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Curr. Oncol., Volume 31, Issue 3 (March 2024) – 44 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Precision oncology has entered into the mainstream of clinical practice. We now can provide very specific information to patients about treatment efficacy and side effects. With certain newer targeted therapies, there is a meaningful trade-off between benefits and harm/side effects. A decision aid can help make these trade-offs more explicit for patients. Based on their personal priorities and preferences, patients employ this resource to help them to decide whether a treatment is right for them or not. Decision aids help patients to communicate more effectively with their providers. Informed consent can now be upgraded to informed choice. View this paper
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22 pages, 1238 KiB  
Article
PC-PEP, a Comprehensive Daily Six-Month Home-Based Patient Empowerment Program Leads to Weight Loss in Men with Prostate Cancer: A Secondary Analysis of a Clinical Trial
by Wyatt MacNevin, Gabriela Ilie, Ricardo Rendon, Ross Mason, Jesse Spooner, Emily Chedrawe, Nikhilesh Patil, David Bowes, Greg Bailly, David Bell, Derek Wilke, Jeffery B. L. Zahavich, Cody MacDonald and Robert David Harold Rutledge
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1667-1688; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030127 - 21 Mar 2024
Viewed by 787
Abstract
Background: The Prostate Cancer—Patient Empowerment Program (PC-PEP) is a six-month daily home-based program shown to improve mental health and urinary function. This secondary analysis explores weight loss in male PC-PEP participants. Methods: In a randomized clinical trial with 128 men undergoing curative prostate [...] Read more.
Background: The Prostate Cancer—Patient Empowerment Program (PC-PEP) is a six-month daily home-based program shown to improve mental health and urinary function. This secondary analysis explores weight loss in male PC-PEP participants. Methods: In a randomized clinical trial with 128 men undergoing curative prostate cancer (PC) treatment, 66 received ‘early’ PC-PEP, while 62 were assigned to the ‘late’ waitlist-control group, receiving 6 months of standard-of-care treatment followed by 6 months of PC-PEP. PC-PEP comprised 182 daily emails with video-based exercise and dietary (predominantly plant-based) education, live online events, and 30 min strength training routines (using body weight and elastic bands). Weight and height data were collected via online surveys (baseline, 6 months, and 12 months) including medical chart reviews. Adherence was tracked weekly. Results: No attrition or adverse events were reported. At 6 months, the early PC-PEP group experienced significant weight loss, averaging 2.7 kg (p < 0.001) compared to the waitlist-control group. Weight loss was noted in the late intervention group of PC-PEP, albeit less pronounced than in the early group. Early PC-PEP surgery patients lost on average 1.4 kg (SE = 0.65) from the trial’s start to surgery day. High adherence to exercise and dietary recommendations was noted. Conclusions: PC-PEP led to significant weight loss in men undergoing curative prostate cancer treatment compared to standard-of-care. Full article
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11 pages, 1036 KiB  
Article
Outcomes of Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer and Brain Metastases Treated with the Upfront Single Agent Pembrolizumab: A Retrospective and Multicentric Study of the ESCKEYP GFPC Cohort
by Simon Nannini, Florian Guisier, Hubert Curcio, Charles Ricordel, Pierre Demontrond, Safa Abdallahoui, Seyyid Baloglu, Laurent Greillier, Christos Chouaid and Roland Schott
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1656-1666; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030126 - 21 Mar 2024
Viewed by 811
Abstract
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common cause of brain metastasis (BM). Little is known about immune checkpoint inhibitor activity in the central nervous system, especially in patients receiving monotherapy for tumors with a tumor proportion score (TPS) ≥ 50%. This [...] Read more.
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common cause of brain metastasis (BM). Little is known about immune checkpoint inhibitor activity in the central nervous system, especially in patients receiving monotherapy for tumors with a tumor proportion score (TPS) ≥ 50%. This noninterventional, retrospective, multicenter study, conducted with the GFPC, included treatment-naïve patients strongly positive for PD-L1 (TPS ≥ 50%) with BM receiving first-line single-agent pembrolizumab treatment between May 2017 and November 2019. The primary endpoints were centrally reviewed intracranial overall response rates (ORRs), centrally reviewed intracranial progression-free survival (cPFS), extracranial PFS, and overall survival were secondary endpoints. Forty-three patients from five centers were included. Surgical or local radiation therapy was administered to 31 (72%) patients, mostly before initiating ICI therapy (25/31). Among 38/43 (88.4%) evaluable patients, the intracranial ORR was 73%. The median PFS was 8.3 months. The cerebral and extracerebral median PFS times were 9.2 and 5.3 months, respectively. The median OS was 25.5 months. According to multivariate analysis, BM surgery before ICI therapy was the only factor significantly associated with both improved PFS (HR = 0.44) and OS (HR = 0.45). This study revealed the feasibility and outcome of front-line pembrolizumab treatment in this population with BM. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Thoracic Oncology)
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0 pages, 534 KiB  
Article
Utilization and Impact of a Radiation Nursing Clinic to Address Acute Care Needs for Patients with Gynecologic Cancers
by Aaron Dou, Genevieve Bouchard-Fortier, Kathy Han, Michael Milosevic, Jelena Lukovic, Stephanie Lheureux, Xuan Li, Mary C. Doherty and Jennifer Croke
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1645-1655; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030125 - 21 Mar 2024
Viewed by 679
Abstract
Background: The risk factors for acute care utilization in gynecologic oncology patients are poorly understood. This study aimed to evaluate risk factors for the utilization of our centre’s acute care radiation nursing clinic (RNC) by gynecologic oncology patients receiving radiotherapy (RT). Methods: This [...] Read more.
Background: The risk factors for acute care utilization in gynecologic oncology patients are poorly understood. This study aimed to evaluate risk factors for the utilization of our centre’s acute care radiation nursing clinic (RNC) by gynecologic oncology patients receiving radiotherapy (RT). Methods: This was a retrospective cohort study of gynecological cancer patients treated with RT at an academic cancer centre between 1 August 2021 and 31 January 2022. Data on socio-demographics, clinical and treatment characteristics, and RNC visits were collected and summarized by descriptive statistics. The Wilcoxon rank sum test and chi-squared test/Fisher’s exact test were used for comparisons of continuous and categorical variables, respectively. Results: RT was delivered to 180 patients, of whom 42 (23%) received concurrent chemoradiation (CCR). Compared to those receiving RT alone, patients receiving CCR had higher rates of RNC utilization (55% vs. 19%, p < 0.001). Within the CCR cohort, patients who presented to the RNC were more likely to be unpartnered (43% vs. 11%, p = 0.04), receive a referral to Psychosocial Oncology (39% vs. 5.3%, p = 0.01), and experience treatment interruptions (52% vs. 16%, p = 0.02). There were no associations between RNC visits and age, disease site, or distance from the cancer centre. Conclusions: The receipt of CCR and specific psychosocial risk factors were associated with increased RNC utilization. Targeted strategies and early intervention to better meet the supportive care and psychosocial needs of this vulnerable population are needed. Full article
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12 pages, 864 KiB  
Article
Comparative Effectiveness and Safety of Trastuzumab Biosimilars to Herceptin for Adjuvant Treatment of HER2+ Breast Cancer
by Caroline Muñoz, Xiaochen Tai, Jessica Arias, Andrea Eisen, Munaza Chaudhry, Scott Gavura and Kelvin K. W. Chan
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1633-1644; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030124 - 21 Mar 2024
Viewed by 904
Abstract
Background: Ontario publicly funds reference trastuzumab (Herceptin) and four biosimilar trastuzumab products for adjuvant treatment of HER2+ breast cancer. We assessed the real-world safety and effectiveness of biosimilar trastuzumab compared to Herceptin for adjuvant treatment of patients with HER2+ breast cancer. Methods: This [...] Read more.
