Tag Archives: Cancer Care Tips

Some Cancers Run in Families – What You Need to Know

Is  Issels Genomic Testing for Personalized Treatment For You
Is Issels Genomic Testing for Personalized Treatment For You

Some families have two or more members who develop the same type of cancer, leading people to believe that it’s inherited. While it’s not passed along like blond hair or brown eyes, there is a genetic element to cancer than can be shared by family members.

How Cell Mutations Give Rise to Cancer

You already know that genes are responsible for certain physical characteristics like height and eye color, but they also contain information that controls cell function. A mutation is an abnormal change that prevents a gene from working properly.

Cancer results from cells that multiply uncontrollably. While the mutations that cause cancer are usually acquired, some inherited mutations affect tumor suppressor genes that act as traffic cops, regulating cell growth and death.

Is It Coincidence or Family Cancer Syndrome?

These inherited gene mutations can lead to family cancer syndrome, in which several members of a family develop similar types of tumors. Telltale factors of family cancer syndrome include:

• Cancer occurring in multiple generations

• Childhood cancer occurring in siblings

• Cancer occurring at unusually young ages

• Two or more types of cancer occurring in a single person

Many times, several diagnoses of cancer within one family can indeed be pure coincidence. They can also be related to family members being exposed to tobacco smoke or other common risk factors.

Genomic Testing for Personalized Cancer Treatment at Issels®

Since our cancer treatment programs target the tumor microenvironment as well as the cancer itself, we use highly specialized testing to address your specific needs. Visit our website to learn more about our cancer treatment that boosts your body’s own immune responses.

Cancer Caregiver Tips: Talking About Cancer with Your Loved One

Cancer Caregiver Tips: Talking About Cancer with Your Loved One
Cancer Caregiver Tips: Talking About Cancer with Your Loved One

Are you a cancer caregiver who’s tiptoeing around your loved one because you’re afraid of saying the wrong thing? Use these tips to guide your conversations in positive and helpful directions.

Tips for Talking to a Cancer Patient

  • Don’t stress about coming up with the perfect words. This is a new situation for both of you. If you don’t know what to say, be honest about it. Your loved one will let you know what he or she needs.
  • Keep the focus on the patient. You’re there to help them, not the other way around. Talk to another friend or family member if you need a sounding board.
  • Avoid clichés or dismissive comments like “You’ll be fine” or “At least you got the ‘good’ cancer.” Of course you don’t want to be a source of doom and gloom, but minimizing the situation doesn’t make the patient feel any better.
  • Every case of cancer is different. Don’t bring up friends, family members or acquaintances and compare their situations.
  • Don’t ask for details about their cancer treatment such as blood test results or possible side effects. Let them share information if they like, but respect their personal boundaries.
  • Sometimes no words are necessary. Your loved one might want you to provide a sympathetic ear, or may prefer a period of silence. Be willing to graciously accommodate their wishes.

Personalized Cancer Treatment from Issels®

Your experience with cancer is unique, so your treatment should be also. Visit our website to learn more about cancer vaccines and other individually tailored and integrative immunotherapy for cancer treatments.

Taking Care of Yourself: Nutrition – What You Need to Know When You Have Cancer

Close up classic seafood paella with mussels, shrimps and vegeta
The Connection to Nutrition

Getting the right vitamins and minerals from the food you eat is so important as a cancer patient. However, many people don’t realize that nutrition is seriously affected by both cancer and the treatments used for it. Here at Issels®, we care about more than just treating cancer. Our focus is on improving your quality of life during your treatments. It is our hope that these nutrition tips for cancer patients will be helpful for you.

Nutrition Tips for Cancer Patients

Prior to cancer, you may have been fairly healthy. Most people are familiar with what they need to do to eat a healthy diet. You probably focused on eating:

  • Plenty of whole grain foods
  • Less red meat
  • Lots of vegetables
  • Lots of fruits

As you know, when you have cancer your desire for food changes. You may need to make some changes in your diet too. Don’t be afraid to:

  • Eat foods that are higher in fat to keep your weight up
  • Eat high calorie foods
  • Drink plenty of milk if it tastes good to you
  • Eat ice cream because it may be soothing to a dry or sore throat

Why is Getting Adequate Nutrition So Hard for Cancer Patients?

If you have cancer, your body is going through a lot of changes internally. You have probably noticed that your throat is often dry. You may not have much of an appetite, or you could have sore teeth or gums. A number of problems can affect your appetite.

At Issels®, we can help you cope with these and other issues you may be facing. Contact us to learn more.

