A National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

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Community Outreach

As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
 

General Information About Cancer

What Is Cancer?
Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide and grow abnormally.
 
Normally, cells throughout the body divide and grow as children's bodies develop, and as adult bodies replace old or injured cells. During this methodical system, new cells form, grow, and stop growing at the appropriate time. When cancer occurs, cell growth becomes uncontrolled. Often, but not always, these cancer cells form into a solid mass called a tumor. Not all tumors are cancerous, however: cancerous tumors are called “malignant,” while non-cancerous tumors are known as “benign.” If the cancerous cells are blood cells, as in leukemia, there is no solid tumor. Early detection and treatment are very important to increasing the patient's chances of recovery.
 
Cancer can occur in many parts of the body, and can take many different forms. The various forms can behave very differently from one another--they may grow at differing rates, and respond to treatments inconsistently. Cancer can also spread to other parts of the body through the bloodstream or lymphatic system (this is called metastasis), but the original site of the cancerous cells determines the cancer type.
 
What Causes Cancer?
The unusual cell growth that brings about cancer is the result of damage to DNA -- the substance inside all cells that directs cell behavior. Damaged DNA can be caused by genetics, by behavior (such as smoking or diet), or by things in the environment (such as air pollutants, radiation or occupational exposure to certain chemicals). Usually, the body can repair damaged DNA, but cancer cells evade this natural process.
 
Treating Cancer
Cancer is traditionally treated using three types of therapy: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Depending on the type of cancer and its stage (how far the cancer has progressed), your doctor may use one of these methods or a combination of them in order to achieve the best possible result.
 
Today, in addition to these three approaches, new and promising therapies for cancer are being developed and used. These new approaches include gene therapy and immunotherapy, and may offer new hope to those who have not benefited from conventional treatment methods.
 
The City of Hope Approach
City of Hope, one of just 41 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, is dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of many different types of cancer. City of Hope has a world-class staff of researchers and physicians who are constantly developing new approaches to treating cancer.Last year, City of Hope conducted more than 300 studies enrolling more than 5,000 patients.
 
In just one example of our leading-edge research, City of Hope is the first – and currently only – institution in the world to perform a clinical study using genetically-engineered T-cells to recognize and attack glioma, a highly lethal (and unfortunately, quite common) form of brain cancer. Learn more about our treatment approaches.
 
Cancer Prevention
Through painstaking effort and years of research, scientists have been able to identify many of the causes of cancer. Today, it is believed that about 75 percent of cancer cases are tied in some way to how we live our lives. Since our lifestyle does contribute to the risk of having cancer, prevention often depends on knowing as much as possible about our own risk factors. It’s important to remember that cancer prevention is an ongoing process.
 
  • Carefully identify lifestyle factors such as smoking, dietary habits, or occupational hazards that might contribute to your risk of developing cancer.
  • Think about which of these lifestyle risk factors you can control.
  • Begin to make simple changes in lifestyle that may help lower your cancer risk. These changes often involve choices that are made every day.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends a cancer-related checkup every three years for people between the ages of 20 to 39 and annually for people age 40 or older.

Additional Information and Resources
This website is designed to provide information about the advanced treatment services and leading biomedical research available at City of Hope.
 
For general information on all types of cancers, as well as cancer causes and prevention, the National Cancer Institute (www.cancer.gov) and American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org) are excellent sources.
 
Become a Patient
City of Hope is committed to making the process of becoming a patient here as easy as possible. Call 800-826-HOPE (4673) or complete the online appointment form.
 

Community Outreach

Community Outreach

As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
 

General Information About Cancer

General Information About Cancer

What Is Cancer?
Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide and grow abnormally.
 
Normally, cells throughout the body divide and grow as children's bodies develop, and as adult bodies replace old or injured cells. During this methodical system, new cells form, grow, and stop growing at the appropriate time. When cancer occurs, cell growth becomes uncontrolled. Often, but not always, these cancer cells form into a solid mass called a tumor. Not all tumors are cancerous, however: cancerous tumors are called “malignant,” while non-cancerous tumors are known as “benign.” If the cancerous cells are blood cells, as in leukemia, there is no solid tumor. Early detection and treatment are very important to increasing the patient's chances of recovery.
 
Cancer can occur in many parts of the body, and can take many different forms. The various forms can behave very differently from one another--they may grow at differing rates, and respond to treatments inconsistently. Cancer can also spread to other parts of the body through the bloodstream or lymphatic system (this is called metastasis), but the original site of the cancerous cells determines the cancer type.
 
What Causes Cancer?
The unusual cell growth that brings about cancer is the result of damage to DNA -- the substance inside all cells that directs cell behavior. Damaged DNA can be caused by genetics, by behavior (such as smoking or diet), or by things in the environment (such as air pollutants, radiation or occupational exposure to certain chemicals). Usually, the body can repair damaged DNA, but cancer cells evade this natural process.
 
Treating Cancer
Cancer is traditionally treated using three types of therapy: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Depending on the type of cancer and its stage (how far the cancer has progressed), your doctor may use one of these methods or a combination of them in order to achieve the best possible result.
 
Today, in addition to these three approaches, new and promising therapies for cancer are being developed and used. These new approaches include gene therapy and immunotherapy, and may offer new hope to those who have not benefited from conventional treatment methods.
 
The City of Hope Approach
City of Hope, one of just 41 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, is dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of many different types of cancer. City of Hope has a world-class staff of researchers and physicians who are constantly developing new approaches to treating cancer.Last year, City of Hope conducted more than 300 studies enrolling more than 5,000 patients.
 
In just one example of our leading-edge research, City of Hope is the first – and currently only – institution in the world to perform a clinical study using genetically-engineered T-cells to recognize and attack glioma, a highly lethal (and unfortunately, quite common) form of brain cancer. Learn more about our treatment approaches.
 
