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supportive care

Predictors of Posthospital Care Transitions in Advanced Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Lage and colleagues found that among patients with advanced cancer who had an unplanned hospital admission, those discharged to hospice or post–acute care facilities had a worse symptom burden and physical function and worse survival...

supportive care

Sperm Banking for Adolescent Males With Newly Diagnosed Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Klosky et al identified factors associated with sperm banking among adolescent males with newly diagnosed cancer who were at increased risk for treatment-related fertility loss. The study included 146 adolescents aged 13 to 22 years (mean...

supportive care
symptom management

Tibetan Yoga Practice May Improve Sleep Quality for Patients With Breast Cancer Undergoing Chemotherapy

Participating in twice-weekly practice of Tibetan yoga may reduce sleep disturbances and improve sleep quality in breast cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, according to a study published by Chaoul et al in Cancer. The study, led by researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer...

issues in oncology
supportive care

ESMO 2017: Patients May Feel Psychosocial Impact of Chemotherapy More Acutely Than Physical Side Effects

The preliminary results of a study presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017 Congress in Madrid show that sociopsychological factors have become more significant for patients today than physical side effects such as nausea and vomiting, which were among the top concerns in...

supportive care
symptom management

FDA Expands Ibrutinib Indications to Chronic Graft-vs-Host Disease

On August 2, 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved ibrutinib (Imbruvica) for the treatment of adult patients with chronic graft-vs-host disease after failure of one or more lines of systemic therapy. This is the first FDA-approved therapy for the treatment of chronic...

supportive care

New ASCO Recommendations for Controlling Nausea and Vomiting Related to Cancer Treatment

An update of the ASCO Clinical Practice Guideline covers new medicines for nausea and vomiting related to cancer treatment. The update, issued by Hesketh et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology today, provides new evidence-based information on the appropriate use of olanzapine, neurokinin 1...

supportive care

Appropriate Distress Screening and Follow-up Leads to Fewer ER Visits and Hospitalizations in Patients With Cancer

Following a cancer diagnosis, all patients experience some level of distress—regardless of disease stage. When severe and left untreated, distress can have a significant impact on health outcomes, lead to greater mortality and morbidity, affect immune function, and result in higher...

breast cancer
supportive care

ASCO 2017: Conquer Fear Intervention Lowers Young Breast Cancer Survivors’ Fear of Cancer Recurrence

About 50% of all cancer survivors and 70% of young breast cancer survivors report a moderate to high fear of recurrence. The fear can be so distressing that it negatively affects medical follow-up behavior, mood, relationships, work, goal setting, and quality of life. Yet interventions to alleviate ...

supportive care

ASCO 2017: CALM Intervention Relieves Distress in Patients With Advanced Cancer

Advanced cancer triggers enormous distress and brings challenges that can seem overwhelming. Yet most cancer centers lack systematic approaches to help patients and families manage the practical and emotional toll of advanced cancer. Findings from a randomized clinical trial of 305 patients with...

supportive care

Are Oncologists Discussing Exercise With Patients?

It is well documented that physical activity benefits patients with cancer, both during and after treatment. Exercise helps patients combat both the physical and psychological impacts of cancer treatment, giving them a sense of well-being, control, stress reduction, and empowerment. However,...

breast cancer
supportive care
integrative oncology

Clinical Practice Guidelines on the Evidence-Based Use of Integrative Therapies During and After Breast Cancer Treatment

In newly updated clinical guidelines from the Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO), researchers at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health and the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, along with an interdisciplinary team of colleagues at The University of Texas MD Anderson...

supportive care

New Supportive Care Resources From NCCN Help Patients With Cancer Confront Distress

All patients with cancer experience some level of distress associated with their cancer diagnosis and the effects of the disease and its treatment—regardless of the stage of disease. Not only does distress affect a patient’s mental and psychosocial well-being, but because distress is a...

breast cancer
prostate cancer
supportive care

ASCO Quality Care 2017: Mental Health Conditions Contribute to Care-Related Costs, Hospital Visits in Breast and Prostate Cancers

A new analysis of data from the U.S. Military Health System found that mood and adjustment disorders such as anxiety and depression were strong predictors of the annual number of outpatient visits, hospital admissions, and number of days in the hospital for patients with breast and prostate...

