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Issues in Oncology
Survivorship

Oncologists Need to Inform Primary Care Physicians About Late and Long-Term Effects of Chemotherapy

A nationally representative survey of 1,130 oncologists and 1,072 primary care physicians found that primary care physicians had limited awareness of late or long-term effects of chemotherapy agents. This was attributed to primary care physicians not typically encountering chemotherapy agents...

Survivorship

Making Progress in Survivorship Care Planning

The recommendation that a survivorship care plan be provided to patients and their primary care providers was first presented in the 2006 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, From Cancer Patient to Cancer Survivor: Lost in Transition. The IOM committee proposed that this document include two parts—a ...

survivorship

Improvements Needed in Use of Survivorship Care Plans 

Survivorship care plans, consisting of treatment summaries and follow-up plans, are intended to promote coordination of post-treatment cancer care, but little is known about how survivorship care plans are being used in routine oncology practice. In a study reported in the Journal of the National...

colorectal cancer
gynecologic cancers
issues in oncology
survivorship

Nothing Prepared Me for Cancer

Fourteen years ago, when I was just 29, I was feeling weak and fatigued and had severe pain in my abdomen. I’d had these symptoms for about a year, but none of the several doctors I saw or any of the tests they performed could find the source of my problems. I even had one nurse practitioner tell...

Survivorship
Leukemia
Lymphoma

Long-Term Decline in Neuropsychological Function Seen After Cranial Radiotherapy for Pediatric Lymphoid Malignancy

Central nervous system–directed chemotherapy and cranial radiotherapy for childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia or lymphoma have neurotoxic effects. In a study reported in Journal of Clinical Oncology, Ilse Schuitema, MSc, of Leiden University, and colleagues evaluated white matter changes and...

colorectal cancer
survivorship

Colorectal Cancer Survivors Face Challenges With Bowel Regulation

The fight against colorectal cancer leaves many survivors with battle wounds, according to studies that show a high incidence of assorted morbidities that can affect quality of life. Clinicians, in fact, may be unaware of the struggles with bowel function that occur during survivorship, researchers ...

survivorship
integrative oncology

Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer

Barrie Cassileth, PhD, Laurance S. Rockefeller Chair in Integrative Medicine and Chief, Integrative Medicine Service, at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York has published a new book called Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer. Dr. Cassileth provides readers with...

survivorship

Ongoing Clinical Trials Actively Recruiting Adolescent and Young Adult Survivors of Childhood Cancer

ADOLESCENT AND YOUNG ADULT CHILDHOOD CANCER SURVIVORS Study Type: Randomized/interventional Study Title: A Randomized Web-Based Physical Activity Intervention in Adolescent Survivors of Childhood Cancer Study Sponsor and Collaborators: St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Purpose:...

survivorship

Join the 21st Annual Cancer Survivors’ Celebration Walk & 5K

Nearly 4,000 attendees, including more than 700 cancer survivors along with friends and family members, will gather in Chicago’s Grant Park for the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University’s Annual Cancer Survivors’ Celebration Walk & 5K Run. This year’s event will ...

survivorship

Detecting Accelerated Aging in Adult Survivors of Childhood Cancer

Last fall, Kirsten K. Ness, PhD, published her study1 on the prevalence of frailty as a sign of accelerated aging in adult survivors of childhood cancer, and the results are startling. Among the 1,922 participants in the study, the prevalence of prefrailty was 31.5% among women and 12.9% among men; ...

Survivorship

Identifying One Main Provider and Involving Oncology Specialist Are Key to High-Quality Rating for Follow-up Care

Long-term cancer survivors are more likely to rate their follow-up care as high-quality when one main provider is identified and an oncology specialist is involved, according to results of a population-based cross-sectional study among adult survivors of breast, prostate, colorectal, endometrial,...

survivorship

Elevated Morbidity/Mortality Risks for Childhood Cancer Survivors Further Increase After Fourth Decade

An analysis of the first generation of childhood cancer survivors, who are now aging into their fourth and fifth decades, shows further increases in the survivors’ morbidity and mortality risks. “By age 50 years, more than half of survivors have experienced a severe, disabling, or life-threatening...

