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Optimal Management of Localized Renal Cell Carcinoma: Surgery, Ablation, or Active Surveillance

David Y. T. Chen and Robert G. Uzzo

Edited by Kerrin G. Robinson

Radical nephrectomy is historically accepted as standard treatment for localized renal cell carcinoma (RCC). However, the presentation of RCC has changed dramatically over the past 3 decades. Newer alternative interventions aim to reduce the negative impact of open radical nephrectomy, with the natural history of RCC now better understood. This article discusses current surgical and management options for localized kidney cancer.

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The Science and Practice of Bone Health in Oncology: Managing Bone Loss and Metastasis in Patients With Solid Tumors

Allan Lipton, Robert Uzzo, Robert J. Amato, Georgiana K. Ellis, Behrooz Hakimian, G. David Roodman, and Matthew R. Smith

Cancer and its treatment can compromise bone health, leading to fracture, pain, loss of mobility, and hypercalcemia of malignancy. Bone metastasis occurs frequently in advanced prostate and breast cancers, and bony manifestations are commonplace in multiple myeloma. Osteoporosis and osteopenia may be consequences of androgen-deprivation therapy for prostate cancer, aromatase inhibition for breast cancer, or chemotherapy-induced ovarian failure. Osteoporotic bone loss and bone metastasis ultimately share a pathophysiologic pathway that stimulates bone resorption by increasing the formation and activity of osteoclasts. Important mediators of pathologic bone metabolism include substances produced by osteoblasts, such as RANKL, the receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa B ligand, which spurs osteoclast differentiation from myeloid cells. Available therapies are targeted to various steps in cascade of bone metastasis.

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Gleason Scoring at a Comprehensive Cancer Center: What’s The Difference?

Natasha C. Townsend, Karen Ruth, Tahseen Al-Saleem, Eric M. Horwitz, Mark Sobczak, Robert G. Uzzo, Rosalia Viterbo, and Mark K. Buyyounouski

This study attempted to determine whether the Gleason score (GS) assigned at a comprehensive cancer center better predicts risk of biochemical failure (BF) after prostate radiotherapy compared with the GS of the referring institution (RI). Between 1994 and 2007, 1649 men received radiotherapy for prostate cancer at Fox Chase Cancer Center (FCCC). The Cox proportional hazard regression was used for inferences about the relationship of time to BF and GS. Harrell’s C-index (HCI) was used to assess concordance in the Cox regression between predicted and observed events. The discordance rate was 26% for any change in either major or minor Gleason pattern. In the RI GS 2 through 6 group, 79 (8%) patients were upgraded to GS 7. Twenty percent of patients with RI GS 7 were downgraded and 2% were upgraded. In the RI GS 8 through 9 group, 58% were downgraded to GS 6 (12%) or GS 7 (88%). The FCCC GS altered the NCCN risk group assignment in 144 men (9%): 92 (64%) men to lower risk and 52 (36%) to higher risk. FCCC GS was a stronger predictor of BF; the hazard ratios for GS 2 through 6 (ref), 3+4, 4+3, and 8 through 9 were 1.00 (ref), 1.82, 4.14, and 2.92, respectively. In contrast, the hazard ratios for the RI GS were 1.00 (ref), 1.53, 2.44, and 1.76, respectively. FCCC GS (HCI=0.76) had improved performance compared with RI GS (HCI=0.74). Changes in GS were common and the GS assigned by a comprehensive cancer center provided better BF risk stratification and prognostication for patients. Changes in GS may impact treatment recommendations in 9% to 26% of patients.