Background: Ontario publicly funds reference trastuzumab (Herceptin) and four biosimilar trastuzumab products for adjuvant treatment of HER2+ breast cancer. We assessed the real-world safety and effectiveness of biosimilar trastuzumab compared to Herceptin for adjuvant treatment of patients with HER2+ breast cancer. Methods: This was a population-based, retrospective study comparing the safety and effectiveness of biosimilar trastuzumab and Herceptin for neoadjuvant/adjuvant treatment of HER2+ breast cancer from 2016 to 2021. Treatment patients started biosimilar trastuzumab from November 2019 to June 2021; historical comparator patients started Herceptin from June 2016 to October 2019. Safety outcomes death within 30 days of last dose of trastuzumab, direct hospitalization, emergency department visit leading to hospitalization, early treatment discontinuation, and in-patient admission for congestive heart failure were measured using logistic/negative binomial regression. Overall survival (OS) was measured using Kaplan–Meier methods and Cox proportional hazards regression. Propensity score matching was applied. Results: From June 2016 to 2021, 5071 patients with breast cancer were treated with neoadjuvant/adjuvant trastuzumab. The rate of direct hospitalization (RR: 0.85, 95% CI: 0.74–0.98, p-value: 0.032) was significantly lower in biosimilar compared to Herceptin patients. OS (log-rank test p = 0.98) and risk of mortality (HR: 1.29, 95% CI: 0.72–2.30, p-value = 0.39) did not significantly differ between treatment groups. Conclusions: Biosimilar trastuzumab demonstrated similar safety and effectiveness to Herceptin. The findings can help improve confidence in and use of biosimilars and demonstrate the value of real-world evidence generation for supporting biosimilar implementations and reassessments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection New Insights into Breast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment)
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15 pages, 454 KiB  
Systematic Review
Paraneoplastic Syndromes in Neuroendocrine Prostate Cancer: A Systematic Review
by Mohammad Abufaraj, Raghad Ramadan and Amro Alkhatib
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1618-1632; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030123 - 21 Mar 2024
Viewed by 733
Abstract
Neuroendocrine prostate cancer (NEPC) is a rare subtype of prostate cancer (PCa) that usually results in poor clinical outcomes and may be accompanied by paraneoplastic syndromes (PNS). NEPC is becoming more frequent. It can initially manifest as PNS, complicating diagnosis. Therefore, we reviewed [...] Read more.
Neuroendocrine prostate cancer (NEPC) is a rare subtype of prostate cancer (PCa) that usually results in poor clinical outcomes and may be accompanied by paraneoplastic syndromes (PNS). NEPC is becoming more frequent. It can initially manifest as PNS, complicating diagnosis. Therefore, we reviewed the literature on the different PNS associated with NEPC. We systematically reviewed English-language articles from January 2017 to September 2023, identifying 17 studies meeting PRISMA guidelines for NEPC and associated PNS. A total of 17 articles were included in the review. Among these, Cushing’s Syndrome (CS) due to ectopic Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) secretion was the most commonly reported PNS. Other PNS included syndrome of inappropriate Anti-Diuretic Hormone secretion (SIADH), Anti-Hu-mediated chronic intestinal pseudo-obstruction (CIPO), limbic encephalitis, Evans Syndrome, hypercalcemia, dermatomyositis, and polycythemia. Many patients had a history of prostate adenocarcinoma treated with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) before neuroendocrine features developed. The mean age was 65.5 years, with a maximum survival of 9 months post-diagnosis. NEPC is becoming an increasingly more common subtype of PCa that can result in various PNS. This makes the diagnosis and treatment of NEPC challenging. Further research is crucial to understanding these syndromes and developing standardized, targeted treatments to improve patient survival. Full article
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18 pages, 524 KiB  
Article
Population Survival Kinetics Derived from Clinical Trials of Potentially Curable Lung Cancers
by David J. Stewart, Katherine Cole, Dominick Bosse, Stephanie Brule, Dean Fergusson and Tim Ramsay
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1600-1617; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030122 - 20 Mar 2024
Viewed by 616
Abstract
Using digitized data from progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival Kaplan–Meier curves, one can assess population survival kinetics through exponential decay nonlinear regression analyses. To demonstrate their utility, we analyzed PFS curves from published curative-intent trials of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) adjuvant [...] Read more.
Using digitized data from progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival Kaplan–Meier curves, one can assess population survival kinetics through exponential decay nonlinear regression analyses. To demonstrate their utility, we analyzed PFS curves from published curative-intent trials of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) adjuvant chemotherapy, adjuvant osimertinib in resected EGFR-mutant NSCLC (ADAURA trial), chemoradiotherapy for inoperable NSCLC, and limited small cell lung cancer (SCLC). These analyses permit assessment of log–linear curve shape and estimation of the proportion of patients cured, PFS half-lives for subpopulations destined to eventually relapse, and probability of eventual relapse in patients remaining progression-free at different time points. The proportion of patients potentially cured was 41% for adjuvant controls, 58% with adjuvant chemotherapy, 17% for ADAURA controls, not assessable with adjuvant osimertinib, 15% with chemoradiotherapy, and 12% for SCLC. Median PFS half-life for relapsing subpopulations was 11.9 months for adjuvant controls, 17.4 months with adjuvant chemotherapy, 24.4 months for ADAURA controls, not assessable with osimertinib, 9.3 months with chemoradiotherapy, and 10.7 months for SCLC. For those remaining relapse-free at 2 and 5 years, the cure probability was 74%/96% for adjuvant controls, 77%/93% with adjuvant chemotherapy, 51%/94% with chemoradiation, and 39%/87% with limited SCLC. Relatively easy population kinetic analyses add useful information. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Thoracic Oncology)
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12 pages, 752 KiB  
Review
Personalized Radiation Therapy for Breast Cancer
by Waqar Haque, Edward Brian Butler and Bin S. Teh
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1588-1599; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030121 - 20 Mar 2024
Viewed by 594
Abstract
Breast cancer is diagnosed in nearly 3 million people worldwide. Radiation therapy is an integral component of disease management for patients with breast cancer, and is used after breast-conserving surgery or a mastectomy to reduce the risk of a local recurrence. The following [...] Read more.
Breast cancer is diagnosed in nearly 3 million people worldwide. Radiation therapy is an integral component of disease management for patients with breast cancer, and is used after breast-conserving surgery or a mastectomy to reduce the risk of a local recurrence. The following review describes the methods used to personalize radiation therapy by optimizing patient selection, using advanced treatment techniques to lessen the radiation dose to normal organs, and using hypofractionation in order to shorten the duration of radiation treatment. Full article
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16 pages, 518 KiB  
Article
Perspectives on Ease of Use and Value of a Self-Monitoring Application to Support Physical Activity Maintenance among Individuals Living with and beyond Cancer
by Manuel Ester, Meghan H. McDonough, Mannat Bansal, Julianna Dreger, Julia T. Daun, Margaret L. McNeely, Thompson Luu and S. Nicole Culos-Reed
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1572-1587; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030120 - 19 Mar 2024
Viewed by 756
Abstract
Background: Physical activity (PA) can improve the physical and psychosocial health of individuals with cancer, yet PA levels remain low. Technology may address PA maintenance barriers in oncology, though the intervention effectiveness to date remains mixed. Qualitative research can reveal the nuances of [...] Read more.
