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Side-Effect Management

Novel Agents Improve Management of CINV

In a recent report, researchers evaluate the efficacy of newer 5HT3-RAs for the prevention of CINV in patients with cancer receiving moderately or highly emetogenic chemotherapy.

Lung Cancer

Palliative Care for Lung Cancer in Veterans at Risk of Suicide

In a review of data from more than 20,000 veterans, researchers determined the effects of palliative care on suicide rates among veterans with advanced lung cancer.

General Oncology

Keep/Start/Stop Analysis in Nursing

This simple framework for communicating can be adapted to fit each situation, regardless of it being a nurse-to-patient or a nurse-to-nurse setting.

General Oncology

Fitness Wearables Are Finding a Place in Oncology Care

Wearable activity monitors offer oncology care teams an unbiased glimpse into patients' health behaviors and improved reports on performance status.

Breast Cancer

Chemotherapy Has Benefits With Midrange 21-Gene Assay Score

In a randomization of women with early-stage breast cancer, researchers explored the potential benefits of chemotherapy for women whose Oncotype DX RS was midrange.

General Oncology

What Hope, Gratitude, and Spiritually Mean to Cancer Patients

A reflection on how these elements affect patients at the time of diagnosis, during their cancer journey, and how it can change their life in survivorship.

Melanoma

Is Radioimmunotherapy a Path Forward for Melanoma?

Recent research implicates patients' immune cells appear to stimulate radiation abscopal effects, raising the possibility that combining radiotherapy and immunotherapy could yield previously-untapped treatment synergies to improve tumor control.

General Oncology

How Accurate Is the Information Your Cancer Patients Find Online?

Information patients find online can be a great concern for oncology nurses, especially when a diagnosis has an uncertain prognosis. In this follow-up study, researchers in Boston sought to determine the quality of the online resources patients with cancer, particularly pancreas, are finding.

Side-Effect Management

Hypnosis: Comparison of an Intervention’s Efficacy Across Patient Populations

Researchers sought to determine if men with prostate cancer would derive the same benefits from hypnosis as women with breast cancer. Their results highlight significant differences in what is helpful for men vs women.

Navigator Notes

Nurse-Led Program Improves Health, Financial Outcomes

In a randomized study, researchers sought to determine the effect of a nurse-led care program on unscheduled hospital visits and admissions and cost for patients with breast cancer undergoing outpatient chemotherapy.

Lung Cancer

Choosing an Effective, Efficient Lung Cancer Screening Model

Four of 9 lung cancer screening models were shown to effectively select the most appropriate candidates for low-dose CT lung cancer screening among US ever-smokers.

Breast Cancer

Choice of Postmastectomy Reconstruction Choice Affects Satisfaction, QOL

A prospective trial with more than 2000 women who underwent mastectomy with immediate breast reconstruction sought to determine patient satisfaction with their breasts and quality of life annually over 4 years after their procedure.

Oncology Nursing

The Caregivers’ Cancer Journey

This installment demonstrates how the caregiver's cancer journey often parallels that of the patient with cancer, highlighting their need for evolving support through survivorship.

Side-Effect Management

Staff Education Increases Oncology Rehabilitation Referrals

Educational intervention for oncology clinicians at a rural Michigan oncology clinic does not demonstrate a statistically significant increase in referrals to rehabilitation; however, results show a clinically significant improvement in identification of need, communication among staff, and potential for greater referrals.

General Oncology

Beware Abbreviated Explanations That May Undermine Patient Communications

Have you ever thought about what is meant — or understood — when you say to a patient "It's going to be okay"? Hearing an exchange between her grandson and a pediatric nurse prompted Ann Brady to reflect on abbreviated communications.

General Oncology

Nurse as Patient Advocate: When My Patient Had No Clothes

Patient advocacy can lead nurses to take on great challenges in the course of caring for their patients or to brave the elements to retrieve replacements for a patient's missing clothes.

Navigator Notes

Younger Patients, Higher Costs: The Changing Demographics of Cancer

This overview provides a snapshot of the shift in cancer care costs and age of patients, reviewing the 4 most commonly diagnosed cancers.

Prostate Cancer

USPSTF Updates Guidelines for PSA-Based Screening in Older Men

In updating its 2012 recommendations, the US Preventive Services Task Force changes its stance on PSA-based screening for prostate cancer in men older than 50. The new guidelines advocate for a patient-physician discussion of the benefits of testing vs the potential harms.

General Oncology

Exercise Habits Influence Mortality in Adult Survivors of Childhood Cancer

A multinational retrospective study investigated the long term effects of exercise intensity and frequency on all-cause and cause-specific mortality among adult survivors of childhood cancers.

