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Charles P. Borden, Charles L. Shapiro, Maria Teresa Ramirez, Linda Kotur and William Farrar

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute participated in NCCN’s Quality Improvement in Breast Cancer initiative. The Opportunities for Improvement (OFI) team elected to improve concordance with the NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology for Breast Cancer recommendation that all patients diagnosed with skeletal metastases receive bisphosphonates. Assembling a multidisciplinary team of clinicians, researchers, and administrative stakeholders, the OFI team followed Six Sigma’s approach to problem-solving known as DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, and control). Baseline concordance was 79%, which was below the recommended target range. Initial analysis quickly revealed that 5 cases were concordant, resulting in a new baseline of 89%. The key root cause identified for the remaining gap was lack of documentation. The solution included education regarding documentation for existing staff, in addition to hard-wiring the material into new physician orientation, discussion of all patients with bone disease at tumor board meetings, and improved consistency with use of the new electronic medical record system. After implementation, the reported concordance was 92%, and the lack of documentation problem decreased from 11% in the baseline study to 6%. The team concluded that use of the NCCN Oncology Outcomes Database as an opportunity for clinical quality improvement initiatives not only is possible but also should be an essential element of any clinical program looking to continuously improve.

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Julie R. Gralow, J. Sybil Biermann, Azeez Farooki, Monica N. Fornier, Robert F. Gagel, Rashmi N. Kumar, Charles L. Shapiro, Andrew Shields, Matthew R. Smith, Sandy Srinivas and Catherine H. Van Poznak

Bone health and maintenance of bone integrity are important components of comprehensive cancer care in both early and late stages of disease. Risk factors for osteoporosis are increased in patients with cancer, including women with chemotherapy-induced ovarian failure, those treated with aromatase inhibitors for breast cancer, men receiving androgen-deprivation therapy for prostate cancer, and patients undergoing glucocorticoid therapy. The skeleton is a common site of metastatic cancer recurrence, and skeletal-related events are the cause of significant morbidity. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) convened a multidisciplinary task force on Bone Health in Cancer Care to discuss the progress made in identifying effective screening and therapeutic options for management of treatment-related bone loss; understanding the factors that result in bone metastases; managing skeletal metastases; and evolving strategies to reduce bone recurrences. This report summarizes presentations made at the meeting.

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Therese B. Bevers, Deborah K. Armstrong, Banu Arun, Robert W. Carlson, Kenneth H. Cowan, Mary B. Daly, Irvin Fleming, Judy E. Garber, Mary Gemignani, William J. Gradishar, Helen Krontiras, Swati Kulkarni, Christine Laronga, Loretta Loftus, Deborah J. MacDonald, Martin C. Mahoney, Sofia D. Merajver, Ingrid Meszoely, Lisa Newman, Elizabeth Pritchard, Victoria Seewaldt, Rena V. Sellin, Charles L. Shapiro and John H. Ward

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in American women with 209,060 and 54,010 estimated cases of invasive breast cancer and female carcinoma in situ, respectively, in 2010. Approximately 39,840 women will die of breast cancer in the United States in 2010.1 Risk factors for the development of breast cancer can be grouped into categories, including familial/genetic factors (family history, known or suspected BRCA1/2, TP53, PTEN, or other gene mutation associated with breast cancer risk); factors related to demographics (e.g., age, ethnicity/race); reproductive history (age at menarche, parity, age at first live birth, age at menopause); environmental factors (prior thoracic irradiation before age 30 years [e.g., to treat Hodgkin disease], hormone replacement therapy [HRT], alcohol consumption); and other factors (e.g., number of breast biopsies, atypical hyperplasia or lobular carcinoma in situ [LCIS], breast density, body mass index). Estimating breast cancer risk for the individual woman is difficult, and most breast cancers are not attributable to risk factors other than female gender and increased age. The development of effective strategies for the reduction of breast cancer incidence has also been difficult because few of the existing risk factors are modifiable and some of the potentially modifiable risk factors have social implications extending beyond concerns for breast cancer (e.g., age at first live birth). Nevertheless, effective breast cancer risk reduction agents/strategies, such as tamoxifen, raloxifene, and risk reduction surgery, have been identified. However, women and their physicians who are considering interventions to reduce risk for breast cancer must balance the demonstrated...