Monday, July 2, 2012


Do you live in close proximity to UCLA?  Army of Women is helping Patricia Ganz recruit for a study.

There are a few rock stars studying chemobrain.  Patricia Ganz is absolutely on the short list.  This study is being conducted by her and will, I'm sure, build upon the information she has already gleaned from her previous work.

Last week, Idelle Davidson notified her readers that the study needs participants.  Here'e the information from the Army of Women website.  If you fit the criteria, might I suggest you have Army of Women connect you with the team at UCLA.  You won't be sorry.

I participated in a study at MSKCC one year ago.  It involved using a specific software program specially designed to train working memory.  Last week, I was provided with "extension study" for one year.  Twice a week, I will play four games in the CogMed training program.  The computer selects the games.  There are a total of twelve from which the computer will choose.  I presume there's some sort of crazy algorithm that selects the games based upon those from which I will derive the most benefit.

I finished the formal five week training last July.  I did my first extension training the other day.  I didn't do very well.  I can see my progress so I know exactly how far I had advanced.  I wonder how quickly I will catch up to where I was in July.

Eight Games A Week Is Not Enough To Fix My Brain.....

Or maybe it is.  We shall see.  I'll let you know.  Meantime.... interested in seeing what Dr. Ganz has up her sleeve? Here's the basic information.  Remember, these are NOT intrusive studies.  They will require an element of time commitment but if I could get to UCLA, I'd be running...... Just sayin'


Project Title Breast Cancer Cognitive Rehabilitation Study
Researcher Patricia Ganz, MD, UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Linda Ercoli, PhD, Steven Castellon, PhD, and Andrew Luechter, MD, UCLA Semel Institute
Study Summary The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a rehabilitation group intervention program for breast cancer survivors who are experiencing memory loss and concentration problems associated with cancer treatments. About 60 women will take part in the study.
Who Can Participate? You can sign up for the Breast Cancer Cognitive Rehabilitation Study if you meet ALL of these MAIN criteria:

• You are a woman between the ages of 21-65.
• You have been diagnosed with Stage I, II, or III breast cancer.
• You were diagnosed with breast cancer between 18 months and 5 years ago.
• You have completed your primary treatments (surgery and, if needed, radiation and/or chemotherapy), and are currently disease free (it is OK if you are on endocrine therapy, such as tamoxifen or an aromatase inhibitor).
• You do not have a personal history of any other cancer besides breast cancer.
• You are experiencing cognitive problems (for example, memory loss and concentration problems) that interfere with your everyday activities.
• You are able to read and write English.
• You live in the Los Angeles area and are willing and able to drive to UCLA to attend 5 weekly group sessions and participate in a pre-visit and two follow-up visits.

After you RSVP, the research team will contact you to ask additional questions to be sure that the study is a good fit for you.
What Does Participation Involve? If you sign up for the Breast Cancer Cognitive Rehabilitation Study, you will be contacted by the research team to confirm that you are eligible for the study. If you choose to participate in the study, you will be asked to do the following:

• Go to UCLA for an initial baseline visit that will last about three hours.
• Go to UCLA once a week for a 5-week group intervention program. These visits will last 2 hours each.
• Go to UCLA for follow-up study visits a week or two after the group intervention ends, and again 2 months later. These visits will take approximately 2.5 hours each.
• Complete a survey questionnaire at your home before your baseline and follow-up visits.
• Take part in a procedure called quantitative electroencephalography (QEEG). An EEG is a test that measures the electrical activity of the brain. The purpose of the QEEG is to determine whether or not the research team can detect EEG patterns associated with cognitive complaints after breast cancer. This procedure will be conducted at 3 time points in the study.

In this study half of the women will be assigned by chance (like the flip of a coin) to participate in the rehabilitation group intervention program and half will be assigned to a wait-list control group. This type of randomized study is necessary to scientifically prove that something is effective. The wait-list control group will also be able to participate in the group intervention in the future, but not until after all the visits have been completed.
Where? University of California, Los Angeles

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