Perspective

Healthcare has become increasingly costly with the advent of advanced technologies, and the field of oncology has not been spared from issues related to cost.
The doctoral degree in nursing is earned as either a professional or a practice degree. Nurses with professional doctorates (PhDs) test and validate new knowledge; whereas, nurses with practice doctorates (DNPs) apply concepts into best practices in the clinical setting.
Although heart disease is the major cause of death in the United States, the public perception of cancer includes death, fear, stigma, lingering suffering and pain, loss of control, helplessness, and economic ruin.
A few years ago my son talked me into buying him a pair of Reeboks. It’s not that they were all that expensive, but they were purple and orange and, well, sorta ugly. I caved and bought him the shoes after he promised he would “wear them every day.” He wore them for a while, but then they just ended up in the back of his closet. I mean, how long can you wear purple and orange shoes? His feet grew, as boys’ feet do, and I took the shoes (still with plenty of wear left) to Goodwill.
Honesty is not always a bad thing: I am also the person who tells you that you have something in your teeth, yanks toilet paper off your foot, or pulls out that skirt, which you somehow tucked into your panty hose, before you leave the restroom.
Balancing work and home life is difficult, especially when you work in oncology.

Almost one third of Americans are currently considered obese.1 As the number of patients with cancer who are overweight is increasing, the conventions of chemotherapy dosing are constantly being questioned. Because of the concern for overdosing obese patients, clinicians are routinely tasked with questions such as—Should we use actual body weight, ideal body weight, or something in between? Should we cap doses? Overdosing patients is a concern for all clinicians, but underdosing may be just as problematic.

The development of ipilimumab (Yervoy) and its approval by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in March 2011 have opened a new era in the treatment and management of patients with metastatic melanoma. The continued innovation in cancer drug development has been focused on a different mechanism of action that engages the patient’s own immune system in attacking malignancy in contrast to the more traditional myelosuppressive drugs that have been used in the past half century to kill rapidly dividing cancer cells.


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