The Impact of Early Referrals to Dietitians for Patients With Esophagogastric Cancer
Eric J. Roeland and Richard F. Dunne
In Chemotherapy for Lung Cancer, Sometimes Less is More
Eric Roeland, Charles Loprinzi, Timothy J. Moynihan, Thomas J. Smith, and Jennifer Temel
Patterns of Palliative Care Consultation Among Elderly Patients With Cancer
Eric J. Roeland, Daniel P. Triplett, Rayna K. Matsuno, Isabel J. Boero, Lindsay Hwang, Heidi N. Yeung, Loren Mell, and James D. Murphy
Background: The role of palliative care has expanded over the past several decades, although the oncology-specific regional evolution of this specialty has not been characterized at the population-based level. Methods: This study defined the patterns of palliative care delivery using a retrospective cohort of patients with advanced cancer within the SEER-Medicare linked database. We identified 83,022 patients with metastatic breast, prostate, lung, and colorectal cancers. We studied trends between 2000 through 2009, and determined patient-level and regional-level predictors of palliative care delivery. Results: Palliative care consultation rates increased from 3.0% in 2000 to 12.9% in 2009, with most consultations occurring in the last 4 weeks of life (77%) in the inpatient hospital setting. The rates of palliative care delivery were highest in the West (7.6%) and lowest in the South (3.2%). The likelihood of palliative care consultation increased with decreasing numbers of regional acute care hospital beds per capita. The use of palliative care consultation increased with increasing numbers of regional physicians. The use of palliative care decreased with increasing regional Medicare expenditure with a $1,387 difference per beneficiary between the first and fourth quartiles of palliative care use. Conclusions: Geographic location influences a patient's options for palliative care in the United States. Although the overall rates of palliative care are increasing, future effort should focus on improving palliative care services in regions with the least access.
Patient-Controlled Analgesia for Cancer-Related Pain: Clinical Predictors of Patient Outcomes
Emily J. Martin, Eric J. Roeland, Madison B. Sharp, Carolyn Revta, James D. Murphy, Katherine E. Fero, and Heidi N. Yeung
Background: Patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) is an effective approach to treat pain. However, data regarding patterns of PCA use for cancer pain are limited. The purpose of this study was to define the patterns of PCA use and related outcomes in hospitalized patients with cancer. Methods: We identified 90 patients with cancer admitted to a single academic center who received PCA for nonsurgical, cancer-related pain and survived to discharge between January 2013 and January 2014. Data collected included patient demographics, cancer diagnosis, type of cancer-related pain, PCA use, opioid-specific adverse events, and 30-day readmission rates for pain. Univariable and multivariable linear regression models were used to analyze the association between patient and clinical variables with PCA duration. Logistic regression models were used to evaluate the relationship between patient and clinical variables and 30-day readmission rates. Results: The median length of hospitalization was 10.2 days with a median PCA duration of 4.4 days. Hematologic malignancies were associated with longer PCA use (P=.0001), as was younger age (P=.032). A trend was seen toward decreased 30-day readmission rates with longer PCA use (P=.054). No correlation was found between 30-day readmission and any covariate studied, including age, sex, cancer type (solid vs hematologic), pain type, palliative care consult, or time from PCA discontinuation to discharge. Conclusions: This study suggests that there is longer PCA use in younger patients and those with hematologic malignancies admitted with cancer-related pain, with a trend toward decreased 30-day readmission rates in those with longer PCA use.
Barriers to Optimal End-of-Life Care for Adolescents and Young Adults With Cancer: Bereaved Caregiver Perspectives
Jennifer W. Mack, Erin R. Currie, Vincent Martello, Jordan Gittzus, Asisa Isack, Lauren Fisher, Lisa C. Lindley, Stephanie Gilbertson-White, Eric Roeland, and Marie Bakitas
Background: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs; aged 15–39 years) with cancer frequently receive intensive measures at the end of life (EoL), but the perspectives of AYAs and their family members on barriers to optimal EoL care are not well understood. Methods: We conducted qualitative interviews with 28 bereaved caregivers of AYAs with cancer who died in 2013 through 2016 after receiving treatment at 1 of 3 sites (University of Alabama at Birmingham, University of Iowa, or University of California San Diego). Interviews focused on ways that EoL care could have better met the needs of the AYAs. Content analysis was performed to identify relevant themes. Results: Most participating caregivers were White and female, and nearly half had graduated from college. A total of 46% of AYAs were insured by Medicaid or other public insurance; 61% used hospice, 46% used palliative care, and 43% died at home. Caregivers noted 3 main barriers to optimal EoL care: (1) delayed or absent communication about prognosis, which in turn delayed care focused on comfort and quality of life; (2) inadequate emotional support of AYAs and caregivers, many of whom experienced distress and difficulty accepting the poor prognosis; and (3) a lack of home care models that would allow concurrent life-prolonging and palliative therapies, and consequently suboptimal supported goals of AYAs to live as long and as well as possible. Delayed or absent prognosis communication created lingering regret among some family caregivers, who lost the opportunity to support, comfort, and hold meaningful conversations with their loved ones. Conclusions: Bereaved family caregivers of AYAs with cancer noted a need for timely prognostic communication, emotional support to enhance acceptance of a poor prognosis, and care delivery models that would support both life-prolonging and palliative goals of care. Work to address these challenges offers the potential to improve the quality of EoL care for young people with cancer.
