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PREVENTATIVE STEPS TO FIGHT CANCER Routine screenings can lead to early detection, better outcomes B Y M E G H A N N F I N N S E P U LV E D A


ducation is considered one of the best ways to stay in control of your health. Cancer screenings can vary, but if you follow these recommendations for detecting breast, cervical and skin cancer, you’ll be armed with a powerful defense: knowledge.

P ROTEC T YOUR SK I N More than 3.5 million people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year in the U.S., according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, and one in five Americans will develop the disease. Skin cancer is mainly caused by excessive ultraviolet ray exposure from the sun.

“People should apply sunscreen with SPF 15 or 30 every day,” said Randall Craft, M.D., plastic and reconstruction surgeon at Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert. Melanoma is the most common form of skin cancer and is usually found on the face, neck and arms, and on the back and chest in men, and legs in women. A biopsy can determine PREVENTION | 2 



Patient with lymphoma fights back with stem cell transplant

Expert tips for 20 days of cancer prevention


Acupuncture: The ‘Qi’ to good health




the type of skin cancer a person has and the best method of treatment. “The most important thing people can do is get a periodic skin exam to identify changes,” Craft said. “While research shows there isn’t a high correlation between family history and melanoma, there is a greater incidence of skin cancer in people who burn easily or have a history of blistering sunburns, blue eyes, red hair, or freckling.” Benign or non-cancerous skin tumors like moles are common and often harmless, but are sometimes removed to be safe.

risk women, but other options do exist. “Additional screenings, genetic testing and preventative medications are available, and should be discussed with a physician or breast health specialist,” Loving said. “Surgical options such as preventative mastectomies can reduce breast cancer risk by 90 percent.” PA P TE ST AN D H P V VACCI N ATI ON The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children, teenagers and adults between the ages of 9-26 receive the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine to prevent infection with viruses associated with cervical cancer. From left: Vilert Loving, M.D.; Randall Craft, M.D.; and Matthew Schlumbrecht, M.D.

MA MM OG RAMS E V E RY Y E A R Starting at age 40, women should have annual mammograms, or sooner, if family history of breast cancer is present in a first degree relative, such as a mother or sister. “When a woman is considered at significantly high risk for breast cancer, we typically suggest an annual mammogram in combination with a breast MRI to complement our detection methods,” said Vilert Loving, M.D., director of Breast Imaging at Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert. Breast imaging specialists say regular screenings are the most effective strategy in identifying early breast cancer in high

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“It takes about ten years for a patient to develop cervical cancer after infection with HPV, which allows for pre-cancerous lesions to be discovered and treated early,” said Matthew Schlumbrecht, M.D., gynecologic oncologist and surgeon at Banner MD Anderson. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists say women ages 21-30 should have a pap test, which detects changes in the cells of a cervix, once every three years. At 30, women need a pap and HPV test. If results are normal, this can be repeated every five years until age 65. An annual pelvic exam during a well-woman visit is also recommended. • ch

FREE POWER OF PREVENTION EVENT Get advice from the experts on how to avoid a cancer diagnosis at the Community Cancer Prevention Day and Open House from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 22, at Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert, 2946 E. Banner Gateway Drive. The event, which is free and open to the public, will feature the following presentations by leading oncology authorities and physicians: 9:30 and 10:15 a.m.: Integrative Healing Modalities Research 9:30 and 10:15 a.m.: Genetic Risk Assessments 11:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.: Lifestyle and Cancer 11:00 and 11:45 a.m.: Skin cancer prevention 11:45 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.: Breast Cancer Screening and Imaging In addition, nutrition and exercise specialists will be on hand to share tips for reducing the risk of cancer, and information about the latest cancer screening recommendations and guidelines will be available. Open house attendees are also welcome to tour the center’s new clinic, The James M. Cox Center for Cancer Prevention and Integrative Oncology, named for the founder of Cox Enterprises, the communications, media and automotive services company that operates two subsidiaries in Arizona. To RSVP for the event or for more information, call 602-230-2273 (CARE). — G R E M LY N B R A D L E Y- WA D D E L L


Life-changing treatment Stem cell transplant gives new hope to lymphoma patient BY KRISTINE BURNETT


