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See detailA European patient record study on diagnosis and treatment of chemotherapy-induced anaemia
Ludwig, H.; Aapro, M.; Bokemeyer, C. et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2014), 22

Purpose – Patients with cancer frequently experience chemotherapy‐induced anaemia (CIA) and iron deficiency (ID). Erythropoiesis‐stimulating agents (ESA), iron supplementation and blood transfusions are ... [more ▼]

Purpose – Patients with cancer frequently experience chemotherapy‐induced anaemia (CIA) and iron deficiency (ID). Erythropoiesis‐stimulating agents (ESA), iron supplementation and blood transfusions are available therapies. This study evaluated routine practice in CIA management. Methods – Medical oncologists and/or haematologists from nine European countries (n=375) were surveyed on their last five cancer patients treated for CIA (n=1730). Information was collected on tests performed at diagnosis of anaemia, levels of haemoglobin (Hb), serum ferritin and transferrin saturation (TSAT), and applied anaemia therapies. Results – Diagnostic tests and therapies for CIA varied across Europe. Anaemia and iron status were mainly assessed by Hb (94%) and ferritin (48%) measurements. TSAT was only tested in 14%. At anaemia diagnosis, 74% of patients had Hb ≤10g/dL, including 15% with severe (Hb <8g/dL) anaemia. Low iron levels (ferritin ≤100ng/mL) were detected in 42% of evaluated patients. ESA was the most commonly used treatment (63%) and 30% of ESA‐treated patients also received iron supplementation. Most iron‐treated patients (74%) received an oral iron; intravenous iron was administered to 26%. 52% of patients received transfusions and in 76% of these, transfusions formed part of a regular anaemia treatment regimen. Management practices were similar in 2009 and 2011. Conclusion – Management of anaemia and iron status in patients treated for CIA varies substantially across Europe. Iron status is only assessed in half of the patients. In contrast to clinical evidence, iron treatment is underutilised and mainly based on oral iron supplementation. Implementation of guidelines needs to be increased, particularly the minimisation of blood transfusions. [less ▲]

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See detailScreening for malnutrition in lung cancer patients undergoing therapy
BARTHELEMY, Nicole ULg; Streel, Sylvie ULg; Donneau, Anne-Françoise ULg et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2014), 22(6), 15311536

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See detailHigh prevalence of anaemia and limited use of therapy in cancer patients : a Belgian survey (Anaemia Day 2008)
Verbeke, N.; Beguin, Yves ULg; Wildiers, H. et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2012), 20

Objectives: The aim of this study is to provide relevant and accurate information on prevalence and treatment patterns of anaemia in Belgian cancer patients. Methods The Anaemia Day 2008 survey was a ... [more ▼]

Objectives: The aim of this study is to provide relevant and accurate information on prevalence and treatment patterns of anaemia in Belgian cancer patients. Methods The Anaemia Day 2008 survey was a single visit, multi-centre, non-interventional study in adult cancer patients under systemic therapy (chemotherapy, hormonal, immunological and/or targeted therapy) and/or radiotherapy. Efforts were made to enrol the maximum number of patients seen in each centre that day. Patients signed an informed consent and relevant data were collected from their files, i.e. disease and disease stage, cancer therapy and anti-anaemic treatment, including transfusions and the use of erythropoietin stimulating agents (ESA). A blood count of each included patient was performed. Haemoglobin (Hb) values (grams per decilitre) were classified into four categories to assess the severity of anaemia, as defined byWHO: no anaemia: Hb≥12 g/dL; mild 10≤Hb≤11.9 g/dL; moderate 8≤Hb≤9.9 g/dL; severe Hb< 8 g/dL. Univariate and multivariate analyses were carried out with anaemia as the dependent variable. Results A total of 1,403 eligible patients aged 63±13 years (mean age±SD) were enrolled in 106 oncology or haematology centres. The mean Hb level (±SD) was 11.6 g/dL (±1.8 g/dL) and the prevalence of anaemia (Hb<12 g/dL) was 55.7% (95% CI, 53.1–58.3%), respectively, 35.9% mild, 17.8% moderate and 2.1% severe anaemia. Anaemia was more frequent in females than in males, and in patients with haematological malignancies (73.4%) than in those with solid tumours (51.4%; p<0.001). Anaemia prevalence was higher in hospitalised patients (75.5%) compared to those seen in one-day-clinic (54.3%) or in consultation (33.9%; p<0.001), and in patients treated with chemotherapy (61.3%) compared to those receiving radiotherapy (34.4%) or hormonal therapy (19.5%; p<0.001). There was a clear correlation between severity of anaemia and WHO performance status (p< 0.001). Among anaemic patients, 53.1% received no treatment (mean Hb 10.8±0.9 g/dL). Among the anaemic patients who received therapy for their anaemia (mean Hb 9.7±1.1 g/dL), the most frequent treatments were RBC transfusions (42%), ESA (34.6%), transfusions+ESA (12%), ESA+iron (7.9%) and iron alone (3.5%). Comparison to the ECAS survey shows that there has been no major change in attitude towards anaemia management in the last decade. Conclusion This survey shows that cancer-related anaemia is still frequently observed in cancer patients. Even if in our study ESA were used more frequently than about 10 years ago, still a large amount of anaemic patients who could be treated for anaemia according to EORTC guidelines, were not. [less ▲]

