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palliative care
lung cancer
cost of care

Effect of Increased VA Hospice Care on Use of Aggressive Care and Costs for Veterans With Advanced Lung Cancer

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Mor et al found that veterans with advanced lung cancer treated in Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Centers with high hospice use were more likely to receive concurrent cancer care but less likely to receive aggressive care. Moreover, veterans treated at...

Palliative Care
Supportive Care

Sweet Surrender

The ASCO Post is pleased to reproduce installments of the Art of Oncology as published previously in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. These articles focus on the experience of suffering from cancer or of caring for people diagnosed with cancer, and they include narratives, topical essays,...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

National Consensus Project Clinical Practice Guidelines: Improving Education on the Tenets of Palliative Care

The provision of palliative care (primary or specialty) is paramount to providing excellent quality care to all patients with cancer. Palliative care is associated with improving the quality of life, mood, and survival in patients with cancer. In fact, ASCO guidelines recommend that patients with...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

National Consensus Project Releases 4th Edition of Clinical Practice Guidelines for Quality Palliative Care

As reported by Betty R. Ferrell, PhD, MA, FAAN, FPCN, of the Division of Nursing Research and Education, City of Hope Medical Center, Duarte, California, and colleagues in the Journal of Palliative Medicine, the National Consensus Project (NCP) of the National Coalition for Hospice and Palliative ...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Innovative Research to Improve the Supportive Care Needs of Cancer Survivors

First launched in 2014, the Palliative Care in Oncology Symposium introduced a nascent interdisciplinary approach to the treatment of both the physical and psychological symptoms of cancer to improve disease outcome and quality of life for patients. Today, it has evolved into a leading forum for...

palliative care
issues in oncology

Site of Care May Affect Racial and Ethnic Minorities’ Access to Palliative Treatment

For patients at the end of life, palliative care can prolong survival and improve the quality of life for patients with a life-threatening illness and for their families—but studies have found that racial and ethnic minorities are less likely to receive end-of-life palliative care than...

palliative care
issues in oncology

Impact of Survival Predictions on Aggressive End-of-Life Care Among Patients With Metastatic Cancer

In a single-institution study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Sborov et al found that inaccurate prediction of life expectancy can be associated with greater likelihood of aggressive end-of-life care among patients with metastatic cancer receiving palliative radiation therapy. Study...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Improving Palliative Care in Low-Resource Settings

In 2016, ASCO published an update to its Clinical Practice Guideline, “Integration of Palliative Care Into Standard Oncology Care,” which provides evidence-based recommendations for symptom management, clarification of treatment goals, support of coping and distress management, and coordination of...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

The Great Opioid Debate: Treating Cancer Pain Safely

As the number of opioid-related deaths continues to rise in the United States, stakeholders are struggling to make sense of the crisis. At the 2018 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium, two experts in the field, Charles F. von Gunten, MD, PhD, and Leslie J. Blackhall, MD,...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Study Finds Poor Adherence to Guidelines in Preventing Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea and Vomiting

Adherence to antiemetic guidelines for the prevention of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting has been shown to improve patient outcomes. However, a new study suggests that physicians are still struggling to reach attainable adherence targets in antiemetic prophylaxis.1 According to data...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Artificial Intelligence–Based Smartphone App Decreases Pain and Reduces Inpatient Hospitalizations in Patients With Cancer

A smartphone application utilizing elements of artificial intelligence was associated with improved cancer pain outcomes and a significant reduction in pain-related hospital admissions, according to data presented at the 2018 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium.1 Results of the...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Palliative Care in the Pediatric Oncology Setting

Cancer is the leading cause of disease-related childhood death. To better serve the special needs of this highly vulnerable patient population, pediatric palliative care teams use a personalized, holistic, and interdisciplinary approach tailored to relieve the physical, psychosocial, and spiritual ...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care
Issues in Oncology
Global Cancer Care

Unequal Burden of Cancer-Related Suffering and Need for Palliative Care

The global burden of cancer-related suffering is tremendously unbalanced, according to Eric L. Krakauer, MD, PhD, Director of the Global Palliative Care Program at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston and a lead coauthor of the Report of the Lancet Commission on Global...