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Use of Postprostatectomy Radiation Therapy at an NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

Jeffrey M. Martin, Tianyu Li, Matthew E. Johnson, Colin T. Murphy, Alan G. Howald, Marc C. Smaldone, Alexander Kutikov, David Y.T. Chen, Rosalia Viterbo, Richard E. Greenberg, Robert G. Uzzo, and Eric M. Horwitz

Purpose: Characterize use of postprostatectomy radiation (PPRT) for patients with prostate cancer at an NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center. Methods: We queried our prospective prostate cancer database for patients treated with 60 to 68 Gy of radiation therapy (RT) to the prostate bed after prostatectomy from 2003 to 2011. Prostatectomy cases were obtained from billing records. Patients with an intact prostate treated with definitive RT served as a control for the change in volume of patients with prostate cancer treated in the department. Chi-square analysis assessed differences between adjuvant and salvage RT cohorts. Spearman correlation assessed yearly trends in prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level at the time of referral for RT. Linear regression models tested trends for number of PPRT cases, prostatectomies, and patients with intact prostate receiving radiation across years. Results: PPRT was used to treat 475 men at Fox Chase Cancer Center from 2003 to 2011 (83 adjuvant and 392 salvage). Over time, an increased proportion of patients receiving RT to the prostate were treated with PPRT. No increase was seen in the proportion of patients treated with adjuvant RT compared with salvage RT (P=.5). Patients receiving adjuvant RT were younger, had higher pathologic Gleason score, pathologic T stage, and rates of positive margins than those receiving salvage RT. Pre-RT PSA values were inversely correlated with year (P=.005). The number of patients referred for salvage RT with a PSA of 0.5 ng/mL or less increased significantly from 7.9% in 2003 to 26.6% in 2011 (P=.002). Conclusions: A larger proportion of patients treated with RT for localized prostate cancer are now receiving PPRT. No increase was seen in the proportion of patients treated with adjuvant RT. Over time, patients with lower PSAs were referred for salvage RT.

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Adverse Events Reported by Patients With Cancer After Administration of a 2-Dose mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine

Rebecca M. Shulman, David S. Weinberg, Eric A. Ross, Karen Ruth, Glenn F. Rall, Anthony J. Olszanski, James Helstrom, Michael J. Hall, Julia Judd, David Y.T. Chen, Robert G. Uzzo, Timothy P. Dougherty, Riley Williams, Daniel M. Geynisman, Carolyn Y. Fang, Richard I. Fisher, Marshall Strother, Erica Huelsmann, Sunil Adige, Peter D. Whooley, Kevin Zarrabi, Brinda Gupta, Pritish Iyer, Melissa McShane, Hilario Yankey, Charles T. Lee, Nina Burbure, Lauren E. Laderman, Julie Giurintano, Samuel Reiss, and Eric M. Horwitz

Background: Most safety and efficacy trials of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccines excluded patients with cancer, yet these patients are more likely than healthy individuals to contract SARS-CoV-2 and more likely to become seriously ill after infection. Our objective was to record short-term adverse reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine in patients with cancer, to compare the magnitude and duration of these reactions with those of patients without cancer, and to determine whether adverse reactions are related to active cancer therapy. Patients and Methods: A prospective, single-institution observational study was performed at an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. All study participants received 2 doses of the Pfizer BNT162b2 vaccine separated by approximately 3 weeks. A report of adverse reactions to dose 1 of the vaccine was completed upon return to the clinic for dose 2. Participants completed an identical survey either online or by telephone 2 weeks after the second vaccine dose. Results: The cohort of 1,753 patients included 67.5% who had a history of cancer and 12.0% who were receiving active cancer treatment. Local pain at the injection site was the most frequently reported symptom for all respondents and did not distinguish patients with cancer from those without cancer after either dose 1 (39.3% vs 43.9%; P=.07) or dose 2 (42.5% vs 40.3%; P=.45). Among patients with cancer, those receiving active treatment were less likely to report pain at the injection site after dose 1 compared with those not receiving active treatment (30.0% vs 41.4%; P=.002). The onset and duration of adverse events was otherwise unrelated to active cancer treatment. Conclusions: When patients with cancer were compared with those without cancer, few differences in reported adverse events were noted. Active cancer treatment had little impact on adverse event profiles.