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Online Resources

Sisterhood of Survivorship

Online support for those with or surviving women's cancers. Sponsored by Women's Cancer Network.
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painAction: Dolor de Cáncer
Cancer pain information in Spanish.
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Palliative & Supportive Care
A collection of current and past articles from Oncology and Oncology Nurse Edition.
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A collection of current and past articles from Oncology Nurse Edition.
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Inflexxion, Inc. has relaunched painACTION.com, the self-management program for patients living with chronic pain.
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The Spirituality and Health Online Education and Resource Center (SOERCE) from the The George Washington Institute for Spirituality and Health (GWish). NOTE: on the GWish home page, sign up for the quarterly e-mail newsletter.
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CA CONNections
The quarterly newsletter of the Connecticut Cancer Partnership, CA CONNections, is available online.
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"Chemobrain Resources"
Jane Brody articles in New York Times The Fog That Follows Chemotherapy
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Taking Steps to Cope With Chemo Brain
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New Book, Your Brain after Chemo: A Practical Guide to Lifting the Fog and Getting Back Your Focus.
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NY Times Blog Q & A: When Cancer Treatment Affects Memory, by author of Your Brain After Chemo.
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Yale Bioethics

Tuesdays; 5:30pm - 7:00pm
77 Prospect St., Room A002 (CME)

September 1
Conscientious Objection and Moral Distress.
Nancy Berlinger, PhD

October 6
Dignity, Liberty, and Human Rights at the Very End of Life.
Kathryn L. Tucker, JD

Annual Meeting: Connecticut Coalition to Improve End-of-Life Care
September 17
10:30am - 2:00pm
Franciscan Family Care Center
267 Finch Avenue
Meriden, CT 06451

"Futility: Hope, Reality, and Moral Distress." 
Karen Stanley, RN, MSN, AOCN. 
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Continuing Education


September 26
7:30am -  2:00pm
8th Annual Oncology Nursing Conference: Challenges in Oncology Nursing Practice.
The Study at Yale
1157 Chapel St., New Haven

Oncology Nursing Council of Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven. Contact: Jamy Stenger, 203-688-6437. (CNE)


October 9-11; Cambridge, MA
Practical Aspects of Palliative Care: Integrating Palliative Care into Clinical Practice. (CME)
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October 21; Publick House in Sturbridge, MA
8:00am - 12:00pm
Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (MOLST),  Massachusetts Pain Initiative quarterly meeting. (CME, CNE, CSWE)
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November 2009; Online
Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) Virtual Meetings for Fall 2009: Institutes of Learning and Advance Practice Nurses meetings. (CNE)
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November 6-8, 2009; Dana Farber Cancer Institute
Cancer Survivorship for Clinicians: Helping Survivors Live Well Beyond Cancer (CME)
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  August 2009          Volume 3 · No 8
Staying Active after a Diagnosis of Cancer
Guest author, Scott Capozza, MS, PT, is the physical therapist for the Connecticut Challenge Survivorship Clinic at Yale Cancer Center.  Along with being a longtime runner, as well as a cyclist and volunteer with the CT Challenge, he is a 10-year survivor of testicular cancer.  The following article describes the approach that he takes in counseling cancer survivors.
During and following surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, your body may feel fatigued while it is healing from these treatments, and thus you may not feel like exercising. A vicious circle can be created: you feel tired, so you don't exercise, and then you become more fatigued because you have not been able to increase your energy level by exercising, and so on. Begin slowly and keep things in perspective. If you were exercising before you began your treatments, it will take you the same amount of time since you stopped to regain your previous fitness level. Aim for 30 minutes a day 5 times a week as your long-term goal.  If this is too much to start with, begin with 15 minutes, 3 times a week (a day on, a day off for rest) and increase each session gradually to 30 minutes. Then you can add in another day, (starting at 15 minutes and working up to 30).  Set a specific goal. For example: "I want to be able to do a 3 mile walk for breast cancer by May." Write your routine and goals for the week on the calendar. Having concrete, but realistic and adjustable, plans and goals is a good strategy to keep you motivated. Moderate to vigorous levels of exercise are the most effective. If you think of exercise on a scale of 1-10, 1 is sitting on the couch and at 10 you feel like you'll pass out - aim for a level of 5-7.
How can you return to work and still find ways to stay active or increase your activity level? If you work on the upper floors of an office building, take the stairs instead of the elevator (and if you do work on the first floor, you can always walk up and down the stairwell several times anyway!) You can park farther away from where you work in the parking lot; if there is a shuttle to work from the parking lot, try to walk the distance once a day for two weeks, and then as you get stronger you can walk round-trip. If you plan on going to a gym or working out after work, bring your gym clothes with you to work, and change into them at the end of your work day. This way, you don't have to go home first to change and then potentially get distracted from your time to exercise. Encourage a co-worker (or two or three) to come with you on a lunch-time walk or an after work workout.  Having a partner to exercise with you makes the task more fun, it makes the time go by faster, it holds you more accountable, and you are getting somebody else to exercise and be healthy too! Talk to your co-workers and your supervisor about entering a corporate challenge at a local road race, bike event, or other activity, such as a weekend hike. This will help get more people to be active and help build camaraderie amongst all of your co-workers.
If you need help getting back your strength or endurance, you can consult with a personal trainer at a gym. If you are experiencing a reduction or loss of range of motion, lymphedema, or other chronic condition as a result of your cancer treatments, you can seek the professional advice of a physical therapist, lymphedema certified therapist, or a licensed massage therapist. These professionals will be able to help you develop a plan to address barriers to your exercise plan. Have a plan in your head (putting it down on a calendar or your Blackberry is better) for the steps on your journey to regaining your physical fitness or in establishing your fitness plan for the first time. Having a series of short-term, attainable goals is a great strategy for mental and physical fitness.

In the News

Surviving Cancer a Long-Term Journey
A recent article in the Connecticut Post, "Surviving cancer a long-term Journey," highlights the role of the Connecticut Challenge Survivorship Clinic at Yale Cancer Center in cancer care.

The Connecticut Challenge
While the ride is over, the fundraising is not. Please donate to support survivorship programs at Yale and other institutions in Connecticut. You can make a general donation, donate to a rider, or donate to the Yale HEROS or YCC Hot Wheelers teams.

The fund-raising deadline for 2009 is September 24.
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September is...
Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month
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Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
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Leukemia and Lymphoma Awareness Month
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Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
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October is...
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
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American Cancer Society: National Breast Cancer Awareness Month
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Lifting Weights Helps Breast Cancer Survivors
A new study suggests weight lifting helps decrease the severity of lymphedema (see YaleCares article on lymphedema). The study did not address whether weight lifting can prevent the development of lymphedema.
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Connecticut Coalition Updated Booklet
Connecticut Coalition to Improve End-of-Life Care has updated their booklet entitled "Beginning the Conversation about Death, Dying and End-of-Life Care in Connecticut" and has recently reduced the cost to $5/copy.
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Journal Watch

Schmitz KH, et al. Weight lifting in women with breast-cancer-related lymphedema. N Engl J Med. 2009 Aug 13;361(7):664-73.

Houliha NG. Transitioning to Cancer Survivorship: Plans of Care. ONCOLOGY Nurse Edition July 2009, Vol 23 No 5.

Boyle DA. Nursing Leadership in Survivor Care.  ONCOLOGY Nurse Edition July 2009, Vol 23 No 5.
(NOTE: Debbie Boyle is a featured speaker at the upcoming 8th Annual Oncology Nursing Conference, Sep 26. (see Continuing Education)