CHICAGO—Women and men were treated differently for the same tumor stages of head and neck cancer (HNC) and had different outcomes in a study with patients surveyed over a fifteen-year period in Santa Clara, California. The findings—using the generalized competing event (GCE) assessment model that balanced the risk of cancer death against non-cancer death—has prompted a call to reassess the influence of gender on treatment decision-making.
Study author Jed A. Katzel MD, a medical oncologist with Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, talks with the Audio Journal of Onclogy about his new data from GCE modeling he reported at the 2018 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
(Abstract LBA6002: Are women with head and neck cancer undertreated?)
Commenting on the findings ASCO Expert Joshua A Jones, MD MA, a radiation oncologist at the Perelman School of Medicine at University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia said: “We don’t know why women are getting less treatment and having worse outcomes and we need to find out. Though these findings are specific to California the disparities we see are startling and worth considering in treatment discussions in everyday practice.”