hematologic malignancies
supportive care

ASH 2016: Preventative Antibiotics Could Prevent Clostridium difficile Among Stem Cell Transplant Recipients

It may be possible to safely prevent one of the most common—and costly to treat—infections contracted by hospitalized patients undergoing bone marrow transplantation for the treatment of blood cancers, according to a study from the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of...

issues in oncology
supportive care

Distress Screening in Oncology Leads to Better Doctor-Patient Relationships and Improved Outcomes

As many as 60% of patients with cancer report distress following a cancer diagnosis, and this stress can have a significant impact on patients’ well-being, resulting in psychosocial problems, physical side effects, and dissatisfaction with their health care. To examine the impact of distress ...

supportive care
survivorship

Sexual Pain Experienced by Women After Cancer Is Common and May Be Ignored

Painful sex in women after cancer treatment is relatively common, often treatable, and needs to be addressed by medical providers, a University of California (UC), Davis, oncologist and researcher suggests. Vanessa Kennedy, MD, a gynecologic oncologist at UC Davis Health System, said that with...

palliative care
hematologic malignancies
supportive care

Palliative Care 2016: Inpatient Palliative Care in Patients Hospitalized for HSCT

During hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), patients sometimes experience physical and psychological symptoms that negatively impact their quality of life. Researchers led by Areej El-Jawahri, MD, Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Director of the Bone Marrow Transplant...

supportive care
symptom management

FDA Approves Extended-Release Granisetron Injection for the Prevention of Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea and Vomiting

Heron Therapeutics, Inc, announced on August 10, 2016, that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved granisetron (Sustol) extended-release injection. Granisetron is a serotonin-3 (5-HT3) receptor antagonist indicated in combination with other antiemetics in adults for the prevention ...

supportive care
symptom management

Olanzapine Combination Reduces Nausea and Vomiting in Patients Receiving Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy

In a phase III trial reported by Navari et al in The New England Journal of Medicine, the addition of the antipsychotic agent olanzapine vs placebo to dexamethasone, aprepitant, or fosaprepitant, and a 5-hydroxytryptamine type 3–receptor antagonist reduced nausea and improved antiemetic...

supportive care
symptom management

Impact of Systemic Inflammation on Quality of Life in Advanced Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Laird et al found that increased systemic inflammation was associated with poorer patient-reported quality of life independent of performance status. Study Details The study involved data from 2,520 adult patients in a biobank of patients...

issues in oncology
supportive care

Study Finds Many Terminal Patients Unaware of Their Impending Death

A sizable portion of patients with advanced cancer lack an understanding of their prognosis and impending death, according to a study by Epstein et al. However, those patients who had recent discussions of prognosis/life expectancy with their oncologists had a better understanding of the terminal...

supportive care

Family-Focused Therapy Continued Into Bereavement Benefits High-Risk Families

Family-focused grief therapy continued into bereavement reduced the severity of complicated grief and the risk of prolonged grief disorder among high-risk families of dying cancer patients, according to a report by Kissane et in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Study Details In the trial,...

supportive care

Cancer and Fertility Program Improves Patient Satisfaction With Information on Fertility Risks and Preservation

A cancer and fertility program established at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) improves patient satisfaction with information received regarding fertility risks and preservation options, according to a report by Kelvin et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Designed to support...

breast cancer
supportive care

Epoetin Alfa vs Best Standard of Care in Treatment of Anemia in Patients With Metastatic Breast Cancer Receiving Chemotherapy

Use of epoetin alfa (Epogen, Procrit) vs best standard of care to treat anemia did not achieve noninferiority for investigator-assessed progression-free survival in patients receiving chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer, reported Leyland-Jones et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology....

breast cancer
supportive care

Study Finds Many Patients With Breast Cancer Develop Symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder; Symptoms Diminished Over 1 Year

According to a study led by Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) researchers, a majority of patients diagnosed with breast cancer go on to develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, and in most of these cases, symptoms persist for at least a year. These findings were published by Voigt et ...

gynecologic cancers
supportive care
symptom management

Fosaprepitant Combination Reduces Risk of Emesis During Chemoradiotherapy for Cervical Cancer

