NEW YORKMembers of eight major oncologic organizations are working together to produce a set of uniform guidelines for the prevention and control of nausea and vomiting in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
The ad hoc international group is working to reconcile the six sets of guidelines already issued by various professional organizations, according to Richard Gralla, MD, associate director and professor of medicine, Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center of Columbia University College of Medicine.
Broad CollaborationThe collaboration includes representatives of oncology nursing, pharmacy, and medical oncology, as well as of the Multinational Society for Supportive Care in Cancer, Dr. Gralla said during an international teleconference for health professionals sponsored by the European Association for Cancer Education and Cancer Care, Inc.
Dr. Gralla is one of about 20 individuals from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Europe involved in the guidelines project. He said that preliminary results have been presented at several meetings in the United States and Europe, with the final document slated for submission for publication later this year.
When the guidelines are finalized, the group hopes to make them easily available in such forms as laminated cards and files that can be downloaded from the Internet.
Different countries now follow varying guidelines for prevention and treatment of nausea and vomiting, although studies point to a single set of effective approaches. The dosages of various agents currently being prescribed vary widely, he observed. In addition, studies show that even existing guidelines are often not followed.