Oncology Practice Management Issues

November 2018, Vol 8, No 11

Managing Anxiety in Patients with Advanced Cancer

Meg Barbor, MPH

Symptom Management

Anxiety is a common symptom in patients with advanced cancer, and is associated with reduced quality of life, increased symptom burden, poor medication adherence, and suboptimal treatment decisions at the end of life. Anxiety also tends to cluster with disease- and treatment-related side effects such as fatigue, pain, breathlessness, nausea, vomiting, and sleep disturbance. [ Read More ]

Immunotherapy Combinations “Raising the Bar”

Phoebe Starr


Immunotherapy combinations are being studied intensively to determine which combinations hold the most promise in specific cancer types. At ASCO 2018, the session “Compelling Combinations: Raising the Bar with Immunotherapy,” which featured 3 new studies that explore chemotherapy plus immunotherapy, got high marks from lead investigator Sibylle Loibl, MD, PhD, Co-chair of the German Breast Group, Neu-Isenburg, Germany, who discussed the results. [ Read More ]

Investigational CAR T-Cell Therapy, bb2121, Shows Durable Responses in Relapsed or Refractory Multiple Myeloma

Wayne Kuznar


The second-generation chimer­ic antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy bb2121, engineered to target B-cell maturation antigen (BCMA), a protein on the surface of certain myeloma cells, displayed continuing efficacy and safety in an update of a phase 1 clinical trial in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma, according to data presented at ASCO 2018. Currently, no CAR T-cell therapy has been approved for patients with multiple myeloma. [ Read More ]

Poteligeo Approved for 2 Rare Types of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

FDA Approvals, News & Updates

On August 8, 2018, the FDA approved mogamulizumab-kpkc (Poteligeo; Kyowa Kirin) injection, a monoclonal antibody, for use after at least 1 other systemic therapy, for the treatment of adults with relapsed or refractory mycosis fungoides or Sézary syndrome—2 uncommon types of non-Hodgkin lymphoma that have few or no FDA-approved treatment options. The FDA used its priority review for this approval and assigned mogamulizumab-kpkc breakthrough therapy and orphan drug designations. This is the first drug approved by the FDA specifically for the treatment of patients with Sézary syndrome. [ Read More ]

Lumoxiti a New Treatment Approved for Patients with Hairy-Cell Leukemia

FDA Approvals, News & Updates

On September 13, 2018, the FDA approved moxetumomab pasudotox-tdfk (Lumoxiti; AstraZeneca), an intravenous CD22-directed cytotoxin, for adults with relapsed or refractory hairy-cell leukemia (HCL) who received ≥2 systemic therapies, including treatment with a purine nucleoside analog. The FDA used its fast track and priority review for this approval, and it granted moxetumomab pasudotox-tdfk an orphan drug designation for this indication. [ Read More ]

Vizimpro a New First-Line Targeted Therapy for Metastatic NSCLC with EGFR Mutations

FDA Approvals, News & Updates

On September 27, 2018, the FDA approved the targeted therapy dacomitinib (Vizimpro; Pfizer), an oral kinase inhibitor, for the first-line treatment of patients with meta­static non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) associated with EGFR exon 19 deletion or exon 21 L858R substitution mutations, as identified by an FDA-approved test. The FDA approved dacomitinib using its priority review process and granted it an orphan drug designation. [ Read More ]

FDA Approves Expanded Use of HPV Vaccine Gardasil 9

FDA Approvals, News & Updates

On October 5, 2018, the FDA approved the expanded use of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine Gardasil 9 (9-valent vaccine, recombinant; Merck) to include men and women between the ages of 27 and 45 years. The FDA initially approved Gardasil 9 in 2006 for younger people (male and female) aged 9 years to 26 years. This HPV vaccine can prevent some types of cancers, including genital and oral cancer, as well as other diseases caused by 9 variants of HPV infection. [ Read More ]

New First-Line Regimen for Small-Cell Lung Cancer: Atezolizumab plus Chemotherapy

Phoebe Starr

Lung Cancer

Although many new treatments, including targeted therapies and immunotherapies, have recently become available for patients with non–small-cell lung cancer, those with small-cell lung cancer have not seen new treatment options in the past 2 decades. But this is about to change. (In August 2018, the FDA approved the immunotherapy nivolumab (Opdivo) for patients with metastatic small-cell lung cancer.) [ Read More ]