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Office of Public Affairs
2000 Circle of Hope,
Salt Lake City, UT 84112

public.affairs@hci.utah.edu

801-587-7639

HCI News

Tiny needles make big impact on quality of life for cancer patients
In The Media, HCI News

Tiny needles make big impact on quality of life for cancer patients

To say Annie Budhathoki, DAOM, L.Ac., was skeptical of acupuncture would be an understatement. “I thought acupuncture was the devil’s work,” she says. Then she was in a horrific accident. After more than two years of surgeries and recovery, she still had to walk with a cane. She turned to acupuncture as a last resort to relieve the pain in her leg, and quickly became a believer. After three sessions she was able to walk, cane-free.

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A vaccine prevents cancer, yet few use it
In The Media, HCI News

A vaccine prevents cancer, yet few use it

Thousands of lives could be saved by a simple vaccination to protect against Human Papillomavirus (HPV). Yet only 51% of teens receive the vaccine each year. Every year more than four thousand people die from cancers related to HPV. It's upsetting, it's really upsetting,” says Deanna Kepka, PhD, MPH, a population scientist at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI). “If you ask any cancer survivor whether they would have taken an opportunity to get a vaccine that prevented their cancer, they would say yes.”

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Better health before surgery leads to better outcomes
HCI News

Better health before surgery leads to better outcomes

Surgery is part of cancer treatment plans in many cases. While surgery is an important part of treatment, recovery from surgery has a major impact on overall health. Strong for Surgery is a program that focuses on making small changes in health before surgery. Making these changes, even just before surgery, can make a big difference in recovery.

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Therapy on four legs
In The Media, HCI News

Therapy on four legs

Every week, a special visitor appears at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI). His job? To cheer up patients fighting cancer and their family members. His name is Misio, and he’s a therapy dog with Intermountain Therapy Animals. Kathy McNulty, a volunteer with the organization, is Misio’s escort. Kathy says Misio has only been coming to HCI for a few months, but she can already see the difference he’s making for patients and their families. “Over and over, I’ve seen tears turn to smiles,” she says. “Misio takes their minds off the procedures.”

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Why Do Elephants Almost Never Get Cancer?
In The Media, HCI News

Why Do Elephants Almost Never Get Cancer?

P53 – one gene that may hold the key. Humans have two copies, but some people are missing a copy. For individuals with only one working copy of P53, their lifetime risk of cancer is nearly 100 percent. Elephants, after 55 million years of evolution, have 40 copies of the P53 gene. Those extra copies protect elephant’s cells from cancer by eliminating cells that develops any type of mutation that could go on to become cancer.

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Chemoprevention for People at High Risk
In The Media, HCI News

Chemoprevention for People at High Risk

Individuals with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) have a nearly 100 percent chance of developing colon cancer and often undergo surgery to remove the colon so cancer can’t develop there. A new medication being tested in a clinical trial lead by Jewel Samadder, MD, has shown promising results. The first round of testing shows that in less than six months, half of the patients who received medication saw a nearly 70% regression of polyps. For some, polyps disappeared completely.

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Navigating Through Cancer
HCI News

Navigating Through Cancer

Eduardo Ayala was 17 years old when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. He is fluent in English and Spanish, but his parents speak only Spanish. Eduardo and his family came to HCI from Nevada for his treatments. It is one of the five Mountain West states at the core of HCI’s service area. Cancer has a language all its own and it’s that much harder if English is not your first language. That’s where Guadalupe Tovar, a health educator and patient navigator at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), comes in. She helps Hispanic families navigate their cancer care.

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HCI News

"The Generation to End Cancer" - the Sigma Chi 20k Club

They call themselves “The Generation to End Cancer.” Sigma Chi fraternity brothers from across the United States sharing one goal – to raise $10 million for cancer research at HCI. For many Sigma Chi brothers, this fight against cancer is personal. Dan Shaver, chairman of the Sigma Chi Philanthropy Committee says, ,”We rarely come across someone whose family isn’t directly or indirectly affected by cancer. I just don’t think we’ll ever rest until we find the cure.” Sigma Chi fraternities raised $1.3 million during the 2015-2016 school year. 29 schools each raised more than $20 thousand dollars and traveled to Salt Lake to be inducted into the 20k club.

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Data is Knowledge, Knowledge is Power
HCI News

Data is Knowledge, Knowledge is Power

At Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), researchers are using the power of Big Data to help prevent cancer. HCI is home of the Utah Population Database (UPDB), a shared data resource that tracks family medical history through many generations. The UPDB is the only database of its kind in the United States and one of few such resources in the world. The UPDB has contributed to important gene discoveries including those for colon cancer (APC), breast cancer (BRCA1), melanoma (p16), and others. Utilizing the UPDB, researchers are able to identify families that have higher than normal rates of certain cancers.

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Blood and Marrow Transplant: Hope for a Cure for Many Blood-Related Cancers
HCI News

Blood and Marrow Transplant: Hope for a Cure for Many Blood-Related Cancers

In the United States, someone is diagnosed with a blood-related cancer every three minutes. For many of them, a blood or marrow transplant is the only hope for a cure. More than two-thirds of these patients, however, don’t have a matched marrow donor in the family. Donor registries offer them the best hope for finding a match.