Cancer Prevention
Through painstaking effort and years of research, scientists have been able to identify many of the causes of cancer. Today, it is believed that about 75 percent of cancer cases are tied in some way to how we live our lives. Since our lifestyle does contribute to the risk of having cancer, prevention often depends on knowing as much as possible about our own risk factors. It’s important to remember that cancer prevention is an ongoing process.
 
  • Carefully identify lifestyle factors such as smoking, dietary habits, or occupational hazards that might contribute to your risk of developing cancer.
  • Think about which of these lifestyle risk factors you can control.
  • Begin to make simple changes in lifestyle that may help lower your cancer risk. These changes often involve choices that are made every day.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends a cancer-related checkup every three years for people between the ages of 20 to 39 and annually for people age 40 or older.

Additional Information and Resources
This website is designed to provide information about the advanced treatment services and leading biomedical research available at City of Hope.
 
For general information on all types of cancers, as well as cancer causes and prevention, the National Cancer Institute (www.cancer.gov) and American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org) are excellent sources.
 
Become a Patient
City of Hope is committed to making the process of becoming a patient here as easy as possible. Call 800-826-HOPE (4673) or complete the online appointment form.
 
Cancer Information
Find out more about cancer and how it develops, including risk factors, early detection, diagnosis, prevention and treatment. You can also find additional resources, statistics and a glossary from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society that may help in your search for more information about cancer.
Discover the wide range of progressive cancer treatment options at City of Hope designed to meet the individual needs of each patient. Here, medical research and clinical care are integrated, speeding the application of scientific discoveries toward better, more effective patient cancer treatments.
Only a National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center such as City of Hope offers a full complement of services designed to address all aspects of cancer, from understanding its origins to developing new therapies.
NCICCC
Community Outreach
As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
    CCARE - Center of Community Alliance for Research and Education

    Sitio web de City of Hope en español - City of Hope Spanish-language website
 


NEWS & UPDATES
  • The outlook and length of survival has not changed much in the past 25 years for patients suffering from an aggressive form of pancreatic cancer known as pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC). These patients still have few options for therapy; currently available therapies are generally toxic and do not incre...
  • “With bladder cancer, the majority of patients that I see can be cured,” said urologist Kevin Chan, M.D., head of reconstructive urology at City of Hope. “The challenge is to get patients the same quality of life that they had before surgery.” To meet this challenge, Chan and the urologic team at City of Hope [...
  • Already pioneers in the use of immunotherapy, City of Hope researchers are now testing the bold approach to cancer treatment against one of medicine’s biggest challenges: brain cancer. This month, they will launch a clinical trial using patients’ own modified T cells to fight advanced brain tumors. One of but a...
  • Brain cancer may be one of the most-frightening diagnoses people can receive, striking at the very center of who we are as individuals. Further, it often develops over time, causing no symptoms until it’s already advanced. Listen to City of Hope Radio as Behnam Badie, M.D., director of the Brain Tumor Pro...
  • The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. It takes a village. No man is an island. Choose your aphorism: It’s a simple truth that collaboration usually is better than isolation. That’s especially true when you’re trying to introduce healthful habits and deliver health care to people at risk of disease and...
  • When Maryland Governor Larry Hogan announced earlier this week that he has the most common form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, he was giving voice to the experience of more than 71,000 Americans each year. The announcement came with Hogan’s promise to stay in office while undergoing aggressive treatment for the...
  • The spine can be affected by many different kinds of tumors. Malignant, or cancerous, tumors can arise within the spine itself. Secondary spinal tumors, which are actually much more common, begin as cancers in another part of the body, such as the breast and prostate, and then spread, or metastasize, to the spi...
  • Although most cancer occurs in older adults, the bulk of cancer research doesn’t focus on this vulnerable and fast-growing population. City of Hope and its Cancer and Aging Research Team aim to change that, and they’re getting a significant boost from Professional Practice Leader Peggy Burhenn, R.N....
  • Liz Graef-Larcher’s first brain tumor was discovered by accident six years ago. The then-48-year-old with a long history of sinus problems and headaches had been sent for an MRI, and the scan found a lesion in her brain called a meningioma – a tumor that arises in the meninges, the layers of tissue that cover a...
  • The colon and rectum are parts of the body’s gastrointestinal system, also called the digestive tract. After food is digested in the stomach and nutrients are absorbed in the small intestine, the remaining material moves down into the lower large intestine (colon) where water and nutrients are absorbed. The low...
  • If there is one truism about hospital stays it is that patients want to get out. For many, however, the joy of being discharged is tempered by the unexpected challenges that recovery in a new setting may pose. Even with professional help, the quality of care and treatment that patients receive at City of Hope [...
  • Jana Portnow, M.D., associate director of the Brain Tumor Program at City of Hope, didn’t expect to specialize in treating brain tumors. But, early in her career, she undertook a year of research on pain management and palliative care and, in that program, got to know many patients with brain tumors. After that...
  • Ask any patient: Nurses are as pivotal in their care as doctors. They answer the call of a patient in the middle of the night, they hold the patient’s hand as he or she takes on yet another round of treatment and, in the best-case scenario, they wave goodbye as the patient leaves the hospital, […]
  • Many oncologists, not to mention their patients, might think that there’s no place for mathematical analysis in the treatment of cancer. They might think that all treatment decisions are based on unique factors affecting individual patients, with no connection to other patients and their treatment regimen...
  • Within three days in 2007, Stephanie Hosford, then 37, learned that she was pregnant with her long-awaited second child – and that she had triple-negative breast cancer. Soon afterward, Hosford discovered that she and her husband, Grant, had been approved to adopt a little girl from China.  After encountering m...