Current practice in and considerations for personalized medicine in lung cancer: From the patient's molecular biology to patient values and preferences

Percivil Melendez Carrera, Meghann Ormond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Both at the individual and health system levels, the burden of complex illnesses associated with and which rise in mid- to later life, such as cancer, is expected to increase further. The advent of personalized medicine, or the use of a patient's genetic profile to guide medical decisions, is touted to substantially improve drug tolerance and efficacy and, in so doing, also improve the effectiveness and efficiency of oncological care. Amidst the hype and hope surrounding personalized cancer care, there is increasing concern about its unnecessary, unintended effects especially with regards to the financial burden of targeted therapies using specialty drugs. In this paper, we take a patient-centered perspective on the therapeutic benefits of personalized medicine as well as the limitations of current practice and its psychological and financial toxicities by focusing on advanced-stage lung cancer. We argue that the modest clinical benefits of targeted therapy, premium prices for many specialty drugs and the narrow focus on the genetic constitution of individual patients run the risk of undercutting personalized lung cancer care's contribution to realizing health and non-health outcomes. We discuss the contribution of grading the financial burden of treatment and seamless integration of palliative care as key action areas regarding patients’ access to and appropriateness of care given patients’ needs and preferences
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-99
JournalMaturitas
Volume82
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • METIS-311196
  • IR-96774

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