Background: Physical activity (PA) can improve the physical and psychosocial health of individuals with cancer, yet PA levels remain low. Technology may address PA maintenance barriers in oncology, though the intervention effectiveness to date remains mixed. Qualitative research can reveal the nuances of using technology-based PA maintenance tools. The present study aimed to understand the perspectives of individuals with cancer on using an app to support PA maintenance. Methods: Individuals were interviewed after using a self-monitoring app for 24 weeks, asking about their app use, ease of use, and perceived value for supporting PA. Analyses were guided by an interpretive description. Results: Eighteen individuals were interviewed. The participants were 37–75 years old; lived in seven Canadian provinces/territories; identified as White, South Asian, or Indigenous; and had eight different cancers. Four themes were developed: some did not need the app to stay physically active, some valued the app for helping them maintain their PA, the user experience ranged from intuitive to confusing, and the time burden of app use ranged from acceptable to overwhelming. Conclusions: The participants provided insights on using a self-monitoring app to improve PA maintenance in oncology. Work is needed to capture additional perspectives and apply findings to the development of technology-based PA maintenance tools. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimizing Integrated Cancer Care from Diagnosis to Survivorship)
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10 pages, 550 KiB  
Article
Real-World Evidence of the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Lung Cancer Survival: Canadian Perspective
by Jason Agulnik, Goulnar Kasymjanova, Carmela Pepe, Jennifer Friedmann, David Small, Lama Sakr, Hangjun Wang, Alan Spatz, Khalil Sultanem and Victor Cohen
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1562-1571; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030119 - 19 Mar 2024
Viewed by 649
Abstract
Background: The effect of COVID-19 on treatment outcomes in the literature remains limited and is mostly reported either as predictive survival using prioritization and modeling techniques. We aimed to quantify the effect of COVID-19 on lung cancer survival using real-world data collected at [...] Read more.
Background: The effect of COVID-19 on treatment outcomes in the literature remains limited and is mostly reported either as predictive survival using prioritization and modeling techniques. We aimed to quantify the effect of COVID-19 on lung cancer survival using real-world data collected at the Jewish General Hospital, Montreal. Methods: This is a retrospective chart review study of patients diagnosed between March 2019 and March 2022. We compared three cohorts: pre-COVID-19, and 1st and 2nd year of the pandemic. Results: 417 patients were diagnosed and treated with lung cancer at our centre: 130 in 2019, 103 in 2020 and 184 in 2021. Although the proportion of advanced/metastatic-stage lung cancer remained the same, there was a significant increase in the late-stage presentation during the pandemic. The proportion of M1c (multiple extrathoracic sites) cases in 2020 and 2021 was 57% and 51%, respectively, compared to 31% in 2019 (p < 0.05). Median survival for early stages of lung cancer was similar in the three cohorts. However, patients diagnosed in the M1c stage had a significantly increased risk of death. The 6-month mortality rate was 53% in 2021 compared to 47% in 2020 and 29% in 2019 (p = 0.004). The median survival in this subgroup of patients decreased significantly from 13 months in 2019 to 6 months in 2020 and 5 months in 2021 (p < 0.001). Conclusions: This study is, to our knowledge, the largest single-institution study in Canada looking at lung cancer survival during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our study looks at overall survival in the advanced/metastatic setting of NSCLC during the COVID-19 pandemic. We have previously reported on treatment pattern changes and increased wait times for NSCLC patients during the pandemic. In this study, we report that the advanced/metastatic subgroup had both an increase in the 6-month mortality rate and worsening overall survival during this same time period. Although there was no statistical difference in the proportion of patients with advanced disease, there was a concerning trend of increased M1c disease in cohorts 2 and 3. The higher M1c disease during the COVID-19 pandemic (cohorts 2 and 3) likely played a crucial role in increasing the 6-month mortality rate and leading to a reduced overall survival of lung cancer patients during the pandemic. These findings are more likely to be better identified with longer follow-up. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clinical Management and Outcomes of Lung Cancer Patients)
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6 pages, 1870 KiB  
Case Report
Ductal Adenocarcinoma of the Prostate with Novel Genetic Alterations Characterized by Next-Generation Sequencing
by Alexandra Zara Rozalen, Jose Manuel Martin, Rithika Rajendran, Maneesh Jain and Victor E. Nava
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1556-1561; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030118 - 19 Mar 2024
Viewed by 714
Abstract
Ductal adenocarcinoma of the prostate (DAP) is an uncommon variant of prostate cancer associated with aggressive disease and poor outcome. It presents most frequently as a mixed tumor combined with acinar adenocarcinoma. Although the histopathological features of DAP are well known, its genomic [...] Read more.
Ductal adenocarcinoma of the prostate (DAP) is an uncommon variant of prostate cancer associated with aggressive disease and poor outcome. It presents most frequently as a mixed tumor combined with acinar adenocarcinoma. Although the histopathological features of DAP are well known, its genomic characteristics are still evolving, prompting the suggestion that all DAP would benefit from molecular analysis with the purpose of improving tumor recognition, genetic classification, and, ultimately, personalized therapy. Herein, we report a case of DAP with novel genetic alterations (BCOR P1153S, ERG M219I, KDR A750E, POLE S1896P, and RAD21 T461del). Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Genitourinary Oncology)
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14 pages, 905 KiB  
Article
Safety and Feasibility of Combining On-Demand Selective Locoregional Treatment with First-Line Atezolizumab Plus Bevacizumab for Patients with Unresectable Hepatocellular Carcinoma
by Tasuku Nakabori, Sena Higashi, Yutaro Abe, Kaori Mukai, Toshiki Ikawa, Koji Konishi, Noboru Maeda, Katsuyuki Nakanishi, Shinichiro Hasegawa, Hiroshi Wada and Kazuyoshi Ohkawa
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1543-1555; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030117 - 15 Mar 2024
Viewed by 682
Abstract
Various locoregional treatments for localized hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) have been developed. This retrospective study investigated the safety and feasibility of combining on-demand selective locoregional treatment for residual lesions after tumor shrinkage (complete response [CR] oriented) or for solitary or few drug-resistant lesions (progressive [...] Read more.
