related deaths just by changing the diet.”

In a separate sub-study, the research team also showed that the longer women were on the modified diet, the lower their risk of death during the study period. The results should give doctors more confidence in considering diet when discussing treatment options with women who are diagnosed with breast cancer. While the study did not find a significant connection between dietary changes and the incidence of new breast cancer, the results do suggest that modifying the diet can lower a woman’s risk of dying from any cause, or from breast cancer, if she is diagnosed with the disease.

The reason for that, says Iyengar, may have to do with the diet’s “dose.” It’s possible, for example, that the effect of the dietary change is greater on tiny tumors in the breast tissue that are already established, although they aren’t robust enough yet to lead to a diagnosis of breast cancer. “The effect of this diet may be stronger in preventing the growth of already established tumors rather than preventing the development of tumors,” he says. “What this trial does is position us to take a deeper dive, now that we know we can effectively change the tumor or cancer behavior with diet.”

Chlebowski plans to dig deeper into the data to find out more about how diet is working to lower deaths from breast cancer. During the trial, women provided blood samples both at the start of the study and one year later, so he and his team may find factors that changed among the women on the diet compared to those on the control plan.

In the meantime, he hopes cancer doctors will talk about diet with their patients who might be at higher risk of developing breast cancer. Though not all women in the study were able to lower their fat intake to 20% of their daily calories,“these dietary changes are achievable by many,” he says. Even though not all of the women on the low-fat diet met the target, the study showed that the modifications still reduced risk of dying from any cause and from breast cancer. “It’s about taking smaller pieces of meat, and adding vegetables to the plate to balance things out,” he says.

By Alice Park

Source: https://time.com/

 

Promising Blood Test Could Help to Predict Breast Cancer Recurrence

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Doctors have gotten much better at detecting and treating breast cancer early. Drug and chemotherapy regimens to control tumors have gotten so effective, in fact, that in some cases, surgery is no longer necessary. In up to 30% of cases of early-stage breast cancer treated before surgery, doctors can’t find evidence of cancer cells in postoperative biopsies. The problem, however, is that there is currently no reliable way to tell which cancers have been pushed into remission and which ones have not.

That’s where an easy identifier, like a blood test, could transform the way early stage breast cancer is treated. In a paper published in Science Translational Medicine, researchers led by a team at the Translational Genomics Institute (TGen), an Arizona-based nonprofit, report encouraging results on just such a liquid biopsy. Its test, called Targeted Digital Sequencing (or TARDIS), was up to 100 times more sensitive than other similar liquid-biopsy tests in picking up DNA shed by breast cancer cells into the blood.

Currently available ways of tracking breast cancer cells in the blood are most useful in people with advanced cancer. In those conditions, cancer cells litter the blood with fragments of their DNA as they circulate throughout the body to seed new tumors in other tissues like the bone, liver and brain. But in early-stage breast cancer, these cells are, by definition, scarcer.

To address the problem, the research team, which included scientists at Arizona State University, the City of Hope, Mayo Clinic, and the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, developed a new way to pick up elusive cancer DNA. They genetically sequenced tumor biopsy tissue from 33 women with stage 1, 2, or 3 breast cancer, most of whom received drug or chemotherapy treatment prior to getting surgery to remove their tumors. By comparing the tumor sequence to the sequence from the patients’ normal cells, the scientists isolated potential mutations that distinguished the cancer cells and identified those that were most likely to be so-called “founder mutations”—genetic aberrations present in the original cancer cells and carried into the resulting tumor.

On average, each patient harbored about 66 such founder mutations. For each patient, the scientists combined the founder mutations to form a personalized assay, which could then be used to pick up signs of breast cancer DNA in blood samples. Combining a number of mutations together turned out to be a more sensitive way to detect tumor DNA than trying to pick up a single or a small number of mutations in an already small number of tumor DNA fragments present in the blood.

They combined this approach with a new strategy for amplifying the scarce tumor DNA found in a blood sample by preserving the size of these snippets and attaching unique molecular identifiers to them to make them more easily detectable.

At the start of the study, TARDIS was able to find tumor DNA in the blood samples of all the patients; other liquid biopsies for breast cancer currently in development have reported picking up 50% to 75% of the cancer cases.

