Comment on 'Ovarian Cancer: An ESMO Guide for Patients'

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Published: 1 Nov 2018
Views: 1607
Dr Nicoletta Colombo - Istituto Europeo di Oncologia, Milan, Italy

Dr Nicoletta Colombo speaks at a press session at ESMO 2018 in Munich about the ovarian cancer patient guide.

Dr Colombo delivers the reminder that ESMO is as committed to patients as it is to physicians.

Patient guides, that provide clear and reliable information to cancer patients, are a good example of patient empowerment. 

First of all I must say that I’m also extremely excited about this data. My centre included the highest number of patients in this trial worldwide so I’m particularly excited and happy about these results which will change, I think, the standard of care of frontline treatment for our patients with ovarian cancer.

But I’m here today to speak about a different thing which is the patient guide. Because ESMO is committed to patients as much as to physicians and the most important expression of this commitment is the patient guide but actually ESMO is producing a lot of patient guides for patients. This is crucial because we strongly believe that our patients need to have information and they need to receive this information in the proper way. So we don’t want our patients to go to Doctor Google, asking for information about their disease, we want to provide them with a very reliable instrument and, in the same way, a very easy to read instrument.

So we basically translate the up to date and reliable information which are included in the clinical guidelines for physicians and we translate this document into something which can be easily accessible to patients. In this way we make sure that they will have the most up to date information, the most reliable information but in a very easy way to understand. This will empower them and of course they will be able to discuss with their physician in the best way and to discuss their treatment choices. We do believe that this, of course, is crucial.

The ovarian cancer guide is just one of the several that we produce and, of course, includes also information about these new treatments and not only about the new treatments, the efficacy, but also on the side effects because, of course, the patients want to know also about the side effects of these treatments and how these side effects may influence their lives. Therefore in our patient guide we did not include this information, which is brand new, but we will make an update possibly. But we do have already information about the side effects for PARP inhibitors so when this information will be available for patients they will know already which kinds of side effects they may expect from this kind of treatment.