roswellness connections(February 2011)

Video Spotlight:
Audio Podcast:
Roswell Round-Up:
Events and Giving Opportunities:
Patient Voice:
Donor Impact:
Business Partner of the Month
Thank you, our generous supporters and friends, for your continued dedication to our ongoing efforts in the fight against cancer. We appreciate your support through your donations and participation in fundraisers like The Ride For Roswell, Goin' Bald for Bucks, Team Cure Challenge, Carly's Club activities, The Paint Box Project and more! Feedback? Please email or call 716-845-1038.


Early Detection is Step One in Cancer Fightscreening
Too many common cancers go undetected until they’ve advanced to a late stage, says a recent report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Almost one-half of colorectal and cervical cancers and one-third of breast cancers are diagnosed at a late stage. But these cancers, when detected early, have very high survival rates and early-detection screening tests such as colonoscopy, the Pap test and mammography are widely available. “Despite repeated messages to complete cancer screening tests,” says Martin Mahoney, MD, PhD, Associate Professor, department of Health Behavior and Medicine, “adherence rates remain below the levels they need to be. There are a variety of programs to assure access to screening among persons with limited or no health insurance.” Current screening recommendations include:
  • Colon cancer screening for men and women age 50 to 75 with a colonoscopy every 10 years.  For patients not willing to undergo colonoscopy, a fecal occult blood test should be completed annually.
  • Breast cancer screening for women age 40 and older with mammography every one to two years
  • Cervical cancer screening with yearly Pap tests should begin for women within three years of becoming sexually active or at age 21, whichever comes first. Initial screening should be annual and after three consecutive normal tests, at least every three years to age 64
“Persons with other family members with breast, colorectal or prostate cancer should talk with their medical care providers about the possible need to start testing for these cancers at an earlier age and/or use of other medical testing,” says Dr. Mahoney.
Cancer Pain Linked to Smoking Status
Do smokers diagnosed with cancer suffer worse pain than nonsmokers? Yes, according to a recent study published in the medical journal Pain. Researchers surveyed 224 patients with various cancers and asked them about their pain, such as its severity, degree of pain-related distress and pain-related interference. They found that current smokers reported more severe pain and more interference from pain than patients who had never smoked.  For the patients who were former smokers, the longer they had been smoke-free, the less pain they felt. Experts say the findings add to the evidence that smokers should seek assistance with quitting the habit, even after a cancer diagnosis.

“It is never too late to stop smoking,” says Martin Mahoney, MD, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Health Behavior and Medicine. “In addition to less pain, cancer patients who quit smoking do better than those who continue to smoke.”

RPCI has initiated the “Just Breathe” program for all its patients and their family members to help them in their cessation efforts. The progam will connect tobacco users with behavioral counseling; pharmacotherapy, when indicated; and follow-up support and referral to additional services.For more information on our program, please call 1-877-ASK-RPCI (1-877-275-7724).

Video Spotlight

Sisters Face Breast Cancer Together
When you’re diagnosed with cancer, your family can be a vital source of support. But what happens when you battle cancer at the same time as your sister? This recent Double Check story from WGRZ shares the story of two Western New York women who helped each other through their battles.

If you are interested in a second opinion or breast cancer consultation from the Breast Center, or to be paired with a cancer coach to help deal with your own diagnosis, please call 1-800-ROSWELL (1-800-767-9355).

Audio Podcast

The Role of Support Groups in a Cancer Patient’s Care
Rosa Scrivani, LCSWR, Director of Social Work Services at RPCI, and Glenn Frost, LCSWR, a Medical Social Worker, fill listeners in on the concepts behind the support group model and why these group sessions can be such a positive experience for cancer patients and their loved ones. Related: how your donations are helping provide this source of support.

Roswell RoundUp

New RPCI “AYA” Program Will Better Serve Young Adults with Cancer
Young people face unique challenges after a cancer diagnosis, and having access to the right resources can make a vast difference during their journey. The new Adolescents and Young Adults with Cancer Program at Roswell Park for adults ages 15 to 29 seeks to expand and enhance treatment and services addressing these patients’  medical, social, psychological, cultural and educational needs. The program also will help advance research to improve outcomes for this population.

To better understand why the need for this program is so great, read the moving first-hand account of young cancer survivor Kali Mordaunt, who was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2006. Or, watch video interviews with Mordaunt, program coordinator Dr. Lynda Beaupin and another young survivor, Kevin Garvey. The AYA program will be funded by The Steadfast Foundation.

