Sankt Gallen, Switzerland
Sankt Gallen, Switzerland

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Solheim T.S.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | Solheim T.S.,European Palliative Care Research Center | Blum D.,Norwegian University of Science and Technology | Blum D.,European Palliative Care Research Center | And 8 more authors.
Acta Oncologica | Year: 2014

Background. How to assess cachexia is a barrier both in research and in clinical practice. This study examines the need for assessing both reduced food intake and loss of appetite, to see if these variables can be used interchangeably. A secondary aim is to assess the variance explained by food intake, appetite and weight loss by using tumor-related factors, symptoms and biological markers as explanatory variables. Material and methods. One thousand and seventy patients with incurable cancer were registered in an observational, cross sectional multicenter study. A total of 885 patients that had complete data on food intake (PG-SGA), appetite (EORTC QLQ-C30) and weight loss were included in the present analysis. The association between reduced food intake and appetite loss was assessed using Spearman's correlation. To find the explained variance of the three symptoms a multivariate analysis was performed. Results. The mean age was 62 years with a mean survival of 247 days and a mean Karnofsky performance status of 72. Thirteen percent of the patients who reported eating less than normal had good appetite and 25% who had unchanged or increased food intake had reduced appetite. Correlation between appetite loss and food intake was 0.50. Explained variance for the regression models was 44% for appetite loss, 27% for food intake and only 13% for weight loss. Conclusion. Both appetite loss and food intake should be assessed in cachectic patients since conscious control of eating may sometimes overcome appetite loss. The low explained variance for weight loss is probably caused by the need for more knowledge about metabolism and inflammation, and is consistent with the cancer cachexia definition that claims that in cachexia weight loss is not caused by reduced food intake alone. The questions concerning appetite loss from EORTC-QLQ C30 and food intake from PG-SGA seem practical and informative when dealing with advanced cancer patients. © 2014 Informa Healthcare.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: globenewswire.com

Helsinn Provides Grant for ESMO's Preceptorship Course on Supportive and Palliative Care Lugano, Switzerland, February 15, 2017 - Helsinn, a Swiss pharmaceutical group focused on building quality cancer care, announces that the Group has provided a grant to the European Society for Medical Oncology ("ESMO") for a preceptorship event dedicated to supportive and palliative care for physicians. The preceptorship course will take place in Zurich on February 20-21, 2017 and will touch on a broad range of aspects related to cancer supportive and palliative care. The key learning objectives of the preceptorship are to: The Chair of the event will be Dr Florian Strasser MD, Associate Professor in the Clinic Oncology/Hematology at the Cantonal Hospital St. Gallen, Head of Oncological Palliative Medicine at Cantonal Hospital St Gallen, Switzerland, where he is responsible for the clinical and research activities in Palliative Oncology and in Geriatric Oncology. He is also substantially involved in Geriatric Oncology, Supportive Care and Cancer Rehabilitation for both in- and out-patients in the Comprehensive Cancer Center. The co-Chair is Dr Karin Jordan who, since 2010, has been Associate Professor of Medical Oncology and Supportive Care in the Department of Oncology/Haematology at the University Hospital, Halle, and who has just recently changed position and is now working at the University of Heidelberg. The event is expected to be attended by members of ESMO from around the world. The aim of these educational courses, which focus on teaching standard of care in specific areas, is to provide "state of the art" lectures in an interactive setting including formal presentations and interaction between experts and attendees presenting clinical cases. The full meeting program is available here. Sergio Cantoreggi, Helsinn Group Chief Scientific Officer, said: "At Helsinn we are delighted to be able to provide a grant to ESMO to work with physicians and further advance supportive and palliative care through this Preceptorship Course. This event will help foster relationships between senior, experienced physicians, and those at the start of their careers, meaning that patients will receive the best possible supportive care to help them live with cancer on a day to day basis." Dr Florian Strasser MD, Chair of the Preceptorship Course on Supportive and Palliative Care, commented: "I am delighted this event dedicated to both supportive and palliative care has been organized, and I thank those at Helsinn for their generous and fully unrestricted support in helping us establish this. Supportive and palliative care is an area of oncology that does not receive enough merit increasing attention in modern, personalized oncology and this event will help to address this problem." Helsinn is a privately owned pharmaceutical group with an extensive portfolio of marketed cancer care products and a broad development pipeline. Since 1976, Helsinn has been improving the everyday lives of patients, guided by core family values of respect, integrity and quality. The Group works across pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices and nutritional supplements and has expertise in research, development, manufacture and the commercialization of therapeutic and supportive care products for cancer, pain and inflammation and gastroenterology. In 2016, Helsinn created the Helsinn Investment Fund to support early-stage investment opportunities in areas of unmet patient need. The company is headquartered in Lugano, Switzerland, with operating subsidiaries in Ireland and the US, a representative office in China as well as a product presence in about 90 countries globally. For more information, please visit www.helsinn.com. ESMO is the leading professional organisation for medical oncology. With 15,000 members representing oncology professionals from over 130 countries worldwide, ESMO is the society of reference for oncology education and information. We are committed to supporting our members to develop and advance in a fast-evolving professional environment.


Walker J.,Oncological Palliative Medicine | Bohnke J.R.,University of Trier | Cerny T.,Oncological Palliative Medicine | Strasser F.,Oncological Palliative Medicine
Critical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology | Year: 2010

Assessment of individual patients' distress is a cornerstone of clinical care for advanced cancer. Patients' ability to fill out lengthy questionnaires is compromised by many factors. Computer-adaptive tests (CAT) offer a promising approach to developing tailored instruments, that administer only items relevant to the individual patient. A systematic review of the literature about CATs in medical databases was conducted. Based on the results, a method for developing a CAT was designed that requires nine steps: (1) build an item pool; (2) administer the items to a predefined sample in a calibration study; (3) eliminate inappropriate items; (4) examine whether all items are influenced by a single dominant trait; (5) calibrate the items to the best-fitting item response theory (IRT) model; (6) evaluate items' parameter equivalence across subgroups; (7) build an item bank with the calibrated items; (8) develop the CAT; and (9) pilot test the developed CAT. CAT offers the chance to extend the usefulness of patient-reported outcome (PRO) measurements from clinical studies to daily clinical practice. © 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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