Hem/Onc Roundup: Chronic Pain in Cancer Survivors, HPV Vaccine and Cervical Cancer, and more

Here are the top stories covered by DocWire News this week in the Hematology & Oncology section. This week, a study found the HPV vaccine is having an impact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Keytruda® for small cell lung cancer (SCLC), and more.

A study published in The Lancet reports “evidence of the substantial impact” of the HPV vaccine on reducing the incidence of HPV infections, high-grade cervical lesions, and anogenital warts. The researchers noted that it is too soon to tell whether the HPV vaccine will lead to decreased cervical cancer rates; however, the results suggest that this may be the case, as the study shows that HPV infections and lesions are on the decline.

The FDA granted approval for Keytruda® (pembrolizumab) to treat metastatic SCLC. The approval was based on the results of the KEYNOTE-158 and KEYNOTE-028 trials.

About one in three cancer survivors live with chronic pain, according to a research letter published in JAMA Oncology. The analysis included 4,526 cancer survivors, of whom 1,648 (34.6%) reported chronic pain and 768 (16.1%) reported high-impact chronic pain.

According to the American Cancer Society, significant strides have been made over the past several decades to reduce the racial disparity of African Americans shouldering a disproportionate brunt of the country’s cancer burden, although a disparity still remains.

A recent review compared the use of decision aids versus usual care in men choosing to undergo prostate cancer screening. The researchers found that there is no strong evidence favoring the use of decision aids in this population. “Well-designed decision aids may, at least in part, address these challenges by summarizing the current best evidence and by supporting conversations that address the issues that matter most to patients,” according to the authors.