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See detailDoes psychological characteristic influence physicians' communication styles? Impact of physicians' locus of control on interviews with a cancer patient and a relative
Libert, Yves; Merckaert, Isabelle; Reynaert, Christine et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2006), 14(3), 230-242

Context: Physicians' psychological characteristics may influence their communication styles and may thus interfere with patient-centred communication. Objective: Our aim was to test the hypothesis that ... [more ▼]

Context: Physicians' psychological characteristics may influence their communication styles and may thus interfere with patient-centred communication. Objective: Our aim was to test the hypothesis that, in interviews with a cancer patient and a relative, physicians with an "external" locus of control (LOC; who believe that life outcomes are controlled by external forces such as luck, fate or others) have a communication style different from that of physicians with an "internal" LOC (who believe that life outcomes are controlled by their own characteristics or actions). Design, setting, participants and intervention: Eighty-one voluntary physicians practising in the field of oncology were recorded while performing an actual and a simulated interview with a cancer patient and a relative. Main outcome measures: Physicians' communication skills were assessed using the Cancer Research Campaign Workshop Evaluation Manual. Physicians' LOC was assessed using the Rotter I-E scale. The communication skills of the upper and lower quartiles of physicians in respect of their scores on this scale were compared using Student's t test. Results: In actual interviews, physicians with an "external" LOC talked more to the relative (P=0.017) and used more utterances with an assessment function (P=0.010) than physicians with an "internal" LOC. In simulated interviews, physicians with an "external" LOC used less utterances that give premature information (P=0.031) and used more utterances with a supportive function, such as empathy and reassurance (P=0.029), than physicians with an "internal" LOC. Conclusion: These results provide evidence that physicians' LOC can influence their communication styles. Physicians' awareness of this influence constitutes a step towards a tailoring of their communication skills to every patient's and relative's concerns and needs and thus towards a patient-centred communication. [less ▲]

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See detailTeaching communication and stress management skills to junior physicians dealing with cancer patients: a Belgian Interuniversity Curriculum
Bragard, Isabelle ULg; Razavi, Darius; Marchal, Serge et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2006), 14(5), 454-461

Background: Ineffective physicians' communication skills have detrimental consequences for patients and their relatives, such as insufficient detection of psychological disturbances, dissatisfaction with ... [more ▼]

Background: Ineffective physicians' communication skills have detrimental consequences for patients and their relatives, such as insufficient detection of psychological disturbances, dissatisfaction with care, poor compliance, and increased risks of litigation for malpractice. These ineffective communication skills also contribute to everyday stress, lack of job satisfaction, and burnout among physicians. Literature shows that communication skills training programs may significantly improve physicians' key communication skills, contributing to improvements in patients' satisfaction with care and physicians' professional satisfaction. This paper describes a Belgian Interuniversity Curriculum (BIC) theoretical roots, principles, and techniques developed for junior physicians specializing in various disciplines dealing with cancer patients. Curriculum description: The 40-h training focuses on two domains: stress management skills and communication skills with cancer patients and their relatives. The teaching method is learner-centered and includes a cognitive, behavioral, and affective approach. The cognitive approach aims to improve physicians' knowledge and skills on the two domains cited. The behavioral approach offers learners the opportunity to practice these appropriate skills through practical exercises and role plays. The affective approach allows participants to express attitudes and feelings that communicating about difficult issues evoke. Such an intensive course seems to be necessary to facilitate the transfer of learned skills in clinical practice. Conclusions: The BIC is the first attempt to bring together a stress management training course and a communication training course that could lead not only to communication skills improvements but also to burnout prevention. [less ▲]

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See detailCatheter tip position as a risk factor for thrombosis associated with the use of subcutaneous infusion ports.
Caers, Jo ULg; Fontaine, Christel; Vinh-Hung, Vincent et al

in Supportive Care in Cancer (2005), 13((5)), 325-31

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