December 14, 2010

Fall/Winter 2010 Issue of Momentum Available Online Now

The Fall/Winter 2010 issue of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center's magazine, Momentum, is now available online at

In this issue:

Did You Smoke?
Patients with lung cancer – whether they smoked or not – often feel blamed for causing their disease. Beyond this psychological stress, does the “smoking stigma” impact research funding and public awareness about the disease that kills more people than breast, colon and prostate cancers combined?

Genome Maintenance
Like a railroad needs regular maintenance to keep trains running, our cells employ maintenance crews to keep the genome – the entirety of our genetic information – in working order. When these crews fail, cancer can result.

Words to Live By
Expressive writing can help patients cope with a cancer diagnosis. Sigourney Cheek chronicled her cancer journey – first in e-mails to friends, and later in a book. Others find an outlet by writing poetry.

You'll also meet:
• Carolyn Watts, a surgical nurse with a specialty in wound care, whose philosophy is to treat “the whole patient, not just the hole in the patient.”
• Bomar Herrin, who has a precursor condition to multiple myeloma. He didn't just want to wait on his disease to progress, so he gave a gift to advance research on the disease – with one special stipulation.
• Ezra Fitz, a brain tumor survivor, who see stars – not just the ones in the sky, but the star-like cells, called astrocytes, that almost killed him.