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ONCOLOGY Vol 31 No 4

Recent improvements in our understanding of the biology of colorectal cancer have led to the identification of several important prognostic and predictive markers of disease-associated risk and treatment response for the individual patient.

A 48-year-old Caucasian woman presented with a palpable right breast mass. Physical examination confirmed a lump on the upper outer quadrant of her right breast. On PET/CT scan there was an incidental finding of increased metabolic activity in the left lateral breast.

PARP inhibitors are an active, novel, and exciting class of anticancer agents. They have shown clear patient benefit in gBRCA, HR-deficient, and other ovarian cancers.

Sexual health is an important aspect of human life, and cancer does not (and should not) change that. Data suggest that issues related to sexual function are quite common among women treated for cancer. However, clinicians often spend little to no time on the topic.

Ultimately, meaningful value assessment is going to require unbiased comparisons between competing strategies. Decision models are extremely useful in this regard and can provide important insight into cost-effectiveness evaluations.

Value in its essence is preference or outcome divided by cost, or described in terms of a mathematical equation, value = outcome (preference)/cost. It follows, then, that value is increased by holding outcome constant and reducing cost, or by improving outcome while holding cost constant.

In this interview we discuss humanistic medicine and some of the skills that physicians need in order to have open communication with their cancer patients, which can improve the quality of cancer care.

 

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