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In The Media, HCI News

A colorful plate helps protect against cancer

You don't smoke. You wear sunscreen. You exercise regularly. But your breakfast usually consists of a donut or store-bought muffin as you run out the door, lunch is something from the vending machine, and dinner is grabbed at the drive-thru. These decisions about what you eat may be doing more harm to your health than you think.

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What's Your Story
In The Media, HCI News

What's Your Story

That little phrase, a common conversation starter, takes on new meaning at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI). There, a program called Your Story gives cancer patients the chance to reflect on and share their life stories.

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Art therapy aids recovering cancer patients
In The Media, HCI News

Art therapy aids recovering cancer patients

Patients at the Hunstman Cancer Institute are getting a new chance for treatment through art therapy. A new artist in residence program allows cancer patients bring some color back to their lives by expressing themselves through art.

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Personal Optimism with Exercise Recovery (POWER) at HCI
HCI News

Personal Optimism with Exercise Recovery (POWER) at HCI

When dealing with cancer treatments and side effects, exercising usually isn’t at the top of a patient’s to-do list. One program at HCI is helping patients understand the importance of physical fitness: Personal Optimism with Exercise Recovery (POWER). Studies show that exercising during and after treatment reduces recurrence rates and improves overall health and survival. At HCI’s Wellness Center, cancer exercise specialists meet with patients to create exercise prescriptions. This consists of an initial visit to look at things like balance, flexibility, range of motion, and strength. Then the patient is walked through their exercise prescription, including what to do both at the Wellness Center and at home, and can participate in fitness classes based on their abilities. Doctors and exercise specialists at HCI hope to help patients not just get through cancer, but take control of their health for years to come.

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Feeling Cancer Information Overload? Call or visit our Cancer Learning Center
HCI News

Feeling Cancer Information Overload? Call or visit our Cancer Learning Center

With so much information about cancer that is readily available, those impacted by a cancer diagnosis often experience a feeling of information overload. The Cancer Learning Center (CLC) at HCI provides a welcoming environment where patients, families, and the general public can get answers to their questions about cancer. Trained health educators help visitors and callers navigate the potential for information overload and provide current, accurate information about treatment, side effects, and coping strategies. This resource is free for anyone with questions about cancer. Learn more about the G. Mitchell Morris Cancer Learning Center and how it began in our 2010 Annual Report, and other Education and Outreach programs at HCI.

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Mole Crowdsourcing:  A New Way to Find Deadly Skin Cancer
HCI News

Mole Crowdsourcing: A New Way to Find Deadly Skin Cancer

Melanoma is the most deadly of all skin cancers. If melanoma is found early, it is easier to treat. Researchers at the University of Utah and Texas Tech University have identified a new approach for finding suspicious moles that could be melanoma: mole crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing refers to using crowds of people, often recruited online, to accomplish tasks. An individual performing a skin self-exam can miss about half of melanomas. But with mole crowdsourcing, one example showed if at least 19 out of 100 people think a mole is suspicious, then a doctor should examine it. Researchers are developing a cell phone application that will allow people to take a photo of a mole and have that image evaluated by other users. Learn more in The Scope Radio podcast about mole crowdsourcing, or about our Melanoma Program and the services it offers to diagnose and treat this disease.

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A seed makes breast cancer surgery easier
In The Media, HCI News

A seed makes breast cancer surgery easier

Alison Elliot, a nurse, knows her health is important. So when her fiftieth birthday rolled around, she scheduled a mammogram. She was called back for a second appointment, where they performed a biopsy on her breast.

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Mindfulness Group Helps Manage Pain, Other Symptoms
HCI News

Mindfulness Group Helps Manage Pain, Other Symptoms

Mindfulness is a way to learn stress reduction and relaxation techniques, restore peace and well-being. For patients at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), a weekly mindfulness group has helped reduce pain and other symptoms at a. The group started as a way to help people learn tools for reducing stress and cope with pain associated with cancer. Dr. Paul Thielking, a psychiatrist at HCI who leads the group, says meditation-based practices have a long history and are becoming a more prevalent form of chronic pain management in treatment centers across the country.

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Precision Prevention with Genetic Counseling
HCI News

Precision Prevention with Genetic Counseling

Actress Angelina Jolie-Pitt made headlines when she went public with a decision to have a preventative double mastectomy and later surgery to remove her ovaries as well. Jolie-Pitt made these decisions because test results revealed she has a genetic mutation that significantly raises her risk of breast and ovarian cancer. This drew important attention to understanding inherited cancer risk – part of ongoing genetic research at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI).

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Our media relations representatives are here to help reporters Monday-Friday, 7:30 am-5 pm.

Debby Rogers
Public Affairs Manager
Phone: 801-587-7639
debby.rogers@hci.utah.edu

Amie Parker
Public Relations Associate
Phone: 801-213-5755
amie.parker@hci.utah.edu

Jill Woods
Administrative Assistant
Phone: 801-585-5321
Fax: 801-585-0900
jill.woods@hci.utah.edu

After-hours calls: Reporters calling before or after business hours on an urgent matter can page the University of Utah Health on-call media relations representative at 801-581-7387 and press 1.