Awareness, surveillance key to early detection, better prognosis in fight against anal cancer

David Aboulafia, MD, Virginia Mason Medical Center
August 9, 2016
Anal cancer is a subject most people would rather not discuss, because of its anatomical location, along with an unfortunate stigma attached to the malignancy. Although tragic, actress Farrah Fawcett’s openness about her diagnosis in 2006 helped create much-needed public awareness about the malady during her 11-year battle with the disease which she lost in 2015 at the age of 62. Closer to home, a 51-year-old White Center resident named Ed was impressed with Fawcett’s openness and advocacy. He now feels very fortunate that he listened to his physician and decided to have an anal Pap smear

Beliefs About Anal Cancer among HIV-Infected Women: Barriers and Motivators to Participation in Research

Tracy A. Battaglia, MD, MPH, Christine M. Gunn, PhD, Molly E. McCoy, MPH, Helen H. Mu, MPH, Amy S. Baranoski, MD, MSc, Elizabeth Y. Chiao, MD, MPH, Lisa A. Kachnic, MD, Elizabeth A. Stier, MD in Women's Health Issues
December 15, 2015
Women's Health Issues Vol. 25(6): 720-26. Abstract Background Infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) remains associated with a greater risk of anal cancer, despite widespread use of combination antiretroviral therapy. Evidence concerning the acceptability of anal cancer screening gives little attention to women. Because HIV-infected women have a high prevalence of depression and history of sexual trauma, understanding acceptability among this group is critical. Purpose We sought to assess barriers and motivators to participation in anal cancer screening research among a racial/

First HIV, then cancer.

Mary Engel, Fred Hutch News Service.
October 5, 2015
As people with HIV live longer, they are developing cancers at higher rates than the general population. Read Article

Prevalence of anal human papillomavirus infection and anal HPV-related disorders in women: a systematic review

Elizabeth A. Stier, MD; Meagan C. Sebring, BBA, BA; Audrey E. Mendez, PhD, MS; Fatimata S. Ba, MPH; Debra D. Trimble, PhD, RN; Elizabeth Y. Chiao, MD, MPH
September 29, 2015
AJOG Sept. 2015 Abstract: The aim of this study was to systematically review the findings of publications addressing the epidemiology of anal human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, anal intraepithelial neoplasia, and anal cancer in women. We conducted a systematic review among publications published from Jan. 1, 1997, to Sept. 30, 2013, to limit to publications from the combined antiretroviral therapy era. Three searches were performed of the National Library of Medicine PubMed database using the following search terms: women and anal HPV, women anal intraepithelial neoplasia, and women and

'Putting Your Bottom at the Top of Your List' -- The Pap Smear That's Not Just for Women

Erin N. Marcus, MD, HuffPost
April 27, 2015
About 17 years ago, Jeff Taylor, an AIDS advocate, became worried he might have anal cancer. Through his work, Taylor knew that anal cancer rates had risen steeply among people with HIV. He was having discomfort, and he knew that there was a simple screening test: a swab that is processed just like a routine pap smear. His doctor knew about the test, but at that time there was little agreement on how to diagnose and treat anal cancer, which is rare in the general population. "He said, 'even if I sent it in, the lab wouldn't process it,'" because the pap smear specimen wasn't from a female

Anchor's Away!

Gary Bucher, M.D., FAACP
April 1, 2015
The Anal Cancer/HSIL Outcomes Research Study IT’S INDISPUTABLE THAT HAVING A CELEBRITY SPOKESPERSON benefits any cause. Scott Hamilton defeated testicular cancer, Kathy Bates overcame ovarian cancer and is now fighting breast cancer, and two of the original Charlie’s Angels, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith, are breast cancer survivors. But it was the third angel, Farrah Fawcett, who didn’t survive her cancer, dying at the age of 62 in 2009 of anal cancer. Fawcett became the one who took this particular cancer from being “unmentionable” to finally grabbing the attention of the public. Now, it

Risk of anal cancer looms for those with HIV

Tim Nelson, Advocate Health Care eNews
March 24, 2015
Bob says the first indication something was wrong was the blood he found when he used the restroom more than four years ago. “I thought about going to the doctor, but bleeding stopped,” he says. But then, a year later, it began again. This time, it didn’t go away. “It got worse. It was constant. There was blood on my sheets, on my clothes,” Bob says. “I went to the doctor, had a colonoscopy. It turns out there was a cancerous growth in biopsy. It was anal cancer.” Read On

Anchor study seeks answers to link between HIV, HPV

Lauren E. Childers, Windy City Times
March 18, 2015
The Anchor Study's main goal is to determine if these screenings decrease the incidence of anal cancer. "In the Midwest, we're trying to get the word out because a lot of people aren't screening for this because patients don't want to get a rectal exam and doctors really don't want to do the rectal exam either," Bucher said. "But that's how you will find things." Read On