survivorship
global cancer care

Improving Quality of Life in Cancer Survivors

The number of cancer survivors has been steadily increasing in recent years. According to the Ministry of Health National Cancer Registry, in 2010 there were 254,000 cancer survivors in Israel (3.3% of the population) compared with 15,700 (0.4% of the population, P < .005) in 1975.1 Forty years...

supportive care
survivorship

Maximizing the Benefits of Exercise in Patients With Cancer

Many nonpharmacologic therapies increase both physical and emotional strength during cancer treatment as well as throughout survivorship. These therapies include the mind-body practices of meditation, self-hypnosis, guided imagery, and breath awareness, touch therapies including massage and...

supportive care
survivorship

ASCO Releases Adapted Guideline on Screening, Assessment, and Management of Fatigue in Adult Survivors of Cancer

A majority of cancer patients experience some level of fatigue during the course of their treatment, and approximately 30% contend with persistent fatigue for years after treatment. Fatigue is among the most common and distressing long-term effects of cancer treatment and significantly affects...

survivorship

Promoting Health Behaviors Among Cancer Survivors

Promoting healthy behaviors among cancer survivors is associated with improved quality of life according to many studies. But how to translate that evidence into community practice remains a huge question, and the need for answers is growing.  It’s not only the lack of consensus on how to help...

breast cancer
colorectal cancer
lung cancer
prostate cancer
skin cancer
leukemia
lymphoma
multiple myeloma
survivorship

NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology: 2014 Updates

At the 19th Annual Conference of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), held recently in Hollywood, Florida, NCCN Panel members presented updates for several tumor types, briefly summarized here. For a more complete description of all updates, visit www.nccn.org. Breast Cancer...

Survivorship
Symptom Management

ASCO Releases Guideline on Prevention and Management of Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy in Survivors of Adult Cancers

ASCO has released a clinical practice guideline on prevention and treatment of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy in adult cancer patients, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.1 The guidelines resulted from the efforts of an expert panel, with representation from the fields of...

Survivorship
Supportive Care
Bladder Cancer

NCCN Scientific Posters Include New Findings in Bladder Cancer, Survivorship Care, and Antiemetic Therapy

The 19th Annual Conference of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), recently held in Hollywood, Florida, featured a number of scientific posters by member organizations and meeting sponsors. The ASCO Post captured some of the most interesting findings for our readers, including these...

Survivorship

Study Calls for Revisiting Guidelines for Screening Childhood Cancer Survivors at Risk of Congestive Heart Failure

One of the first studies to analyze the effectiveness of screening survivors of childhood cancer for early signs of impending congestive heart failure found improved health outcomes but suggests that less frequent screening than currently recommended may yield similar clinical benefit. The...

breast cancer
survivorship

Coping With the Aftermath of Cancer

Even now, 3 years after I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I’m still struggling with how it is possible to have a normal mammogram and 6 months later be confronted with stage II estrogen/progesterone–positive, HER2-positive breast cancer. The news was especially devastating to hear because it...

survivorship

Newly Updated: Cancer Survivorship

This latest ASCO Answers guide helps patients transition into life after active treatment has finished. In addition to information on the challenges survivors may face and the importance of follow-up care, it includes a blank treatment summary and survivorship care form that patients can fill out...

colorectal cancer
survivorship

Colorectal Cancer Survivors Prefer More Information on Late Effects of Treatment and Recurrence Risks

Survivors of nonmetastatic colorectal cancer, when surveyed about their needs and preferences for survivorship information, responded that they would prefer receiving more information about late effects of treatment, challenges to expect, general health maintenance, and risks of recurrence. Most of ...

survivorship

Cancer Survivors Face Unique Challenges Reentering the Workforce

An online survey of 201 unemployed cancer survivors looking for work found that a majority—61%—are at least somewhat concerned that a potential employer would find out about their cancer diagnosis and not hire them. In this survey conducted by Cancer and Careers, 66% of participants said they...

breast cancer
survivorship

Coping With the Aftermath of Cancer

Editor’s note: In the July 10 issue of The ASCO Post, this article by Marie Krejci as told to Jo Cavallo was published; however, the published version was incomplete in that it did not reflect important updates made by Ms. Krejci. We apologize to Ms. Krejci for this error and to our readers for any ...

survivorship

ASCO’s Cancer Survivorship Compendium Offers Oncologists Help With Survivorship Care

