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1.  Quality of life and physicians' perception in myelodysplastic syndromes 
To detect factors associated with quality of life (QOL) of patients with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and to compare the MDS patients’ self-assessed QOL with that perceived by their physicians. In an observational, non-interventional, prospective, multicentre study, QOL was evaluated in 148 patients with newly diagnosed low- and intermediate-risk IPSS MDS. QOL measures (QOL-E v.2, LASA and EQ-5D) and patient-related candidate determinants of QOL were assessed for up to 18 months. Patients' QOL scores were compared with those obtained by appointed hematologists’ assessment and with ECOG performance status (PS). Fatigue was not prevalent at diagnosis, though physical QOL and energy levels were low. Transfusion-dependent patients had worse QOL scores. In multivariate analysis, Hb levels and comorbidities were a major determinant of QOL. Physicians’ perception of patients’ well-being correlated with patients’ QOL. Physicians underestimated the impact of disturbances on patients’ QOL, mainly in the MDS-specific components. ECOG PS did not discriminate patients according to QOL status. In conclusion, the association of anemia with QOL is confirmed, while co-morbidities emerge as an independent predictor of QOL in MDS. Fatigue is not a major concern. ECOG PS is not a valuable surrogate of patient’s QOL, thus highlighting that physician’s judgment of patient’s well-being must not substitute patient-reported outcomes. Appropriate questionnaires should be used to assess MDS patients’ QOL in order to improve communication and therapeutic choice.
PMCID: PMC3384400  PMID: 22762033
Myelodysplastic syndromes; quality of life; comorbidities; anemia; transfusion-dependence; patient-reported outcomes
2.  HCV infection, B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and immunochemotherapy: Evidence and open questions 
There is plenty of data confirming that hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a predisposing factor for a B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (B-NHL) outbreak, while relatively few reports have addressed the role of HCV in affecting B-NHL patients’ outcome. HCV infection may influence the short-term outcome of B-NHL because of the emergence of severe hepatic toxicity (HT) during immunochemotherapy. Furthermore, the long term outcome of HCV-related liver disease and patients’ quality of life will possibly be affected by Rituximab maintenance, multiple-lines of toxicity during chemotherapy and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. In this review, data dealing with aggressive and low-grade B-NHL were separately analyzed. The few retrospective papers reporting on aggressive B-NHL patients showed that HCV infection is a risk factor for the outbreak of severe HT during treatment. This adverse event not infrequently leads to the reduction of treatment density and intensity. Existing papers report that low-grade B-NHL patients with HCV infection may have a more widespread disease, more frequent relapses or a lower ORR compared to HCV-negative patients. Notwithstanding that, there is no statistical evidence that the prognosis of HCV-positive patients is inferior to that of HCV-negative subjects. HCV-positive prospective studies and longer follow-up are necessary to ascertain if HCV-positive B-NHL patients have inferior outcomes and if there are long term sequels of immunochemotherapies on the progression of liver disease.
PMCID: PMC3312928  PMID: 22468183
Marginal zone lymphoma; Diffuse large B cell lymphoma; Hepatitis C virus; Non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas; Hepatotoxicity; Chemotherapy; Immunochemotherapy; Prognosis; Rituximab

Results 1-2 (2)