t was like getting hit in the head with a two by four.” That’s how Bill Clayburg describes being diagnosed with t-cell nonHodgkin lymphoma in June 2012. Once the initial shock of his diagnosis wore off, the 80-year-old East Mesa resident turned to Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert for treatment. With a positive attitude and willingness to do whatever was necessary, Clayburg underwent five rounds of chemotherapy and an additional drug therapy. When those treatments failed to rid his body of the disease, doctors suggested a new strategy: stem cell transplantation. “About a year into my cancer treatment the doctors brought up stem cell transplant as a possible option,” explains Clayburg. “My immediate thought was, ‘OK, let’s do whatever works.’” GET TIN G AG G RE S SIV E Stem cell transplantation is an aggressive treatment that, for patients whose healthy blood cells have become crowded out by cancerous ones, may be the only curative option. But before Clayburg could move forward with transplantation, he had to complete a rigorous qualification process. “They basically wipe out your entire immune system before the transplant, so it’s important to know ahead of time what your body can and can’t tolerate. I was impressed with the thoroughness of the screening. Even my dentist had to sign off because my doctors didn’t want to run the risk of me getting an oral infection.” Once cleared for the procedure, Clayburg was admitted to Banner Gateway Medical Center, located on the same campus, in August 2013. Over the course

of 18 days he underwent five days of intense chemotherapy followed by stem cell transplantation on day six. “They gave me real tough chemo twice a day for four days and then backed off a bit on day five,” he recalls. “It took two sessions to do the actual transplant.” P O ST T R A N SP L AN T C AR E Once transplantation was complete, Clayburg remained hospitalized for 12 days of close observation to ensure his body was responding appropriately. Satisfied with the results, doctors released Clayburg from the hospital, but not before his wife, Jody, took part in a half-day seminar tailored to caregivers of stem cell transplant patients.

“My good wife was my fantastic caregiver and [Banner MD Anderson] made sure she knew what to do. Having an understanding, informed and patient caregiver is a necessity. Banner leaves nothing to chance.” For several weeks, Clayburg returned to Banner MD Anderson two to three times week for outpatient monitoring. Pleased with his progress, doctors began spreading out the follow-up visits. “I was never really wiped out,” he says. “My energy level was down a bit and I couldn’t drive for three weeks after the procedure, but my energy level is back to 100 percent now and I’m doing everything I did before.”


EN JOYI N G EAC H DAY A positron emission tomography (PET) scan in early December showed Clayburg’s cancer was 95 percent gone. A follow-up scan in February will give physicians a better understanding of the disease status so they can plan next steps accordingly. Until then, Clayburg is enjoying each day. When asked what advice he would offer to anyone facing cancer, Clayburg encourages them to be thoughtful and thorough. “You play the hand you’re dealt. Don’t do any shortcuts and maintain a positive attitude. If you don’t, then what’s the point?” • ch 3




Reduce your risk of cancer by finding the fun! Pick an activity you enjoy (hiking, for example), and you are more likely to stick to a regular activity routine.

Research shows that being physically active can reduce your risk of certain types of cancer. Aim for 30 minutes of exercise a day!



People who spend less time sitting and more time walking or doing other activities can reduce risk of premature death from any cause, including cancer. Walk around a shopping mall or take walking breaks at work to increase your activity!

Resistance training (lifting weights) is not just for building muscle. Research suggests it may reduce cancer risk by regulating hormones and reducing body fat. Start with resistance training just two days a week to notice a difference in your health!



Incorporate a whole food, ood od,, plant-based p ant-based pl d diet with plenty of physical activity into your family lifestyle.

Research proves that not smoking or quitting smoking lowers the risk of getting cancer and dying from cancer.

KNOW YOUR FAMILY TREE Some types of cancer have a genetic link and screening guidelines may begin sooner to decrease your risk cancer. Try our breast cancer risk assessment at healthprofilers.

PRACTICE BODY SELF-AWARENESS Notice breast changes, skin/ mole changes, symptoms that are unusual or last more than two weeks and make an appointment with your physician to address.

KNOW YOUR CANCER SCREENING RECOMMENDATIONS Discuss with your physician current screening recommendations for your age and family history. You can find the current recommendations at


PROTECT YOUR LIPS! Don’t forget to cover up lips from the sun. Excess exposure to sunlight may increase risk of lip cancer.

Timely and practical tips from Banner MD Anderson experts BY KRISTINE SALMON







If you enjoy a daily soft drink or sugary coffee drink, try to skip it today. The American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR) recommends avoiding sugary drinks. Try to eliminate or reduce your sweet drink each day this month.

PLANT YOUR PLATE Fill 2/3 of your plate with fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans. A plant-based plate helps reduce your risk of cancer.


Dark green leafy vegetables are a must in a cancer preventative diet. A one cup serving is full of carotenoids, which research suggests can reduce the risk of certain cancers.


Adding different flavors to your dishes can make them more interesting and may help fight off cancer. The AICR’s prevention report concluded that garlic protects against stomach and colorectal cancer. Other spices and herbs are also being investigated for their cancer fighting abilities.


Flaxseed is packed with fiber, a component that protects against colorectal cancer. Buy whole flaxseed and grind in a coffee grinder. Add to cereal, yogurt or muffin batter to boost the nutrients in a meal or snack!


Garlic is a rich source of organosulfur compounds, which may help prevent cancer. Since cooking can inactivate an important enzyme, some scientists recommend letting garlic stand for ten minutes after chopping or crushing before cooking it.


