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Expert Point of View: Charles B. Simone II, MD, and Aaron S. Mansfield, MD


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Charles B. Simone II, MD

Charles B. Simone II, MD

In a press briefing before the 2019 Multidisciplinary Thoracic Cancers Symposium, Charles B. Simone II, MD, a radiation oncologist and Chief Medical Officer at the New York Proton Center, noted that although the National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) provides high-quality clinical guidelines to oncologists, there are more limited guidelines and fewer standardized resources available for patients to help guide their treatment decision-making.

“The investigators showed that patients with whom evidence-based guidelines were discussed were more likely to receive guideline-based therapy, particularly those with early-stage disease or advanced-stage disease,” said Dr. Simone. “They also found that there was a higher rate of smoking cessation counseling and intervention for patients who were exposed to the guidelines. These findings support the importance of patient education and informed decision-making among patients with lung cancer to potentially improve their outcomes.”

Additional Commentary

The discussant of the abstract, Aaron S. Mansfield, MD, a translational scientist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, added that although the study was adequately powered to answer the smoking cessation question, there might not have been enough patients to answer questions about intermediate staging of disease.

Aaron S. Mansfield, MD

Aaron S. Mansfield, MD

“The sample size was limited for some of the study components, and it can be problematic making comparisons to retrospective controls, but there were some encouraging findings with the use of this tool,” said Dr. Mansfield. “I do think that reputable sources of disease- and stage-specific information may fill a niche that patients and their caregivers need. Utilization of the tool suggests that patients and their caregivers are looking for more detailed information than what can generally be found online.” 

DISCLOSURE: Dr. Simone reported no conflicts of interest. Dr. Mansfield is a consultant/advisor (honoraria to institution) with AbbVie, TrovaGene, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Genentech; and has received institutional research funding from Novartis.


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