Cancer-Related Fatigue: Real, Treatable, and Under-Treated

Life-altering fatigue will affect 80% of people getting chemotherapy or radiation therapy, plus most people who have metastatic cancer, and even many survivors long after treatment is done. Yet fatigue in cancer patients has been under-reported, under-diagnosed, and under-treated, according to an expert panel convened by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) a decade ago to…  Read More

Earlier End-of-Life Talk Associated with Less Aggressive Late Care

Early discussions about desired end-of-life care, among patients with incurable cancer, were associated with less aggressive treatment in the last month of life, according to a study published this week in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (Nov. 13 online ahead of print). The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) highlighted this study for providing “the first-of-its-kind…  Read More

"Isn't Hospice End-of-Life Care?"

Fight Colorectal Cancer’s September 2012 patient webinar focused on issues that run rampant with misunderstanding and fear: palliative and hospice care. Dr. Jim Meadows, Director of Palliative and Hospice Care at Tennessee Oncology, led the webinar. He spoke at length about palliative care, but not surprisingly, the majority of questions toward the end of the webinar…  Read More

Doctors Urged to Talk Discuss Palliative Care

Soon after diagnosing a patient with advanced cancer, a doctor should begin discussing options for palliative care—the management of symptoms—according to a new policy statement from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).  ASCO also released a new, free guide called Advanced Cancer Care Planning for patients to help initiate those conversations.

Early Palliative Care Increases Survival Time

Should cancer care focused on quality of life wait until all treatment ends?  Or can it be integrated with medical treatment as soon as someone is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness? In a study of 150 advanced lung cancer patients, starting palliative care along with standard life-prolonging treatment when patients were first diagnosed not only improved…  Read More

Phone Calls Improve Life for People with Advanced Cancer

Regular phone calls from specially trained nurses improved quality of life and reduced depression in rural patients with advanced cancer. However, the calls didn’t reduce cancer symptoms or time in the hospital. While patients in the telephone based-palliative care program did live slightly longer than patients who received regular care, the difference wasn’t significant.