Try spice and flavoring combinations from around the world and benefit from their cancer-fighting power! Oregano and basil give an Italian flare. Use Cinnamon, saffron and ginger for Moroccan combinations! Use turmeric, red pepper flakes and curry powder for Indian flavors.


Limit consumption of red meats and avoid processed meats. To reduce your cancer risk, eat less than 18 oz. per week of red meats, like beef, pork and lamb, and eliminate processed meat such as ham, bacon, salami, hot dogs and sausages from your diet.


Research has shown that salt and salt-preserved foods may increase the chance of developing stomach cancer.


Aim for at least five fruits and vegetables of varying color every day. Fill your shopping cart with produce from all the colors of the rainbow. 5


From left: John and Kathleen Graham, Larry and Sheree Hayward and John Strittmatter and Pat Ganser



othing worthwhile is ever easy. That is certainly true for the new Hope Starts Here campaign for Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert. An ambitious $22 million philanthropic endeavor, Hope Starts Here was established on the premise that when the mission is meaningful and the intent is worthy, no one is too busy to make a difference. At the helm of Hope Starts Here, which formally launched in January, are three married couples who know firsthand what Banner MD Anderson means for Arizona, the community in which they live and the patients receiving care. Serving as co-chairs, John and Kathleen Graham, Larry and Sheree Hayward, and John Strittmatter and Pat Ganser, have all been touched by cancer. Some have been impacted personally. Some have watched loved ones wage courageous battles. All have been witness to the toll cancer has taken on friends and colleagues. United by a sense of responsibility and guided by a desire to ensure Arizonans have access to the best possible cancer care, these six individuals are dedicated to helping others understand the value of Banner MD Anderson and rallying support from those who believe that hope truly does start here. EMBRACING THE OPPORTUNITY “I’ve been surprised by how many people I know have been impacted by cancer,” says Strittmatter, southwest region president of Ryan Companies US, Inc. and member of the Banner Health Foundation board of directors. He and his wife, both of whom lost

6 F E BR U A RY 2 0 1 4 CRE ATI N G HOPE

Investing in the future of cancer care

HOPE STARTS HERE their parents to cancer, are all too familiar with the devastation cancer causes. But seeing friends benefit from the protocols and treatments available at Banner MD Anderson gives them hope. With a campaign centered on funding cancer research, personalized medicine, education and prevention, and a host of family assistance services, they are confident the public will embrace the opportunity to invest in the future of cancer care. “One thing that makes this campaign so special is that it will fund vital programs like research and personalized medicine that will benefit patients for years to come.” Those sentiments were echoed by Graham, whose wife Kathleen was recently seen by Dr. Edgardo Rivera at Banner MD Anderson for an abnormal cell formation in a breast lump, underwent surgery to remove it and is being followed annually by Dr. Rivera. The longtime member of the Banner Health Foundation board of directors and president and CEO of Sunbelt Holdings is thankful for the expertise his wife and countless friends have received at the cancer center.

“We are so fortunate to have access to this level of cancer care right here,” he says. However, such access doesn’t come without a cost. Graham stressed the fact that everyone can and should play a role in supporting an institution that will, undoubtedly, touch the lives of so many. “Not everyone can or is expected to make a huge gift, but everyone can give something,” he says. “I’ve heard Derrick Hall of the Arizona Diamondbacks tell people that if they don’t make much money, then they don’t need to give much, but they should still give something. That’s so true.” COMMUNITY COLLABORATION “Before getting involved with this campaign I met with leaders of some of the Valley’s most prominent cancer care institutions,” he says. “Each explained that this community, with its varied cancer care and research facilities, is extremely collaborative. They embrace the healthy competition that comes with another organization raising the bar and pushing everyone to improve. I would hope the people who support health care are willing to do the same when it comes to their philanthropic giving.” Reaching the campaign’s $22 million goal will be no easy feat. It will require the collective contributions of an entire community – individuals, corporations and foundations. As Larry Hayward, chairman and CEO of Leslie’s Poolmart, Inc., says, “It will take all of us, but we can do it. The mission is so genuine, and for that reason alone I’m confident we will be successful.” • ch To learn more about the Hope Starts Here, contact Banner Health Foundation at 602-747-4483 (GIVE).