What the HEC? Clinician Adherence to Evidence-Based Antiemetic Prophylaxis for Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy
Eric J. Roeland, Kathryn J. Ruddy, Thomas W. LeBlanc, Ryan D. Nipp, Gary Binder, Silvia Sebastiani, Ravi Potluri, Luke Schmerold, Eros Papademetriou, Lee Schwartzberg, and Rudolph M. Navari
Background: Clinician adherence to antiemetic guidelines for preventing chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) caused by highly emetogenic chemotherapy (HEC) remains poorly characterized. The primary aim of this study was to evaluate individual clinician adherence to HEC antiemetic guidelines. Patients and Methods: A retrospective analysis of patients receiving HEC was conducted using the IBM Watson Explorys Electronic Health Record Database (2012–2018). HEC antiemetic guideline adherence was defined as prescription of triple prophylaxis (neurokinin-1 receptor antagonist [NK1 RA], serotonin type-3 receptor antagonist, dexamethasone) at initiation of cisplatin or anthracycline + cyclophosphamide (AC). Clinicians who prescribed ≥5 HEC courses were included and individual guideline adherence was assessed, noting the number of prescribing clinicians with >90% adherence. Results: A total of 217 clinicians were identified who prescribed 2,543 cisplatin and 1,490 AC courses. Patients (N=4,033) were primarily women (63.3%) and chemotherapy-naïve (92%) with a mean age of 58.6 years. Breast (36%) and thoracic (19%) cancers were the most common tumor types. Guideline adherence rates of >90% were achieved by 35% and 58% of clinicians using cisplatin or AC, respectively. Omission of an NK1 RA was the most common practice of nonadherence. Variation in prophylaxis guideline adherence was considerable for cisplatin (mean, 71%; SD, 29%; coefficient of variation [CV], 0.40) and AC (mean, 84%; SD, 26%; CV, 0.31). Conclusions: Findings showed substantial gaps in clinician adherence to HEC CINV guidelines, including a high variability across clinicians. Clinicians should review their individual clinical practices and ensure adherence to evidence-based CINV guidelines to optimize patient care.
BPI19-019: Avoidable Acute Care Use Associated With Nausea and Vomiting Among Patients Receiving Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy or Oxaliplatin
Eric J Roeland, Thomas W. LeBlanc, Kathryn J. Ruddy, Ryan Nipp, Rebecca Clark-Snow, Rita Wickham, Gary Binder, William L. Bailey, Ravi Potluri, Luke M. Schmerold, Eros Papademetriou, and Rudolph M. Navari
Background: Avoiding acute care services can improve cancer care and reduce cost. The US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) new oncology outcome measure (OP-35) defines 30-day post-chemotherapy inpatient (IP) and/or emergency department (ED) events (IP/ED) as “potentially avoidable” if involving any of 10 toxicities, including nausea or vomiting (NV). Evidence demonstrates meaningful gaps in oncologists’ adherence to antiemetic prophylaxis guidelines for highly emetogenic chemotherapy (HEC), and that NV-related IP use costs >$10,000; yet the incidence of avoidable acute care events involving NV is not well studied. Methods: We assessed chemotherapy courses using IBM Explorys electronic health records (4Q 2012–1Q 2018). We identified rates of IP/ED ≤30 days post-chemotherapy, and OP-35 toxicities (NV, anemia, dehydration, diarrhea, fever, neutropenia, pain, pneumonia, or sepsis) by ICD-9, ICD-10, procedure codes, and CMS criteria. We evaluated cisplatin, anthracycline + cyclophosphamide (AC), carboplatin (>14 days apart, as a proxy for AUC ≥4), oxaliplatin (OX), and other non-HEC chemotherapy. We assessed guideline adherence, defined as triple prophylaxis (NK1 RA + 5HT3 RA +dexamethasone) rates at HEC initiation. Results: In 17,609 HEC and 56,624 non-HEC courses, we observed 30-day IP/ED utilization in 29% and 19% of courses, respectively (). For HEC, 76% of IP/ED use involved ≥1 of the 10 CMS toxicities, most often anemia (42%), pain (41%), dehydration (24%), and NV (24%). Rates of all-cause IP/ED, IP/ED with OP-35 toxicity, and NV-related IP/ED were consistent for HEC and OX. Gaps in triple prophylaxis were common in HEC. Conclusion: Roughly one-third of patients receiving HEC or OX experienced IP/ED events ≤30 days after chemotherapy. Three-quarters of IP/ED events involved ≥1 of 10 OP-35 toxicities linked by CMS to potentially avoidable acute care; of these, one-third involved NV. NV-associated acute care use is considerable, costly, and potentially avoidable with better adherence to antiemesis guidelines.