Various locoregional treatments for localized hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) have been developed. This retrospective study investigated the safety and feasibility of combining on-demand selective locoregional treatment for residual lesions after tumor shrinkage (complete response [CR] oriented) or for solitary or few drug-resistant lesions (progressive disease (PD) salvage) with first-line atezolizumab plus bevacizumab (atezo/bev) for unresectable HCC. Twenty-nine patients with unresectable HCC were included. Fourteen locoregional treatments were performed (CR oriented, 7; PD salvage, 7) in ten patients in the combination-therapy group. All patients in the combination-therapy group successfully achieved a CR or PD salvage status after the planned locoregional treatment. The objective response rate of the combination-therapy group (80.0%) was higher than that of the atezo/bev alone group (21.1%; p = 0.005). Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) were longer in the combination group (medians for PFS and OS not reached) than in the atezo/bev alone group (median PFS, 7.4 months; median OS, 19.8 months) (PFS, p = 0.004; OS, p < 0.001). The albumin–bilirubin score did not change, and no severe complications occurred after locoregional treatment. When performed in a minimally invasive manner, on-demand selective locoregional treatment combined with first-line atezo/bev could be safe and feasible for unresectable HCC. Full article
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14 pages, 2200 KiB  
Article
Wedge Resection versus Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Tumors ≤8 mm
by Arian Mansur, Zain Saleem, Jorind Beqari, Camille Mathey-Andrews, Alexandra L. Potter, James Cranor, Alexandra T. Nees, Deepti Srinivasan, Margaret E. Yang, Chi-Fu Jeffrey Yang and Hugh G. Auchincloss
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1529-1542; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030116 - 15 Mar 2024
Viewed by 615
Abstract
The objective of this study was to evaluate the overall survival of patients with ≤8 mm non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who undergo wedge resection versus stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). Kaplan–Meier analysis, multivariable Cox proportional hazards modeling, and propensity score-matched analysis were [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the overall survival of patients with ≤8 mm non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who undergo wedge resection versus stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT). Kaplan–Meier analysis, multivariable Cox proportional hazards modeling, and propensity score-matched analysis were performed to evaluate the overall survival of patients with ≤8 mm NSCLC in the National Cancer Database (NCDB) from 2004 to 2017 who underwent wedge resection versus patients who underwent SBRT. The above-mentioned matched analyses were repeated for patients with no comorbidities. Patients who were coded in the NCDB as having undergone radiation because surgery was contraindicated due to patient risk factors (e.g., comorbid conditions, advance age, etc.) and those with a history of prior malignancy were excluded from analysis. Of the 1505 patients who had NSCLC ≤8 mm during the study period, 1339 (89%) patients underwent wedge resection, and 166 (11%) patients underwent SBRT. In the unadjusted analysis, multivariable Cox modeling and propensity score-matched analysis, wedge resection was associated with improved survival when compared to SBRT. These results were consistent in a sensitivity analysis limited to patients with no comorbidities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Thoracic Oncology)
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14 pages, 1745 KiB  
Article
Biomarker Turnaround Times and Impact on Treatment Decisions in Patients with Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Carcinoma at a Large Canadian Community Hospital with an Affiliated Regional Cancer Centre
by Katelyn E. Fleming, Ava Hupel, Hamid Mithoowani, Tea Lulic-Kuryllo and Mario Valdes
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1515-1528; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030115 - 14 Mar 2024
Viewed by 867
Abstract
Background: Timely reporting of molecular biomarkers is critical in guiding optimal treatment decisions in patients with advanced non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC). Any delays along the tissue or treatment pathway may be associated with suboptimal treatment/outcomes and a reduced quality of life. [...] Read more.
Background: Timely reporting of molecular biomarkers is critical in guiding optimal treatment decisions in patients with advanced non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC). Any delays along the tissue or treatment pathway may be associated with suboptimal treatment/outcomes and a reduced quality of life. For many centres, biomarkers are tested off-site. Methods: A retrospective chart review of 123 patients with advanced NSCLC seen between 1 June 2021 and 30 June 2022 was conducted. With a focus on core biomarkers (PD L1, EGFR, and ALK), the outcome variables were as follows: total turnaround time (total TAT), divided into pre-laboratory, laboratory, and post-laboratory time intervals, as well as time to treatment decision (TOTD) and time to optimal systemic therapy decision (TOTSD). Results: At first consult, only 20.3% of patients had all core biomarker results available. The median total TAT was significantly longer for non-squamous (non-SCC) than squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) specimens (36.5 versus 22 days, p < 0.001). The median pre-laboratory time for the entire cohort was 5 calendar days. The median laboratory testing time was greater for non-SCC compared to the SCC specimens (23 versus 12 days, p < 0.001). The median time from consult to TOTD was 19 calendar days for the entire cohort. Conclusions: This study emphasizes the need for the expansion of regional resources to meet the clinical needs of advanced NSCLC patients treated at a regional cancer centre which uses an off-site molecular laboratory. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medical Oncology)
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11 pages, 1727 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Additional Treatments on the Survival of Patients Undergoing Transarterial Radioembolization (TARE)
by Natale Quartuccio, Salvatore Ialuna, Daniele Scalisi, Fabio D’Amato, Maria Rosa Barcellona, Maria Grazia Bavetta, Giorgio Fusco, Enrico Bronte, Emma Musso, Fabrizio Bronte, Viviana Picciotto, Antonio Carroccio, Francesco Verderame, Giuseppe Malizia, Angelina Cistaro, Fabio La Gattuta and Antonino Maria Moreci
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1504-1514; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030114 - 13 Mar 2024
Viewed by 726
Abstract
The aim of this study was to present our preliminary experience with transarterial radioembolization (TARE) using Yttrium-90 (90Y), compare the cancer-specific survival (CSS) of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and colorectal cancer (CRC) liver metastases undergoing TARE, and investigate the influence [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to present our preliminary experience with transarterial radioembolization (TARE) using Yttrium-90 (90Y), compare the cancer-specific survival (CSS) of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and colorectal cancer (CRC) liver metastases undergoing TARE, and investigate the influence of additional treatments on CSS. Our database was interrogated to retrieve patients who had undergone TARE using Yttrium-90 (90Y) glass or resin microspheres. Kaplan–Meier curves and the log-rank test were employed to conduct survival analysis for the different groups (p < 0.05). Thirty-nine patients were retrieved (sex: 27 M, 12 F; mean age: 63.59 ± 15.66 years): twenty-three with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and sixteen with CRC liver metastasis. Globally, the patients with HCC demonstrated a significantly longer CSS than those with CRC liver metastasis (22.64 ± 2.7 vs. 7.21 ± 1.65 months; p = 0.014). Among the patients with CRC liver metastasis, those receiving TARE and additional concomitant treatments (n = 10) demonstrated a longer CSS than the CRC patients receiving only TARE (9.97 ± 2.21 vs. 2.59 ± 0.24 months; p = 0.06). In the HCC group, there was a trend of a longer CSS in patients (n = 8) receiving TARE and additional treatments (27.89 ± 3.1 vs. 17.69 ± 3.14 months; p = 0.15). Patients with HCC seem to achieve a longer survival after TARE compared to patients with CRC liver metastases. In patients with CRC liver metastases, the combination of TARE and additional concomitant treatments may improve survival. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Gastrointestinal Oncology)
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21 pages, 2496 KiB  
Article
A Retrospective Age Analysis of the Ambulatory Oncology Patient Satisfaction Survey: Differences in Satisfaction across Dimensions of Person-Centred Care and Unmet Needs among Older Adults Receiving Cancer Treatment
by Fay J. Strohschein, Siwei Qi, Sandra Davidson, Claire Link and Linda Watson
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1483-1503; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030113 - 13 Mar 2024
Viewed by 725
Abstract
Over half of all new cancer cases in Alberta are diagnosed among people aged 65+ years, a group that encompasses vast variation. Patient-reported experience measures are routinely collected within Cancer Care Alberta; however, the specific consideration of the needs and concerns of older [...] Read more.
