As people get older, they frequently neglect their fitness. The pressures of family life take over and fitness falls to the wayside. If you want to feel more energetic and have a body you are happy with, follow the tips listed here. These tips can help you to reach your fitness goals, and get in perfect shape. Getting older sometimes means people no longer focus upon fitness. Working out often takes a back seat to career and family responsibilities. When you have reached your limit with the way your level of fitness is declining, use these tips to get back in shape. By making your own health and fitness a priority, you will better be able to enjoy the rewards of a busy family life…. 

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Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Sheryl Crow Has Benign Brain Tumor

After being diagnosed with a benign brain tumor, singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow described it as a “bump in the road” and told fans not to worry about her.

“Please don’t worry about my ‘brain tumor,’ it’s a noncancerous growth. I know some folks can have problems with this kind of thing, but I want to assure everyone I’m OK,” Crow wrote on her Facebook page, CNN reported.

She was diagnosed with meningioma a few months ago. She doesn’t require surgery for this common type of brain tumor but will have periodic brain scans to monitor its growth.

“It’s a tumor that typically grows between the outer layer of the brain and the brain itself. So it’s not actually inside the brain,” explained CNN Chief Medical Correspondent and neurosurgeon Sanjay Gupta.

Depending on the size, some people have this type of tumor removed immediately while others may never need surgery or treatment, Gupta said.

… 

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A simple blood test can save lives by helping doctors swiftly diagnose whether a patient with early breast cancer faces high risk of death or relapse after treatment, specialists said Wednesday.

Tumour cells in a blood sample, when taken at an early stage of the disease, are an accurate predictor of a patient’s survival chances, the team said in the journal The Lancet Oncology…. 

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Big Tobacco’s success in branding a proposed California cigarette tax as a government boondoggle sent a message that could echo in other states as votes trended toward the opposition.

Through a barrage of campaign ads, the industry was able to cut support for a $1-a-pack cigarette tax backed by cycling legend Lance Armstrong from a two-thirds majority in March to a dead heat on Election Day…. 

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BATON ROUGE, La., June 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Esperance Pharmaceuticals presented its Phase 1 study of EP-100, a novel targeted membrane‐disrupting peptide (tMDP) in advanced solid tumors at the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago, Illinois. EP‐100 is designed to seek and destroy cancer cells that over‐express luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (LHRH) receptors on their surfaces. LHRH receptors are over‐expressed in a wide range of cancers. The Phase 1 study was designed to determine safety and maximum dose of EP-100, including a recommended dose for Phase 2 trials. Based on clinical experience of escalating doses in 38 patients in the Phase 1 study and on preclinical studies showing synergy of EP-100 with various chemotherapeutic agents, Esperance has begun enrollment of patients in a Phase 2 multi‐center trial for patients with advanced ovarian cancer randomized to EP‐100 in combination with paclitaxel versus paclitaxel alone. … 

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Finally, chemo ends and it appears that I have won a few rounds of this battle with breast cancer. This is one ordeal I am glad to be over and done with. Chemotherapy has consumed the better part of my life since February 2012. I can look forward to finishing my reconstruction and getting on with my life. Good riddance, chemo.

Chemo’s side effects

Everyone has a different experience with chemo. There are so many different combinations of drugs and so many side effects that no two people have the same reaction. For me, my white blood counts crashed and they put me on a drug to correct that.

My chemotherapy lasts five hours. Yes, sitting in a recliner for five hours hooked up to an IV through my port is not the way I would want to spend an afternoon. I receive two chemotherapy drugs, a biological therapy and six drugs to prevent side effects. One of the drugs used to pretreat is a steroid. The chemo drugs given to me are Cytoxin and Taxotere.

I have an adverse reaction to the steroid they use. It puts me in a drug induced fog where I am unable to focus. Driving is not an option for three days after chemo. I also turn sunburn red and my chest and face feel like they are on fire. Doctors are aware of this, but not concerned enough to do anything about it.

I also had a bad reaction to the drug used to increase my white blood count. An injection of Neulasta is given 24 hours after chemo. This particular drug causes me unbearable bone pain. The pain is so bad that walking across a room is difficult for me.

Goodbye chemo

I gladly say goodbye to chemotherapy. Although it is very effective at killing cancer cells, it is also very good at trashing healthy cells that your body needs. Now, I can start getting back to living my life again. I still have another surgery to go through but it looks like the hardest part is behind me now.