palliative care
issues in oncology

Factors Affecting Use of Outpatient Specialty Palliative Care Clinics Among Patients With Advanced Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Yu et al identified factors affecting use of outpatient specialty palliative care (OSPC) among patients with advanced cancer in the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Hillman Cancer Center Network (UPMC-HCCN). Study Details The...

geriatric oncology
palliative care

Katherine C. Lee, MD, on Emergency Surgery and End-of-Life Care

Katherine C. Lee, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, discusses her study findings that showed older patients with metastatic cancer who survived emergency general surgery experienced higher intensity end-of-life care than similar patients who did not undergo surgery (Abstract 56).

issues in oncology
palliative care

Mary E. Johnson on Holding Vigil With Dying Loved Ones

Mary E. Johnson, author of Stay With Me Awhile, discusses her play, a compilation of vigil stories from across cultures and religions, and the profound impact the performances have had on audience members.

palliative care
survivorship
myelodysplastic syndromes
leukemia

Suleika Jaouad on Making the Most of a Life Interrupted: A Young Adult Perspective on Cancer

Suleika Jaouad, an Emmy Award–winning writer, advocate, and cancer survivor who was diagnosed at age 22 with myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia, discusses what she has learned about coping with cancer, learning from it, and growing beyond it.

palliative care
pain management

Leslie J. Blackhall, MD, on Unregulated Opioid Access: Consequences and Outcomes

Leslie J. Blackhall, MD, of the University of Virginia, discusses abuse of opioids, prescribing responsibly, and reducing cancer pain while also decreasing the risk of misusing these agents.

palliative care
issues in oncology
symptom management

2018 Palliative Care: Can an AI-Based App Help Manage Cancer-Related Pain?

A study of 112 patients with metastatic solid tumors found that the use of an artificial intelligence (AI)-based smartphone app reduced both the severity of patients’ reported pain and hospital admissions. After an 8-week period, patients who used the AI-powered app to monitor and address...

Palliative Care

Developing Patient-Centered Palliative Care From Diagnosis to End of Life

In December, The University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School will launch an innovative cancer care model called the CaLM (cancer life re-imagined) Clinic as part of its new cancer center, the Livestrong Cancer Institutes. The goal of the Livestrong Cancer Institutes and the CaLM Clinic is to...

Issues in Oncology
Palliative Care

End-of-Life Dashboard Drives Transformation With Actionable Personalized Data

A NUMBER OF STUDIES from the palliative care literature have shown that nonbeneficial health-care interventions actually may harm patients’ quality of life, increase patient and caregiver distress, and drive costs. Yet, according to the National Cancer Institute, about 30% of all cancer spending...

palliative care
lung cancer
issues in oncology
cost of care

ICU Admissions During Terminal Hospitalizations in Patients With Stage IV Lung Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Mrad et al found an increase in the proportion of patients with stage IV lung cancer admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) during terminal hospitalization between 1998 and 2014. A large increase in palliative care contacts also occurred,...

Issues in Oncology
Palliative Care

Closing the Gender Divide in Preference for Palliative Care

Eight years ago, a survey of the preferences of Dutch patients with cancer for health care found that while gender was one aspect influencing how men and women approach cancer care, it was the most important, with men, generally, regarding most care aspects as less important than women. The study...

Issues in Oncology
Palliative Care

Expanding the Use of Provider Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment for Patients With Advanced Cancer

Patients with advanced cancer often get more aggressive treatment than they want because too few oncologists elicit their end-of-life treatment preferences.1,2 In response to this problem, leading associations, including ASCO3,4 and the Institute of Medicine,5 have called for more advance care...

palliative care

Quality Improvement Initiative for Documenting Goals of Care for Patients With Advanced Cancer

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Karim et al found that a quality improvement initiative at a single cancer center improved documentation of goals-of-care discussions and referral to palliative care for patients with advanced cancer. Study Details In the study,...

palliative care

Impact of Peer-Review Intervention on Radiotherapy Schedules for Palliative Treatment of Bone Metastases

In a single-center study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Walker et al found that institution of a peer-review process resulted in shorter fractionation schedules for palliation of bone metastases, consistent with current guidelines. As stated by the authors, “Shorter...

