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“Cancer is not just one disease but many diseases. There are more than 100 different types of cancer,” states the National Cancer Institute. Cancer involves the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells that have mutated from normal tissues. This growth can kill when these cells prevent normal function of vital organs or spread throughout the body, damaging essential systems.

Internet Resources

Designed especially for cancer patients by the cancer professionals of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, this site is dedicated to providing accurate, reliable, current information about cancer.

Accurate, current information from the world’s leading authority on cancer, the National Cancer Institute. Look here first for information on treatment, clinical trials, and psychosocial support.

MedlinePlus: Cancers
Developed by the National Library of Medicine specifically for consumers, this site is a portal for both government-sponsored and privately developed health information for the lay public. Look for links to familiar places like the National Institutes of Health.

American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society is dedicated to fighting cancer with sections on education, support and treatment, and research. This site has many resources available to patients, families, and caregivers.

National Comprehensive Cancer Network
The consumer web site of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, this site offers current cancer news, treatment summaries for the most common types of cancer, and links to leading cancer treatment centers. It also offers practical advice on such topics as living with cancer, paying for treatment, and life after cancer.

The Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University at Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Contains information about the many services offered by the Lurie Cancer Center, one of thirteen founding members of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN).

MyBiopsy is a free resource developed by the College of American Pathologists for people who have been diagnosed with cancer and their loved ones to help them better understand their illness. It includes pictures of normal and diseased tissues and cells .

Steve Dunn’s Cancer Guide
Developed by a cancer survivor, this carefully indexed site leads to home pages for many different types of cancer. Other useful resources, including "Pros and Cons of Researching Your Cancer," are included.

Genetics Home Reference: Your Guide to Understanding Genetic Conditions
Excellent consumer information about genetic conditions and the genes or chromosomes responsible for those conditions, including some types of cancers.


General Information about Cancer

  • Everything you need to know about cancer in language you can actually understand. Galsky MD. 2010.
  • AJCC cancer staging manual. 2010
  • American Cancer Society’s complete guide to complementary and alternative cancer therapies. 2009.
  • Biology and treatment of cancer: understanding cancer. Pardee AB, ed. 2009.
  • Cancer clinical trials: experimental treatments & how they can help you. Finn R. 1999.
  • Choices. Morra M. 2003.
  • Everyone’s guide to cancer therapy: how cancer is diagnosed, treated, and managed day to day. Ko A. 2008.
  • Gale encyclopedia of cancer. Longe J, ed. 2010. Available in print at the Health Learning Center or online at http://www.nmh.org/nm/health library virtual library.
  • How cancer works. Sompayrac L. 2004.

Care During and After Cancer

  • American Cancer Society’s complete guide to nutrition for cancer survivors. 2010
  • American Cancer Society’s healthy eating cookbook: a celebration of food, friends, and healthy living. 2003.
  • Anticancer: a new way of life. Servan-Schreiber D. 2008.
  • Bone metastasis: what you need to know now. American Cancer Society. 2008.
  • Cancer-fighting kitchen: nourishing big-flavor recipes for cancer treatment and recovery. Katz R. 2009.
  • Caregiving: a step-by-step resource for caring for the person with cancer at home. Houts P. 2003.
  • Diagnosis cancer: your guide to the first months of health survivorship. Tolbert P. 2008.
  • Your brain after chemo: a practical guide to lifting the fog and getting back your focus. Silverman D. 2009.

Cancer in the Family

  • 100 questions and answers about caring for family and friends with cancer. Ross S. 2005
  • Children with cancer: a reference guide for parents. Munn Bracken J. 2010
  • Cancer in the family: helping children cope with a parent’s illness. Heiney S. 2001
  • Couples confronting cancer: keeping your relationship strong. Fincannon J. 2003
  • Live longer, live larger: a holistic approach for cancer patients and families. Buchholz B. 2001
  • The love knot: ties that bind cancer partners. Ross R. 2001.
  • When a parent has cancer: a guide to caring for your children. Harper WS. 1997.

Ask a staff person to help you locate one of our many personal narratives of cancer. Here is a sampling:

  • Because cowards get cancer too: a hypochondriac confronts his nemesis. Diamond J. 1999.
  • Between me and the river: living beyond cancer. Host C. 2009.
  • The last lecture. Pausch R. 2008.
  • Lessons for Dylan. Siegel J. 2003.
  • No time to die: living with ovarian cancer. Tilberis L. 1998.
  • Notes left behind. Desserich B. 2009.
  • Ordinary life: a memoir of illness. Conway K. 1997.
  • Saving Jack: a man’s struggle with breast cancer. Willis J. 2008.

Search our collection for hundreds more resources concerning cancer.


Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s Alberto Culver Health Learning Center has joined forces with the American Cancer Society’s Patient Navigator Program to provide assistance to patients and families dealing with cancer. To take advantage of this unique service, provided by a licensed clinical social worker, call 312-926-4282.

Association of Cancer Online Resources
One-stop access to nearly one hundred electronic mailing lists devoted to cancer as well as a variety of unique web sites and cancer news.

Contact Us

For more information, please contact the Alberto Culver Health Learning Center at 312-926-5465, or e-mail us at HLC@nmh.org.

Last UpdateOctober 29, 2012