Breast Cancer

Disparities to Disclosure: Lesbians and Breast Cancer

Marissa Fors, director of CancerCare's Susan G. Komen® Breast Care Helpline, talked with Dr Penelope Damaskos, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, about breast cancer risk and related challenges for women who identify as lesbian and their healthcare providers.

Side-Effect Management

ARIE: A Common, Debilitating Clinical Challenge in Thoracic Radiotherapy

A review of current options and ongoing trials for managing ARIE, a common esophageal adverse effect caused by radiotherapy to the thoracic region for lung, breast, or head and neck cancers, or lymphoma.

General Oncology

Bedside Intervention Improves Pain, Anxiety, Mood in Hospitalized Cancer Patients

Results from a study on an innovative program from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, demonstrates the potential positive effects of providing hospitalized patients with brief one-on-one art lessons.

General Oncology

Avoiding the ED: Planned Strategies for Unplanned Urgent Cancer Care

Results of a literature review highlighted 5 strategies for improving the management of urgent care situations in patients with cancer.

Skin Cancer

Improving Counseling About Skin Cancer Risks

A new US Preventive Services Task Force Evidence Report is suggesting that greater efforts are needed to educate children and young adults with fair skin about risks of sun exposure. Although the Task Force recommendations are directed at primary care, its members are encouraging oncology nurses to take note of these new findings.

Breast Cancer

A Review of HER2-Positive Breast Cancer

A review of HER2-positive breast cancer, including etiology, diagnosis, and treatments.

Prostate Cancer

SDM Discussions Still Lacking in Prostate Cancer

A review of shared decision making with men about undergoing PSA testing revealed that although full SDM discussions are increasing, variations in whether these discussions occur and how much information is shared still exist.

Leukemia

Venetoclax Effective in Relapsed/Refractory CLL

A group of Australian researchers report study findings that demonstrate a significant improvement in PFS in patients with relapsed/refractory CLL treated with venetoclax plus rituximab compared with the standard care.

Side-Effect Management

Evidence-Based Practices, No CLABSIs Achieved Through Quality Improvement

Faced with an increasing CLABSI rate on their oncology unit, nurse leaders at this rural Northwest hospital surveyed their staff to identify the changes they needed to make. Implementing those changes resulted in a dramatic improvement in patient care outcomes.

Navigator Notes

Enabling a Timely Diagnosis, Treatment After Cancer Screening

A review of the literature on follow-up after positive screening results led researchers to a consensus opinion on timing of diagnostic tests for 4 cancers: breast, cervical, colorectal, and lung.

Oncology Nursing

The Noise of Too Much Information

Overwhelmed by her poor prognosis, a patient with a newly diagnosed advanced cancer cuts off communicating with her health care team.

Lung Cancer

Evolving Role of RT in Mesothelioma Treatment

Research into the potential of radiation therapy in the management of mesothelioma may improve the prognosis, and possibly extend progression-free survival, for patients with this incurable cancer.

Oncology Nursing

Facing Cancer as a Young Couple

A cancer diagnosis can alter life plans for a young adult couple, completely upending their carefully thought out plans. Understanding their unique challenges can ensure oncology nurses are prepared to help these patients and their partners face an uncertain future.

Genitourinary Cancer

Testicular Cancer Treatment May Increase Heart Disease Risk in Survivors

Recent research shows that although testicular cancer survivors do not totally conform to the criteria for metabolic syndrome, past treatment with platinum-based chemotherapy increases its prevalence among survivors and may lead to a greater risk for heart disease in this patient population.

Breast Cancer

Better Breast Imaging: Improved Outcomes or Increased Overdiagnosis

Advances in breast imaging such as DBT offer better, clearer images of breast tissue that can identify even low-grade DCIS tumors. But will more sensitive imaging lead to improved outcomes or increased overtreatment?

Navigator Notes

Spousal, Partner Perception of Coping, Adjustments in Breast Cancer

Male spouse or partner perspectives on a female patient's ability to cope was found to have a positive effect on her ability to cope and adjust to her disease. Unfortunately, this effect remains rarely researched and poorly understood among patients with breast cancer in same sex relationships.

Head and Neck Cancer

Overtreatment a Concern With RAI for Well-Differentiated Thyroid Cancer

In a study from the Cleveland Clinic, researchers investigated the association between well-differentiated thyroid cancer and risk for AML or CML in those patients treated with radioactive iodine.

Oncology Nursing

Dear Doctor Letter Adds Patients’ Bucket List to EOL Care

What matters most to me, who matters most to me, and what do I want in my last days? Letter-writing project is a tool for patients to communicate their wishes for their last days.

