Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Exercise 'most proven method' to prevent return of breast cancer

Wednesday Feb 22 2017

"A half hour stroll a day can help women who've survived breast cancer prevent the killer disease returning," The Sun reports. A review of recent evidence, carried out by Canadian researchers, was prompted by the fact that many women…

GPs 'failing to prescribe tamoxifen to prevent breast cancer'

Tuesday Feb 14 2017

"Half of GPs unaware of drug's use [tamoxifen] in cancer prevention," The Guardian reports. An online survey of GPs found many were unaware of national guidelines recommending the use of tamoxifen for at risk women…

Long-term vaping 'far safer than smoking' says 'landmark' study

Tuesday Feb 7 2017

"Vaping has been endorsed by health experts after the first long-term study of its effects in ex-smokers," ITV News reports. A six-month study found that e-cigarettes users had far lower levels of toxins and carcinogens in their body than smokers…

Diabetes could be a warning sign of pancreatic cancer

Tuesday Jan 31 2017

"Experts have revealed the onset of diabetes, or existing diabetes getting much worse could be a sign of hidden pancreatic cancer," reports The Daily Express. The media reports follow a press release of a study...

Breath test shows potential for detecting cancer

Monday Jan 30 2017

"Breath test could save lives by diagnosing deadly cancers earlier," reports The Daily Telegraph. The story is based on new research into whether it is possible to detect cancers of the stomach and oesophagus (gullet) using a breath test...

Anxiety and depression linked to increased cancer death risk

Thursday Jan 26 2017

"Depression linked to higher chance of dying from cancer," The Independent reports. Analysis of UK data found a link between mental distress and cancer mortality, which remained even after other factors such as smoking were taken into account…

New drug treatment for pancreatic cancer 'extends survival'

Wednesday Jan 25 2017

"Trial finds combination of pancreatic cancer drugs extends survival," The Guardian reports. The results of a trial that combined the use of two chemotherapy drugs has led to calls for this approach to become the…

New insights into why breast cancer drugs fail for some women

Tuesday Jan 24 2017

"Breast cancer drugs taken by thousands of women stop working because tumours 'outsmart' them," is the headline in The Sun. Around 70% of breast cancer cases are what are known as oestrogen-receptor positive breast cancers…

Warning over 'burnt toast chemical' acrylamide’s cancer risk

Monday Jan 23 2017

"Browned toast and potatoes are 'potential cancer risk', say food scientists," BBC News reports. The FSA has launched a campaign about the possible health risk of acrylamide; a chemical formed when starchy foods are subjected to a high temperature…

MRI scans could spare 25% of men from prostate biopsies

Friday Jan 20 2017

"Every man with suspected prostate cancer should have an MRI scan," The Guardian reports. That is the conclusion of a study looking at how well MRI scans compare with the current practice of biopsies; removing sections of prostate tissue for analysis...

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