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FORCE's eXamining the Relevance of Articles for You (XRAY) program looks behind the headlines of cancer news to help you understand what the research means for you. XRAY is a reliable source of hereditary cancer research-related news and information.
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1 through 10 of 217

Relevance: Medium

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : Increasing melatonin use raises concerns

Most relevant for: people who take or consider taking melatonin to help with sleep.

Adult use of melatonin as a sleep aid has increased even though its benefits and risks are not well understood. This study looked at trends in melatonin use over the last 19 years. (Posted 4/14/2022)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : New tool to predict breast cancer risk for Black women

Most relevant for: Black women in the U.S.

An important part of making decisions about breast cancer screening and prevention is knowing your breast cancer risk. Specific tools are used to identify people who would benefit from early and/or additional screening and chemoprevention or those who would most benefit from genetic counseling and testing. Because these tools were developed using data mostly from white women, they are unable to predict cancer risk as well for Black women. To begin to address these gaps, researchers developed a new tool specifically designed to predict breast cancer risk for Black women. This tool has been shown to work well, especially for younger Black women. (posted 3/22/2022)

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Relevance: High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : The chance of a second breast cancer is higher among some Hawai'ian women

Most relevant for: women of Hawai’ian, Filipino or Asian American ancestry.

Women diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), an early form of breast cancer, are more likely to have a second breast cancer diagnosis if they are of Native Hawai'ian, Filipino or Japanese ancestry than women of other racial or ethnic groups. (posted 3/15/22)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Strength of Science: High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : Quality of life for people with early-stage breast cancer who participated in the OlympiA clinical trial

Most relevant for: People with inherited mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2 who have been diagnosed with early-stage, HER2-negative breast cancer.

The OlympiA study showed that the PARP inhibitor olaparib (Lynparza) is effective when used as maintenance therapy for people with an inherited BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation who have early-stage breast cancer. Patient-reported outcomes from OlympiA suggest that olaparib was well tolerated and did not reduce quality of life or delay recovery from chemotherapy. (posted 2/22/22) Update: Based on OlympiA results, the FDA approved olaparib as adjuvant treatment for people with an inherited BRCA mutation who were diagnosed with early-stage HER2-negative breast cancer at high risk for recurrence. (03/11/2022)

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Relevance: High

Quality of Writing: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Article : Chris Evert's ovarian cancer diagnosis highlights the importance of genetic counseling and testing

Most relevant for: People with genetic test result called a VUS

Tennis star Chris Evert shared her story about a change in her sister's genetic test results that led Ms. Evert to have genetic testing and her decision to have her ovaries removed to lower her cancer risk. Ovarian cancer was found at the time of Ms. Evert’s surgery, but fortunately, it was caught early. Her story highlights the importance of genetic counseling, testing and post-testing follow-up with experts. (Posted 2/8/22)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Human Research

Study : Cannabis use among breast cancer patients

Most relevant for: People interested in using cannabis to relieve treatment side effects.

This study looked at patterns of cannabis use among breast cancer patients who are members of online health communities. Almost half of the study participants reported using cannabis to help manage treatment symptoms and side effects. The study also looked at reasons why patients used cannabis, where they obtained it and whether they perceived cannabis to be safe. While this study only looked at cannabis use among breast cancer patients it is likely results would be similar among patients diagnosed with other types of cancers. (posted 1/25/22)

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Relevance: High

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Study : Physical activity may prevent chemotherapy-related cognitive decline in women with breast cancer

Most relevant for: People concerned about the impact of chemotherapy

Many people experience chemo brain or chemo fog (cognitive effects) during and after chemotherapy. Researchers looked at the impact of physical activity on chemotherapy-related decline in memory, attention and information processing in women with breast cancer. This study shows that more physical activity before and during chemotherapy is linked to better information processing after chemotherapy. (Posted 1/6/22)

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Relevance: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Update : Stronger guidance about breast implant safety

Most relevant for: People with or considering breast implants

The FDA issued new guidance for breast implants so that all people with breast implants have the appropriate information to understand and make decisions about their healthcare. Required features include box warning, patient decision checklist, guidelines for screening for implant ruptures and patient device cards. (posted 12/14/21)

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Relevance: Medium

Strength of Science: Medium-High

Research Timeline: Human Research

Study : Multiple sclerosis may affect breast and colorectal cancer survival

Most relevant for: People with multiple sclerosis who are diagnosed with cancer

People with multiple sclerosis (MS) have lower overall survival after a breast or colorectal cancer diagnosis compared to people diagnosed with these cancers who do not have multiple sclerosis. Survival differed by cancer type. (posted 12/10/21)

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Relevance: High

Research Timeline: Post Approval

Most relevant for: People with cancer considering a COVID-19 booster

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network has issued new guidelines for COVID-19 vaccinations. Guidelines now recommend a booster or third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine for patients with cancer, including those undergoing active treatment. Currently, these updated guidelines do not address people who had the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. (posted 11/16/2021)

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