Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Research shows gap in care for childhood cancer survivors

Date:
January 23, 2014
Source:
Loyola University Health System
Summary:
A recent study shows that many internists feel ill-equipped to care for adult patients who are childhood cancer survivors.

A recent study shows that many internists feel ill-equipped to care for adult patients who are childhood cancer survivors. Eugene Suh, MD, assistant professor in the division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, was the first author on the study that was conducted at the University of Chicago with Tara Henderson, MD, MPH.

As technologies and treatments advance, the number of childhood cancer survivors is growing. In fact, it is estimated that there are more than 350,000 survivors in the U.S. As these children grow into adulthood and their care is transitioned to adult medicine providers, Suh’s study has shown that many internists don’t feel prepared to provide the care and monitoring necessary for these patients.

“As we see the number of survivors grow, it’s so important to educate the patient, their family and physicians about care plans for survivors,” Suh said. “Providing information about a survivor’s treatment history as well as appropriate surveillance guidelines to patients and primary care physicians is a need that we now know exists.”

The study involved a sampling of physicians from across the U.S. who listed general internal medicine as their primary specialty from the American Medical Association Physician Masterfile. The mailed 18-item survey assessed respondents’ demographics, medical education and practice structure. It was derived from a previous survey concerning physicians’ attitudes and knowledge about cancer care. A childhood cancer survivor was defined as a patient diagnosed with cancer at or before the age of 21 who was at least five years from cancer therapy completion and was cancer free.

“For some survivors this a period of their life they would prefer to put behind them and not to think about, but it’s important for them to be engaged in their healthcare. We realize if they are to come back into the healthcare setting it would most likely be with their primary care provider. That is why it’s so important for adult primary care physicians to feel comfortable caring for these patients,” Suh said.

Though surveillance guidelines for childhood cancer survivors have been available since 2003, the Institute of Medicine reports that most survivors are not engaged in appropriate risk-based healthcare. One likely reason identified by the study is that most primary care physicians are not provided survivorship care plans.

More than 61 percent of internists who received the survey completed it. Fifty-one percent said they had cared for at least one childhood cancer survivor and among these 71 percent said they never received a treatment summary. On average most internists reported being somewhat uncomfortable caring for childhood cancer survivors and most preferred to care for the patient in collaboration with a cancer center-based physician.

“From an oncologists standpoint, it is our responsibility to the patient to work closely with primary care providers to ensure cancer survivors are healthy and informed, and that they receive the best health care possible. ”

The study showed how essential a survivorship care plan is for a patient and physician. It also highlighted the need for primary care physicians to have access to and education about the guidelines for caring for childhood cancer survivors.

“In an age of information technology sharing and education, resource availability could be accomplished by providing links to guidelines on webpages where primary care physicians turn for information and through webinars on survivor advocate websites,” said Suh.

With 70 percent of adult childhood cancer survivors having a chronic health condition, it is extremely important for physicians and medical institutions to bridge these communication and education gaps.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Loyola University Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Loyola University Health System. "Research shows gap in care for childhood cancer survivors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161835.htm>.
Loyola University Health System. (2014, January 23). Research shows gap in care for childhood cancer survivors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161835.htm
Loyola University Health System. "Research shows gap in care for childhood cancer survivors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161835.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins