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issues in oncology

Infertility in Women and Low Absolute Risk of Cancer

A study of over 64,000 women of childbearing age in the United States has found that infertility is associated with a higher risk of developing cancer compared to a group of over 3 million women without fertility problems—although the absolute risk is very low, at just 2%. These findings ...

breast cancer
issues in oncology

Number of Pregnancies May Influence Breast Cancer Risk in Women With BRCA Mutations

Researchers have found the lower risk of breast cancer associated with multiple pregnancies and breastfeeding in the general population extends to those at the highest risk of breast cancer. These results were published by Terry et al in the JNCI Cancer Spectrum. Methods and Findings The...

lung cancer
issues in oncology

Kyle F. Concannon, MD, on Lung Cancer in Homeless Patients: Outcomes and Quality Measures

Kyle F. Concannon, MD, of the University of Washington/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, discusses study results on the delays in biopsy after radiographic findings among homeless vs housed patients with lung cancer, and the higher rates of missed appointments following diagnosis (Abstract 125).

lung cancer
issues in oncology

Shraddha M. Dalwadi, MD, MBA, on Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer: What Contributes to Disparities in Treating Stage I Disease

Shraddha M. Dalwadi, MD, MBA, of Baylor College of Medicine, discusses the nearly 12% of potentially curable patients with stage I NSCLC who do not receive treatment, the various socioeconomic reasons why, and how some patients may benefit from minimally invasive therapies (Abstract 127).

gynecologic cancers
issues in oncology

SGO 2019: Brachytherapy Boost Added to EBRT and Chemotherapy in Advanced Cervical Cancer

A recent National Cancer Database study has shown the current standard of care for advanced cervical cancer—external-beam radiation and chemotherapy in combination with brachytherapy—provides significantly higher overall survival over chemoradiation alone. However, the addition of...

gynecologic cancers
issues in oncology

SGO 2019: HPV Vaccine Uptake in the Deep South

A study by Pierce et al presented at the Society of Gynecologic Oncology’s (SGO) 50th Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer showed that human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination rates in Alabama are highest in counties with high incidence rates of HPV-related cancer (Abstract 13).  ...

issues in oncology
survivorship

Implementing Personalized Pathways for Cancer Follow-up Care in the United States

A new approach to cancer follow-up care is required to meet the needs of the growing population of cancer survivors in the United States, while also addressing provider shortages and rising costs, according to a new multiagency report. The report—published by Alfano et al in CA: A Cancer ...

issues in oncology
kidney cancer

Sumanta K. Pal, MD: Let's Get More Patients With Rare Tumors Into Clinical Trials

Sumanta K. Pal, MD, of City of Hope, talks about the need for investigators across the country to enroll their patients with rare tumors in clinical trials. He describes a trial he is leading for papillary kidney cancer and how others can join his efforts.

issues in oncology
cost of care

Karim Fizazi, MD, PhD: We Need to Find a Way to Make Cancer Drugs Affordable

Karim Fizazi, MD, PhD, of Gustave Roussy, urges governments, insurers, and pharmaceutical companies to work together in order to find a way to make anticancer drugs affordable and accessible for all patients.  

breast cancer
leukemia
multiple myeloma
issues in oncology

FDA Pipeline: Assay Approval, Breakthrough Designations for AI Technology and CLL, and More

In the past week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a companion diagnostic assay, granted Breakthrough Device and Breakthrough Therapy designations, and extended the review period of a proposed treatment. The agency also published four draft guidances and one final guidance...

issues in oncology
legislation

Statement on White House’s FY2020 Budget Proposal by ASCO President Monica M. Bertagnolli, MD, FACS, FASCO

ASCO President Monica M. Bertagnolli, MD, FACS, FASCO, issued the following statement earlier this week: We strongly oppose the White House budget proposal for fiscal year (FY) 2020, which would stall our nation's progress against cancer and impede access to needed care for the millions of...

issues in oncology

Lack of Genetic Diversity in Common Cancer Cell Lines

Researchers have found that some commercial cancer cell lines used for laboratory studies have mislabeled ancestry when it comes to minorities. These findings were published by Hooker et al in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. “A lack of diversity is prevalent in every level...

issues in oncology
global cancer care

Global Incidence of Undiagnosed Pediatric Cancers

Nearly half of all childhood cancers are not being diagnosed globally, according to a new modeling study published by Ward et al in The Lancet Oncology. “Our model suggests that nearly one in two children with cancer are never diagnosed and may die untreated,” said lead...

issues in oncology

Position Paper Addresses Shortages of Chemotherapy and Supportive Care Agents for Pediatric Oncology Patients

Shortages of essential chemotherapy drugs for children undergoing cancer treatment have been an increasingly frequent obstacle for patients and hospitals in the United States. These shortages can result in increased medication errors, delayed administration of life-saving therapy, inferior...

breast cancer
issues in oncology
cost of care

Patients With Breast Cancer Provide Recommendations to Ease Financial Toxicity

A qualitative study yielded nine patient-driven recommendations across circumstances that include changes to insurance, supportive services, and financial assistance to reduce long-term, breast cancer–related economic burden. The study was published by Dean et al in Cancer. Unique...

solid tumors
issues in oncology

Effect of Adjuvant Treatment for Early Testicular Cancer on Reproductive Potential

Men with early-stage testicular cancer can safely receive one course of adjuvant chemotherapy or radiotherapy without it having a long-term effect on their reproductive potential, according to a study published by Weibring et al in Annals of Oncology. Although it is known already that several...

skin cancer
issues in oncology

2019 AAD: Disadvantages and Potential Improvements of Artificial Intelligence in Skin Cancer Detection

While artificial intelligence (AI) systems for skin cancer detection have shown promise in research settings, there is still a lot of work to be done before the technology is appropriate for real-world use. This was the topic of a scientific session at the 2019 American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) ...

issues in oncology
survivorship

Creating ‘Right-Sized’ Follow-up Care in Oncology as Number of Cancer Survivors Grows

An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will lead to challenges in delivering care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made, according to a commentary in the Journal of the National Cancer...

issues in oncology

Statement on the NIH’s Efforts to Address Sexual Harassment in Science

Leadership from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) issued the following statement yesterday: As the NIH Director stated in September, sexual harassment is about power. The goal of the perpetrator, most commonly but not exclusively a man, is to objectify, exclude, demoralize,...

issues in oncology
immunotherapy

TAT 2019: Barriers to Clinical Trial Access for Adolescents vs Young Adults With Cancer

Compared to young adults, adolescents with the same types of cancer have far less access to immunotherapy and/or targeted therapies, according to findings presented at the TAT 2019–International Congress on Targeted Anticancer Therapies in Paris. In addition, young adults could be included in ...

prostate cancer
issues in oncology

AACR 2019: Does Treatment With Abiraterone Acetate Benefit Patients With Advanced Prostate Cancer and Preexisting Cardiovascular Disease?

Patients with advanced prostate cancer who had preexisting cardiovascular disease had a higher risk of mortality in the 6 months after starting abiraterone acetate treatment compared with those who had no preexisting cardiovascular disease, according to data presented by Lu-Yao et al at a presscast ...

issues in oncology
cost of care

Medical Expenses in Patients With Coronary Artery Disease and Cancer

New research published by Chopra et al in JNCCN—Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network calls for much greater integration between cardiologists and oncologists for patients with coronary artery disease who are diagnosed with cancer. Coronary artery disease is the most...

issues in oncology

Report Says Health Systems Are Key to Improving Cancer Outcomes in the United States

A new report indicates that without a national effort to transform health-care delivery in the United States, many people will not benefit from the ongoing improvements in cancer care. These findings were published by Yabroff et al in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. The article is the fifth...

issues in oncology

Involvement of Primary Care Providers in Cancer Treatment Decisions

The idea of team-based cancer care most often focuses on involving primary care physicians in the care of cancer survivors, but research has shown patients are also discussing initial cancer treatment options with their primary care doctors. Now, a new study by Wallner et al in Cancer has...

lung cancer
issues in oncology

System-Based Intervention to Reduce Racial Disparities in Early-Stage Lung Cancer Treatment

Results from a study published by Cykert et al in Cancer Medicine showed that a pragmatic system-based intervention within cancer treatment centers may eliminate existing disparities in treatment and outcomes for black patients with early-stage lung cancer. “These results show ...

prostate cancer
issues in oncology

2019 GU Cancers Symposium: Study Evaluates Survival by Race in Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

A large, retrospective study analyzing 5 years of data from the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) found that African American men with chemotherapy-naive, metastatic, castration-resistant prostate cancer who were treated with abiraterone acetate or enzalutamide lived 20% longer compared with...

health-care policy
issues in oncology

More Than 60 Leading Health-Care Organizations Call on CMS to Maintain Coverage for Medically Necessary Cancer Testing

Leading health-care companies and organizations representing patients, providers, academic medical centers, laboratories, and diagnostic manufacturers urged the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to revise its interpretation of the National Coverage Determination (NCD) 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...

issues in oncology

American Lung Association's State of Tobacco Control Report Released

According to the American Lung Association’s recently released 2019 State of Tobacco Control report, states and the federal government have not taken meaningful action in establishing policies to prevent and reduce tobacco use, the nation's leading cause of preventable death and disease. ...

issues in oncology

Obesity-Related Cancers Rising in Young Adults in the United States

A new study has found rates are increasing for 6 of 12 cancers related to obesity in younger adults in the United States, with steeper increases in progressively younger ages and successively younger generations. The study, published by Sung et al in The Lancet Public Health, also looked at rates...

issues in oncology
global cancer care

World Cancer Day 2019: Emphasis on Early Detection

World Cancer Day 2019—February 4—highlights the need for urgent action to increase early-stage cancer detection, screening, and diagnosis to significantly improve patients’ chances of survival. Taking place with the theme of “I Am and I Will,” World Cancer...

solid tumors
issues in oncology
legislation

ASCO Clinical Cancer Advances 2019 Names Advance of the Year: Progress in Treating Rare Cancers

Over the past year, major research advances provided new treatment options for patients with rare, difficult-to-treat cancers. In recognition of these achievements, ASCO named “Progress in Treating Rare Cancers” as the Advance of the Year. To continue the forward momentum, ASCO also...

issues in oncology
survivorship
cost of care

Cancer Survivors and Medical Financial Hardship

New research indicates that cancer survivors carry greater financial burdens related to medical debt payments and bills compared with individuals without a cancer history, with the greatest hardships in younger survivors. Published by Zheng et al in Cancer, the study also found that among...

issues in oncology

ACCC 2018 Survey Finds Multiple Barriers to Cancer Program Growth

At a time of unprecedented advances in the science of cancer, growing complexity in cancer treatments, and ongoing health policy fluctuation, the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) 9th annual Trending Now in Cancer Care survey reveals how cancer programs across the country are ...

issues in oncology

HPV Vaccination Rates in Younger Adolescents

Only about 16% of U.S. adolescents have been fully vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV) by the time they turn 13, despite national recommendations that call for vaccination at 11 to 12 years of age. These findings, published by Bednarczyk et al in the Journal of Infectious Diseases,...

health-care policy
issues in oncology

Over 40 Medical Organizations Call for an End to the Government Shutdown

Forty-six medical advocacy organization and professional societies have called on President Donald Trump, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to end the government shutdown and, in...

issues in oncology

Comorbidities and Cancer Clinical Trial Enrollment

Patients diagnosed with cancer who also have other illnesses or conditions, such as hypertension, asthma, or a prior cancer, are less likely to talk with their health-care provider about a cancer clinical trial, are less likely to be offered to join a clinical trial, and are ultimately less likely...

hepatobiliary cancer
issues in oncology

Role of Donor Race in Liver Transplant Outcomes in African American Patients With Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Among African American adults undergoing liver transplant to treat hepatocellular carcinoma, patients whose organ donor was also African American lived significantly longer than those with a racially unmatched donor, report authors of a new study using national data. Their findings were published...