Oncology Nursing

Using Medical Terms in Patient Education

Medical terminology can be a foreign language — or confusing, at the least — for many patients. Ann Brady uses a patient encounter to illustrate the potential miscommunication inherent in using "medicalese" in patient communication.

Oncology Nursing

A Witness to Letting Go: Nursing Care at the End of Life

A new oncology nurse reflects on the first time she provided comfort care for a patient at the end of life and her family.

Side-Effect Management

Managing Chemo Brain in Pediatric Cancer Survivors

Reintegration to the general environment, particularly to school, can be challenging for survivors of childhood cancers. This review discusses how adverse effects such as chemo brain may present extra challenges for these patients and what can be done to ease patients' anxiety.

Side-Effect Management

Advances in Prevention, Treatment of RT-Associated Radiodermatitis Hold Promise

This review of radiodermatitis, a common adverse effect of radiation therapy, discusses preventive and treatment options available that reduce and/or minimize symptoms of the condition.

General Oncology

The Controversy Over Proton Beam Radiotherapy

At $225 million per system, the precision of proton beam radiotherapy is not necessarily overshadowing its high costs. Yet ongoing studies seek to determine how this technology fits into current treatment regimens for prostate, breast, and other cancers.

Lymphoma

Hodgkin Lymphoma Treatment in EU vs US: Similarities Would Enable Worldwide Studies

A review of management approaches to Hodgkin lymphoma in Europe vs the United States/North America demonstrates that although some differences exist, worldwide studies that would enhance patient outcomes are feasible.

General Oncology

JNC 8 Guides BP Management During Cancer Treatment

Publication of the JNC 8 introduces a lower threshold for initiating hypertension treatment during cancer therapy.

Breast Cancer

Anticancer Properties of Omega-3 PUFAs: Plants vs Fish

Researchers compared the association between diets high in plant-based omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) vs those high in marine-based PUFAs and the risk for breast cancer.

Oncology Nursing

Sitting With Silence in EOL Cancer Care

Modern oncologic care entails actively pursuing treatment and cure; however, at the end of life, the ability to share silence may be the best treatment.

Lung Cancer

Risk-Targeting Approach vs NLST Eligibility Criteria for Lung Cancer Screening

In a review of data from the NLST, researchers sought to determine if a risk-targeting approach would more efficiently select high-risk persons for lung cancer screening than the eligibility criteria defined by the NLST.

Navigator Notes

Program Addresses Loneliness of Cancer

LISTEN, a novel program developed at WVU School of Medicine, is designed to tackle loneliness — a significant health concern for patients with cancer.

General Oncology

Diversionary Activities Help Pass Time in Infusion Chair

A kind gesture toward friends during their chemotherapy infusions developed into a support organization that helps patients pass the time during their treatment.

Oncology Nursing

Interpreting Patients’, Families’ Subtle Body Language

Although many physical expressions are universal, oncology nurses may be challenged to catch notice of more subtle body language from patients or a family member.

Oncology Nursing

Psychosocial Needs of YAs With Metastatic Cancer

A cancer diagnosis is wrought with challenges for young adults. This article identifies the unique support needs for patients aged 20 to 39 years with cancer.

General Oncology

Incidence of PTSD Among Patients With Cancer

Study evaluates the incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder in patients with cancer from diagnosis through survivorship.

Oncology Nursing

Curriculum Changes May Help Improve Care for Terminally Ill Patients

An analysis of select responses to a survey conducted by researchers from the College of Nursing at South Dakota State University identified oncology nurses' comfort level in handling end-of-life care and patient education.

Breast Cancer

Bridging the Gap in Genetic Cancer Research Data on Minorities

Investigators sought to determine why so few biospecimens were available for research from minority populations of women with breast cancer.

Navigator Notes

Cultural Humility in Healthcare Settings

Cultural humility is a different perspective on nurse-patient communication than cultural competence. Eucharia Borden, an oncology social worker, explains their difference and how it can improve your care for patients of minority cultures.

Oncology Nursing

Cardiac Care in the Oncology Setting

Cardio-oncology is an emerging interdisciplinary practice poised to address care patients who need concurrent cancer and cardiovascular disease therapies as well as the late effects of cancer and cancer treatments.

Side-Effect Management

Opioid Epidemic Response Affects Cancer Pain Management

A report on current legislation and practice trends regarding opioids and how they are affecting cancer patients' ability to manage their pain.

Colorectal Cancer

CRC and Dietary Fiber: Type of Fiber Is More Important

New research on the benefits of high-fiber diets for CRC survivors took its findings one step further and identified the type of fiber consumed and which provided better benefits.