The addition of fosaprepitant (Emend) to palonosetron and dexamethasone reduced the risk of emesis during 5 weeks of chemoradiotherapy for cervical cancer, according to the phase III GAND-emesis trial reported in The Lancet Oncology by Ruhlmann et al. Study Details In the double-blind trial, 234...

prostate cancer
supportive care

Severe Adverse Event Clusters Identified Using NCI Common Terminology Criteria in Advanced Prostate Cancer

Using the National Cancer Institute’s Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE), researchers from Columbia University, New York, and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, identified six severe adverse events clusters in patients with advanced prostate cancer. The...

supportive care

Family Perspectives Support Advance Care Planning With Patient Preferences in End-of-Life Care

Three measures of aggressive end-of-life care “were associated with relatively large differences in family member–reported quality ratings for end-of-life care and a lower likelihood that patients with advanced-stage cancer received care congruent with their preferences,”...

supportive care

2016 Quality Care Symposium: New Triage System Decreases Emergency Room Visits by Oncology Patients in Florida

A quality improvement initiative to reduce patients’ reliance on emergency room (ER) visits to treat cancer treatment side effects has shown to be highly effective, according to early findings from a new study. The strategy, involving a telephone triage service coupled with patient education, ...

supportive care

Rolapitant Reduces Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea and Vomiting in Patients Receiving Moderately and Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy

In three phase III studies reported in The Lancet Oncology, the addition of the neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptor antagonist rolapitant to serotonin (5-HT3) receptor antagonist and dexamethasone treatment significantly improved complete response rates in the prevention of chemotherapy-induced nausea and ...

supportive care
issues in oncology

UK Trial Shows Little Benefit of Pregabalin Combined With Palliative Radiotherapy for Cancer-Induced Bone Pain

In a UK study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Fallon et al found no improvement with pregabalin vs placebo combined with concurrent palliative radiotherapy in relieving cancer-induced bone pain. Study Details In the double-blind trial, 233 patients with bone metastases who were...

issues in oncology
supportive care
geriatric oncology

Deconditioning in Older Adults With Cancer: A Cascade to Dependency

It is estimated that nearly half of adults over age 80 living in the community are frail despite apparent functional well-being.1 Frailty is recognized as a clinical syndrome in which three or more of the following criteria are present: unintentional weight loss, self-reported exhaustion, weakness, ...

supportive care

Uridine Triacetate Granules for Fluorouracil or Capecitabine Overdose or Early Severe Toxicity

In the Clinic provides overviews of novel oncology agents, addressing indications, mechanisms, administration recommendations, safety profiles, and other essential information needed for the appropriate clinical use of these drugs. On December 11, 2015, uridine triacetate (Vistogard) was...

breast cancer
supportive care
survivorship

Risk Factors for Lymphedema in Patients Treated for Breast Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Ferguson et al found that cellulitis in the affected arm, but not blood draws, injections, trauma to the affected arm, or air travel, was associated with an increased risk of lymphedema in women treated for breast cancer. Study Details In...

breast cancer
supportive care

No Association Seen Between New or Worsening Aromatase Inhibitor–Related Musculoskeletal or Vasomotor Symptoms and Relapse-Free Survival

Retrospective analyses of the ATAC, TEAM, and BIG 1-98 adjuvant endocrine therapy trials in breast cancer have suggested that treatment-emergent endocrine symptoms may be associated with superior survival outcomes. However, in a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Stearns et al...

breast cancer
supportive care

Telephone and In-Person Counseling for Weight Loss Effective in Women Treated for Breast Cancer

In the LEAN (Lifestyle, Exercise, and Nutrition) study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Harrigan et al found that telephone and in-person weight loss counseling was effective in reducing weight and C-reactive protein level in overweight or obese women treated for breast cancer. In the ...

palliative care
supportive care
issues in oncology

Italian Study Shows Low-Dose Morphine Better Than Weak Opioids in Relieving Moderate Cancer Pain

In an Italian trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Bandieri et al found that low-dose morphine provided better and more rapid pain relief than weak opioids in patients with moderate cancer pain. Study Details In the open-label 28-day trial, 240 adults with moderate cancer pain from ...

supportive care
cost of care

Palliative Care Offers Greater Cost Savings for Cancer Patients With Multiple Chronic Conditions

Patients with incurable cancer and numerous other serious health conditions who consulted with a palliative care team within 2 days of hospitalization had significant savings in hospital costs, according to a new study led by researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Published by...

