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Head and neck cancers: Women less commonly receive intensive chemo



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– Women with head and neck cancer less commonly receive intensive chemotherapy (35% vs. 46%) and radiation therapy (60% vs. 70%) than do their male counterparts, finds an analysis of 223 female patients and 661 male patients with stage II-IVB disease treated at Kaiser Permanente Northern California. And this apparent undertreatment may be compromising survival for women, as their ratio of cancer deaths to other deaths is nearly twice that of men (adjusted relative hazard ratio, 1.92; 95% CI, 1.07-3.43).

In this video interview from the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, senior study author Jed A. Katzel, MD, of Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, Calif., described the new statistical approach used to assess outcomes and discussed ongoing research to pin down the reasons for the apparent treatment disparities, including patient preferences and the influences of tumor site and HPV status.

Dr. Katzel reported no financial disclosures.

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