After the pre-surgery treatment TARDIS detected circulating tumor DNA in the blood in concentrations as low as 0.003%, or 100-fold more sensitive than other tests being developed.

“This is an important advance,” says Dr. Debu Tripathy, professor and chair of the breast medical oncology department at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, who was not involved in the study. “This test can help identify those with early stage breast cancer who may still have residual cancer in their body that may not be detectable with standard scans.”

That could help guide treatment, by, for example, determining which patients require closer monitoring for recurrent growths. Because the sequencing identifies the genetic mutations contributing to the tumor, the test could also help doctors to decide which targeted drug therapies, which are designed to address specific cancer mutations, to prescribe for their patients.

Most importantly, the test could help women whose tumors are effectively eliminated by their pre-surgery treatment to avoid an operation altogether since the blood test would reassure her and her doctor that no residual tumor DNA remained.

“If we could really know with a more accurate degree of certainty that you don’t have residual disease, it would be help in saying that you don’t need any more therapy [including surgery],” says Dorraya El-Ashry, chief scientific officer of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. ”Conversely, if you still had residual disease, if there is information from the test that can pinpoint the next therapy, that would also be better.”

Muhammed Murtaza, co-director of the center for non-invasive diagnostics at TGen, says TARDIS needs to be tested in a larger group of breast cancer patients before it can be rolled out to doctors’ offices. His team is planning to study the test’s efficacy in about 200 breast cancer patients, in order to clarify exactly what levels of tumor DNA found in the blood are most likely to lead to recurrence. They are also exploring how modified versions of TARDIS could be applied to other cancers, like esophageal, colorectal, pancreatic and prostate.

There’s even encouraging precedent for this sort of a liquid biopsy. Doctors routinely rely on a blood test for chronic myeloid leukemia, for example, to track patients’ response to targeted drugs that treat specific mutations driving the cancer. “Applying this same technology to more common solid cancers like breast cancer is the new frontier,” says Tripathy.

By Alice Park

Source: https://time.com

 

World Cancer day 4 th Feb — Success Inspirers’ World

World cancer day is a day we should remember,It’s a day for taking action ! Cancer is a word.Not a sentence John Diamond This day is celebrated as World Cancer day,where in, the world becomes one,united to fight cancer epidemic. This day is a reminder and an attempt to bring an awareness of cancer,in terms […]

via World Cancer day 4 th Feb — Success Inspirers’ World

A Cure For Cancer: How To Kill A Killer – The Guardian

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Last month, the Nobel prize in medicine was awarded for two breakthrough scientific discoveries heralded as having “revolutionised cancer treatment”, and “fundamentally changed the way we view how cancer can be managed”. One of them went to a charismatic, harmonica-playing Texan named Jim Allison for his breakthrough advances in cancer immunotherapy. His discovery had resulted in transformative outcomes for cancer patients and a radical new direction for cancer research. And yet many cancer patients, and even some doctors, have hardly heard of cancer immunotherapy or refuse to believe it. Those who have struggle to make sense of the new menu of options and sort reasonable hope from overblown hype………..

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/nov/04/a-cure-for-cancer-how-to-kill-a-killer-revolutionary-immune-system-immunotherapy

 

 

 

 

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Blood Pressure Medication Recall: What Is In This That May Cause Cancer – Bruce Y. Lee

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Do you have an idea of what is in these blood pressure medications? Take away the “I” from an idea and you’ve got a NDEA. That’s the chemical that seems to have contaminated certain lots of a type of blood pressure medication. NDEA is short for N-nitrosodiethylamine. PubChem describes NDEA as a “synthetic light-sensitive, volatile, clear yellow oil that is soluble in water, lipids, and other organic solvents,” which is “used as gasoline and lubricant additive, antioxidant, and stabilizer for industry materials.”The description also mentions NDEA emitting “toxic fumes” when heated to a high enough temperature and being used in the lab to cause liver tumors for experiments……..

Read more: https://www.forbes.com/sites/brucelee/2018/11/02/blood-pressure-medication-recall-what-is-in-them-that-may-cause-cancer/#5a8c7831211e

 

 

 

 

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