It has been almost 10 years since the Institute of Medicine released its influential report, “From Cancer Patient to Cancer Survivor: Lost in Transition,” in which it stressed that all patients completing cancer treatment should receive a survivorship care plan. Since then, the need to help...

survivorship

Childhood Cancer Survivors Hospitalized Frequently Years After Cancer Treatment

Survivors of childhood cancers were hospitalized more often and for longer durations because of blood disorders and other problems, many years after cancer treatment was completed, compared with the general population, according to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers &...

multiple myeloma
issues in oncology
survivorship

Cancer Survivor and Patient Advocate Michael S. Katz, MBA,  Has Helped Alter the Standard of Care for Myeloma Survivors

Michael S. Katz, MBA, has lived longer than any of his doctors thought he would. A two-time cancer survivor, Mr. Katz was diagnosed, first with multiple myeloma in 1990 and then with colorectal cancer in 2008, and has spent the past 2 decades tirelessly advocating for patients with cancer. The...

survivorship

Taking Charge of Your Care

The first sign I had that something might be wrong was an uncontrollable itch all over my body. Although I had never had anything like that before, the problem was easy to initially dismiss. I’m a respiratory therapist and visit patients in their homes daily, so I chalked up the itchiness to an...

Survivorship

Discussing Sexual Health Issues With Female Cancer Survivors

Advances in cancer treatment have led to increasing numbers of long-term survivors, bringing greater attention to the needs of this growing population. Female cancer patients often experience difficult adjustments related to sexual health and intimacy. To better understand the complexity of this...

survivorship

More Collaboration Needed Between Oncologists and Primary Care Physicians

One of the most important cancer survivorship issues is the transition from oncologist to the primary care setting. With a growing population of cancer survivors, patients need to feel secure about their primary care provider having the tools to address their special needs. To shed light on this...

survivorship

Cancer Has Given Me Courage

In 1986, I was pregnant with my third child and excited to be interviewing for a job on the assembly line at a General Motors plant near my home in Brodhead, Wisconsin. Hiring requirements included a physical examination and a chest x-ray, which was done by my obstetrician to avoid any radiation...

breast cancer
survivorship

Breast Cancer Has Led Me to Careers in Activism and Filmmaking

The last thing I expected to find when I returned home after a summer vacation celebrating my 50th birthday was a letter from my gynecologist saying the routine mammogram I had before I left found suspicious-looking calcifications in my right breast and that I should see a surgeon right away. Being ...

supportive care
survivorship

Expert Consensus Recommends Echocardiograph as Cornerstone to Protecting Cancer Patients’ Heart Health

Patients with cancer and survivors of cancer are living longer than ever before as a result of significant advances made over the past decade. Importantly, however, cardiovascular complications of their cancer treatment may present a life-threatening issue after their cancer treatment has ended....

survivorship

New Books by Authors at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Address Aging, Survivorship

Bookmark Title: Survivorship: Living Well During and After CancerAuthor: Barrie Cassileth, PhDFormat: PaperbackISBN: 978-1-938170-35-5Pages: 216Publication Date: April 1, 2014Dimensions: 5.5 × 8.5Also Available: eBook   Bookmark Title: Lighter as We Go: Virtues, Character Strengths, and...

Survivorship
Cost of Care

Cancer Survivors Face Lasting Financial Struggles Long After Treatment Ends, New Study Reports

The majority (62%) of America’s middle-income cancer survivors say they were not financially prepared for cancer diagnosis and treatment, according to a new study released by the Washington National Institute for Wellness Solutions (IWS). The study, “Insights from Survivors: Managing the Personal,...

breast cancer
survivorship

Testosterone/Anastrozole Implants Relieve Menopausal Symptoms in Breast Cancer Survivors

Subcutaneous implants containing testosterone in combination with a low dose of anastrozole can relieve menopausal symptoms in breast cancer survivors, according to research presented at the 2014 ASCO Breast Cancer Symposium.1 “Menopausal symptoms can be quite severe in breast cancer survivors in...

survivorship

Lilly Oncology On Canvas Art Competition Names 2014 Winners

The 10th anniversary of the Lilly Oncology On Canvas Art Competition was celebrated with the presentation of awards and display of winning entries on October 23 in New York’s Grand Central Terminal. The competition, which is presented by Lilly Oncology and National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship ...

survivorship
lymphoma

Vigorous Exercise Lowers Risk of Cardiovascular Events in Adult Survivors of Childhood Hodgkin Lymphoma

In a report from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology,1 Lee W. Jones, PhD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and colleagues found that vigorous exercise reduces the risk of major cardiovascular events in adult survivors of childhood Hodgkin...

