Navigating Neuroendocrine Tumors
PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa., Oct. 9, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) has published a brand new NCCN Guidelines for Patients focused on neuroendocrine tumors (NET). This cancer type can originate in many different parts of the body, have variable symptoms and require individualized and complicated treatment approaches. These new guidelines offer up-to-date information to help patients and caregivers make knowledgeable medical decisions. The NCCN Guidelines for Patients: NET were funded by the NCCN Foundation®, with sponsorship from the Neuroendocrine Cancer Awareness Network (NCAN) and The Healing NET Foundation. The content has also been endorsed by The Carcinoid Cancer Foundation, Inc. and the Neuroendocrine Tumor Research Foundation (NETRF).
"It is imperative to have access to the best and most accurate information when coming up with a treatment plan," said Maryann Wahmann, Patient and Founder of NCAN. "The NCCN Guidelines for Patients: NET is an amazing resource for patients and caregivers, helping them become their best self-advocate."
"As an NET patient and an advocate for NET education, I especially like that the patient guidelines provide a better road map to understand and navigate care, as well as the opportunity to communicate more effectively with health care providers," said Cindy Lovelace, Patient and Co-Founder of The Healing NET Foundation. "Neuroendocrine tumors are complicated and the treatment paths are varied because the disease presents and behaves differently in each patient. The NCCN Patient Guidelines offer a common ground of understanding so patients and providers can work as a team to achieve the best possible care."
As with all NCCN patient guidelines, the information is based on the evidence and expert-consensus available in the clinical practice guidelines created by NCCN's multidisciplinary panels from 27 leading academic cancer centers throughout the United States. The treatment recommendations are presented in user-friendly terms, complete with glossary, illustrations, and space for notes. The guidelines are intended to empower patients while also safeguarding them from misinformation.
"When people with neuroendocrine tumors seek information on what to expect, they often find a lot of confusing advice online," explained Whitney S. Goldner, MD, Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center, Vice-Chair of the NCCN Guidelines Panel for Neuroendocrine and Adrenal Tumors. "They might even know someone with a NET, but in a different location, leading them to expect symptoms and treatment courses that won't apply to their circumstances."
The most-common types of NETs are carcinoid tumors found in the lung, airways, small intestine, rectum, appendix, and thymus. Another common type is found in the pancreas. In some locations, NETs can cause hormones to be released into the blood system.
"It really takes a multidisciplinary team to treat these tumors," Dr. Goldner continued. "Everybody plays a different role in the care of NETs, including endocrinologists, medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists and sometimes nuclear medicine radiologists. These guidelines help prepare patients for the group of people who will comprise their treatment team, and ensure they understand the need for specific testing and therapies for their tumor."
While neuroendocrine tumors often occur in patients without any risk factors, there are some that result from hereditary, genetic syndromes. Awareness of NETs has increased over the past decade, helping doctors to correctly diagnose it more quickly. Advances in imaging have also led to more targeted therapies.
The NCCN Guidelines for Patients are available free-of-charge online at NCCN.org/patients, or via the NCCN Patient Guides for Cancer app. Printed versions can be purchased at Amazon.com for a small fee.
NCCN Guidelines for Patients and NCCN Quick Guide™ sheets DO NOT replace the expertise and clinical judgment of the clinician.
To help support these tools, visit NCCN.org/patients or text "GIVE" to 856-FOR-NCCN (856-367-6226).
About The Healing NET Foundation
About the Neuroendocrine Cancer Awareness Network (NCAN)
About the NCCN Foundation
About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network
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SOURCE National Comprehensive Cancer Network