cns cancers
supportive care

Memantine Provides Modest Improvement in Cognition after Cranial Irradiation

Memantine, a drug used to treat Alzheimer’s disease, slowed cognitive decline in patients with brain cancer treated with whole-brain radiation therapy in a phase III trial reported at the 54th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO), held recently in Boston. Cognitive ...

supportive care

Fixed-dose Apixaban Reduces Risk of Recurrent Venous Thromboembolism

Venous thromboembolism is a frequent problem in cancer patients, and approximately 20% of all patients who develop the disease have a recurrence. Extending treatment with two fixed doses of the investigational agent apixaban, a factor Xa inhibitor without laboratory monitoring, may provide a...

supportive care

Tumor Grade Is Associated with Risk for Venous Thromboembolism

Recent data suggest that risk for venous thromboembolism is associated with biologic aggressiveness of cancer. Findings in the Vienna Cancer and Thrombosis Study, recently reported by Ahlbrecht and colleagues in Journal of Clinical Oncology, indicate that patients with higher-grade tumors are at...

supportive care

Cisplatin Linked to Significantly Increased Risk of Venous Thromboembolism

Patients with advanced solid tumors treated with cisplatin-based chemotherapy had a significantly increased risk of venous thromboembolic events, according to a meta-analysis of 38 randomized phase II and III trials evaluating cisplatin-based vs non–cisplatin-based chemotherapy. The trials involved ...

supportive care

Pilot Study Seeks to Offer Social Support to Patients with Mesothelioma 

Researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) reported that group therapy sessions may help patients cope with mesothelioma. Their two-part pilot study, which began recruitment in May 2011, is examining the emotional burden of the cancer and offers discussion groups as a source of...

issues in oncology
supportive care
symptom management

Automated Telephone Monitoring Reduces Chemotherapy-related Symptoms 

The use of an automated computer-based telephone monitoring system to assess symptoms during outpatient chemotherapy—and provide intervention where appropriate by a nurse practitioner—substantially reduced the number of days with symptoms in a study reported at the 18th Annual Conference of the...

supportive care

Patients with Cancer Can Have Cachexia-related Poor Prognostic Factors Regardless of Overall Weight 

“Patients with cancer who are cachexic by the conventional criterion (involuntary weight loss) and by two additional criteria (muscle depletion and low muscle attenuation) share a poor prognosis, regardless of overall body weight,” concluded a study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Researchers ...

supportive care
palliative care

Older Patients and Those with Comorbidities Are Less Likely to Receive Palliative Radiotherapy 

Older patients and those with comorbid conditions are less likely to receive palliative radiotherapy, according to an analysis of data from 51,610 patients with stage IV breast, prostate, lung, or colorectal cancer. The study also found that black patients with prostate cancer were 20% less likely...

supportive care

Once-daily Moxifloxacin for Low-risk Patients with Febrile Neutropenia 

Once-daily oral moxifloxacin works at least as well as twice-daily oral ciprofloxacin plus amoxicillin–clavulanic acid when it comes to treating febrile neutropenia in patients who are at low risk for complications, according to a randomized, double-blind trial reported in the Journal of Clinical...

issues in oncology
supportive care

FDA Clears Multicenter Trial of Treatment for Hair Loss Related to Chemotherapy

The FDA has approved initiation of a multicenter trial of the DigniCap System, a scalp-cooling device for chemotherapy-related hair loss. The trial is the second and final phase of study for the DigniCap System. A pilot study previously conducted by researchers at the University of California San...

supportive care

Venous Thromboembolism in Patients with Cancer: Real-world Challenges for the Practicing Oncologist 

The close association between cancer and thrombosis has been recognized now for more than 150 years.1 Not only is it now known that patients with cancer are at substantially increased risk of developing venous thromboembolism, even prior to the diagnosis of cancer, but the association between...

supportive care

Updated ASCO Clinical Practice Guideline for Venous Thromboembolism Prophylaxis and Treatment 

ASCO has released a new evidence-based clinical practice guideline for venous thromboembolism prophylaxis and treatment, updating the 2007 practice guideline.1 The update is based on a systematic review of literature published from December 2007 to December 2012. An Update Committee reviewed...

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