Together we will beat cancer


On the webThere’s an unimaginable amount of information about cancer on the internet.  Much of it is scientifically accurate and reliable, such as our own CancerHelp UK pages, and some of it is very bad and misleading.  Here are some interesting – and authoritative – posts we’ve spotted on other blogs recently.

The Oxford University Science Blog has an interview with Professor Thomas Helleday, from the new Cancer Research UK MRC Gray Radiation Oncology and Biology Institute, about his work on hitting cancer’s ‘Achilles’ heel’.

There are a few cancer-related posts up on the excellent NHS Choices Behind the Headlines blog.  Firstly, they discuss the reports that a cancer drug could be used to “prevent or even reverse type 1 diabetes”.  There’s also a nice explanation of the recent stories in the media, revealing that counselling might increase survival from breast cancer. And finally, there’s a post about the role that vigorous exercise, including scrubbing the floors, can play in preventing breast cancer.  We’ve also covered the links between housework and breast cancer prevention in our own Behind the Headlines pages.

Dr Len Lichtenfeld from the American Cancer Society writes a highly informative blog.  He’s recently covered the story about vitamin D failing to reduce breast cancer risk, and similar findings pointing to a lack of benefit for selenium and vitamin E in preventing prostate cancer.

Finally, there’s a handy guide to understanding the complexity of cancer – not one but hundreds of diseases – on the Denialism blog.


Disclaimer: Cancer Research UK is not responsible for the content of external websites.  This is not a specific endorsement of tthese websites by Cancer Research UK.


Andysnat February 4, 2009

Told you so !!

Terry Hamblin February 4, 2009

Hi Kat
Just seen Andysnat’s posting. This is a very serious issue. Not just I, but every CLL expert in the world is agrred that no CLL patient should have the shingles vaccine.

Kat December 4, 2008

Thanks for your comment and for the interesting links – it looks like there’s some healthy debate going on about this topic.

All our CancerHelp UK pages about specific chemotherapy drugs suggest that people shouldn’t have live vaccinations for at least 6 months after having chemo (for example here), but from your post it seems that there might be a special case to be made for CLL.

But as an organisation, we can’t really offer an opinion on this – in such cases we tend to turn to our own clinical experts for advice. Our CancerHelp UK pages are reviewed by expert oncologists, who take the latest research into account. I will pass on your information to the CancerHelp team.

If you have specific questions about vaccinations and cancer, you may find it helpful to contact our team of Cancer Information Nurses


Andysnat December 1, 2008

I’d like to see your comments on a post on my own blog about the advice given by The CDC (Centre for Disease Control) in the USA regarding the Herpes Zostra vaccine and Leukaemia victims.

Though my own blog might be considered quite irreverent, and certainly has no claim to be any sort of authority, I have cited a post by Professor Terry Hamblin, who is acknowledged as one of the foremost experts in the world in my own condition, CLL.

The CDC is advising that three months post chemo leukaemia patients, in good remission, can be immunised with the herpes zostra attenuated live vaccine.

Any CLL expert will tell you that live vaccines are not advisable for CLL patients, as our immune systems are potentially highly compromised.

My blog also gives links to an American Dr. and CLL patient who has asked the CDC to change their gidlines, but they have refused.

The denialism blog is very well worth reading too.

Henry Scowcroft December 1, 2008

Good stuff Kat, especially given the news today about ‘cyberchondria’…

I’ll try to get a post up about this ASAP.