Associations of Skeletal Muscle With Symptom Burden and Clinical Outcomes in Hospitalized Patients With Advanced Cancer
Emily van Seventer, J. Peter Marquardt, Amelie S. Troschel, Till D. Best, Nora Horick, Chinenye Azoba, Richard Newcomb, Eric J. Roeland, Michael Rosenthal, Christopher P. Bridge, Joseph A. Greer, Areej El-Jawahri, Jennifer Temel, Florian J. Fintelmann, and Ryan D. Nipp
Background: Low muscle mass (quantity) is common in patients with advanced cancer, but little is known about muscle radiodensity (quality). We sought to describe the associations of muscle mass and radiodensity with symptom burden, healthcare use, and survival in hospitalized patients with advanced cancer. Methods: We prospectively enrolled hospitalized patients with advanced cancer from September 2014 through May 2016. Upon admission, patients reported their physical (Edmonton Symptom Assessment System [ESAS]) and psychological (Patient Health Questionnaire-4 [PHQ-4]) symptoms. We used CT scans performed per routine care within 45 days before enrollment to evaluate muscle mass and radiodensity. We used regression models to examine associations of muscle mass and radiodensity with patients’ symptom burden, healthcare use (hospital length of stay and readmissions), and survival. Results: Of 1,121 patients enrolled, 677 had evaluable muscle data on CT (mean age, 62.86 ± 12.95 years; 51.1% female). Older age and female sex were associated with lower muscle mass (age: B, –0.16; P<.001; female: B, –6.89; P<.001) and radiodensity (age: B, –0.33; P<.001; female: B, –1.66; P=.014), and higher BMI was associated with higher muscle mass (B, 0.58; P<.001) and lower radiodensity (B, –0.61; P<.001). Higher muscle mass was significantly associated with improved survival (hazard ratio, 0.97; P<.001). Notably, higher muscle radiodensity was significantly associated with lower ESAS-Physical (B, –0.17; P=.016), ESAS-Total (B, –0.29; P=.002), PHQ-4-Depression (B, –0.03; P=.006), and PHQ-4-Anxiety (B, –0.03; P=.008) symptoms, as well as decreased hospital length of stay (B, –0.07; P=.005), risk of readmission or death in 90 days (odds ratio, 0.97; P<.001), and improved survival (hazard ratio, 0.97; P<.001). Conclusions: Although muscle mass (quantity) only correlated with survival, we found that muscle radiodensity (quality) was associated with patients’ symptoms, healthcare use, and survival. These findings underscore the added importance of assessing muscle quality when seeking to address adverse muscle changes in oncology.
NCCN Guidelines Insights: Antiemesis, Version 2.2017
Michael J. Berger, David S. Ettinger, Jonathan Aston, Sally Barbour, Jason Bergsbaken, Philip J. Bierman, Debra Brandt, Dawn E. Dolan, Georgiana Ellis, Eun Jeong Kim, Steve Kirkegaard, Dwight D. Kloth, Ruth Lagman, Dean Lim, Charles Loprinzi, Cynthia X. Ma, Victoria Maurer, Laura Boehnke Michaud, Lisle M. Nabell, Kim Noonan, Eric Roeland, Hope S. Rugo, Lee S. Schwartzberg, Bridget Scullion, John Timoney, Barbara Todaro, Susan G. Urba, Dorothy A. Shead, and Miranda Hughes
The NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines) for Antiemesis address all aspects of management for chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. These NCCN Guidelines Insights focus on recent updates to the NCCN Guidelines for Antiemesis, specifically those regarding carboplatin, granisetron, and olanzapine.