Tag Archives: CANCER

Prostate Cancer Does Not Discriminate

It doesn’t matter how much or how little money you have, famous or not famous, prostate cancer is not biased – it can affect any man. More and more celebrities are being diagnosed with and treating the disease, while sadly, some succumb to it. While no man should have to die from prostate cancer, the fact that famous men are being diagnosed with prostate cancer has helped to raise awareness of the disease. As I always say, the first step in better treatment and survival rates comes through better education. In my time as a surgeon I’ve performed robotic prostatectomy surgery on a number of notable men including famed Dutch interior designerJan Des Bouvrie, world-famous Latin musician “Little Johnny” Rivero, and just yesterday, Curtis Sliwa, radio host and founder of the Guardian Angels organization. The one thing that these men all have in common is that they want to help raise awareness; they want share their stories with the world. Through their fame and exposure they’re able to reach a large segment of people who are interested in their experiences and what they have to say. In Curtis Sliwa’s case, as a […]

A Cure And Quality of Life In Prostate Cancer Treatments

There is no doubt that any currently available prostate cancer treatment has potential for long-term effects on a man’s quality of life. A recent study by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that many of these treatments have a severe impact on sexual and urinary function. However, when it came to the overall quality of a man’s life, factors like pain, energy levels, emotional health and the ability to perform daily physical tasks, such as walking, climbing stairs or errands were largely unaffected. The study followed 1,269 American men for four years after their early-stage prostate cancer treatment. Sixty percent had undergone a radical prostatectomy, or surgical removal of the prostate gland. Seventeen percent had radiation therapy, otherwise known as brachytherapy, whereby radioactive “seeds” are implanted in the prostate gland. Twelve percent had external radiation therapy. Six percent of patients had a combination of two radiation therapies and five percent used hormone drug therapy to inhibit prostate cancer growth. It is well known that prostate cancer treatments such as surgery and radiation can cause problems with urinary function and sexual performance, including erectile dysfunction. However, this is the […]

Omega-3 and Its Surprising Effects on Prostate Cancer Development

A recent study has come to a surprising conclusion about the effect of Omega-3 fatty acids in the role of prostate cancer development. Omega-3 is considered to be a healthy type of fat found in fish such as salmon and herring. It’s long been known that high levels of Omega-3 in your diet has a beneficial effect on the heart, and was also believed to have a cancer fighting effect as well. However, a new study shows that this may not be the case. The conclusion of the study came from data collected over the course of seven years, looking at a total of around 19,000 men, all of which were over the age of 55. During that time 1,668 of the men (8.8%) developed prostate cancer. This included both slow and aggressive forms of the disease. Of those men, 125 (7.5%) of them developed an aggressive form of the disease. Throughout the study the participants received regular blood tests, and levels of the Omega-3 fatty acid called DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) were recorded. At the end of the study these values were compared against the participants and it was found […]

Omega-3 and Its Surprising Effects on Prostate Cancer Development

A recent study has come to a surprising conclusion about the effect of Omega-3 fatty acids in the role of prostate cancer development. Omega-3 is considered to be a healthy type of fat found in fish such as salmon and herring. It’s long been known that high levels of Omega-3 in your diet has a beneficial effect on the heart, and was also believed to have a cancer fighting effect as well. However, a new study shows that this may not be the case. The conclusion of the study came from data collected over the course of seven years, looking at a total of around 19,000 men, all of which were over the age of 55. During that time 1,668 of the men (8.8%) developed prostate cancer. This included both slow and aggressive forms of the disease. Of those men, 125 (7.5%) of them developed an aggressive form of the disease. Throughout the study the participants received regular blood tests, and levels of the Omega-3 fatty acid called DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) were recorded. At the end of the study these values were compared against the participants and it was found […]

New Study Discusses Radiation Exposure from Full Body Scanners

Radiation is a subject that’s been in the news a lot. Even before the radioactive leaks in Japan and the fear ofradiation spreading to California increasing sales of Iodide pills there was often talk in the news about the risks and dangers of being exposed to it. When the TSA introduced new full-body scanners, that use radiation to screen people for potential bombs and weapons before boarding airplanes, many were concerned about the risks that these scanners posed. How much radiation were people receiving by going through these? Would they increase a person’s risk of cancer? Did frequent fliers have to be extra concerned? I did a Fox News Medical “A-Team” segment on this very subject back in November of 2010. A new study was just published this week in the Archives of Internal Medicine that confirms what was said in that segment: there is no reason to be concerned. The study states that less than 1% of the radiation that will be received during a flight will come from the scanning process; the rest is from the time actually spent in the air on the plane. Additionally, each scan is equivalent to just 3-9 minutes of […]

Robotic Oncology Around the World – The Dominican Republic

Late last year I made a trip to Israel as the first step in an initiative to spread information about prostate cancer and robotic treatment options to other areas of the world. While there I performed live, televised robotic prostatectomies to demonstrate my SMART surgery technique and shared my knowledge with the doctors at Rambam Hospital in Haifa; where they had recently acquired their own da Vinci robot. Last week I took the next step by speaking at a conference at the Hospital Metropolitano Santiago (HOMS) in the Dominican Republic. I have also appeared in many Spanish language publications over the past few months. All of this is in an effort to reach out to Spanish speaking communities to further educate the world about the robotic treatment options available for prostate cancer. During the conference I discussed the benefits of my SMART surgery technique, but also discussed the future of remotely performed robotic surgery. This is a subject that fascinates me, and is one that I have touched on before in my blog. In the future it will be possible for surgeons trained in robotic procedures to perform on patients from across the world with the help […]

Treating Pre-Cancerous Lesions in Women with HPV

Last week I spoke a bit about HPV (human papillomavirus), it’s prevalence among men, and the risks of developing cervical cancer that women face if they contract the disease. I also spoke about the vaccination that is available for the virus, but pointed out that it really needs to be administered before infection occurs. So that may have left readers wondering what courses of action can be taken if a woman already has the HPV virus and what steps can be taken to minimize cancer risks. For most women (90%), HPV will simply go away within a 2 year time-span. It’s the 10% of women who develop a persistent infection that we’re really concerned about. Pre-cancerous lesions can develop on the cervix, which are what eventually lead to cancer. What is important is that we identify and remove those lesions while they’re still in that pre-cancerous state. This is typically done through laser treatment or cryotherapy (freezing) treatment to remove the cells. These treatments do carry risks such as damaging healthy tissue around the affected area, potentially making it more difficulty to become pregnant. There are new treatment options in development […]

Skin Cancer Foundation’s Annual “Road to Healthy Skin” Tour

Most people only think about skin cancer in the summer months when we spend much more time outside, in the sun and at the beach. When summer rolls around we’re constantly told about how we should not go out into the sun without sunblock and given reminders about how to protect ourselves from the sun’s rays. Most of the time we wear coats and long sleeve shirts and pants during the winter to keep warm, but we are still exposed to the sun’s rays and skin cancer is still a very real threat. I would bet many of you haven’t even looked at your sunblock in the last few months. With that said, the Skin Cancer Foundation’s fourth annual “Road to Healthy Skin” tour is about to start. The tour is dedicated to educating people about skin cancer and providing free skin cancer examinations by local dermatologists in their specially equipped RV. Starting on March 11th, the tour will be coming to 25 states, and will be making about 80 stops. The Skin Cancer Foundation says that over the past three years they’ve found over 200 suspected cases of melanoma