Tag Archives: Matthew Taub

Telling Patients They Have Cancer

 

Prostate Cancer pic
Cancer
Image: webmd.com

A hematology and an oncology physician at Optimum Oncology Hematology Associates, Matthew Taub, MD, leverages more than 20 years of medical experience to treat benign and malignant disorders in patients. Over the course of his career, Dr. Matthew Taub has developed a reputation among patients for being a compassionate and an altruistic physician.

One of the most significant moments of a patient’s life is hearing that he or she has cancer. Because of this, the way physicians deliver a cancer diagnosis is extremely important. Yet, only around 10 percent of physicians receive specific training for sharing a cancer diagnosis.

According to research, most patients would prefer receiving their cancer diagnosis at their physician’s office. Despite this preference, only about half of all patients receive their diagnosis in this setting. Roughly 18 percent are told over the phone, and another 28 percent are informed in a hospital. However, hearing the news in a physician’s office isn’t preferable to everyone. Because of this, physicians may want to ask their patients directly how they would prefer to receive bad news if their biopsy reveals cancer.

When sharing the actual news of cancer, physicians must be clear with patients by avoiding medical jargon, such as malignancy. Although there is often a desire to avoid the word “cancer,” it is frequently the best way to discuss a cancer diagnosis with patients since it leaves no room for misinterpretation. At the same time, physicians shouldn’t be too blunt, but focus instead of a patient-centered approach to sharing the news. This approach conveys hope to patients while giving them honest information about their diagnosis and connecting with them emotionally.

Finally, physicians must discuss treatment plans for their patients. This gives patients more hope about their future since it provides them with a clear pathway through this difficult time of their life. If physicians are uncertain about treatment options since they depend on the prognosis of a different specialist, they should be upfront about it. There’s no harm in telling patients that another physician can provide more details about the best course of treatment.

FDA Approves New Combination Therapy for Adult Leukemia

Ibrutinib pic
Ibrutinib
Image: webmd.com

A recipient of the Best Fellow award during his fellowship at St. Vincent’s Medical Center, respected hematologic oncologist Dr. Matthew Taub is involved in the local medical community. In addition to serving on a tumor board, Dr. Matthew Taub serves on a multidisciplinary committee, providing advice on treatment protocols for blood cancers such as leukemia.

In late 2018, the FDA approved the first non-chemotherapy combination treatment specifically for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), which represents nearly 40 percent of leukemia diagnoses in American adults. The approval was based on the results of a phase 3 drug trial which determined that a combination therapy of the small-molecule drug ibrutinib and the whole antibody obinutuzumab significantly improved outcomes for patients. The study was conducted at the Hospital de la Santa Creu in Barcelona, Spain.

Ibrutinib, manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceutica under the brand name Imbruvica, had previously been approved as a single drug treatment for CLL. The drug hinders the spread of CLL by blocking a protein that is essential to the survival of abnormal B lymphocytes. This new expanded use provides CLL patients with a viable alternative to chemotherapy.

The American Society of Hematology Education Roadmap

American Society of Hematology pic
American Society of Hematology
Image: hematology.org

A board-certified oncologist with more than 20 years of experience, Matthew Taub, MD, practices at Optimum Oncology Hematology Associates in Pembroke Pines, Florida. An active participant in the professional community, Dr. Matthew Taub maintains membership in the American Society of Hematology (ASH).

The leading provider of continuing education to hematologists, ASH recently developed an “Education Roadmap” that seeks to expand the society’s professional development offerings and address the skill gaps and educational needs of its members. ASH is working on enhancing its content in six areas: precision medicine, acute myeloid leukemia, sickle cell disease, immune therapies, systems-based hematology, and hemostasis and thrombosis.

In addition to in-person conferences and training, ASH offers an eLearning platform called ASH Academy with up-to-date clinical information and practice tools. By completing ASH Academy courses and evaluations, members can earn continuing medical education credits to maintain certifications. The ASH On Demand service also makes previous educational meetings and webinars available to members for on-demand viewing.

ASCO Highlights Recent Cancer Treatment Advances

Matthew Taub
Matthew Taub

Dr. Matthew Taub, a board-certified physician specializing in internal medicine, hematology, and oncology, possesses more than 20 years of clinical experience. In addition to his work on several medical committees, Dr. Matthew Taub holds membership in the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).

For over a decade, ASCO has released Clinical Cancer Advances, an annual report detailing the year’s most significant advances in cancer treatment. The 2018 release brings focus to several Food and Drug Administration-approved therapies for their impact in the fight against cancer.

In 2017, the FDA approved pembrolizumab for use in patients with certain types of metastatic tumors. The immunotherapy drug is first in a line of tissue-agnostic therapies, treatments that work based on a tumor’s biomarkers, to be approved.

The report also chronicles improvements in targeted therapies for lung, breast, and bladder cancers and reviews the promising effects of radiotherapy and tumor-treating fields on aggressive forms of brain cancer.