breast cancer
gynecologic cancers
issues in oncology

BRCA Exchange: Resource Aggregates Data on BRCA Variants

A global resource that includes data on thousands of inherited variants in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes is available to the public. The BRCA Exchange was created through the BRCA Challenge, a long-term demonstration project initiated by the Global Alliance for Genomics and...

issues in oncology
global cancer care

Patient Navigation Program Reduces Time to Treatment in Patients With Cancer

Global Cancer Institute recently announced the results of its Patient Navigation Program in Mexico City. The average time to referral before the program’s inception was 5 months, but the implementation of patient navigators reduced that average to 7 days. These findings were published by ...

issues in oncology

27% Drop in Overall U.S. Cancer Mortality Rate From 1991 to 2016

A steady 25-year decline has resulted in a 27% drop in the overall cancer death rate in the United States between 1991 and 2016. The data come from “Cancer Statistics, 2019,” the American Cancer Society’s annual report on cancer rates and trends. The report was published in CA: A...

prostate cancer
issues in oncology

Gleason 6 Score May Underestimate Prostate Cancer Mortality Risk in Black Men

Black men diagnosed with prostate cancer classified as low risk may actually have a more aggressive form of the disease that is more likely to be fatal than in nonblack men placed in the same prognostic category, according to results from a new study published as a research letter by Mahal et al in ...

colorectal cancer
issues in oncology

2018 Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer Survey Report Covers Disease Stage at Diagnosis and More

Nearly three-quarters of patients with young-onset colorectal cancer are diagnosed with an advanced stage of the disease, a significantly higher percentage than has been reported for their more mature peers, according to a report from the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. The findings of...

issues in oncology

Quality of Life and Patient- and Clinician-Reported Cumulative Toxicity

New research has found that quality of life for people with cancer is reduced by an accumulation of low-level toxicities just as much as it is from high-level adverse events. Additionally, patient-reported outcomes were more likely to reflect the impact on a patient’s physical well-being than ...

issues in oncology
cost of care

New Study Examines Orphan Drug Exclusivity and Pricing

A new report commissioned by the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) and published by the IQVIA Institute demonstrates that the 7-year market exclusivity granted to drugs designated under the Orphan Drug Act of 1983 for rare diseases is working as intended. In nearly every case, orphan...

head and neck cancer
issues in oncology

Facing Death: Having the Difficult Conversation With Your Patients

Michael Becker, a former CEO for two biotechnology companies, discusses his terminal head and neck cancer diagnosis and his message for oncologists: be proactive and, at the appropriate time, talk with your patients about death and dying. For more information about Michael Becker’s blog and his HPV ...

issues in oncology

Association Between Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and Cancer Risk

New research published by Song et al in Arthritis Research & Therapy evaluated the link between lupus and cancer risk, supporting the data from earlier studies. The newer study indicates an association between systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and increased risk for several cancers (blood,...

colorectal cancer
issues in oncology

Does Tailored Lifestyle Feedback Given During Colorectal Cancer Screening Improve Disease-Preventive Behaviors?

A program that provided individually tailored lifestyle recommendations for patients undergoing screening for colorectal cancer helped encourage healthy behavior, according to results published by Knudsen et al in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. “It is well known that...

issues in oncology

ASCO and Friends of Cancer Research Applaud NCI’s Expansion of Clinical Trial Eligibility Criteria

ASCO and Friends of Cancer Research (Friends) applaud the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) recent revision of its clinical trial protocol template to broaden eligibility criteria for cancer clinical trials. The protocol template was expanded to help increase the opportunity for ...

breast cancer
solid tumors
leukemia
lung cancer
lymphoma
multiple myeloma
issues in oncology
immunotherapy

FDA Pipeline: New Priority Reviews, Designations, and Clearances, Plus Statements on Genetic Testing and Class Labeling

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued the following new approvals and designations: Priority Review for Atezolizumab in Combination With Chemotherapy for the Initial Treatment of Extensive-Stage SCLC The FDA accepted a supplemental biologics license application...

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