Radiation oncology services expand Treatment expertise extends to Thunderbird, Desert Medical Centers


anner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert has expanded its radiation oncology program, bringing new treatment expertise to patients at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center in Glendale and Banner Desert Medical Center in Mesa, which also provides pediatric care at Banner Children’s at Cardon Children’s Medical Center. This began on Jan. 1. The program integrates the clinical services of radiation oncology programs at these hospitals with Banner MD Anderson, including The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s worldrenowned approach to cancer care and access to subspecialty experts in both Gilbert and Houston. Patients at these two locations will also have access to many of the programs and services offered at the comprehensive cancer center in Gilbert. “This expansion will allow us to


provide radiation treatment close to where patients live, work collaboratively with physicians in these communities, and bring the same high-quality cancer treatment that has made Banner MD Anderson so widely respected,” says Dr. Edgardo Rivera, medical director of Banner MD Anderson. These campuses have been providing radiation oncology care for many years, including electron beam treatment, image-guided radiation therapy, intensity modulated radiation therapy, stereotactic radiotherapy, brachytherapy, and 3D conformal treatment, which allows radiation therapy beams to be shaped exactly to the size of a tumor. One intent of this expansion is to enhance and build upon these existing programs. New physicians will join both campuses, bringing radiation treatment expertise backed by residency training

at MD Anderson. Physicians and staff at the hospitals will also have a direct link to radiation oncologists and subspecialty physicians at Banner MD Anderson. Approximately half of all cancer patients require radiation therapy as part of their treatment. This incredibly precise method of delivering regulated doses of high-energy radiation may be a patient’s only course of treatment. It may also be used with chemotherapy and/or as a complement to surgery. The highly coordinated radiation oncology team at Banner MD Anderson consists of board-certified physicians specially trained in radiation oncology, medical physicists, dosimetrists, radiation therapists and nurses. Together, they provide the customized treatment plans using the latest medical equipment in conjunction with the world-renowned protocols of MD Anderson. • ch


Acupuncturist, Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center

Q: What is acupuncture and how can it benefit my health?


Acupuncture is a therapy that has been used for centuries to reduce stress and inflammation, which can negatively affect a person’s health. An acupuncturist uses very fine needles that are inserted into the body. These needles send signals to the brain, and the brain responds by lowering stress levels, decreasing feelings of pain, and even improving digestion. When acupuncture was first developed in Asia, certain organ energies were assigned to different areas of the outer body. Acupuncturists discovered they could strengthen energy and improve a person’s overall wellness by needling or massaging a given area, and modern research has confirmed that different points affect different functions in the body. One example is a point located about two inches above the inner wrist which can regulate heart rate and calm nausea when stimulated.

Another point found on the top of the forearm below the elbow can calm intestinal cramping and relieve muscle pain in the neck and shoulders. Each of these points is believed to be filled with an energy called Qi. While Qi cannot yet be measured, acupuncture is based on the notion that overall health is influenced by how well the outer body works in sync with the inner body, similar to the effects of exercise, yoga, and massage. Acupuncturists are trained to look for subtle cues from the body to help determine someone’s likelihood of becoming ill. First, the acupuncturist gets to know a patient by asking a series of questions

that helps determine that patient’s energy. The five acupuncture elements that are used to classify a patient’s energy are Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. Each element has an organ, emotion, color and season associated with it. The lung, for example, is related to Metal and fall, when people often get colds and flu. For a patient who regularly catches colds, an acupuncturist knows to build the strength of the lungs while the patient is healthy to help prevent future colds. Using a person’s energy type as a guide, the acupuncturist and patient work together to improve that energy and boost wellness. Acupuncture is most effective when a therapist is able to build trust and encourage communication with the patient, so the patient can relax and truly use the powerful peace that an acupuncture session can provide. • ch 7

BANNER HEALTH 1441 N. 12th SREET PHOENIX, AZ 85006-2887



Colorectal Cancer Prevention MAR



Ask the Expert: Cancer Prevention Series Join Dr. Tomislav Dragovich to discuss the latest research regarding colorectal cancer prevention and screenings. Dr. Dragovich is a renowned oncologist in treating cancer of the digestive track.

Time: 6-7:30 p.m. Location: Grand Canyon Conference Rooms, Banner Gateway Medical Center To RSVP: Call 602-230-CARE

Advancements in Breast Cancer Screening and Imaging Tools APRIL


Dr. Vilert Loving will discuss the advancements in breast cancer screening and imaging tools. Learn how often you should be screened and which screening methods are the most effective in diagnosing breast cancer. Dr. Loving is a board certified radiologist who specializes in breast diseases.

Genetic Relationships in Cancer: Are You at Risk? MAY


To learn more about these events or to register, please visit www.Banner

People with a family history of cancer are invited to learn about genetic relationships in cancer and when genetic testing may be appropriate. Gail Martino, Genetic Counselor, will discuss if your family history may put you at risk for cancer.


On the campus of Banner Gateway Medical Center, U.S. 60 and Higley Road in Gilbert Banner MD Anderson Radiation Therapy also available at: Banner Thunderbird Medical Center, 55th Avenue and Thunderbird in Glendale, 602-865-5445 Banner Desert Medical Center, Dobson and US 60 in Mesa, 480-412-3808

To schedule an appointment, call 480-256-6444

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Banner MD Anderson Power of Prevention - February 2014