This week on DocWire, editors spoke with Dr. Noopur Raje, Professor at Harvard Medical School, about why multiple myeloma is associated with bone disease and how to manage this complication in patients. “The reason it’s really important to try and identify [bone disease] and treat this proactively is because this can result in pretty significant morbidity in the way of bone pain, fractures, and some of the acute sort of emergencies that we know of in oncology, such as hypercalcemia and cord compression,” said Dr. Raje.
Rising Cost for Brain Cancer Drug
In other news, the maker of the brain cancer drug Gleostine has removed it from the Medicare drug rebate program, a move that could have dire consequences for some patients. The drug from NextSource Biotechnology is used to treat glioblastoma and other brain cancers and can cost as much as $1,000 a capsule. The Gleostine patent has expired, but there is no generic version. The company’s decision was criticized by brain tumor experts and patient advocates.
Racial Disparities in Pediatric Cancer Incidence
A new study found notable racial disparities in rates of childhood cancers when considering single year of age rather than grouping several years together. “There are significant racial and ethnic disparities in the incidence of some childhood cancer types,” said Dr. Erin L. Marcotte, PhD, of the University of Minnesota. “Additionally, unlike in cancers that occur in older adults, the incidence of cancer among children and young adults has striking variations by age at diagnosis.”
Health Disparities among LGBTQI Cancer Survivors
A review of cancer treatment outcomes among patients who are sexual or gender minorities, including those who identify as LGBTQ+, found differences in physical and mental health outcomes among these patients compared to their heterosexual, cisgender counterparts. “Collectively, these findings support past research that has demonstrated the importance of knowledgeable and unassuming providers in meeting the cancer care needs of sexual or gender minority persons,” wrote the study authors.