FiveThirtyEight visualizes mortality rates for leading causes of death in every US county from 1980 to 2014 in an impressive and interactive data visualization.
FiveThirtyEight covers research on "garbage codes" from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. Some notable trends for oncology folks from 30+ years of data:
See FiveThirtyEight's Guide to 35 Years of American Death video for tips on how to navigate the interactive data visualization.
Cancer patients who die in hospital typically experience more pain, stress and depression than similar patients who die in a hospice or at home.
There is a disconnect between patients dying of a chronic condition, like cancer, and physicians. This article from the Economist calls for a better understanding and conversation around palliative care and is a particularly relevant read for physicians. Though there are many threads to untangle in this issue, here are some of the most important themes for this audience:
Travel back in time to the beginning of precision medicine with this heartwarming success story of the drug Gleevec—which the New England Journal of Medicine recently said “changed everything".
If the previous two articles were a bit heavy for you, consider this article the happy movie epilogue as you leave the theater. The story follows Dr. Brian Druker and his 31 chronic myeloid leukemia patients in the 1999 round of trials of the compound that would eventually become Gleevec.
"I’m looking at this and thinking, 'This is amazing. We’ve never seen anything like this before.' These are people who’d been told to get their affairs in order. And now their blood counts are normal. But here’s the problem: When can you celebrate? I felt a little bit like walking on eggshells, because it’s like, 'OK, is this going to be a flash in the pan, or is this going to last?' And there’s only one way to find out: wait and see."—Dr. Druker
The budget agreement Congress reached on Sunday would give the National Institutes of Health a $2 billion increase for the second year in a row.
As we've covered in several stories in this roundup, President Trump's initial proposal to cut $5.8 billion (later reduced to a $1.2 billion cut) from the NIH would halt or significantly delay some of the progress researchers have made for cancer and other diseases. Per Axios health reporter David Nather (someone worth following), it seems Congress will actually be doing the opposite—giving the NIH a budget increase of $2 billion.