Dr Sibel Blau Discusses the Importance of Precision Medicine for Cancer Practices

The Quality Cancer Care Alliance is focusing on 2 major topics: value-based care and innovation, and precision oncology is the intersection of those 2 issues, said Sibel Blau, MD.

The Quality Cancer Care Alliance (QCCA) is focusing on 2 major topics: value-based care and innovation, and precision oncology is the intersection of those 2 issues, said Sibel Blau, MD, medical oncologist, Northwest Medical Specialties, and president and CEO of QCCA.


QCCA’s annual leadership summit kicked off with 2 sessions on precision medicine. Why is that topic so important to cancer practices right now?

Because it just fits with the value-based care mentality. I mean, we are, the QCCA network is focusing on 2 major topics, although we have other goals together. But 1 is the research network and bringing clinical trials—and every kind of trial, not just the traditional trials—every kind of research to our patients so that we can contribute to that innovation and give access to treatment with the new drug development our patients.

The other thing is the value-based care. So when you put those 2 together, and when you look at the precision medicine definition, and what we heard from our speakers last week, that it is not just genomic testing, it’s all about everything from diverse patient populations, to economics, to testing, to data-sharing platforms or data tools, and all of it together to be able to bring it into the patient. The talk about the right patient, the right time, and right place, and we have to provide the right care for the patient. And in order to do that, you have to look at it from a global perspective.

So, we thought when we were trying to bring our thoughts together, “what should be the theme of this meeting?” I think precision medicine is what we are trying to do in our practices in our daily practices and bring a bigger, broader perspective of precision medicine that fits with value-based care and research.

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Sidra Medicine highlights importance of mental health in families

Sidra Medicine has reiterated the importance of mental health in families as part of its ongoing commitment to support the development and advancement of mental health services in Qatar.

Dr Felice Watt, division chief, Adult Psychiatry for Women’s Mental Health at Sidra Medicine said, “Mothers are the key to a family’s mental health and we need our mothers to be physically and emotionally well. It is important that pregnant women and mothers feel supported and empowered. We can ask them “How are you feeling?” and “What can I do to help you?” and offer support and company. It is also important to listen without judgment. If you feel that you are unable to support, then help her get professional assistance.”
Mental health not only affects the woman but also impacts the pregnancy, the child and the family. This highlights the importance of fathers’ and infants’ mental health and wellbeing.
Infant Mental Health describes the capacity of a baby to form close relationships; to recognise and express emotions and to explore and learn about their environment. Every interaction contributes to the child’s brain development and lays the foundation for later learning.
To reach their full potential, children need support of their physical and mental health and an environment of nurturing care. This includes responsive caregiving whereby their caregivers notice, understand and respond to the child’s signals in a timely and appropriate manner. Opportunity for early learning is also encouraged.
Fathers also play a unique and important role in their children’s development and in supporting their wife.     
Dr Zainab Imam, psychiatrist from Sidra Medicine said, “According to research featured in the Wiley Online Library, about 10% of new fathers experience depression, especially if their wives are depressed; while up to 18% of fathers suffer from anxiety. Since most new mothers look to their husbands as the main source of support, poor paternal support can worsen a mother’s mental health.”
“We advocate that there needs to be stronger support systems for fathers, encouraging them to be involved, and giving them an opportunity to talk about their experiences as fathers and to learn how to support their children’s development And most importantly, fathers need support to access professional help when needed, without the stigma that sometimes stops many new fathers from seeking help,” continued Dr Imam.
Qatar has set up a helpline (16000) to support people of all ages and nationalities who are looking for advice on coping with stress, anxiety and depression and other mental health disorders. The helpline is available from 8 am to 7pm Sundays to Thursdays, and 8am to 3pm on Saturdays.

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Mary J. Blige and other women touched by breast cancer talk importance of screening

The nine-time Grammy Award-winning singer said in an interview with “Good Morning America” that highlighting the illness is important to her because of the racial disparity in breast cancer death rates.

Higher death rates from the disease for Black women are due to several factors, according to the American Cancer Society’s biennial update on female breast cancer statistics in the U.S.

Some include “later stage at diagnosis and other unfavorable tumor characteristics, higher prevalence of obesity and comorbidities, as well as less access to timely and high‐quality prevention, early detection, and treatment services.”

Blige partnered with the Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI), RAD-AID and Hologic, Inc. for the P.O.W.E.R. of Sure campaign in hopes of giving women necessary information about breast cancer screening and why it’s so important.

Women who have battled the disease or who are currently battling the disease are also sharing more about their cancer journeys in the campaign.

The importance of getting screened: ‘Do it even when you’re scared’

Blige said she feels “a lot of fears and barriers” affect whether or not a woman will prioritize getting screened. After losing an aunt to breast cancer, the singer says she now believes a lack of awareness toward screening played
a role in her loved one’s battle with cancer.

“I believe if she had this information that she would be here today — the importance of a mammogram,” the singer said. “When we were growing up, no one spoke about a mammogram, breast cancer — anything like that.”

The singer recalled having many fears going into her first mammogram after losing her aunt and wondering whether it was going to hurt or if she was going to be diagnosed.

“Once I went into the office and went to the procedure, I realized that it was nothing to it,” she said. “It wasn’t painful, it was just a little discomfort on each breast for a second or two, and then it was over.”

She emphasized how she received early results following her Genius 3D Mammography exam and even called the screening “enlightening.” She also said it made her want to know more about her health.

Kimberly Wortham-Macon, a mother of three, is fighting breast cancer and is featured in the campaign along with Blige. She is also adamant about emphasizing the importance of getting checked.

She said she had been considering putting off her mammogram because of the pandemic but quickly took action and went in for a screening after feeling a lump in her right breast. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in July at the age of 40.

PHOTO: Kimberly Wortham-Macon opened up on her battle with breast cancer for the P.O.W.E.R. of Sure campaign.

Kimberly Wortham-Macon

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Cites Link to Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and Importance of Early Detection

Echosens, a high-technology company offering the FibroScan family of products, urges increased awareness of the rise of liver cancer rates, which have more than tripled since 1980, while death rates have more than doubled during this time. About 21,000 Americans are diagnosed with primary liver cancer each year—twice as common in men than in women. Risk factors include other liver diseases, including cirrhosis, chronic hepatitis B, chronic hepatitis C and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD may be a key driver of increased cancer associated with obesity, while non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is the fastest growing cause of liver cancer among transplant candidates.

“People with NAFLD have higher rates of several types of cancer, with the greatest increase seen for liver cancer and other gastrointestinal cancers,” says Jon Gingrich, CEO, Echosens North America. “Point-of-care examinations, monitoring and ongoing assessment of liver fat and stiffness as provided by FibroScan, a rapid, non-invasive point of care examination, can identify individuals who are asymptomatic and undiagnosed for liver damage.”

Researchers have found that liver cancer, NAFLD, hepatitis C and liver transplants are prevalent in 40-80% of people who have Type 2 diabetes and in 30-90% of people who are obese. Being overweight or obese is responsible for about 85% of fatty liver disease.

“Approximately 30,000 people die from liver cancer each year and these numbers have continued to rise in recent years,” says Lynn Gardner Seim, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, American Liver Foundation. “It is essential that patients at risk for liver cancer, including those who have previously been diagnosed with hepatitis C, NAFLD, NASH and other liver diseases, talk with their doctors and have a plan in place for getting screened.”

Traditional approaches to assessing liver health, such as liver biopsy and advanced radiological imaging, may not be cost effective nor accessible to the broader at-risk population. FibroScan directly measures physical properties of stiffness and fat liver to provide reproducible results and allow for both diagnosis and monitoring of liver stiffness and liver fat. It is also recognized worldwide as the reference for non-invasive liver diagnosis supported with more than 2,000 medical publications and 40 guideline recommendations.

About Echosens

Echosens, the developer of FibroScan®, is an innovative high-technology company offering a full range of products and services supporting physicians in their assessment and management of patients with chronic liver diseases. FibroScan is supported by over 2,500 peer-reviewed publications and examinations are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and many insurance plans. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter (@echosensNA).

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Brittany Tedesco
CPR Communications
[email protected]
201.641.1911 x 14

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Kim Kardashian’s Favorite Home Fitness Machine Is Redefining The Importance Of Glute Health

Even within the most high-minded conversations about health and fitness, a squat is considered one of the most, if not the most, essential exercises. In the Kardashian-Jenner era of aesthetics and vanity however, healthy glute muscles are often defined by their size and shape in a body-con mini dress, generally ones no longer than the lateral width of a sock. But The DB Method is not only sustaining the aesthetic trend, they’re re-writing the glute health narrative.

When The DB Method launched in 2017, the brand capitalized on being a machine engineered to help users achieve the perfect squat. Now, they have expanded into accessories, kits, DVD’s, and everything that their loyal fan base would need to achieve all of their fitness goals.

The Machine has been notably pictured in the homes of Kim and Khloe Kardashian, as well as the gym of Hailey Bieber and a slew of other Victoria’s Secret models. But this celebrity-favorite brand is not only interested in vanity – they’re on a mission to educate users about proper glute health.

“The DB Method rebrand signifies our evolution and maturation as a business,” said Sydney Wollman, head of brand strength. “When we first launched, we introduced The Machine as a way to effectively activate and engage the largest and most important muscle group in the body – the glutes.”

In 2019, Harvard Medical School’s Health Publishing issued a piece on why squats are the most important exercise a person can do based on archived journals on the effects of excessive sitting and links to early death.

“Knowing that strong glutes are the foundation of strong bodies, today we are ready to introduce The DB Method to the larger at-home fitness audience; those looking for a quick but effective workout that benefits the entire body.” Explained Ms. Wollman of The DB Method.

Adam Swartz is a different kind of CFO; there are no financial analytics on his desk. As chief fitness officer of The DB Method, Mr. Swartz shapes and structures the fitness benefits and custom workouts of consumers’ experience. “Being a trainer for 20 years, the idea that people who don’t have access to an expensive coach and daily guidance, but can achieve those results with The DB Method is an amazing thing,” explained Mr. Swartz.

An essential element of injury prevention, a strong and defined gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus is often an overlooked benefit in the obsessive age of the butt selfie, or “belfie”.

Consumer reviews of the low impact workout glow with praise. As part of a 30-day challenge, users take posterior before and after photos. Other reviewers who report knee and hip operations say that The DB Method is the only machine they can use with no pain to their joints during recovery, and to avoid further injury.

“Whenever we do a free squat without coaching, the proper posterior muscles into the glutes are not effectively being worked,” said Mr. Swartz when describing

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