TOP - February 2012, Vol 5, No 1
In 2011, the American Cancer Society projected there would be 20,520 cases of newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) and 10,610 deaths from the disease that year.1 MM is an incurable hematologic cancer marked by great heterogeneity, in terms of its biology and clinical course. Morbidity and survival rates vary widely, even in the age of novel, molecularly based targeted therapies. Many factors account for differences in prognoses among patients with MM, including genomic aberrations in the plasma cells of the myeloma neoplasm.
In a randomized phase 2 study of metastatic breast cancer patients, peripheral neuropathy (PN) was less likely to occur in patients receiving eribulin mesylate than with ixabepilone.
“Peripheral neuropathy is a big problem in the treatment of breast cancer. Across the spectrum, patients have it, and we don’t know how to treat it,” said Linda T. Vahdat, MD, of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, who presented the study at the 2011 CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (Poster P5-19-02).
I will say right up front that I am all in favor of specialty pharmacy training and the subsequent board certification. The real questions are: how much training is enough? how much is too much? and what options are available? I’ve been in the oncology business for over 30 years now and began when there was no real specialty training to speak of. In fact, my introduction into the specialty just happened; it wasn’t planned at all. I wanted to stay in Madison, Wisconsin, when I finished my hospital pharmacy residency, but I was actually more interested in emergency care.
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