Taking Care of Yourself: Your Appearance is More than “Looking Good”

Look Good, Feel Good
Look Good, Feel Good

Do you think that maintaining good grooming while you’re going through cancer treatment is a luxury? Caring for your appearance is a great way to lift your spirits from the outside in.

Personal Care Tips for Cancer Patients

  • Are you too tired or weak to get out of bed? Keep a portable mirror and grooming supplies in your nightstand.
  • Shave with an electric razor to avoid nicks and cuts that may become infected.
  • Brush your teeth and floss as usual, but consult your healthcare team before scheduling cleanings or other dental procedures.
  • Hair loss is a frequent side effect of cancer treatment. Opt for whatever solution makes you feel best, whether it’s wearing wigs and scarves or shaving your head.
  • Wear rubber or latex gloves during household chores to prevent contact with harsh soaps and chemical cleaning products.
  • Make sure manicuring tools are clean before using. Instead of cutting cuticles, simply push them back gently. Keep nails short to prevent them from catching on things.
  • Treat yourself to a relaxing spa session. Talk to your doctor beforehand if you’re planning a manicure, pedicure or waxing. Artificial or glue-on nails are usually restricted during cancer treatment.
  • Exercise daily at whatever level feels comfortable. Not only does exercise benefit you physically, it relieves depression and anxiety. Yoga is a good choice that promotes harmony between mind and body.

Personalized Immunotherapy Treatment at Issels®

No matter what form of cancer you have, your case is unique. Contact us to learn how we tailor your specific treatment program to address your individual needs.

 

Find Out What to Expect When You Become a Cancer Caregiver

Improving the Lives of Others Can Help Improve Your Own Life.
Improving the Lives of Others Can Help Improve Your Own Life.

Has a loved one recently been diagnosed with cancer? Assuming the responsibilities of becoming a caregiver can seem overwhelming. Here are some cancer caregiver tips that will help you to better perform your role while maintaining your own physical and mental well-being.

Caring for a Cancer Patient

• The caregiver role is fluid. Duties can change based on factors such as where a patient is in the treatment process and whether he or she is staying in a hospital or at home.

• Caregivers are vital members of a patient’s healthcare team. Meet with the doctors frequently and don’t be afraid to speak up if you have questions or need more clarification.

• Talk to your loved one about how much they want to share with friends and family members and keep others updated accordingly.

• Everyone has their own way of coping with illness. Be available, but respect the patient’s wishes if he or she wants to be alone or doesn’t want to talk.

Caring for the Caregiver

Caregiver is a rewarding role, but the road can be bumpy. Don’t feel guilty if you experience sadness, fatigue or grief. Joining a support group, either in person or online, can be a great source of strength.

• Have some friends or family members who can assist or even take over temporarily if you need a break.

• Plan activities such as workouts or movie outings that will help you maintain balance.

Issels® Is a Resource for Patients and Caregivers

Visit our website for more cancer caregiver tips as well as information about our personally created immunotherapy treatment programs, including cancer vaccines and NK cells.

Which Foods Have Probiotic Benefits for Cancer Care?

Which Foods Have Probiotic Benefits for Cancer Care?
Which Foods Have Probiotic Benefits for Cancer Care?

Have you been hearing about the dietary benefits of probiotics? These live microorganisms found in fermented dairy products create a balance of “good” bacteria in your gut. In addition to promoting digestive health, probiotics appear to have properties that serve as protection against cancer.

Simply adding these foods to your diet can reduce problems such as gas and diarrhea while aiding the ability of your immune system to fight tumors.

Yogurt

Yogurt is one of the more publicized sources of probiotics. Look for brands that include “live and active cultures.”

Sauerkraut

The pasteurization process kills probiotics, so opt for the unpasteurized variety, which also includes vitamins that help prevent infections. If you like it on the spicy side, the popular Korean dish kimchi has the same properties.

Soft Cheeses

Probiotics are sometimes too fragile to survive in the digestive tract, but certain types found in fermented soft cheeses such as Gouda hold up well.

Kefir

During immunotherapy for cancer, beverages may be easier on your stomach than food. Kefir is a yogurt-like drink that originated with the shepherds in Eurasia’s Caucasus Mountains.

Sourdough Bread

The organisms that give sourdough bread its distinctive tang are loaded with probiotics.

Supplements

While probiotics come in convenient capsule, tablet, liquid and powder forms, they lack the additional nutrients provided by foods and beverages. Talk to your doctor before beginning a course of supplements.

Issels®: The Leader in State-of-the-Art Immuno-Oncology

A healthy diet is part of the integrative approach we follow at Issels®. Contact us to learn how our non-toxic immunotherapy for cancer treatment is tailored to accommodate your individual lifestyle, environment and other factors.