Jimmie C. Holland, MD | Authors

"OMG, How Long Is This Going to Take?"

February 16, 2013

It is hard to realize that an elderly patient's visit to you is likely the only trip outside his or her apartment for the week and the only contact with someone other than family or an aide. Doctor visits sometimes become the elderly's primary contact with the larger world.

How's Your Distress?

April 01, 2007

A simple intervention addressing the emotional impact of cancer can help put the "care" back in caregiving

Quick Reference for Oncology Clinicians

November 01, 2006

As a midcareer academic medical oncologist, I have found that some books are especially useful as a pocket reference. Some books are small enough for a briefcase, but not ideal for a coat pocket. Others are best sequestered on a bookshelf. Where a book is placed often influences how one will (or won't) use it or read it.

Surviving the Stresses of Clinical Oncology by Improving Communication

March 01, 2004

Oncologists grapple with an element of psychological stress that relatesto the suffering their patients experience. Although this stress maynot be unique to oncology, it is profound. When these stresses becomeoverwhelming, they lead to physician burnout. It is important to understandwhat makes an oncologist feel successful, what coping strategieshelp combat burnout, and what adds to the process of renewal. Thedoctor-patient relationship plays an important role for many oncologistsin this regard, and communication skills are increasingly recognizedfor their importance in this arena. We outline several clinical scenariosthat pose particular challenges to oncologists. These include breakingbad news and the patient’s response to hearing bad news, transitions incare and offering end-of-life care, participation in investigational studies,error disclosure, complementary and alternative medicine, spirituality,family discussions, and cross-cultural issues. By highlighting therelevant psychosocial issues, we offer insight into, and tools for, anenriched dialogue between patient and oncologist. The doctor-patientrelationship can be viewed as the ultimate buffer for dealing with thehassles encountered in clinical oncology.

The Human Side of Cancer: Living With Hope, Coping With Uncertainty

August 01, 2001

Written by Jimmie C. Holland, MD, and Sheldon Lewis, this book focuses on the "human effects" as opposed to the

Stress and Burnout in Oncology

November 01, 2000

This article identifies the professional stressors experienced by nurses, house staff, and medical oncologists and examines the effect of stress and personality attributes on burnout scores. A survey was conducted of 261 house

New SSRI Antidepressants Offer Advantages in Cancer Patients

October 01, 1996

A 43-year-old married man was referred to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in June, 1995, for further management of a malignant brain tumor. He was asymptomatic until April, 1994, when he suffered a generalized seizure and was admitted to a local hospital. An MRI revealed a right parietal lobe lesion. The tumor was resected and found to be a glioblastoma multiforme.

Commentary (Holland): The Role of Psychological Factors in Cancer Incidence and Prognosis

March 01, 1995

Dr. Bernard Fox has served as the mentor and unbiased monitor of psychological, social, and behavioral research in cancer as it has evolved over the past 20 years. The thoughtful review in this issue of the current status of this research is extremely valuable for oncologists who must deal with patients' concerns as to whether their personality, emotions, or recent stresses caused their cancer or its progression. Media reports of psychological studies proposing new evidence of mind-body relationships and cancer are read by frightened patients who are trying to make some meaning out of their plight. The physician who has read Dr. Fox's article can provide a strong antidote to patients' inappropriate assumptions that they have somehow caused their cancer.