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I grew up playing games with my friends. I wanted to play any kind of physical game (sports), or board games (Stratego, Monopoly, Battleship, Chess) as long as there was a winner and a loser in the end.
As an adult, I like sports but I no longer have the patience to play board games or video games -- for whatever reason.
The practice of using games for health care purposes is being referred to as "gamification." I doubted that I would have much patience for gamification in my professional or personal life, but recently I've learned about two kinds of "games" in health care that I find fascinating.
First, my colleague, Lorenzo Cohen, Ph.D. sent me a link to a TED talk link that I found mesmerizing.
I found it mesmerizing because:
- The speaker, a survivor of a serious health problem, invented a game to get better ("Jane: the concussion slayer").
MD Anderson has launched a new course on The Professional Oncology Education site. Colorectal Cancer Survivorship is funded by a grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. The course assists physicians and other health care professionals in evaluating and managing care for colorectal cancer patients and survivors. It includes 10 lectures by MD Anderson's multidisciplinary team members.
The Professional Oncology Education site also features courses on breast cancer, inflammatory breast cancer, cancer survivorship, and an introduction to clinical oncology. Lectures are offered in multiple languages, including Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Arabic and French. Additional courses and case studies are in development. You can share feedback, suggestions and ideas for lectures at the site, or follow POE on Twitter,@MDAnderson_POE.
Learn more about MD Anderson's online professional education initiative in a Cancerwise post.
Andrew Schorr is a pioneer in health communications and patient education and, along the way, became a patient himself. Andrew was diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia, in 1996 and participated in a Phase II clinical trial at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.
Andrew's mission is to help patients and family members learn more about their health concerns so they can make informed decisions and feel in control. His Patient Power web series is a reflection of his passion.
Andrew interviewed four MD Anderson physicians at the 2011 American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting held December 10-13 in San Diego. Interviews have been posted online periodically through Feb. 7.
Robert Orlowski, M.D., head of the myeloma section in MD Anderson's Department of Lymphoma and Myeloma, details a number of updates from the meeting. He explains data presented regarding newer drugs carfilzomib and bortezomib and a range of studies looking at consolidation and maintenance therapy following a stem cell transplant.
Dr. Robert Orlowski also talks about MEK Inhibitors for Multiple Myeloma
Update on Kinase Inhibitors for CLL: Where Are We Now?
Kinase inhibitors, a newer approach to fighting blood cancers, have been making major strides throughout 2011 for the treatment of CLL. Susan O'Brien, M.D., professor in MD Anderson's Department of Leukemia and an investigator of this approach, gives an update on the ongoing trials for CAL-101 and PCI-32765.
The Tenth Annual AACR International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research theme is Advancing Cancer Prevention Through Technology.
"Cancer treatment has been transformed by technology to facilitate personalized cancer therapy. We chose this theme to promote the same transformation to a personalized approach for cancer prevention," says Powel Brown, M.D., Ph.D., chair of MD Anderson's Department of Clinical Cancer Prevention and scientific program chairman for the meeting. He will open the meeting's first session Saturday night.
High-tech discovery, analysis and application of genetic variation, gene expression and protein activity are allowing oncologists to more precisely match a course of treatment to a patient's specific tumor.
- About 10% of the Proton Therapy Center's patients are children, most of which need anesthesia.
- Child Life Specialist Kelly Wagner uses specialized toys, such as a miniature CT scanner, to normalize the hospital environment and mentally prepare children for their proton treatment.
- The Proton Therapy Center has dedicated pediatric anesthesiologists and CNRAs. No endotracheal tubes or LMAs are used.
- Watch a video of Dr. Grosshans discuss the importance of proton therapy for childhood cancer patients.
This post features key insights from most of the Day 1 speakers including information on proton therapy for multiple disease sites, and recent advances in the field.
Phyiscs of Proton Therapy (Radhe Mohan, PhD)
- Proton therapy has an inherent advantage because proton radiation dose patterns can be shaped to conform to the shape of a tumor.
- Physicists ensure equipment is performing correctly, that treatment plans are optimal for each patient and that the complex ways in which the particles travel within the body are deeply understood so they can be distributed effectively.
- To make protons useful for radiation therapy thin beams entering the treatment "nozzle" must be spread laterally and longitudinally, and shaped appropriately.
Publishing high-quality research is a major advantage for graduate students in today's climate of financial austerity and intense competition for grants and fellowships.
Rui Zhang, a doctoral student in The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston (GSBS), recently served as first author of a major paper in the journal Physics in Medicine and Biology--a top-tier publication in the field of radiation physics.
Guided by his advisor, Wayne Newhauser, Ph.D., associate professor in The University of Texas MD Anderson's Department of Radiation Physics, Zhang and his co-authors developed a new analytical model to calculate the dosage of stray neutrons that cancer patients are exposed to while undergoing proton therapy.
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MD Anderson Research Resources
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- AACR: An annual meeting of "like minds" in cancer prevention
- Adopt a secret identity, recruit allies, and slay YOUR cancer!
- New course added to professional oncology education site
- MD Anderson Experts Review Leukemia, Lymphoma, Multiple Myeloma Progress
- Advancing Cancer Prevention Through Technology
- Proton Therapy Center National Education Conference: Day 2 Highlights
- Proton Therapy Center National Education Conference: Day 1 Highlights
- GSBS Student Chases Details of Stray Neutrons in Proton Therapy
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