Over half of all new cancer cases in Alberta are diagnosed among people aged 65+ years, a group that encompasses vast variation. Patient-reported experience measures are routinely collected within Cancer Care Alberta; however, the specific consideration of the needs and concerns of older Albertans with cancer is lacking. In 2021, 2204 adults who had received treatment at a cancer centre in Alberta completed the Ambulatory Oncology Patient Satisfaction Survey (AOPSS). In this study, we explored the age differences in satisfaction across six dimensions of person-centred care and in the proportions of unmet needs across eight types of issues, with specific attention to older adults. Using three age groups (18–39, 40–64, 65+), only the physical comfort dimension showed significantly lower satisfaction among those aged 65+ years. Using five age groups (18–39, 40–64, 65–74, 75–84, 85+), significantly lower levels of satisfaction were found related to ‘physical comfort’ for those aged 65–74 and 75–84, ‘coordination and continuity of care’ for those aged 75–84 and 85+, and ‘information, communication, and education’ for those aged 85+. Therefore, grouping together all older adults aged 65+ years obscured lower levels of satisfaction with some dimensions of person-centred care among those aged 75–84 and 85+ years. Unmet needs generally increased with age for all types of issues, with significant differences across age groups for emotional, financial, social/family, and sexual health issues. The lower levels of satisfaction and higher proportions of unmet needs call for tailored interventions to promote optimal care experiences and outcomes among older adults receiving cancer care in Alberta and their families. Full article
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6 pages, 1155 KiB  
Case Report
Chylous Ascites Associated with Advanced Pancreatic Cancer That Improved with Appropriate Treatment: A Case Report
by Hiroo Imai, Ken Saijo, Noriko Takenaga, Keigo Komine, Kota Ouchi, Yuki Kasahara, Shiori Ishikawa, Keiju Sasaki, Yuya Yoshida, Hidekazu Shirota, Masanobu Takahashi and Chikashi Ishioka
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1477-1482; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030112 - 12 Mar 2024
Viewed by 630
Abstract
Chylous ascites is a rare form of ascites with high triglyceride content arising from the thoracoabdominal lymph nodes in the peritoneal cavity due to various benign or malignant etiologies, including pancreatic cancer. During cancer chemotherapy, the accumulation of ascites can lead to the [...] Read more.
Chylous ascites is a rare form of ascites with high triglyceride content arising from the thoracoabdominal lymph nodes in the peritoneal cavity due to various benign or malignant etiologies, including pancreatic cancer. During cancer chemotherapy, the accumulation of ascites can lead to the deterioration of the patient’s general condition, making chemotherapy administration difficult, and resulting in a poor prognosis. We encountered a rare case of chylous ascites complicated by advanced pancreatic cancer. The patient presented with a discrepancy between the shrinkage of the pancreatic cancer and the accumulation of ascites. Therefore, we were able to promptly diagnose chylous ascites by performing biochemical tests. The patient was treated with octreotide, reportedly effective in treating chylous ascites, which rapidly improved the chylous ascites and general condition of the patient, allowing the patient to continue chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer. Therefore, physicians should consider the possibility of chylous ascites when clinically unexplained ascites are observed in patients with advanced cancer. The investigation and treatment of chylous ascites should be initiated as soon as possible. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Palliative and Supportive Care)
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7 pages, 698 KiB  
Commentary
Overview of the Engagement Process to Develop the Future of Cancer Impact (FOCI) Report in Alberta: The Power of Collective Action
by Anna Pujadas Botey, Tara R. Bond, Eliya Farah, Chantelle Carbonell, Stacey Dyck, Angela Estey, Douglas A. Stewart, Darren R. Brenner and Paula J. Robson
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1470-1476; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030111 - 12 Mar 2024
Viewed by 662
Abstract
This commentary provides a detailed overview of the extensive stakeholder engagement efforts critical to the development of the Future of Cancer Impact (FOCI) in Alberta report. The overarching aim of the FOCI report was to support informed and strategic discussions and actions that [...] Read more.
This commentary provides a detailed overview of the extensive stakeholder engagement efforts critical to the development of the Future of Cancer Impact (FOCI) in Alberta report. The overarching aim of the FOCI report was to support informed and strategic discussions and actions that will help key stakeholders in the province prepare for a future with increasing cancer incidence and survival. Employing a comprehensive approach and a diverse range of engagement activities, insights from a wide spectrum of stakeholders were gathered and subsequently used to shape the content of the report. This inclusive process ensured broad representation of perspectives, contributing to a deeper understanding of the complexities in cancer care. The outcome is a robust, consensus-driven report with recommendations set to drive significant transformations within the healthcare system. These efforts highlight the critical role of extensive, inclusive, and collaborative engagement in shaping healthcare initiatives and advancing discussions crucial for the future of cancer care in Alberta. Full article
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10 pages, 582 KiB  
Review
Impact of Systemic Delays for Patient Access to Oncology Drugs on Clinical, Economic, and Quality of Life Outcomes in Canada: A Call to Action
by Sandeep Sehdev, Joanna Gotfrit, Martine Elias and Barry D. Stein
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1460-1469; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030110 - 11 Mar 2024
Viewed by 930
Abstract
Canada has one of the most complex and rigorous drug approval and public reimbursement processes and is, unfortunately, one of the countries with the longest delays in drug access. To assess the overall impact of systemic delays in access to cancer therapy, a [...] Read more.
Canada has one of the most complex and rigorous drug approval and public reimbursement processes and is, unfortunately, one of the countries with the longest delays in drug access. To assess the overall impact of systemic delays in access to cancer therapy, a targeted literature review (TLR) was performed to identify studies associated with the clinical, economic, and quality of life impacts of delayed access to oncology drugs. Using MEDLINE/PubMed databases and snowballing, four unique records met the eligibility criteria. Results revealed that clinical outcomes were the most impacted by systemic delays in access to oncology drugs (e.g., life years lost, overall survival, and progression-free survival). The four articles retrieved by the TLR specifically illustrated that a substantial number of life years could potentially be saved by increasing systemic efficiency regarding the development, approval, and reimbursement processes of new drugs for advanced malignancies. It is imperative that initiatives are put in place to improve the performance and speed of Canadian drug regulatory and health technology assessment (HTA) processes, especially for new cancer therapeutics. The proposed solutions in this paper include better coordination between HTA and Canadian payers to harmonize coverage decisions, international collaborations, information sharing, and national standards for timeliness in oncology drug access. Full article
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15 pages, 462 KiB  
Review
Peritoneal Metastatic Gastric Cancer: Local Treatment Options and Recommendations
by Miklos Acs, Pompiliu Piso and Gabriel Glockzin
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1445-1459; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030109 - 09 Mar 2024
Viewed by 771
Abstract
Peritoneal metastasis is a common finding in patients with advanced gastric cancer. Beyond systemic chemotherapy, additive local treatments such as cytoreductive surgery and intraperitoneal chemotherapy are considered an inherent part of different multimodal treatment concepts for selected patients with peritoneal metastatic gastric cancer. [...] Read more.
Peritoneal metastasis is a common finding in patients with advanced gastric cancer. Beyond systemic chemotherapy, additive local treatments such as cytoreductive surgery and intraperitoneal chemotherapy are considered an inherent part of different multimodal treatment concepts for selected patients with peritoneal metastatic gastric cancer. This review article discusses the role of cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and intraperitoneal chemotherapy, including HIPEC, NIPS, and PIPAC, as additive therapeutic options with curative and palliative intent. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Gastrointestinal Oncology)
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19 pages, 527 KiB  
Guidelines
Cell Therapy Transplant Canada (CTTC) Consensus-Based Guideline 2024 for Management and Treatment of Chronic Graft-Versus-Host Disease and Future Directions for Development
by Dennis Dong Hwan Kim, Gizelle Popradi, Kylie Lepic, Kristjan Paulson, David Allan, Ram Vasudevan Nampoothiri, Sylvie Lachance, Uday Deotare, Jennifer White, Mohamed Elemary, Kareem Jamani, Christina Fraga, Christopher Lemieux, Igor Novitzky-Basso, Arjun Datt Law, Rajat Kumar, Irwin Walker and Kirk R. Schultz
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1426-1444; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030108 - 08 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1176
Abstract
This is a consensus-based Canadian guideline whose primary purpose is to standardize and facilitate the management of chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGvHD) across the country. Creating uniform healthcare guidance in Canada is a challenge for a number of reasons including the differences in healthcare [...] Read more.
