Emerging Research About Chemo Brain and Hormones

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Many cancer patients talk about the problems with memory that they develop during their cancer treatment. While the stress of a cancer diagnosis can itself cause cognitive impairments, so can chemotherapy and radiation treatments. But how do the hormonal changes that women undergo during cancer treatment also affect memory? Joel L. Voss, PhD, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medical Social Sciences and the Interdepartmental Neuroscience Program at Northwestern University investigates this exact question.

Dr. Voss using advanced brain imaging to examine how chemotherapy affects brain functioning in breast cancer survivors. Chemotherapy can cause damage to the ovaries and can impair the production of estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone. Dr. Voss further investigates the role of hormones on memory impairment in these survivors by asking how adjuvant tamoxifen therapy may affect memory in younger women. As young breast cancer survivors are frequently prescribed for five years after a breast cancer diagnosis, understanding the cognitive effects is important for their careers and quality-of-life into survivorship.Best health blogs 2013

This Thursday, December 12th at 10 am Central Time, the Oncofertility Consortium is proud to host a Virtual Grand Rounds with Dr. Voss as he discusses this important research in a talk, entitled, “The role of hippocampal insults in cognitive impairments related to cancer treatment.”

View some of the previous Virtual Grand Rounds.