Prevention and Control

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The Challenges of Cancer

More than 1.6 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year in the United States, including over 48,000 in New Jersey. In addition, there are over 66 million informal caregivers in the United States. These numbers are expected to increase as the population ages. Advances in early detection and treatment have led to better outcomes, with more people surviving cancer than ever before.

However, there are still many challenges that need to be overcome to reduce the burden of cancer in New Jersey and in the United States. We need a greater understanding of ways to reduce or manage cancer risk, as well as new ways to help people get through treatment and have more successful recovery.

Confronting the Challenges

We are learning more about the ways lifestyle factors and genetics influence cancer risk. We need to learn ways to help people make and maintain healthy lifestyle changes. And we need to help them make informed decisions about treatments, tests, and test results, including tests assessing genetic risks. In addition, we understand that cancer impacts the patient as well as those in their support networks.

In a research partnership with investigators at Georgetown University’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, researchers in the Cancer Prevention and Control Program at John Theurer Cancer Center, part of Hackensack University Medical Center, are conducting studies addressing these challenges.

Our ongoing and recent studies investigate:

  • Factors influencing the quality of cancer survivorship and interventions to improve patients’ and caregivers’ physical and psychological health after cancer.
  • How to use technology to increase patients’ and caregivers’ access to training that can help them manage pain and anxiety.
  • The manner in which people understand, make decisions about, and respond to information from genomic sequencing to understand their health problems and risks.
  • Ways to help people engage in behaviors to protect themselves and their family members from cancer and other health problems.