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July Cancer Support Group News
Calling all local cancer survivors! The PVH Cancer Support Group will be participating in the Lincoln Homecoming Parade with a float, and they would like to invite any interested survivors to take part. They hope to raise awareness of how widespread cancer is in our community and also to show that cancer can be beat.
Participants are invited to carry a sign showing the number of months or years of survivorship they’ve reached. Remember, as soon as you hear the words “You have cancer” and choose to fight it, you are a survivor! If you’d like to join the PVH Cancer Support Group in the homecoming parade, please call 794-7149 to arrange for space on the float and signage.
The PVH Cancer Support Group has a new Facebook page for information on the latest cancer research and items of interest to those touched by cancer. Simply click this link or go to the search bar at the top of your Facebook page and type in “PVH Cancer Support Group". Be sure to LIKE the group, and check back often for updates.
With the recent heat wave, skin cancer is again on our minds. A new study presented by the American Association for Cancer Prevention shows that coffee may aid in the prevention of basal cell carcinoma. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is a slow-growing form of skin cancer that accounts for 75 percent of all skin cancers, according to the American Cancer Society. BCC is especially common among people with light-colored skin, blue or green eyes, or blonde or red hair.
"Given the nearly 1 million new cases of BCC diagnosed each year in the United States, daily dietary factors with even small protective effects may have great public health impact," Dr. Fengju Song, a postdoctoral researcher at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, said in a written statement. "Our study indicates that coffee consumption may be an important option to help prevent BCC."
The more coffee that was consumed, the lower the risk of developing BCC. Women who drank 3 or more cups of daily coffee in the study had an 18% reduction in risk, and men showed a 13% reduction compared to those who drank less than one cup per month. It is believed that the caffeine in the coffee is responsible for conferring the protection. Tea and hot chocolate may also lower BCC risk, although they were not included in this analysis.
But before you decide to camp out in front of the coffeemaker, experts warn that there are many more effective ways to prevent skin cancer. Bill Head, PA-C at Penobscot Valley Hospital states, “Use sunscreen and avoid the sun during the hottest parts of the day. Keep a close watch on your skin and get suspicious spots removed early to help prevent skin cancer.”
The next PVH Cancer Support Group meeting will be held on July 24 at 6 pm in Conference Room B at the hospital. For more information, call the PVH Cancer Support Group hotline at (207) 794-7149. Be sure to cheer for your local cancer survivors in this year’s Lincoln Homecoming Parade!