This is a consensus-based Canadian guideline whose primary purpose is to standardize and facilitate the management of chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGvHD) across the country. Creating uniform healthcare guidance in Canada is a challenge for a number of reasons including the differences in healthcare authority structure, funding and access to healthcare resources between provinces and territories, as well as the geographic size. These differences can lead to variable and unequal access to effective therapies for GvHD. This document will provide comprehensive and practical guidance that can be applied across Canada by healthcare professionals caring for patients with cGvHD. Hopefully, this guideline, based on input from GvHD treaters across the country, will aid in standardizing cGvHD care and facilitate access to much-needed novel therapies. This consensus paper aims to discuss the optimal approach to the initial assessment of cGvHD, review the severity scoring and global grading system, discuss systemic and topical treatments, as well as supportive therapies, and propose a therapeutic algorithm for frontline and subsequent lines of cGvHD treatment in adults and pediatric patients. Finally, we will make suggestions about the future direction of cGvHD treatment development such as (1) a mode-of-action-based cGvHD drug selection, according to the pathogenesis of cGvHD, (2) a combination strategy with the introduction of newer targeted drugs, (3) a steroid-free regimen, particularly for front line therapy for cGvHD treatment, and (4) a pre-emptive approach which can prevent the progression of cGvHD in high-risk patients destined to develop severe and highly morbid forms of cGvHD. Full article
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10 pages, 1507 KiB  
Article
The Development and Testing of a Patient Decision Aid for Individuals with Homologous Recombinant Proficient Ovarian Cancer Who Are Considering Niraparib Maintenance Therapy
by Laura Hopkins, Mark Carey, Linda Brown, Sabryna McCrea, Mark Milne, Dawne Tokaryk and Dawn Stacey
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1416-1425; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030107 - 08 Mar 2024
Viewed by 959
Abstract
New treatments for ovarian cancer are available that require trade-offs between progression-free survival and quality of life. The aim of this study was to develop a decision aid for patients with homologous recombinant proficient (HRP) tumors, as the benefit–harm ratio of niraparib needs [...] Read more.
New treatments for ovarian cancer are available that require trade-offs between progression-free survival and quality of life. The aim of this study was to develop a decision aid for patients with homologous recombinant proficient (HRP) tumors, as the benefit–harm ratio of niraparib needs consideration. This decision aid was created with a systematic and iterative development process based on the Ottawa Decision Support Framework. The decision aid was user-tested for acceptability, usability, and comprehensibility using a survey completed by a sample of patients with ovarian cancer and oncologists. This decision aid follows the International Patient Decision Aids Standards (IPDAS) criteria in its development. User-test respondents (n = 13 patients; 13 physicians) reported that the decision aid used language that was easy to follow (69% patients; 85% physicians), was an appropriate length (69% patients; 62% physicians) and provided the right amount of information (54% patients; 54% physicians). Most respondents (92% patients; 62% physicians) would recommend this decision aid for HRP patients considering niraparib. This is the first decision aid for patients with HRP ovarian cancers who are considering niraparib maintenance therapy. It is available on-line and is being further evaluated in a pragmatic clinical trial in Saskatchewan. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ovarian Cancer in the Age of Precision Medicine)
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16 pages, 1007 KiB  
Review
177Lu-PSMA-617 in Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer: A Review of the Evidence and Implications for Canadian Clinical Practice
by Kim N. Chi, Steven M. Yip, Glenn Bauman, Stephan Probst, Urban Emmenegger, Christian K. Kollmannsberger, Patrick Martineau, Tamim Niazi, Frédéric Pouliot, Ricardo Rendon, Sebastien J. Hotte, David T. Laidley and Fred Saad
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1400-1415; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030106 - 07 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1129
Abstract
Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) is highly expressed in prostate cancer and a therapeutic target. Lutetium-177 (177Lu)-PSMA-617 is the first radioligand therapy to be approved in Canada for use in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). As this treatment represents a [...] Read more.
Prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) is highly expressed in prostate cancer and a therapeutic target. Lutetium-177 (177Lu)-PSMA-617 is the first radioligand therapy to be approved in Canada for use in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). As this treatment represents a new therapeutic class, guidance regarding how to integrate it into clinical practice is needed. This article aims to review the evidence from prospective phase 2 and 3 clinical trials and meta-analyses of observational studies on the use of 177Lu-PSMA-617 in prostate cancer and discuss how Canadian clinicians might best apply these data in practice. The selection of appropriate patients, the practicalities of treatment administration, including necessary facilities for treatment procedures, the assessment of treatment response, and the management of adverse events are considered. Survival benefits were observed in clinical trials of 177Lu-PSMA-617 in patients with progressive, PSMA-positive mCRPC who were pretreated with androgen receptor pathway inhibitors and taxanes, as well as in taxane-naïve patients. However, the results of ongoing trials are awaited to clarify questions regarding the optimal sequencing of 177Lu-PSMA-617 with other therapies, as well as the implications of predictive biomarkers, personalized dosimetry, and combinations with other therapies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Recent Advances in Anticancer Strategies)
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11 pages, 522 KiB  
Article
Outpatient Embedded Palliative Care for Patients with Advanced Thoracic Malignancy: A Retrospective Cohort Study
by Mary C. Boulanger, Margaret D. Krasne, Ethan K. Gough, Samantha Myers, Ilene S. Browner and Josephine L. Feliciano
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1389-1399; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030105 - 07 Mar 2024
Viewed by 595
Abstract
Although cancer care is often contextualized in terms of survival, there are other important cancer care outcomes, such as quality of life and cost of care. The ASCO Value Framework assesses the value of cancer therapies not only in terms of survival but [...] Read more.
Although cancer care is often contextualized in terms of survival, there are other important cancer care outcomes, such as quality of life and cost of care. The ASCO Value Framework assesses the value of cancer therapies not only in terms of survival but also with consideration of quality of life and financial cost. Early palliative care for patients with advanced cancer is associated with improved quality of life, mood, symptoms, and overall survival for patients, as well as cost savings. While palliative care has been shown to have numerous benefits, the impact of real-world implementation of outpatient embedded palliative care on value-based metrics is not fully understood. We sought to describe the association between outpatient embedded palliative care in a multidisciplinary thoracic oncology clinic and inpatient value-based metrics. We performed a retrospective cohort study of 215 patients being treated for advanced thoracic malignancies with non-curative intent. We evaluated the association between outpatient embedded palliative care and inpatient clinical outcomes including emergency room visits, hospitalizations, intensive care unit admissions, hospital charges, as well as hospital quality metrics including 30-day readmissions, admissions within 30 days of death, inpatient mortality, and inpatient hospital charges. Outpatient embedded palliative care was associated with lower hospital charges per day (USD 3807 vs. USD 4695, p = 0.024). Furthermore, patients who received outpatient embedded palliative care had lower hospital admissions within 30 days of death (O.R. 0.45; 95% CI 0.29, 0.68; p < 0.001) and a lower inpatient mortality rate (IRR 0.67; 95% CI 0.48, 0.95; p = 0.024). Our study further supports that outpatient palliative care is a high-value intervention and alternative models of palliative care, including one embedded into a multidisciplinary thoracic oncology clinic, is associated with improved value-based metrics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Palliative Care and Supportive Medicine in Cancer)
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13 pages, 1077 KiB  
Conference Report
The REthinking Clinical Trials Program Retreat 2023: Creating Partnerships to Optimize Quality Cancer Care
by Ana-Alicia Beltran-Bless, Mark Clemons, Lisa Vandermeer, Khaled El Emam, Terry L. Ng, Sharon McGee, Arif Ali Awan, Gregory Pond, Julie Renaud, Gwen Barton, Brian Hutton and Marie-France Savard
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1376-1388; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030104 - 06 Mar 2024
Viewed by 654
Abstract
Patients, families, healthcare providers and funders face multiple comparable treatment options without knowing which provides the best quality of care. As a step towards improving this, the REthinking Clinical Trials (REaCT) pragmatic trials program started in 2014 to break down many of the [...] Read more.
