Supportive Care

BOSTON—Recognizing steroid-induced hyperglycemia early and addressing it promptly can prevent significant ad - verse effects associated with this complication. Educating patients on the importance of and methods for maintaining good blood glucose control helps mitigate damage to the vascular system and kidneys from hyperglycemia. It also lessens susceptibility to infection, a complication of hyperglycemia that is of serious concern in immunocompromised patients. Read More ›

As the incidence of invasive fungal infections has risen over the past 20 years, so has the level of concern among oncology nurses. In an interview with The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA, Brenda Shelton, MS, RN, CCRN, AOCN, clinical nurse specialist, The Sidney Kimmel Comp rehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, Baltimore, Maryland, discusses who is at risk, how nurses can identify them, and steps nurses can take to help these patients.

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Use of hormone therapy for menopause is associated with reduced risks for esophageal, gastric, and colorectal cancers, according to results of a prospective study that were then combined with published studies in a meta-analysis. In this British study of women aged 50 to 64 years, researchers found no significant differences in risk by type of hormone therapy, duration of use, or between past and current users. The reduction in risk, however, was small in comparison to the increased risk of breast cancer that has been attributed to hormone therapy in this population.

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Up to 39% of cancer patient believed they did not receive the physical rehabilitation they needed, and 10% to 24% believed they did not receive other rehabilitation services they required. These are the findings of a group of Danish researchers who used the Oncology Nursing Society definition of “a process by which individuals within their environments are assisted to achieve optimal functioning within limits imposed by cancer,” to survey 2202 cancer patients regarding their perception of the rehabilitation they received. Read More ›

The evidence backing the use of myeloid growth factors in patients at high risk for febrile neutropenia is solid, according to Jeffrey Crawford, MD, of Duke Cancer Institute, Durham, North Carolina.


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Patients receiving chemotherapy are at risk for reactivation of the hepatitis B virus (HBV), and this can have a significant negative impact on the outcomes, including death from liver failure. According to Emmy Ludwig, MD, of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC), New York, one-third of the world has been exposed to HBV, “making it an enormous problem.”

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By assigning weight to health outcomes and calculating the benefits from raloxifene compared with placebo and from tamoxifen compared with placebo, researchers developed a benefit/risk index for the use of these agents as chemo preventives in postmenopausal women at high risk for breast cancer. As seen in the indices in the article, the researchers found raloxifene better than tamoxifen for women with a uterus; for women without a uterus, the profiles were similar. Read More ›

Effective management of breakthrough cancer pain requires optimizing background therapy for chronic pain and accurately assessing the type of breakthrough pain, said presenters at the 45th American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Midyear Clinical Meeting & Exposition.

“Knowing the type of breakthrough cancer pain can help match the right drug with the right goal,” said Mary Lynn McPherson, PharmD, BCPS, CDE, who is professor and vice chair, Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, University of Maryland School of Pharmacy in Baltimore.

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