The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) has now published a third book to complete the NCCN Guidelines for Patients®: Head and Neck Cancers series. Each book contains detailed, expert guidance on what to expect and management options for various cancers that impact the mouth and throat. The information is based on the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines®) but is presented in easy-to-read language and format—with charts, images, and a glossary of medical terms—to empower patients and caregivers to make shared decisions on the care plan that’s right for them.
An independent study recently found NCCN Guidelines for Patients to be among the most trustworthy options for patients with cancer seeking information online, and they can be a useful tool through the continuum of care. This series of patient and caregiver resources is available for free online through funding received by the NCCN Foundation®.
Benefits for Patients and Caregivers
“When I was first diagnosed with stage IV tongue cancer, I was in shock,” said Tom Bennett, cancer survivor and Ambassador for the Head and Neck Cancer Alliance. “I thought, ‘Why me? How can I have cancer?’ For people who are newly diagnosed, there is so much to process emotionally, in addition to the steep learning curve about the disease itself. These guidelines will help patients and caregivers understand more about treatment options in a plain and straightforward way, which is important during a stressful time.”
“I wish someone had handed me a publication like this the day my husband received his diagnosis,” said Linda Clyne, facilitator for Support for People with Oral and Head and Neck Cancers. “This one resource could have saved me many sleepless nights and Internet searches that yielded too much unfiltered
information and too little encouragement. Patients and their families will appreciate the wealth of information it provides, intelligently presented with precision, clarity, and a minimum of medical jargon.”
A Wealth of Information
NCCN has a single clinical version of the guidelines for health-care providers covering all head and neck cancers (aside from thyroid cancer, which is covered separately). However, the version for patients was divided into three books: one on oral cancers, one on nasopharyngeal cancers, and the newly published book on oropharyngeal cancers. All are available in digital form for free at NCCN.org/patients and via the NCCN Patient Guides for Cancer app for mobile devices and tablets. Printed versions are available at Amazon.com for a nominal fee.
The NCCN Guidelines for Patients address disease types accounting for approximately 94% of all cancer diagnoses in the United States across 44 books, including breast, colon, pancreatic, lung, prostate, bladder, esophageal, and hepatobiliary cancers, and many more. They are updated and expanded on a regular basis in collaboration with more than 100 patient advocacy organizations.