Palliative Care
Immunotherapy

Meeting the Challenges of Immunotherapy-Related Toxicities

In 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved ipilimumab (Yervoy), an anticytotoxic T-lymphocyte– associated antigen 4 (CTLA-4), the first checkpoint inhibitor for the treatment of advanced melanoma.1 Since then, several more checkpoint inhibitors directed at both the programmed...

palliative care
colorectal cancer
lung cancer
cost of care

Geographic Differences in End-of-Life Cancer Care

When it comes to how much end-of-life care a patient with cancer receives, geography may, indeed, be destiny, according to new research led by Harvard Medical School that found differences in this type of cancer care across different parts of the country. The findings, published by Keating et al...

palliative care
issues in oncology

Palliative Care Preferences in Male Patients With Cancer

Men with advanced cancer are 30% less likely than women to consider palliative care, according to a University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) study. Researchers believe the findings reflect social norms about gender roles, as well as widespread messages in the media and society about...

issues in oncology
palliative care
immunotherapy

A. Oliver Sartor, MD, on Issues in Immunotherapy

A. Oliver Sartor, MD, of Tulane University, speaks anecdotally about immunotherapy for prostate cancer and shares his experiences in speaking to patients with late-stage disease about the knowns, unknowns, risks, and toxicities of using a therapy outside the context of a clinical trial setting. The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.

issues in oncology
palliative care
immunotherapy

Owen A. O’Connor, MD, PhD, on Issues in Immunotherapy

Owen A. O'Connor, MD, PhD, of Columbia University Medical Center, shares his perspective on immunotherapy for patients with late-stage cancer in the context of a clinical trial setting and recent Right-to-Try legislation. The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.

Palliative Care

How Learning What’s on Your Patient’s Bucket List May Improve Care

It may sound too good to be true, but asking patients a simple question about what is on their bucket list can actually spark a dialogue about how best to make their cancer care and survivorship fit into their life plans, as well as be an effective way to identify their end-of-life care goals,...

Issues in Oncology
Palliative Care

Voluntarily Stopping Eating and Drinking Is Legal—and Ethical—for Terminally Ill Patients Looking to Hasten Death

Terminally ill patients with cancer will sometimes ask their clinicians for help with assisted or hastened death.1 Although palliative care and hospice care can usually address the concerns of most patients, some have physical or existential suffering that is refractory to comfort and supportive...

palliative care
issues in oncology

AMA Rejects Recommendation to Reaffirm Opposition to Medical Aid in Dying

On June 11, the American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates voted 56% to 44% to reject a report by its Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs (CEJA) that recommended the AMA maintain its Code of Medical Ethics’ opposition to medical aid in dying. Instead, the House of Delegates...

palliative care
lung cancer

Racial/Ethnic Disparities in the Quality of End-of-Life Care Among Patients With Lung Cancer

Significant disparities in the quality of end-of-life lung cancer care were found among racial/ethnic minorities, with higher odds of experiencing potentially preventable medical encounters during end of life as compared with non-Hispanic whites. These findings were published by Karanth et al in...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Using Video Decision-Support Tools to Facilitate End-of-Life Discussions With Patients

GUEST EDITOR Addressing the evolving needs of cancer survivors at various stages of their illness and care, Palliative Care in Oncology is guest edited by Jamie H. Von Roenn, MD. Dr. Von Roenn is ASCO’s Vice President of Education, Science, and Professional Development. Research shows that...

palliative care
lung cancer

Updated ASTRO Guideline for Palliative Radiotherapy in Lung Cancer

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has issued an update to its clinical guideline for the use of palliative-intent radiation therapy for patients with incurable non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Reflecting new evidence from randomized clinical trials, the guideline now...