Patients, families, healthcare providers and funders face multiple comparable treatment options without knowing which provides the best quality of care. As a step towards improving this, the REthinking Clinical Trials (REaCT) pragmatic trials program started in 2014 to break down many of the traditional barriers to performing clinical trials. However, until other innovative methodologies become widely used, the impact of this program will remain limited. These innovations include the incorporation of near equivalence analyses and the incorporation of artificial intelligence (AI) into clinical trial design. Near equivalence analyses allow for the comparison of different treatments (drug and non-drug) using quality of life, toxicity, cost-effectiveness, and pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic data. AI offers unique opportunities to maximize the information gleaned from clinical trials, reduces sample size estimates, and can potentially “rescue” poorly accruing trials. On 2 May 2023, the first REaCT international symposium took place to connect clinicians and scientists, set goals and identify future avenues for investigator-led clinical trials. Here, we summarize the topics presented at this meeting to promote sharing and support other similarly motivated groups to learn and share their experiences. Full article
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17 pages, 256 KiB  
Conference Report
Barriers and Unequal Access to Timely Molecular Testing Results: Addressing the Inequities in Cancer Care Delays across Canada
by Stephanie Snow, Christine Brezden-Masley, Michael D. Carter, Neesha Dhani, Cassandra Macaulay, Ravi Ramjeesingh, Michael J. Raphael, Monika Slovinec D’Angelo and Filomena Servidio-Italiano
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1359-1375; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030103 - 06 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1175
Abstract
Genomic medicine is a powerful tool to improve diagnosis and outcomes for cancer patients by facilitating the delivery of the right drug at the right dose at the right time for the right patient. In 2023, a Canadian conference brought together leaders with [...] Read more.
Genomic medicine is a powerful tool to improve diagnosis and outcomes for cancer patients by facilitating the delivery of the right drug at the right dose at the right time for the right patient. In 2023, a Canadian conference brought together leaders with expertise in different tumor types. The objective was to identify challenges and opportunities for change in terms of equitable and timely access to biomarker testing and reporting at the education, delivery, laboratory, patient, and health-system levels in Canada. Challenges identified included: limited patient and clinician awareness of genomic medicine options with need for formal education strategies; failure by clinicians to discuss genomic medicine with patients; delays in or no access to hereditary testing; lack of timely reporting of results; intra- and inter-provincial disparities in access; lack of funding for patients to access testing and for laboratories to provide testing; lack of standardized testing; and impact of social determinants of health. Canada must standardize its approach to biomarker testing across the country, with a view to addressing current inequities, and prioritize access to advanced molecular testing to ensure systems are in place to quickly bring innovation and evidence-based treatments to Canadian cancer patients, regardless of their place of residence or socioeconomic status. Full article
11 pages, 370 KiB  
Article
Ovarian Cancer in the Older Manitoban Population—Treatment Tolerance and Cancer-Related Outcomes: A Manitoba Ovarian Cancer Outcomes (MOCO) Group Study
by Lesley F. Roberts, Pascal Lambert, Mark W. Nachtigal, Alon D. Altman and Erin Dean
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1348-1358; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030102 - 05 Mar 2024
Viewed by 610
Abstract
Background: In Canada, individuals with gynecologic reproductive organs (ovaries, fallopian tubes, uterus) over the age of 70 comprise a large proportion of epithelial ovarian cancer patients. These patients often have co-morbidities, polypharmacy, or decreased functional status that may impact treatment initiation and tolerance. [...] Read more.
Background: In Canada, individuals with gynecologic reproductive organs (ovaries, fallopian tubes, uterus) over the age of 70 comprise a large proportion of epithelial ovarian cancer patients. These patients often have co-morbidities, polypharmacy, or decreased functional status that may impact treatment initiation and tolerance. Despite this, there is limited evidence to guide treatment for older patients diagnosed with ovarian epithelial carcinoma. Methods: This is a retrospective study with data from Manitoba, Canada. The data were obtained from the Manitoba Ovarian Cancer Database, the Manitoba Cancer Registry, and electronic health records. All individuals with epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer diagnosed between 2009 and 2018 were identified. Patients aged > 70 at the time of diagnosis were included in the study cohort. Results: Four hundred and forty individuals were included. The majority had advanced stage disease (56%). Moreover, 59% of patients received no chemotherapy. Of the patients who received chemotherapy, 20% received <2 cycles and 21% required a dose reduction due to toxicity. Univariable and multivariable analysis identified advanced stage (p < 0.001), treatment modality (p < 0.001), and advanced age at diagnosis (p < 0.001) with poorer overall survival. Conclusions: Our study demonstrated a high rate of chemotherapy dose reduction and discontinuation in the elderly epithelial ovarian cancer population. Further research is needed to identify risk factors for treatment discontinuation and intolerance in this population. Full article
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13 pages, 738 KiB  
Article
Scheduled and Breakthrough Opioid Use for Cancer Pain in an Inpatient Setting at a Tertiary Cancer Hospital
by Aline Rozman de Moraes, Elif Erdogan, Ahsan Azhar, Suresh K. Reddy, Zhanni Lu, Joshua A. Geller, David Mill Graves, Michal J. Kubiak, Janet L. Williams, Jimin Wu, Eduardo Bruera and Sriram Yennurajalingam
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1335-1347; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030101 - 05 Mar 2024
Viewed by 726
Abstract
Background: Our aim was to examine the frequency and prescription pattern of breakthrough (BTO) and scheduled (SCH) opioids and their ratio (BTO/SCH ratio) of use, prior to and after referral to an inpatient supportive care consult (SCC) for cancer pain management (CPM). [...] Read more.