First FDA-Approved Cancer Treatment Vaccine Available at Roswell Park
The nation’s first FDA-approved cancer treatment vaccine, Provenge (sipuleucel-T), is being offered for the first time in Western New York at Roswell Park. The vaccine is designed for men with advanced prostate cancer who have limited treatment options and who meet eligibility requirements. “It’s the first time we are able to offer immunotherapy with an FDA-approved product,” says Roberto Pili, MD, Chief of the Genitourinary Section in RPCI’s Department of Medicine.
Visit Roswell Park at the WNY Health Expo
Join us Sunday, Feb. 27, at the 2011 WNY Health Expo at the Hamburg Fairgrounds Event Center. Gather cancer information, sign up to save a life as a bone marrow donor and support cancer research through our Spit for the Cure effort (collecting saliva samples, from which genetic information can be extracted for research studies). Visit all three RPCI booths and you could win a prize! You can also hear from Roswell Park experts, including talks on cancer genetics, tobacco and cancer, and preventing cancer.

Win a Trip to See "The Dr. Oz Show,” Live in New York City
News4 and CW23 join Roswell Park to kick off The Bottom Line – a new initiative to bring awareness to the early detection of colorectal cancer – from 10 am to 3pm, Saturday, March 19 at the Boulevard Mall. Bring your cancer questions for the RPCI doctors and gather information on the latest in detection and treatment of the third most common type of cancer. Also sign up to win a trip to see "The Dr. Oz Show,” live in New York City!

Events and Giving Opportunities

Gear Up at The Ride Spinning Event
Ready to get pumped up for the June 25 Ride For Roswell? Or maybe you want to do your part, but outdoor cycling isn’t for you. The Ride Spinning Event on March 6 is your chance to get a great workout while you raise funds for Roswell Park. The second annual indoor cycling event will be held simultaneously at fitness clubs across Western New York, so there’s bound to be one in your neighborhood. Register today!
Are you ready to be part of a landmark year for Goin’ Bald for Bucks? This year marks the program’s tenth anniversary! Sign up for your school, organization or individual Goin’ Bald for Bucks event today. All you need is a good pair of clippers and the determination to raise funds for Roswell Park’s cancer research and patient care programs. Plus, top student fundraisers could win a ticket to WKSE’s Kiss the Summer Hello!
Go the Distance for Roswell Park at the Buffalo Marathon

Patient Voice

Mindi May
At just 32 years old, Mindi May has faced two cancer diagnoses and months of intense chemotherapy. She recently shared her story with WKBW-TV, and she credits her optimism and her strong network of support, including the staff at Roswell Park, for helping her during her journey with cancer.

“[Roswell] definitely stands out. They offer support for everyone involved, like the caregiver meetings my boyfriend attends,” said May, who graduated with a psychology degree during her treatment and hopes to become an oncology social worker. “We’re doing what we can to give back, because the research at Roswell Park gives patients like me a new chance at life.” Pictured: May with boyfriend Matthew Pelkey.

Donor Impact

Is Body Temperature a Clue to Breast Cancer Prognosis?
Chills: to most people, they’re the symptom of a common ailment like the cold or flu. But for breast cancer patients, the significance of feeling cold is unknown, and a new donor-funded study is hoping to learn more.

Chi-Chen Hong, PhD, Assistant Member of the Department of Cancer Prevention and Control at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (pictured at right), is leading donor-funded research to discover whether feeling inappropriately and persistently cold affects cancer prognosis. Read more.

Business Partner of the Month

Tops Markets

The Tops 5K/10K, held each August in support of Team Cure Challenge, is quickly becoming a beloved annual event in Western New York, and a very visible sign of Tops Markets’ support for Roswell Park Cancer Institute. Last year’s Tops 5K/10K raised over $82,000 for cancer research and patient care programs at Roswell Park. But the support of Tops Markets doesn’t end at the 5K/10K finish line.

Most recently, Tops Markets has partnered with Roswell Park and the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Buffalo on an exciting promotion that raises funds through every two-liter bottle of Coke sold in Western New York. Visit your area Tops Market to buy your two-liter featuring the “Buy Coke, Give Hope” badge, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Roswell Park through March 15, 2011. Join us as we celebrate these partnerships and enjoy a sampling of Coca-Cola products on February 23, starting at 3 pm in Roswell Park's lobby.

Tops also has shown their support as a retail sponsor for The Paint Box Project, helping bring the artwork of pediatric patients to the public and raise funds for Roswell Park through the sale of holiday cards and chocolate bars. Plus, at events throughout the year, Tops continues to step up and donate food, beverages and other items to offset costs, provide support and enhance the donor experience.