NICE approves new treatment for high-risk skin cancer

NICE |  September 2018 | NICE approves new treatment for high-risk skin cancer

Dabrafenib with trametinib is recommended, within its marketing 
authorisation, as an option for the adjuvant treatment of resected stage III
BRAF V600 mutation-positive melanoma in adults.

There are currently no adjuvant treatments available for stage III BRAF
V600 mutation-positive melanoma and there is a substantial risk of the
cancer returning and becoming incurable. Dabrafenib with trametinib is a
new adjuvant treatment aimed at curing the cancer by reducing the
likelihood that it will spread. It is therefore an important development in
managing stage III melanoma. (Source: NICE)

Of interest:

OnMedica  NICE approves new treatment for high-risk skin cancer

European Head & Neck Cancer Week

Make Sense Campaign | Head and neck cancer can leave anyone feeling unrecognisable

This week 17 – 21 September 2018 is European Head & Neck Cancer Week. The Make Sense Campaign is raising awareness of Head & Neck Cancer across Europe, led by the European Head and Neck Society (EHNS). 

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Image source: makesensecampaign.eu

Information about the signs and symptoms are available from Make Sense Campaign 

There are a number of Survivor stories 

Download the toolkit  here 

Among the resources for patients with head and neck cancer is a cookbook created by survivors, which provides information on nutrition and guidance on cooking tasty, nutritious meals here

You can follow the campaign on Twitter @MakeSenseCmpn

Cancer Insight – Smoking Cessation

Cancer Research UK has published a newsletter focusing on smoking cessation aimed at community pharmacy teams.

The latest edition provides information on the safety of e-cigarettes, the power of very brief advice and the most successful ways to quit smoking. The magazine also doubles up as a poster to provide different options for quitting smoking.

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Image source: publications.cancerresearchuk.org

Cancer Research UK also has a number of practical resources for health professionals on smoking cessation which pharmacy teams may find useful, especially if teams are planning to participate in Public Health England’s 28-day stop smoking campaign, Stoptober, which launches on 20 September.

Full document via Cancer Research UK

 

Over half of Brits don’t know symptoms of blood cancer

Bloodwise | September 2018 |Over half of Brits don’t know symptoms of blood cancer

September is Blood Cancer Awareness Month and to raise awareness of blood cancers Bloodwise commissioned a survey to assess the general population’s understanding and knowledge of these types of cancer. Despite blood cancer being one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers, Bloodwise’s poll of 1000 adults found that only a tenth of the public were able to recognise its symptoms. Less than 1 % of people are “very confident” they could identify common symptoms of blood cancer, with over 50 per cent of the population not knowing any symptoms at all.

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Blood cancer symptoms can be varied and often very vague. People can have just one or many of these before diagnosis – and in some cases, none at all:

  • Persistent and unexplained tiredness
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unexplained bruising and/or bleeding
  • Persistent infection
  • Breathlessness.
  • Drenching night sweats
  • Lumps or swellings in the neck, head, groin or stomach
  • Bone/joint pain

Read the full article here 

Breast cancer survivors control their follow-up care in Maidstone

NHS England | August 2018 |Breast cancer survivors control their follow-up care in Maidstone

A new case study from NHS England highlights how patients with breast cancer in  are able to control  their own care in Maidstone, Kent.  The Open Access programme enables patients to have access to regular mammograms, support advice and appropriate clinical follow up up to five years following treatment for breast cancer. The programme recognises patients as individuals and that the way in which they want to be supported may change during their recovery, the team introduced an Open Access Programme, based upon a successful model in place at the Royal Marsden Hospital.

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Early results

  • A reduction of 3,000 breast outpatient appointments
  • Patients access suitable clinical appointments and contact their nurse appropriately.

Patient benefits

  • Timely referral to an appropriate clinician (ie surgeon, oncologist, nurse)
  • Appointments aligned to patient need or want
  • Fast access to the Cancer Nurse to answer questions and concerns.

Full story at NHS England 

Combination of new drug and chemotherapy used to treat patients with advanced ovarian and lung cancer

ICR | August 2018 | Drug combination gives ‘exciting’ results in ovarian and lung cancer in early trial

The results of an early clinical trial suggest that a combination of chemotherapy and a new drug could be used to provide treatment for patients with advanced ovarian and lung cancer, where other treatments had failed. 

Scientists from The Institute of Cancer Research, London (ICR), and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, decided to test vistusertib, which inhibits the activation of a specific molecule in ovarian cancer cells, to determine if the drug combination was safe for patients, the dosage and its efficacy.  The combination of targeted drug vistusertib along with paclitaxel chemotherapy caused tumours of over 50 per cent of patients with ovarian cancer and over 33 % with lung cancer to shrink, and stopped patients’ cancers from growing for almost six months.

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This far exceeds what is expected with standard treatments in patients with advanced disease who have already had, and have now become resistant to, standard treatment (Source: ICR).

Read the full news release from The Institute for Cancer Research Drug combination gives ‘exciting’ results in ovarian and lung cancer in early trial

In the news:

BBC News Drug cocktail can ‘shrink cancer tumours’

The Times Cancer drug Vistusertib gives hope for terminal patients

NHS70: spotlight on cancer

NHS England |August 2018 |NHS70: spotlight on cancer

More people are surviving cancer than ever before. As we continue to celebrate 70 years of the NHS, we shine the spotlight on some of the key milestones that improved cancer diagnosis, treatment and care over the decades, as well as looking to the future on NHS cancer care.

NHS England will also explore some of the work of the National Cancer Programme, as the NHS implements an ambitious. They have produced a timeline of cancer care improvements in cancer prevention, treatment and care (Source: NHS England).

You can watch the video here:

 

The NHS has played a major role in advancing cancer treatment and care locally, nationally and globally. In this video, we acknowledge some of the key milestones that marked huge improvements in cancer prevention, treatment and care.

 

Full details are available from NHS England