Solid Tumors
Colorectal Cancer
Supportive Care
Pain Management
Palliative Care
Survivorship
Issues in Oncology

Support, Inform Patients With ASCO Resources

Stock your practice with ASCO resources for your patients. Visit ASCO’s patient information website, Cancer.Net, for a newly updated comprehensive guide to colorectal cancer at cancer.net/colorectal and a shorter, one-page colorectal cancer fact sheet. Copies can be purchased from the ASCO...

palliative care

Association of Early Palliative Care With Patient-Reported Outcomes and End-of-Life Care

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Hoerger et al found that patients with a higher proportion of early palliative care visits addressing behavioral coping strategies had improvement in depression symptoms and quality of life. In addition, those with a high proportion of visits ...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care
Immunotherapy

The Challenge of Prognostication in the Era of Immunotherapy

  GUEST EDITOR Addressing the evolving needs of cancer survivors at various stages of their illness and care, Palliative Care in Oncology is guest edited by Jamie H. Von Roenn, MD. Dr. Von Roenn is ASCO’s Vice President of Education, Science, and Professional Development. Although advances in such ...

Palliative Care

Why Palliative Care Isn’t Just for Older Patients With Cancer

It is well established that adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with cancer—defined by the National Cancer Institute as those between the ages of 15 and 39 years—have not reaped a comparable survival benefit as either younger or older adult cancer survivors over the past 4 decades, despite...

Palliative Care

Working Together to Help Pediatric Patients With Cancer Live and Live Well

While many patients with cancer can benefit from palliative care to ease symptoms from the disease or its treatment, for children with cancer, especially critically ill children, palliative care can provide an additional layer of medical and emotional support for both young patients and their...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Helping Patients With Advanced Disease Transition From Focused to Intrinsic Hope

While hope for a cure after a cancer diagnosis is a feeling both patients and oncologists rightly cling to during treatment, when too much emphasis is placed on this type of “focused” hope, it can make it more difficult for patients to face their mortality. Moreover, such a focus can deny patients ...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

ASCO Answers Palliative Care: A Resource for Patients

Do your patients have questions about palliative care/supportive care? Help them better understand their prognosis and goals of treatment, clarify their expectations, and maintain their quality of life with the ASCO Answers Palliative Care booklet.  This booklet shows how palliative care is used...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Walther Cancer Foundation Endows New ASCO Special Award and Lecture for Palliative and Supportive Care

The Walther Cancer Foundation, Inc., a private foundation based in Indianapolis, Indiana, has endowed a new ASCO award and lecture bearing its name to be presented annually at the Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium. This grant represents a new foray for the foundation as it...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Caring for the Frail, Older Patient With Cancer: Four Practical Approaches

Cancer may be a disease of aging, but data suggest that older patients with cancer are undertreated, especially with respect to chemotherapy. One analysis showed that approximately 40% of patients in their 70s—and 60% of patients in their 80s—do not receive adjuvant therapy after surgery for colon...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

‘Triple Threat’ Conditions May Predict Mortality in Patients With Cancer Presenting to Emergency Departments

Dyspnea, delirium, and poor performance—so-called “triple threat” conditions—are known to predict short survival in palliative care. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium,1 however, the presence of at least two of these symptoms in patients...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Concurrent Palliative Care: Recommendations From the ASCO Clinical Practice Guideline

Updated in 2016, the ASCO clinical practice guideline on the integration of palliative care into standard oncology care provides evidence-based recommendations to oncology clinicians, patients, family and friend caregivers, and palliative care specialists about providing high-quality care for...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care
Cost of Care
Issues in Oncology

Palliative Care Intervention Reduces Total Health-Care Costs in Patients With Advanced Cancer

A matched case-controlled study among Medicare beneficiaries with metastatic lung, colorectal, breast, and prostate cancers has found that palliative care consultation significantly reduced total health-care costs following intervention. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Digital Palliative Care Curriculum Improves Knowledge, Skills, and Opioid Prescribing Behavior

A new electronic curriculum delivered via e-mail with push technology may provide an efficient, cost-effective solution to the shortage of palliative care faculty serving the nation’s oncology fellowship programs. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology...

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