In our ongoing work to empower patients last September, we attended the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) conference in Madrid. Our Communications team recorded numerous interviews with leading oncologists to get updates on research in breast cancer, lung cancer, ovarian cancer, and melanoma. We also talked to patient advocates to find out how they are helping patients with social media and how they engage with other advocates and health professionals at international conferences. All these interviews are being posted on our partners sites –Patient Power, Oncology Tube…- and distributed through social media and patient groups.
Dr Manel Esteller, a world-renowned specialist in cancer epigenetics during his talk at ESMO.
What were the main news?
An important number of studies confirmed the potential of immunotherapy to increase the life expand and quality of life for lung cancer patients. In other cancers immunotherapy is in an experimental phase but is showing promising results in some cancer subtypes, like Triple Negative in breast cancer.
Our deeper understanding of the biology of cancer and new profiling techniques for analysing tumors are personalising our cancer’s approach. Every patient should have a specific treatment depending on the molecular, genetic and hormonal characteristics of his or her tumor. It is what we call Precision or Personalised Medicine.
Close to 24,000 oncologists attended ESMO 2017 in Madrid.
Genomic platforms are a useful tool to determine the response to treatment and the risk of relapse in cancer patients. While only a minority of patients have access to them right now, the hope is that it becomes a widely used tool to personalise cancer treatment.
Patient Advocates are crucial stakeholders to advance cancer awareness and research. ESMO is one of the only scientific societies that recognises patient advocates as full members. In Madrid, the Patient Advocacy Track showed that advocates are working to occupy a more central role in the global fight against cancer.
ESMO Patient Advocates Working Group.
Where can I see the videos?
The interviews we recorded at ESMO 2017 are published in Patient Power, the leading information center for cancer patients worldwide. They can also be found in YouTube, Oncology Tube and in Patient Power and PEF social media channels. Patient groups will also distribute the educational material to their communities.
The work done at ESMO by our foundation has been possible thanks to the unrestricted educational grants that we have received from Bayer (Prostate Cancer), Roche (Breast Cancer) and AstraZeneca (Lung Cancer). We thank these companies for supporting our efforts to empower patients.
See the ESMO videos in Patient Power.