To Lower Your Cancer Risk, Lose Weight

Reduce your cancer riskYou’ve heard it a thousand times: Being overweight or obese increases your risk for chronic conditions like heart disease and diabetes. But did you know being obese can increase your risk for cancer?

The link between obesity and cancer is stronger in certain types of cancer. “Obesity has been shown to be a risk factor for developing postmenopausal breast cancer, colon and rectal cancer, esophageal cancer, pancreatic cancer, endometrial cancer (lining of the uterus) and possibly other cancers,” says Lehigh Valley Health Network hematologist oncologist Nicholas Lamparella, DO, with Hematology-Oncology Associates. The exact biological mechanism of obesity and the various types of cancer is not completely understood, however.

Research studies show obesity also may causes problems for cancer survivors. For example, body mass index (BMI) has been shown to have an effect on survival in early stage breast cancer patients treated with chemotherapy.

Prevention is key, but for patients with cancer a healthy weight and lifestyle is likely beneficial. That is why Lamparella encourages patients to stay active (if possible) while they’re going through cancer treatment. “Exercise is good for your physical and mental health especially during a difficult time.”

Here are things you can do to achieve or maintain a healthy weight and in turn reduce your cancer risk: Read More »

Mammograms Available at Eight LVHN Locations; No Appointment Needed at Four Locations

LVHN health centers at Bangor, Bath, Bethlehem Township and Moselem Springs

Clockwise from top left are the LVHN health centers at Bangor, Bath, Bethlehem Township and Moselem Springs. You can get your mammogram at all of these locations without an appointment.

One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. Early detection of cancer improves treatment outcomes. That’s why the American Cancer Society and most other health organizations recommend starting annual screening mammography at age 40.

A mammogram is an X-ray examination of the breast. It shows abnormal areas that would be examined further to determine if they are cancerous.  A radiologist reads and interprets the X-ray films and reports the results to you and your physician.

It’s convenient to get your screening mammogram at Lehigh Valley Health Network’s many Breast Health Services locations. Four offer walk-in service with no appointment necessary. Read More »

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Shu Xu, MD, PhD: Pediatric Neurology Involves More Than Clinical Treatment – VIDEO

As a board-certified neurologist with special qualifications to treat children, Shu Xu, MD, PhD, provides more than clinical treatment for his patients’ neurological conditions. He also ensures they have the support they need in other areas of their life, such as at school.

“It’s very rewarding to help people and make a difference in their life,” he says.

He sees patients at LVPG Pediatric Neurology – Health & Wellness Center.

Get to know him with this video.

Many Faces of Breast Cancer: Gretchen Gray Helps Start Phone Hotline for Survivors

Gretchen GrayGretchen Gray’s breast cancer diagnosis made her angry. And then it gave her purpose.

“I realized that I am here with God’s guidance to help other people get through their breast cancer treatment,” she says.

She and other breast cancer survivors who met at a support group joined forces to start the Support of Survivors (SOS) telephone hotline, where they answer questions or offer guidance. She also got involved with the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition.

She tells her story and shares her advice in this week’s installment of the Many Faces of Breast Cancer series. Read about Gray and other breast cancer survivors.

LVHN Cancer Surgeon to Join Special World Cancer Day Screening of ‘N.E.D. The Movie’ Feb. 4 in Quakertown

A Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) cancer surgeon will be on hand to answer audience questions when Regal Cinemas in Quakertown celebrates World Cancer Day on Feb. 4 with a special showing of “N.E.D. (No Evidence of Disease) The Movie,” a documentary featuring six gynecologic oncologists who have been able to integrate music to fight the war on cancer. They formed a rock band in order to bring awareness to gynecological cancers such as ovarian, uterine and cervical.

LVHN gynecologic oncologist and robotic surgeon Martin Martino, MD, with Gynecologic Oncology Specialists, will appear at the 7:30 p.m. showing at the Regal Richland Crossing Stadium 12, 185 North West End Blvd. (Route 309), Quakertown. It’s one of 44 theaters nationwide taking part in a special screening of the award-winning film.

“These surgeon colleagues and friends have been involved in a national effort to raise awareness for our patients about the signs and symptoms of cancer,” Martino says. “I’ll be there, and I look forward to having a discussion with those attending about what we’re doing every day to try to win this war against cancer.” Read More »