The American Cancer Societys translation of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guidelines (originally designed for oncology professionals) for the treatment of colon and rectal cancer is now available in a booklet for patients. The guidelines give patients and their families a reliable, specific, and easy-to-understand source of information that can aid them in making informed decisions.
According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 130,200 Americans will learn that they have colorectal cancer this year, and an estimated 56,300 deaths will occur as a result of the disease. Rather than having to consult numerous different sources, colon and rectal cancer patients will now have access to a wealth of information in a convenient, clearly written format.
Among the topics discussed in the booklet are known risk factors, prevention and early detection of colon and rectal cancer, stages of the disease, medical decisions and treatment options, side effects of treatment, important questions for patients to discuss with their doctors, general information about clinical trials, and a glossary of terms commonly used in colon and rectal cancer treatment.
Each topic is covered in depth and incorporates the latest available information in cancer care. The booklet also contains numerous visual aids, including flowchart algorithms that represent appropriate treatment for different stages of colon and rectal cancer.
The partnership between the NCCN and the American Cancer Society provides access to patient versions of the same guidelines oncologists use to aid their decisions about appropriate treatment, said William T. McGivney, chief executive officer of the NCCN. Our goal is to inform and facilitate this critical decision-making process between patient and physician.
American Cancer Society president Gerald L. Woolam, MD, said The patient guidelines collaboration with NCCN has developed some of the best patient materials available today. When you can give patients an easy-to-understand, state-of-the-science tool to help them deal with their cancer, youve done a very important thing.
To obtain copies of the patient version of the colon and rectal cancer guidelines, contact the National Comprehensive Cancer Network at 1-888-909-NCCN or the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345. You may also visit their websites at www.nccn.org or www.cancer.org.