Survivorship

Addressing Patients’ Sexual Dysfunction Throughout Survivorship

Studies show that all cancers and related treatments have the potential to affect sexuality and sexual function. Surgery, chemotherapy, hormonal therapy, bone marrow transplantation, and radiation therapy can physically impact sexual health in myriad ways, including vaginal dryness, dyspareunia,...

survivorship

Major Strides Seen This Year in Survivorship Care

"This year was actually a boon for the patient and survivor care section,” Arif H. Kamal, MD, said at the Best of ASCO meeting in Seattle, where he reviewed the leading abstracts and gave some of his own perspective. “What you see is a lot of the limitations of research in the palliative care and...

survivorship
supportive care

New ASCO Survivorship Care Plan Template Is Simpler, Faster for Health-Care Providers

ASCO has issued a new template for health-care professionals to use when providing a survivorship care plan to patients who have completed curative cancer therapy. The survivorship care plan contains important information about treatment the patient received, the patient’s need for future checkups...

survivorship

Karmanos Cancer Institute’s Hayley Thompson, PhD, Awarded $1.8 Million Grant to Improve Access to Cancer Survivor Resources

Hayley S. Thompson, PhD, Associate Professor, Population Studies and Disparities Research Program at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, and Department of Oncology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, was recently awarded a $1.8 million grant from the Agency for Healthcare Research...

survivorship

ASCO Expert Statement on Cancer Survivorship Care Planning: Timing Is Everything

As the saying goes, “Timing is everything.” And so it is with the recently released ASCO Clinical Expert Statement on survivorship care planning.1 Although there has been extensive discussion and debate about the use of survivorship care plans since the publication of the 2005 Institute of Medicine ...

survivorship

ASCO Clinical Expert Statement on Cancer Survivorship Care Planning

Efforts at implementing survivorship care plans have met with limited success in oncology practice, in part due to the time required to complete them, the lack of role clarity, and the lack of reimbursement for time to complete the documents. In response, ASCO convened a Survivorship Care Planning...

survivorship

More on Beating the Odds

Thank you very much for including Mr. Richard Heimler’s very rewarding story in The ASCO Post (“Beating the Odds,” December 1, 2014, page 118). It was a short, well-written example of excellent oncology management in the face of episodes of “terminal” lung cancer. His story was the perfect...

gastroesophageal cancer
survivorship

Primary Surgical Therapy Results in Higher 5-Year Survival for Patients With Advanced-Stage Disease

Bucking national trends toward preserving the larynx in patients with advanced laryngeal cancer, treatment of patients for stage IV disease at Louisiana State University (LSU) Health-Shreveport were more likely to involve primary surgical therapy, including total laryngectomy, and more likely to...

gynecologic cancers
survivorship

High-Quality Diet Before Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis May Lengthen Survival

An overall high-quality diet at least 12 months before a diagnosis of ovarian cancer “was associated with a statistically significant 27% lower risk of death after ovarian cancer,” an analysis of dietary data from the Women’s Health Initiative showed. The protective effect was strongest among women ...

survivorship
gynecologic cancers

Cancer Was My Wake-Up Call to a Healthier Life

I come from strong physical stock and inherited a sort of “tough it out mentality” when it comes to coping with the usual aches and pains that creep up as you age. So by the time I realized that my legs had become so swollen and my breathing so labored it was difficult for me to walk, I could...

survivorship
breast cancer

Mobile Patient-Centered App Tracks Breast Cancer Survivors’ Experiences

Patricia Ganz, MD, Director of Cancer Prevention and Control Research at the Jonsson Cancer Center of UCLA, and collaborators Apple and Sage Bionetworks, recently announced the launch of “Share the Journey: Mind, Body and Wellness after Breast Cancer,” a patient-centered mobile application (app)...

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