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Cancer Treatment, Outcomes, and Survivorship


There are over 150,000 current Kaiser Permanente Northern California members with a personal history of cancer. Given our integrated health care system, which provides comprehensive care to its members, coupled with exceptionally high member retention rates (more than 80% at 10 years post-cancer diagnosis), Kaiser Permanente Northern California is uniquely positioned to study cancer treatment, outcomes, and survivorship.

In this premiere research setting, DOR investigators have longstanding expertise in behavioral, social, genetic, and molecular factors in relation to prognosis and survival, as well as health-related quality of life and early and late effects of cancer treatment. Factors we are studying include:

  • Behavioral and closely related factors, such as diet, physical activity, obesity, body composition, smoking, alcohol intake, mindfulness, and complementary and integrative medicine.
  • Social factors, including social support and social networks.
  • Genetic and molecular factors, including genetic polymorphisms, serum biomarkers, and tumor tissue markers.

Current prospective studies of cancer survivors, largely funded by the National Cancer Institute, include breast cancer (LACE Study, Pathways Study, WHI Cancer Survivorship Cohort), colorectal cancer (PCORNet Cohort), prostate cancer (PREPARE Study), and bladder cancer (Be-Well Study). In addition to recurrence, mortality, and quality of life, several studies are looking at the importance of comorbidities and treatment side effects, including cardiotoxicity, lymphedema, and fracture. Finally, understudied factors such as sarcopenia and mammographic density are being investigated given their potential pragmatic importance.


American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2015. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2015.

DeSantis C, Chunchieh L, Mariotto AB, et al. (2014). Cancer Treatment and Survivorship Statistics, CA CANCER J CLIN 2014;64:252 271.​​