Skip to content Skip to navigation

Web-based Prostate Cancer Database Portal Launched for Patients

October 25, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints

The National Proactive Surveillance Network, the Ceders-Sinai Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute, the Prostate Cancer Foundation, and Johns Hopkins are jointly launching what they are calling the world's first online medical database designed to help men track the progression of their prostate cancer while avoiding complications from overtreatment. According to the group, the database portal will allow men with slow-growing forms of the disease to track it in a secure, interactive environment.

"Recently, new research has estimated that as many as 50 percent of newly diagnosed prostate cancer patients have a form of the disease that is so slow-growing that it often does not pose a threat to the life or long term health of the patient," said Stuart Holden, M.D., director of Cedars-Sinai’s Louis Warschaw Prostate Cancer Center and medical director for the Prostate Cancer Foundation, said in a statement. “As a result, a growing number of prostate cancer patients are deciding that the best course of action for them may be to defer initial treatment until it can be determined whether they, in fact, have the more aggressive or less aggressive form of the disease.”

According to Holden, many men with early-stage prostate are given immediate surgery or radiation. This treatment, he says, can result in complications such as impotence and incontinence, diminishing quality of life, while not increasing their lifespan. Proactive surveillance allows patients thought to have early-stage or slow-growing forms of the disease to closely monitor it.  If a patient’s cancer accelerates, then more aggressive treatment options can be safely employed.

Patients in the National Proactive Surveillance Network would undergo yearly prostate biopsies, answer extensive lifestyle and nutrition questionnaires and record their medical histories. They, and their doctor, could track their disease would be online. The patient themselves can decide whether and/or when to change the course of their treatment. Ceders-Sinai says researchers will be able to analyze trends as well as patient commonalities and differences through blind data.

Also, both Johns Hopkins Medicine on the east coast and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in the west, will analyze patient samples, including biopsy tissue, blood and urine, for future studies. Ceders-Sinai says this will be the first comprehensive clinical data and tissue collection from a group of men with early-stage, low-volume prostate cancer.  

“This database will eventually give us a better way to predict which men benefit from treatment and which men will not be harmed by choosing to defer treatment,” Holden said.  “Whether to undergo initial treatment or to engage in proactive surveillance is a personal decision that a patient makes after consulting with their own doctors and family members.”

Topics

News

IBM Watson Health Hires Health IT Vet Paul Tang as Chief Health Transformation Officer

May 27, 2016
Paul Tang, M.D., former vice president and chief innovation and technology officer at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation in California, has joined IBM Watson Health as its vice president and chief health transformation officer.

Mayo Clinic Gets $142M to Serve as Precision Medicine Initiative Biobank

May 27, 2016
Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic will be awarded $142 million in funding over five years by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to serve as the national Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort Program biobank.

House Ways and Means Committee Advances Bill to Provide Regulatory Relief for Docs

May 26, 2016
The U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means has passed a bill that among other provisions, would provide relief to hospital outpatient departments as well as consider patients’ socioeconomic status before penalizing hospitals in the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program.

Health IT Leaders Address Cybersecurity Responsibilities at HHS during Congressional Hearing

May 25, 2016
During a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health hearing, healthcare IT leaders and security experts testified in support of proposed legislation to elevate and empower the CISO at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Study: Automated, Real-Time Surveillance Significantly Reduced Sepsis Mortality

May 25, 2016
Automated surveillance and real-time analysis led to a significant reduction in sepsis mortality at Alabama’s Huntsville Hospital, according to research recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association (JAMIA).

Report: Bill to Fight Zika Could Strip HHS of MACRA Funds

May 25, 2016
With a House bill providing money to fight the Zika virus pending, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) may be stripped of funds that it was planning to use for Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) information technology provisions, according to a Morning Consult report.

Healthcare Organizations Push to Look at New Data Sources to Assess Telemedicine in Medicare

May 24, 2016
Several healthcare organizations have sent a letter to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) regarding the use of alternative data sources for cost estimates and analyses of telemedicine utilization in the Medicare program.

Study: Sharing Visit Notes with Patients Improves Patient Satisfaction, Trust and Safety

May 24, 2016
Improving transparency between physicians and their patients by allowing patients to view their visit notes in their health records can improve patient satisfaction, trust and safety, according to a recently published study.

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield Awards $3M to Regional Telemedicine Programs

May 24, 2016
Baltimore-based CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield plans to award nearly $3 million to ten healthcare organizations to help develop or expand existing regional telemedicine initiatives.

Intermountain Launches New Telehealth Service

May 24, 2016
Intermountain Healthcare has launched a new telehealth service that connects patients in Idaho and Utah with the health system’s providers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, through video and audio conferencing on the web.

Kansas Heart Hospital Hit With Ransomware; Hackers Do Not Unlock Files After Receiving Ransom Payment

May 23, 2016
Wichita, Kan.-based Kansas Heart Hospital was hit with a ransomware attack last Wednesday, but after the hospital paid an undisclosed ransom, the hackers demanded more, according to local news reports.

Intermountain Healthcare Names New CEO

May 23, 2016
Salt Lake City-based Intermountain Healthcare has appointed A. Marc Harrison, M.D., as its new president and CEO to take the helm when current CEO Charles Sorenson, M.D., retires in October.

Study: Hospitals Making Significant Investments in Smartphone-Based Communications

May 20, 2016
Sixty-three percent of hospitals and health systems have deployed or plan to deploy a mobile communications platform supporting more than 500 smartphones in the next year, according to a new survey from Spyglass Consulting Group.

UConn Health Appoints Dirk Stanley, M.D., as First CMIO to Oversee EMR Implementation Project

May 20, 2016
The University of Connecticut Health Center (UConn Health), based in Farmington, Conn., has announced the appointment of Dirk Stanley, M.D., as its first Chief Medical Information Officer.

Potential Data Breach at Children’s National Health System Due to Vendor Misconfiguration

May 20, 2016
Children’s National Health System, based in Washington, D.C., has issued a notice about a potential data breach after a third-party vendor inadvertently misconfigured a file site that enabled patient information to be accessed online.

Pages