SGO Issues Jan. 25, 2018
AJCC implements 8th Edition Cancer Staging Manual
How much is too much? | Linda R. Duska, MD, MPH
World Cancer Day is Feb. 4
Articles on patient-reported outcomes in January Gynecologic Oncology
SGO Board election open until Feb. 20
Effective Jan. 1, 2018, the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) has implemented its 8th edition staging system. There are no differences between the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) staging and the AJCC Tumor, Node, Metastases (TNM) staging for all gynecologic malignancies, except that the AJCC version provides a more detailed description for each stage component.
SGO member Alexander B. Olawaiye, MD, MRCOG, FACOG, who also serves as the Education and Promotions Committee Vice-Chair for the AJCC, noted that gynecologic oncologists should be familiar with the AJCC TNM staging.
“In North America, if they want to tap into national data, that data would be gathered using AJCC TNM staging,” said Dr. Olawaiye.
All official cancer data collecting agencies in the United States–the National Cancer Data Base, Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program of the National Cancer Institute, the College of American Pathologists (CAP), the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—utilize the AJCC TNM staging system.
- AJCC 8th Edition Cancer Staging Manual
- PowerPoint presentation and webinar by Dr. Olawaiye on staging updates in the AJCC 8th Edition Cancer Staging Manual pertaining to gynecologic cancer
I have a habit of over-committing at work. I thrive on new opportunities, love learning new things, and appreciate being asked to lead or contribute. And like many of us, I was raised in an environment in which hard work and over-extension were most valued. I have always wanted to be that person who agrees to add another patient to an already over-full clinic, performs the most surgeries, enrolls the most patients onto clinical trials. Competitive much?
But in all seriousness, in our profession as gynecologic oncologists we are often valued by these metrics, if not in others’ minds then in our own. It is weak to say no, to finish the OR at 4:00 p.m., to have a light clinic. But more than that–I don’t want to turn down opportunities because then people will stop asking me, or stop thinking of me when a new position is available.
A few years ago I had a fabulous opportunity to join the Dean’s office. This position opened up many new doors and possibilities for me in my career. But I made an almost fatal mistake: in my first year in this new (50% effort) position, I tried to keep everything I already had, including maintaining my practice at the same volume. At the end of that first year, I knew I was failing at my new position, in addition to not being the best wife, mother, fellowship director, or let’s face it, person. And I had to give something up if I wanted to keep the position and make a difference at my school.
At some point it all becomes overwhelming. There is just too much to do and not enough time to take a breath. So what is the solution?
Clearly I don’t know, because as I write this, I am wondering how I managed to volunteer to write this blog when I have so many other things I need to do. And yet, it is an important message. None of us can do everything well, and also take care of ourselves. When I’m stressed and pulled in too many different directions, I am not the nicest person to those who are most important to me. And when I can’t do my very best with every task, I am disappointed in myself, and promise myself that I won’t overcommit again. And then I do (of course).
For me, the solution definitely involves prioritizing what is important, learning when and how to say no, and graciously passing opportunities to others. Fellowship Director was a mid-career goal and a job that I loved and was passionate about. It was very hard to give up, but after nine years it was time. I passed that role on to a very competent and wonderful colleague who is already doing a great job, and now I’m thriving in my Dean’s position. I’m not always successful at balancing my commitments though, and each phase of my career has brought new challenges. I’m still working on it.
Linda R. Duska, MD, MPH, is a Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the University of Virginia Health System in Charlottesville, VA.
Sunday, Feb. 4, is World Cancer Day. Coordinated by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), World Cancer Day aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year through education, raising awareness and by pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action. There are numerous ways to get involved through the World Cancer Day social media campaign—using available downloads with hashtags #WorldCancerDay and #WeCanICan—as well as planning related activities. Participants are encouraged to add their activity to the WCD2018 Map of Impact.
Lead Article: The use of patient-reported outcome tools in Gynecologic Oncology research, clinical practice, and value-based care Haley A. Moss, Laura J. Havrilesky
Editorial: Patient Reported Outcomes: Recent Successes and Future Opportunities Alexander Melamed, Alexi A. Wright
The 2018 SGO Board of Directors open election began on Jan. 22; all SGO members who are eligible to vote should have received their customized ballot from firstname.lastname@example.org. The message includes the list of candidates for each position, including biographical information, personal statements and photos. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. CST on Tuesday, Feb. 20. If there are any questions about the election, contact SGO Manager of Governance Jennifer Ocampo-Martinez at (312) 676-3916 or email@example.com.