Marriage May Be Linked To Increased Survival Among Colon Cancer Patients.

Study found patients were 14% less likely to die if they had a spouse

THURSDAY, June 23 (HealthDay News) — Being married improves the likelihood of survival for colon cancer patients, a new study finds.

Married men and women with colon cancer were 14 percent less likely to die than other colon cancer patients, according to U.S. researchers who analyzed 127,753 patient records.

The study also found that married patients were diagnosed at earlier stages of colon cancer and sought more aggressive treatment, which echoes findings from studies of other types of cancer.

While the actual reasons for improved survival among married patients weren’t pinpointed by the researchers at Penn State’s College of Medicine and Brigham Young University, they suggested that informal caregiving by spouses may result in better cancer management. That extra support may result in better outcomes, according to a Brigham Young news release.

The study appears online and in an upcoming print issue of the journal Cancer Epidemiology.

Hepatologist Says A Third Of US Population Has Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

CNN (6/17, Cohen) reports that approximately “a third of the US population has nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, according to Dr. Michael Curry, a hepatologist at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston.” He “said most of those people — about 80% — will not develop significant liver disease,” but “the other 20% will develop a disease called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH.” In many of cases of NASH, “liver enzyme tests are sometimes normal, and even ultrasounds and CT scans don’t always pick up on the disease.”

Association Between Processed Meat Intake, Higher Colorectal Cancer Risk

 The Washington Post (5/23, Huget) “The Checkup” blog reports that, according to a study released today, “there’s convincing evidence that eating too much red meat and processed meat raises colorectal cancer risk and that consuming plenty of fiber in the form of plant-based foods reduces that risk.” The Continuous Update Project (CUP), produced by the World Cancer Research Fund and American Institute for Cancer, gathers research about “various forms of cancer, updating its database every few years.” For this report, scientists “conducted a review of published studies and ended up adding 263 new papers about colorectal cancer to the 749 that had been analyzed for the last report, issued in 2007.” The report notes that “red meat, processed meat, excess body fat, and fat carried around the waist increase risk of colorectal cancer.”