Background: Our aim was to examine the frequency and prescription pattern of breakthrough (BTO) and scheduled (SCH) opioids and their ratio (BTO/SCH ratio) of use, prior to and after referral to an inpatient supportive care consult (SCC) for cancer pain management (CPM). Methods and Materials: Patients admitted at the MD Anderson Cancer Center and referred to a SCC were retrospectively reviewed. Cancer patients receiving SCH and BTO opioids for ≥24 h were eligible for inclusion. Patient demographics and clinical characteristics, including the type and route of SCH and BTO opioids, daily opioid doses (MEDDs) of SCH and BTO, and BTO/SCH ratios were reviewed in patients seen prior to a SCC (pre-SCC) and during a SCC. A normal BTO ratio was defined as 0.5–0.2. Results: A total of 665/728 (91%) patients were evaluable. Median pain scores (p < 0.001), BTO MEDDs (p < 0.001), scheduled opioid MEDDs (p < 0.0001), and total MEDDs (p < 0.0001) were higher, but the median number of BTO doses was fewer (2 vs. 4, p < 0.001), among patients seen at SCC compared to pre-SCC. A BTO/SCH ratio over the recommended ratio (>0.2) was seen in 37.5% of patients. The BTO/SCH ratios in the pre-SCC and SCC groups were 0.10 (0.04, 0.21) and 0.17 (0.10, 0.30), respectively, p < 0.001. Hydromorphone and Morphine were the most common BTO and SCH opioids prescribed, respectively. Patients in the early supportive care group had higher pain scores and MEDDs. Conclusions: BTO/SCH ratios are frequently prescribed higher than the recommended dose. Daily pain scores, BTO MEDDs, scheduled opioid MEDDs, and total MEDDs were higher among the SCC group than the pre-SCC group, but the number of BTO doses/day was lower. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Palliative and Supportive Care)
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12 pages, 1596 KiB  
Article
A Survival Analysis of Patients with Recurrent Epithelial Ovarian Cancer Based on Relapse Type: A Multi-Institutional Retrospective Study in Armenia
by Lilit Harutyunyan, Evelina Manvelyan, Nune Karapetyan, Samvel Bardakhchyan, Aram Jilavyan, Gevorg Tamamyan, Armen Avagyan, Liana Safaryan, Davit Zohrabyan, Narine Movsisyan, Anna Avinyan, Arevik Galoyan, Mariam Sargsyan, Martin Harutyunyan, Hasmik Nersoyan, Arevik Stepanyan, Armenuhi Galstyan, Samvel Danielyan, Armen Muradyan and Gagik Jilavyan
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1323-1334; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030100 - 04 Mar 2024
Viewed by 1056
Abstract
Background: Annually, approximately 200 new ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed in Armenia, which is considered an upper-middle-income country. This study aimed to summarize the survival outcomes of patients with relapsed ovarian cancer in Armenia based on the type of recurrence, risk factors, and [...] Read more.
Background: Annually, approximately 200 new ovarian cancer cases are diagnosed in Armenia, which is considered an upper-middle-income country. This study aimed to summarize the survival outcomes of patients with relapsed ovarian cancer in Armenia based on the type of recurrence, risk factors, and choice of systemic treatment. Methods: This retrospective case-control study included 228 patients with relapsed ovarian cancer from three different institutions. Results: The median age of the patients was 55. The median follow-up times from relapse and primary diagnosis were 21 and 48 months, respectively. The incidence of platinum-sensitive relapse was 81.6% (186), while platinum-resistant relapse was observed in only 18.4% (42) of patients. The median post-progression survival of the platinum-sensitive group compared to the platinum-resistant group was 54 vs. 25 months (p < 0.001), respectively, while the median survival after relapse was 25 vs. 13 months, respectively; three- and five-year post-progression survival rates in these groups were 31.2% vs. 23.8%, and 15.1% vs. 9.5%, respectively (p = 0.113). Conclusions: Overall, despite new therapeutic approaches, ovarian cancer continues to be one of the deadly malignant diseases affecting women, especially in developing countries with a lack of resources, where chemotherapy remains the primary available systemic treatment for the majority of patients. Low survival rates demonstrate the urgent need for more research focused on this group of patients with poor outcomes. Full article
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12 pages, 5274 KiB  
Article
ITGAV Promotes the Progression of Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma
by Lingyi Xu, Jeremy G Barrett, Jiayi Peng, Suk Li, Diana Messadi and Shen Hu
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1311-1322; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030099 - 01 Mar 2024
Viewed by 795
Abstract
Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) refers to the malignancy of squamous cells in the head and neck region. Ranked as the seventh most common cancer worldwide, HNSCC has a very low survival rate, highlighting the importance of finding therapeutic targets for [...] Read more.
Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) refers to the malignancy of squamous cells in the head and neck region. Ranked as the seventh most common cancer worldwide, HNSCC has a very low survival rate, highlighting the importance of finding therapeutic targets for the disease. Integrins are cell surface receptors that play a crucial role in mediating cellular interactions with the extracellular matrix (ECM). Within this protein family, Integrin αV (ITGAV) has received attention for its important functional role in cancer progression. In this study, we first demonstrated the upregulation of ITGAV expression in HNSCC, with higher ITGAV expression levels correlating with significantly lower overall survival, based on TCGA (the Cancer Genome Atlas) and GEO datasets. Subsequent in vitro analyses revealed an overexpression of ITGAV in highly invasive HNSCC cell lines UM1 and UMSCC-5 in comparison to low invasive HNSCC cell lines UM2 and UMSCC-6. In addition, knockdown of ITGAV significantly inhibited the migration, invasion, viability, and colony formation of HNSCC cells. In addition, chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays indicated that SOX11 bound to the promoter of ITGAV gene, and SOX11 knockdown resulted in decreased ITGAV expression in HNSCC cells. In conclusion, our studies suggest that ITGAV promotes the progression of HNSCC cells and may be regulated by SOX11 in HNSCC cells. Full article
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9 pages, 217 KiB  
Article
Real-World Analysis of the Clinical and Economic Impact of the 21-Gene Recurrence Score (RS) in Invasive Lobular Early-Stage Breast Carcinoma in Ireland
by Lynda M. McSorley, Mehala Tharmabala, Fathiya Al Rahbi, Fergus Keane, Denis Evoy, James G. Geraghty, Jane Rothwell, Damian P. McCartan, Megan Greally, Miriam O’Connor, Deirdre O’Mahony, Maccon Keane, Michael John Kennedy, Seamus O’Reilly, Steve J. Millen, John P. Crown, Catherine M. Kelly, Ruth S. Prichard, Cecily M. Quinn and Janice M. Walshe
Curr. Oncol. 2024, 31(3), 1302-1310; https://doi.org/10.3390/curroncol31030098 - 01 Mar 2024
Viewed by 837
Abstract
Background: This study, using real-world data, assesses the impact of RS testing on treatment pathways and the associated economic consequences of such testing. This paper pertains to lobular breast cancer. Methods: A retrospective, observational study was undertaken between 2011 and 2019 on a [...] Read more.
Background: This study, using real-world data, assesses the impact of RS testing on treatment pathways and the associated economic consequences of such testing. This paper pertains to lobular breast cancer. Methods: A retrospective, observational study was undertaken between 2011 and 2019 on a cross-section of hormone receptor-positive (HR+), HER2-negative, lymph node-negative, early-stage breast cancer patients. All patients had ILC and had RS testing in Ireland. The patient population is representative of the national population. Patients were classified as low (RS ≤ 25) or high (RS > 25) risk. Patients aged ≤50 were stratified as low (RS 0–15), intermediate (RS 16–25), or high risk (RS > 25). Results: A total of 168 patients were included, most of whom had grade 2 (G2) tumors (n = 154, 92%). Overall, 155 patients (92.3%) had low RS (≤25), 12 (7.1%) had high RS (>25), and 1 (0.6%) had unknown RS status. In 29 (17.5%) patients aged ≤50 at diagnosis, RS was ≤15 in 16 (55%), 16–20 in 6 (21%), 21–25 in 5 (17%), >25 in 1 (3.5%), and unknown in 1 (3.5%). Post RS testing, 126 patients (78%) had a change in chemotherapy recommendation; all to hormone therapy. In total, only 35 patients (22%) received chemotherapy. RS testing achieved a 75% reduction in chemotherapy use, resulting in savings of €921,543.84 in treatment costs, and net savings of €387,283.84. Conclusions: The use of this test resulted in a 75% reduction in chemotherapy and a significant cost savings in our publicly funded health system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Breast Cancer)
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