Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Memory impairment common in people with a history of cancer

Date:
October 4, 2010
Source:
American Association for Cancer Research
Summary:
People with a history of cancer have a 40 percent greater likelihood of experiencing memory problems that interfere with daily functioning, compared with those who have not had cancer, according to results of a new, large study.

People with a history of cancer have a 40 percent greater likelihood of experiencing memory problems that interfere with daily functioning, compared with those who have not had cancer, according to results of a new, large study.

Related Articles


The findings, believed to be one of the first culled from a nationwide sample of people diagnosed with different cancers, mirror findings of cancer-related memory impairment in smaller studies of certain cancers, such as breast and prostate cancer. Results were presented at the Third AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health Disparities.

"The findings show that memory impairment in cancer patients is a national problem that we must pay special attention to," said Pascal Jean-Pierre, Ph.D., M.P.H., assistant professor at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, department of pediatrics, and the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.

He added that while there is no curative treatment yet for memory impairment -- ongoing studies are testing therapies -- physicians can still help these patients.

"One of the most important parts of cancer treatment is management of symptoms, such as impairments in attention, memory and fatigue, in order to improve a patient's quality of life. This study suggests these memory issues are more common than had been recognized before, and should be assessed in all patients with a history of cancer," Jean-Pierre said.

Jean-Pierre and colleagues used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a population-based survey sponsored by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention designed to collect information on the health and nutrition in U.S. households. Their sample included 9,819 people, aged 40 years and older, from diverse educational and racial-ethnic backgrounds. Within that group, 1,305 participants reported they had cancer or a history of cancer. All participants had a physical exam and responded to a survey, which included the question: "Are you limited in any way because of difficulty remembering or because you experience periods of confusion?"

Fourteen percent of participants who had cancer reported memory impairment compared to 8 percent of participants who did not have cancer. Those with cancer were 40 percent more likely to have memory issues than other participants -- impairments that interfered with daily functioning.

"The findings indicate that cancer is, therefore, a key independent predictor of memory problems in the sample studied," said Jean-Pierre.

He calls the condition "cancer related cognitive dysfunction," suggesting that it goes beyond the "chemobrain" label that has been attached primarily to women treated with chemotherapy for their breast cancer who reported problems in cognitive function (e.g., attention and memory).

"These memory issues can be related to treatment, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and hormone therapies, or to the tumor biology itself, which could change brain chemistry and neurobehavioral function," said Jean-Pierre.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Association for Cancer Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Association for Cancer Research. "Memory impairment common in people with a history of cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101003081703.htm>.
American Association for Cancer Research. (2010, October 4). Memory impairment common in people with a history of cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101003081703.htm
American Association for Cancer Research. "Memory impairment common in people with a history of cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101003081703.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Melafind: Spotting Melanoma Without a Biopsy

Melafind: Spotting Melanoma Without a Biopsy

Ivanhoe (Oct. 31, 2014) The MelaFind device is a pain-free way to check suspicious moles for melanoma, without the need for a biopsy. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Battling Multiple Myeloma

Battling Multiple Myeloma

Ivanhoe (Oct. 31, 2014) The answer isn’t always found in new drugs – repurposing an ‘old’ drug that could mean better multiple myeloma treatment, and hope. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chronic Inflammation and Prostate Cancer

Chronic Inflammation and Prostate Cancer

Ivanhoe (Oct. 31, 2014) New information that is linking chronic inflammation in the prostate and prostate cancer, which may help doctors and patients prevent cancer in the future. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sickle Cell: Stopping Kids’ Silent Strokes

Sickle Cell: Stopping Kids’ Silent Strokes

Ivanhoe (Oct. 31, 2014) Blood transfusions are proving crucial to young sickle cell patients by helping prevent strokes, even when there is no outward sign of brain injury. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins