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Ask An Expert

Ask an Expert: Chemotherapy and insomnia

Q: I'm undergoing chemo, and though I am experiencing heavy-duty fatigue, I am also suffering from insomnia! Sometimes it's hard to fall asleep; other nights I wake up around 3 a.m. for an hour or two. My medical oncologist said chemo can disrupt the sleep-wake cycle and prescribed Ambien. I don't like the idea of relying on a sleeping pill. Anything else I can do?

Answer from Miles Hassell, M.D., director of Providence Integrative Medicine at Providence Cancer Center:

Colonoscopy: What to know before you go

A few helpful tips from a Providence family practitioner for what to expect before and after a colonoscopy.

Myth-busting colonoscopy: Five reasons it’s not so bad

We hear “colonoscopy” and our bodies clench. The anticipation of the bowel-emptying prep and a scope snaking through our colon evokes strong feelings among even the hardiest of us.

For Jonathan Vinson, M.D., a family physician with Providence Medical Group-The Plaza, getting screened for colorectal cancer is a “no-brainer.”

What to expect when you’re prepping (for your colonoscopy)

How many of you cringe at scheduling a colonoscopy because the procedure (for which you’re knocked out) is a total drag? Yeah, we didn’t think so. It’s not the procedure itself that gets you in the gut – it’s the dreaded, much-maligned prep. Find out what works and what doesn't from Ken Flora, M.D., regional co-medical director of Providence Gastrointestinal Center.

Forms Instructions

Colon Cancer Care Guidelines

Providence Gastrointestinal Cancer Program has established guidelines for treating non-metastatic colon cancer. Please refer to the attached document.

Proprietary Health Article

Colonoscopy: Helping protect your colorectal health

A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows a doctor to look inside the entire large intestine, including the colon and rectum.

Colorectal cancer risks: tobacco, obesity and inactivity

Once again, tobacco use is firmly established as a cause of cancer, this time, colorectal cancer. – By Todd S. Crocenzi, medical oncologist and researcher

Colorectal cancer screening: back to the basics

Amid controversies over complex screening options, stool-based testing can offer a simple solution today. – By Todd S. Crocenzi, M.D., medical oncologist and researcher

Four steps you can take to prevent colon cancer

By Todd Crocenzi, M.D., oncologist, Providence Oncology and Hematology Care, and medical director, Providence Gastrointestinal Cancer Program, Providence Cancer Center

Studies bring clarity to combination therapies for colorectal cancer

Recent trials have brought some consistency back to integrating EGFR antagonists in the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer. – By Todd S. Crocenzi, M.D., medical oncologist and researcher

Studying statin chemoprevention in colon cancer patients

A clinical trial examines whether statins will inhibit a recurrence in patients with resected stage I or II colorectal cancer. – By Anupama Kurup, M.D., medical oncologist

Recommended Resource

5-Year Survival Following Radiofrequency Ablation of Colorectal Liver Mestastases: A 10-Year Experience

Purpose Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) of colorectal liver mestastases (CRLM) is a relatively new technique which may provide local control of tumors while causing minimal impact on the patient’s health and quality of life. There is little data on long-term outcomes and patient survival following RFA. The purpose of this study was to review our 10-year experience with patients undergoing RFA and CRLM with a focus on technique, patient selection and 5-year survival.

American Cancer Society: Cancer staging

American Cancer Society’s description and explanation of staging cancer. Staging is the process of finding out how much cancer there is in the body and where it is located. It is how the doctor learns the stage of a person's cancer. Doctors use this information to plan treatment and to help find out a person's outlook (prognosis). 

Cancer.net (AKA: People Living with Cancer)

Oncologist-approved cancer information from the American Society of Clinical Oncology

CancerCare.org

Cancer Care is a national nonprofit that provides free, professional support services for anyone affected by cancer.

KidsCope.org

The KidsCope website explains the non-profit program designed to help children and families understand the effects of cancer or chemotherapy on a loved one.

Look Good, Feel Better

This website is a free, non-medical service program created to help individuals with cancer look good, improve their self-esteem and manage their treatment and recovery with greater confidence.

National Cancer Institute

National Cancer Institute home page with links to all cancer topics, clinical trial information, statistics, research and treatment information.