Going forward

I am still undergoing treatment. Chemo ends, but I have almost a year of a biological therapy ahead of me. My oncologist and I are still discussing hormone therapy–which would involve taking a pill on a daily basis for five years.

Hindsight

Hindsight is 20/20. Would I have changed anything now that I have gone through this? My answer is yes. I would not have undergone chemotherapy, knowing what I know now. I had other options available to me which I would have explored completely before deciding on chemo. Hopefully, I can put this part of cancer behind me and move forward. If cancer returns, God forbid, I will not go through chemo again.

MONDAY, June 4 (HealthDay News) — Girls who receive radiation to the
chest to treat childhood cancer, even those getting lower doses, have a
high risk of developing breast cancer at a young age, according to a new
study.

Researchers from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York
City said the risk posed by radiation may be as great as that of the
BRCA1/2 mutation. Previously, it was thought that only moderate to high
doses of radiation raised breast cancer risk, but the new research showed
that even those who got low doses face an increased risk and may warrant
early screening for the disease.

“While radiation doses have decreased and techniques have improved,
radiation is still an essential part of therapy for many childhood
cancers,” said the study’s lead author, Chaya Moskowitz, an associate
member and associate attending biostatistician at the cancer center, in a
news release from the American Society of Clinical Oncology. “The goal is
to maximize the cure rates for childhood cancer while minimizing future
health problems,” Moskowitz said.

The researchers examined information on 1,200 women in the Childhood
Cancer Survivor Study and 4,570 women who are first-degree relatives of
participants in the Women’s Environmental Cancer and Radiation
Epidemiology Study, which involved women diagnosed with breast cancer who
survived at least one year after diagnosis.

Among the childhood cancer survivors, 24 percent were diagnosed with
breast cancer by the time they were 50 years old. Moreover, 30 percent who
survived Hodgkin’s lymphoma developed breast cancer. In comparison, the
incidence of breast cancer by age 50 was 31 percent among the carriers of
a BRCA1 mutation.

The researchers said the roughly 50,000 women in the United States who
were treated with higher doses of radiation when they were younger should
get an annual mammogram and breast MRI either by the time they are 25
years old or eight years after their radiation therapy.

Another 7,000 to 9,000 women received lower-dose radiation to treat
childhood cancer, the researchers said. “Our results suggest that young
women treated with lower doses of radiation who are not currently being
screened also have an elevated risk of breast cancer and might benefit
from a similar screening strategy,” Moskowitz added.

Treatment with a lower dose of chest radiation reduced the incidence of
breast cancer to 7 percent by the age of 40 compared to 12 percent for the
women treated with higher doses of chest radiation, the researchers
found.

The study was scheduled for presentation Monday at the annual meeting
of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago.

Data and conclusions presented at medical meetings should be considered
preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.

More information

The U.S. National Cancer Institute provides more information on breast cancer
risk
.

A drug that is already approved for prostate cancer has been shown to slow the spread of advanced forms of the disease for the first time, according to research released Saturday.

Zytiga, made by Johnson and Johnson, is being tested in a randomized phase III trial involving 1,088 men with prostate cancer at 151 cancer facilities in North America, Europe and Australia.

On average, participants in the study were diagnosed five years prior to entering the research but none had begun chemotherapy.

Their cancer had metastasized and had become resistant to initial hormone therapy, but they were not showing major symptoms.

According to interim results, the drug, abiraterone acetate, given in combination with prednisone, delayed the onset of pain and helped improve quality of life in patients whose cancer had metastasized.

The full data set is expected in 2014.

“This drug extended lives and gave patients more time when they weren’t experiencing significant pain from the disease,” said Charles Ryan, an associate professor of clinical medicine at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

“It appears that this medication may lay a foundation for the use of this drug at an earlier stage of prostate cancer, and its benefits may be able to be delivered to a much wider population of patients as a result.”

The research was to be released at the 48th annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago.

US regulators last year approved abiraterone acetate for men whose disease had spread and who also were resistant to standard hormonal therapy, known as castration-resistant prostate cancer.

The drug was first conceived in a British lab in the 1990s, and works by blocking the production of hormones produced by the cancer that can help it grow.

The drug however carries risk for patients with a history of heart disease, high blood pressure, low blood potassium and fluid retention.

Prostate cancer is the second most common form of cancer in men. Some 241,000 new cases are diagnosed in the US each year and 28,000 men die of the disease annually, according to the American Cancer Society.

About one third of patients require no treatment because their disease does not spread.