Oncology Nursing

Online Learning Modules Improve Physical Activity Counseling

Researchers evaluated the effectiveness of online learning modules on physical activity counseling for oncology nurses. Although the modules improved nurses' counseling practices, they did not resolve the issue of physical activity in survivors.

Navigator Notes

Fertility Preservation in Male AYAs With Cancer

Increasing survival rates for AYA patients with cancer have heightened the importance of discussing fertility preservation options. In this column, we review the options for male patients and the significance of including a discussion of them as part of treatment planning.

Lymphoma

Classical Hodgkin Lymphoma 10 Years After Liver Transplantation

This case describes management of a 61-year-old male with a history of chronic liver diseases and COPD who developed a posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder 10 years after a liver transplant.

General Oncology

Improving ED Care for Older Adults With Cancer

Researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center sought to determine if observation status may be a better treatment option for older adults with cancer who present to the ED.

Oncology Nursing

SUPPORT Tips for Families Coping With Cancer During the Holidays

As the holidays approach, offering these SUPPORT tips can help caregivers of patients with cancer make the most of the seasonal activities and the time with their loved ones.

Hematologic Cancers

G-CSFs: Use, Administration, Adverse Effects

A review of granulocyte colony-stimulating factors, dosage and administration, adverse effects, and nurse management steps is presented.

Lymphoma

Critical Thinking Key to Effective Management of AEs in Lymphoma

Nurses' critical thinking perspective is key to recognizing and managing adverse effects in patients with lymphoma, and staying ahead of the curve in a rapidly changing clinical setting.

General Oncology

Repurposing Statins to Combat Cancer

Study results demonstrate that statins have antitumor activity in various solid-tumor cancers and leukemia; however, experts offer these caveats on using them to treat cancer — at least for now.

Oncology Nursing

WWW: Navigating Complex Conversations

WWW is not for the world-wide web, but it is an easy way to remember the 3 w's of communication with patients with advanced disease: wish, worry, wonder.

Lung Cancer

Case Report: Myocarditis Concomitant to MG in Lung Cancer

In this case, a female patient with advanced lung cancer experiences a rare episode of nivolumab-induced Herzmyasthenie, emphasizing the need to be aware of the potential for rapid myocarditis concomitant with MG in patients undergoing treatment with anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibodies.

Navigator Notes

Navigating the Breast Cancer Posttreatment Transition

The transition from active treatment to survivorship for patients with breast cancer can be as complex as the disease. An oncology social worker discusses the challenges of this "new unknown" in the continuum of care.

General Oncology

Challenges of Combining Radiation With Other Therapies

Combining radiotherapy and immunotherapy has shown early promise against some advanced cancers, but oncology nurses need to be wary of potential overlapping toxicity profiles from each of these treatment modalities.

Oncology Nursing

Nurses Identify AEs Related to Handling Chemotherapy

Using a 4-question survey, investigators determined oncology nurses' perception of their risks in handling and administering cytotoxic chemotherapy to patients.

Breast Cancer

Impact of Pregnancy on Breast Cancer Recurrence

This study explored the potential for pregnancy and breastfeeding among women who survived breast cancer, particularly those with ER-positive disease, and the impact of pregnancy on disease recurrence.

Navigator Notes

Building Successful Cancer Awareness Events

Breast Cancer Awareness Month has been celebrated in October since the early 1990s. In this column, Oncology Nurse Advisor asked 3 community education advocates to share their tips for a successful awareness event.

General Oncology

Extensive Cancer Screening Not Beneficial in Unprovoked VTE

Although unprovoked VTE may be a sign of occult cancer, results of a meta-analysis showed no benefit to extensive cancer screening in these patients.

Navigator Notes

Invisible Burdens: Complexities of Caregiving in Brain Cancer

Caregivers of patients with malignant brain tumors often bear additional burdens in their role, as these patients often experience cognition-related adverse effects as well as the effects of their cancer and its treatment.

Oncology Nursing

Communicating With Nonaccepting Patient Families

When patients and families are holding on to what you don't say, they may use combativeness and being argumentative to keep you — and your words — from bringing them to accept the unacceptable.

Navigator Notes

Biomarker Testing Education Program for CRC

A newly developed patient education resource helps nurses educate patients with colorectal cancer about biomarker testing and counsel them on the significance of the results.

Side-Effect Management

Importance of Recognizing Checkpoint Inhibitor-Related Pneumonitis

As the use of checkpoint inhibitors increases in many types of cancer, oncology nurses need to learn to recognize the signs and symptoms of pneumonitis, a rare but life-threatening adverse effect of these agents.

