Mass General North Shore Cancer Center

Danvers, MA, United States

Mass General North Shore Cancer Center

Danvers, MA, United States
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Nagus I.,Mass General North Shore Cancer Center | Moller C.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Physician Assistant Clinics | Year: 2016

This article presents the concept of palliative care, describes the principles of symptom management, and provides examples of potential treatment options for these common complaints specific to patients living with a cancer diagnosis. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.


Hassett M.J.,Dana-Farber Cancer Institute | Rao S.R.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Brozovic S.,North Shore Medical Center | Stahl J.E.,Massachusetts General Hospital | And 3 more authors.
Oncologist | Year: 2011

Purpose. To describe the frequency, nature, trends, predictors, and outcomes of chemotherapy-related hospitalizations (CRHs) among a nonselected population of cancer patients treated at a community cancer center, and to explore the feasibility of implementing continuous quality improvement methodologies in routine oncology practice. Methods. We conducted a prospective cohort study of consecutive adult cancer patients who received chemotherapy at a community cancer center January 2003 to December 2006. Demographic, comorbidity, diagnosis, treatment, and laboratory data were collected via medical record abstraction. Hospitalizations were classified as chemotherapy related or unrelated by a multidisciplinary panel. Patients who experienced CRHs were compared with those who did not. Using a randomly sampled subset of cases and controls, we built a logistic regression model to identify independent predictors of CRH. Results. Of 2,068 chemotherapy recipients, 179 (8.7%) experienced 262 CRHs. Most hospitalizations were not chemotherapy related (73.7%). The mean monthly rate of CRH was 1.5%, the median length of stay was 5 days, the most common type of CRH was gastrointestinal (46.1%) followed by infectious (31.4%), and 0.9% of chemotherapy recipients had a fatal CRH. Significant predictors ofCRH included having a comorbidity score of 3-4 versus 0 and having a higher creatinine level. Conclusions. Although the vast majority of chemotherapy recipients did not experience a CRH, these events were, unfortunately, not without serious consequences. Care should be taken when offering chemotherapy to patients with multiple comorbid conditions. Systematic efforts to monitor toxicity can lead directly to improvements in quality of care. © AlphaMed Press.


Halabi T.,Harvard University | Lu H.-M.,Harvard University | Bernard D.A.,Rush University Medical Center | Chu J.C.H.,Rush University Medical Center | And 4 more authors.
Medical Physics | Year: 2016

Methods: The authors web deployed plan check automation solution, PlanCheck, which works with all major planning and record and verify systems (demonstrated here for MOSAIQ only), allows them to compute violation rates for a large number of plan checks across many facilities without requiring the manual data entry involved with incident filings.Workflows and failure modes are heavily influenced by the type of record and verify system used. Rather than tackle multiple record and verify systems at once, the authors restricted the present survey to MOSAIQ facilities. Violations were investigated by sending inquiries to physicists running the program. Results: Frequent violations included inadequate tracking in the record and verify system of total and prescription doses. Infrequent violations included incorrect setting of patient orientation in the record and verify system. Peaks in the distribution, over facilities, of violation frequencies pointed to suboptimal policies at some of these facilities. Correspondence with physicists often revealed incomplete knowledge of settings at their facility necessary to perform thorough plan checks. Conclusions: The survey leads to the identification of specific and important policy and system deficiencies that include: suboptimal timing of initial plan checks, lack of communication or agreement on conventions surrounding prescription definitions, and lack of automation in the transfer of some parameters. © 2016 American Association of Physicists in Medicine.


Pender-Cudlip M.C.,Harvard University | Krag K.J.,Mass General North Shore Cancer Center | Martini D.,Mass General North Shore Cancer Center | Yu J.,Mass General North Shore Cancer Center | And 8 more authors.
Cancer Science | Year: 2013

Omega-6 (n-6) arachidonic acid (AA) and its pro-inflammatory metabolites, including prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), are known to promote tumorigenesis. Delta-6 desaturase (D6D) is the rate-limiting enzyme for converting n-6 linoleic acid (LA) to AA. Our objective was to determine if AA synthesis, specifically D6D activity, and PGE2 levels are increased in cancerous breast tissue, and whether these variables differ between estrogen receptor positive (ER+) and negative (ER-) breast cancers. Gas chromatography was performed on surgical breast tissue samples collected from 69 women with breast cancer. Fifty-four had ER+ breast cancer, and 15 had ER- breast cancer. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry was used to determine PGE2 levels. Lipid analysis revealed higher levels of LA metabolites (C18:3 n-6, C20:3 n-6, and AA) in cancerous tissue than in adjacent noncancerous tissue (P < 0.01). The ratio of LA metabolites to LA, a measure of D6D activity, was increased in cancerous tissue, suggesting greater conversion of LA to AA (P < 0.001), and was higher in ER- than in ER+ patients, indicating genotype-related trends. Similarly, PGE2 levels were increased in cancerous tissue, particularly in ER- patients. The results showed that the endogenous AA synthetic pathway, D6D activity, and PGE2 levels are increased in breast tumors, particularly those of the ER- genotype. These findings suggest that the AA synthetic pathway and the D6D enzyme in particular may be involved in the pathogenesis of breast cancer. The development of drugs and nutritional interventions to alter this pathway may provide new strategies for breast cancer prevention and treatment. © 2013 Japanese Cancer Association.


PubMed | Nebraska Methodist Hospital, Mass General North Shore Cancer Center, Harvard University, University of Nebraska Medical Center and 2 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Medical physics | Year: 2016

To identify policy and system related weaknesses in treatment planning and plan check work-flows.The authors web deployed plan check automation solution, PlanCheck, which works with all major planning and record and verify systems (demonstrated here for mosaiq only), allows them to compute violation rates for a large number of plan checks across many facilities without requiring the manual data entry involved with incident filings. Workflows and failure modes are heavily influenced by the type of record and verify system used. Rather than tackle multiple record and verify systems at once, the authors restricted the present survey to mosaiq facilities. Violations were investigated by sending inquiries to physicists running the program.Frequent violations included inadequate tracking in the record and verify system of total and prescription doses. Infrequent violations included incorrect setting of patient orientation in the record and verify system. Peaks in the distribution, over facilities, of violation frequencies pointed to suboptimal policies at some of these facilities. Correspondence with physicists often revealed incomplete knowledge of settings at their facility necessary to perform thorough plan checks.The survey leads to the identification of specific and important policy and system deficiencies that include: suboptimal timing of initial plan checks, lack of communication or agreement on conventions surrounding prescription definitions, and lack of automation in the transfer of some parameters.

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