General Oncology

History of Periodontal Disease Increases Risk of Cancers in Women

A study on a cohort of women enrolled in the WHI-OS shows that those with a history of periodontal disease had a higher risk for developing some cancers.

General Oncology

Super-Elders: An Emerging Challenge for Radiation Oncology

A look at the significant influence of age-adjusted prognoses and treatment priorities for radiation therapy in the oldest patients with cancer.

Side-Effect Management

Body-Trauma Triggers During Radiation Therapy

Some patients undergoing radiation therapy may experience traumatic symptoms if they had a prior experience that triggered their "fight, flight, or freeze" response. Somatic experiencing may help these patients manage their symptoms during their radiation treatments.

Navigator Notes

Better Health Systems for Patient Navigation

A navigator offers her take on how the ideal EHR system could unify the oncology care team toward the common goal of optimal patient outcomes.

Navigator Notes

Caregiver Training Intervention Improves At-Home Cancer Care

Novel intervention focuses on caregivers' beliefs, knowledge, and skills regarding home care for patients with cancer resulting in improved pain management and better overall care at the end of life.

General Oncology

Virtual Reality Experiences for Patients in Hospice

A London hospice facility's experiment with virtual reality offers patients at the end of life the chance to explore the world beyond their bed.

Oncology Nursing

Depression Predicts Poor Health in Cancer Caregivers

The person with cancer is not always the oncology nurse's only patient. Caregivers should be assessed for depressive symptoms, which can indicate declining physical health in the caregiver, and receive appropriate treatment.

Oncology Nursing

Keys to Successful Patient Outcomes

Identifying which archetypical profile fits your patient can help oncology nurses individualize support and education needs to their patients.

General Oncology

Gay Men and Cancer

A cancer diagnosis often further stigmatizes gay men, particularly those who have not revealed their sexual orientation to others. In this review, CancerCare's Bill Goeren discusses the psychosocial challenges inherent to cancer care for gay men.

Oncology Nursing

The Cancer Masquerade

Grief over a loved one's impending death may manifest as other emotions or difficult-to-manage behavior. This month's column describes how families may express their grief as anxiety about their loved one's care, an attempt to take control of the situation, or anger toward the clinicians involved in their loved one's care.

Breast Cancer

3D Marker Improves Outcomes for BCS

Two recent studies examined the benefits of using a 3D bioabsorbable marker to indicate the tumor bed in women with breast cancer who underwent breast conserving surgery (BCS).

Breast Cancer

Late Effects of Taxane-based Chemotherapy

Breast cancer survivors who received taxane-based chemotherapy for their disease are at increased risk for falls due to CIPN and treatment-associated effects on balance and gait.

Lung Cancer

Impact of Hyperfractionated RT on Patient Outcomes

Twice daily radiation therapy with chemotherapy may improve survival times in patients with some advanced head and neck cancers, a new study confirms.

Side-Effect Management

Workshop Addresses Significant Cancer Treatment Issue

American Cancer Society (ACS) program teaches patients with cancer how to repair their physical image when faced with the changes in their appearance brought on by cancer treatments.

Navigator Notes

Improving Patient-Centered, Cohesive Cancer Care

Cancer centers and hospital networks are finding both utility and value in clinical care pathways to help standardize diagnosis, treatment, and management of the most common disease presentations.

Navigator Notes

Text Messages Ensure Survivorship Care for AYA Survivors

An interactive system connects adolescent and young adult survivors of childhood cancers with their health care team to ensure they establish and adhere to recommended survivorship care plans.

General Oncology

Rare Cancers Challenge Patients, Clinicians

A diagnosis of a rare cancer is compounded by a greater sense of isolation because patients often struggle to find "someone like me." Support measures need to provide a sense of inclusion as well as meet unique needs.

Breast Cancer

Why Women Opt for Mastectomy vs BCT

Canadian investigators sought to understand the factors that influence the treatment choices of women with early-stage breast cancer.

Oncology Nursing

Minimizing a Cancer Diagnosis

Seeing another patient's situation as worse may be a coping mechanism for some patients with cancer, but those patients need to be reminded not to diminish their own disease and treatment.

Side-Effect Management

Managing Pain in a Changing Climate

Patient expectations, clinician perception, and institutional objectives create a perfect storm of conflicting interests regarding pain management, especially given the current trend to control opioid use.

Side-Effect Management

Rolapitant Effective in Relieving Delayed CINV

Long-acting NK-1 receptor antagonist rolapitant demonstrates significant efficacy in managing CINV in patients receiving HEC or MEC for cancer.

Side-Effect Management

Distress Management Tool Updated

A review of the updated NCCN Guidelines is presented with a look at the newly published Guideline for Patients.

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