OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to determine the quality of life (QOL) scores among breast cancer patients at a Malaysian public hospital.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional study of breast cancer patients was conducted between March to June 2013. QOL scores were determined using the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30) and its breast cancer supplementary measure (QLQ-BR23). Both the QLQ-C30 and QLQ-BR23 assess items from functional and symptom scales. The QLQ-C30 in addition also measures the Global Health Status (GHS). Systematic random sampling was used to recruit patients.
RESULTS: 223 breast cancer patients were recruited with a response rate of 92.1%. The mean age of the patients was 52.4 years (95% CI = 51.0, 53.7, SD=10.3). Majority of respondents are Malays (60.5%), followed by Chinese (19.3%), Indians (18.4%), and others (1.8%). More than 50% of respondents are at stage III and stage IV of malignancy. The mean Global Health Status was 65.7 (SD = 21.4). From the QLQ-C30, the mean score in the functioning scale was highest for 'cognitive functioning' (84.1, SD=18.0), while the mean score in the symptom scale was highest for 'financial difficulties' (40.1, SD=31.6). From the QLQ-BR23, the mean score for functioning scale was highest for 'body image' (80.0, SD=24.6) while the mean score in the symptom scale was highest for 'upset by hair loss' (36.2, SD=29.4). Two significant predictors for Global Health Status were age and employment. The predictors explained 10.6% of the variation of global health status (R2=0.106).
CONCLUSIONS: Age and employment were found to be significant predictors for Global Health Status (GHS). The Quality of Life among breast cancer patients reflected by the GHS improves as age and employment increases.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed genotyping for both SNPs for 250 GIC patients and 572 healthy volunteers using a polymerase chain reaction- restriction fragment length polymorphism approach. We validated heterozygosity and homozygosity for both SNPs using direct sequencing.
RESULTS: The presence of a variant 194Trp allele in the Arg194Trp SNP was significantly associated with a higher risk of GIC, especially with gastric and colorectal cancers. We additionally found that the variant 399Gln allele in Arg399Gln SNP was associated with a greater risk of developing gastric cancer. Our combined analysis revealed that inheritance of variant alleles in both SNPs increased the GIC risk in Sabah population. Based on our etiological analysis, we found that subjects ≥50 years and males who carrying the variant 194Trp allele, and Bajau subjects carrying the 399Gln allele had a significantly increased risk of GIC.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that inheritance of variant alleles in XRCC1 Arg194Trp and Arg399Gln SNPs may act as biomarkers for the early detection of GIC, especially for gastric and colorectal cancers in the Sabah population.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Genomic DNA was isolated from peripheral blood of 71 breast cancer patients and 260 healthy controls and subjected to polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) analysis.
RESULTS: Our study showed that the c1/c2 genotype or subjects with at least one c2 allele in CYP2E1 rs3813867 SNP had significantly increased almost 1.8-fold higher breast cancer risk in Malaysian women overall. In addition, the variant Phe allele in STK15 rs2273535 SNP appeared to protect against breast cancer in Malaysian Chinese. No significance association was found between XRCC1 SNPs and breast cancer risk in the population.
CONCLUSIONS: This study provides additional knowledge on CYP2E1, STK15 and XRCC1 SNP impact of risk of breast cancer, particularly in the Malaysian population. From our findings, we also recommend Malaysian women to perform breast cancer screening before 50 years of age.
OBJECTIVE: Thus, this research was conducted to evaluate the colorectal cancer screening program in the districts to provide insights intop its efficacy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A cross sectional study was conducted using data on the colorectal cancer screening program in 2013 involving Kota Setar and Kuala Muda districts in Malaysia. We determined the response rate of immunochemical fecal occult blood test (iFOBT), colonoscopy compliance, and detection rates of neoplasia and carcinoma. We also compared the response of FOBT by demographic background.
RESULTS: The response rate of FOBT for first iFOBT screening was 94.7% while the second iFOBT screening was 90.7%. Participants from Kuala Muda district were 27 times more likely to default while Indians had a 3 times higher risk of default compared to Malays. The colonoscopy compliance was suboptimal among those with positive iFOBT. The most common finding from colonoscopy was hemorrhoids, followed by tubular adenoma. Detection rate of carcinoma and neoplasia for our program was 1.2%.
CONCLUSIONS: In summary, the response rate of iFOBT was encouraging but the colonoscopy compliance was suboptimal which led to a considerably low detection rate.
OBJECTIVE: This study is the first of its kind to explore how the predicting variables of self-efficacy, perceived barriers, and body image factors correlate with self-reports of past BSE, and intention to conduct future breast self-exams among female students in Malaysia.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Through the analysis of data collected from a prior study of female students from nine Malaysian universities (n=842), this study found that self-efficacy, perceived barriers and specific body image sub-constructs (MBSRQ-Appearance Scales) were correlated with, and at times predicted, both the likelihood of past BSE and the intention to conduct breast self-exams in the future.
RESULTS: Self-efficacy (SE) positively predicted the likelihood of past self-exam behavior, and intention to conduct future breast self-exams. Perceived barriers (BR) negatively predicted past behavior and future intention of breast self-exams. The body image sub-constructs of appearance evaluation (AE) and overweight preoccupation (OWP) predicted the likelihood of past behavior but did not predict intention for future behavior. Appearance orientation (AO) had a somewhat opposite effect: AO did not correlate with or predict past behavior but did correlate with intention to conduct breast self-exams in the future. The body image sub-constructs of body area satisfaction (BASS) and self-classified weight (SCW) showed no correlation with the subjects' past breast self-exam behavior nor with their intention to conduct breast self-exams in the future.
CONCLUSIONS: Findings from this study indicate that both self-efficacy and perceived barriers to BSE are significant psychosocial factors that influence BSE behavior. These results suggest that health promotion interventions that help enhance self-efficacy and reduce perceived barriers have the potential to increase the intentions of Malaysian women to perform breast self-exams, which can promote early detection of breast cancers. Future research should evaluate targeted communication interventions for addressing self-efficacy and perceived barriers to breast self-exams with at-risk Malaysian women. and further explore the relationship between BSE and body image.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We analysed internationally comparable representative household survey data from 33,482 respondents aged ≥ 15 years in Indonesia, Malaysia, Romania, Argentina and Nigeria for determinants of tobacco use within each country. Socio-demographic variables analysed included gender, age, residency, education, wealth index and awareness of smoking health consequences. Current tobacco use was defined as smoking or use of smokeless tobacco daily or occasionally.
RESULTS: The overall prevalence of tobacco use varied from 5.5% in Nigeria to 35.7% in Indonesia and was significantly higher among males than females in all five countries. Odds ratios for current tobacco use were significantly higher among males for all countries [with the greatest odds among Indonesian men (OR=67.4, 95% CI: 51.2-88.7)] and among urban dwellers in Romania. The odds of current tobacco use decreased as age increased for all countries except Nigeria where. The reverse was true for Argentina and Nigeria. Significant trends for decreasing tobacco use with increasing educational levels and wealth index were seen in Indonesia, Malaysia and Romania. Significant negative associations between current tobacco use and awareness of adverse health consequences of smoking were found in all countries except Argentina.
CONCLUSIONS: Males and the socially and economically disadvantaged populations are at the greatest risk of tobacco use. Tobacco control interventions maybe tailored to this segment of population and incorporate educational interventions to increase knowledge of adverse health consequences of smoking.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Here we reported the initial experience of aflibercept / FOLFIRI in combination. We evaluated treatment-related adverse events (AEs), progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS).
RESULTS: The majority of the patients experienced gastrointestinal toxicity (grade 1-2), with diarrhea (52%), mucositis (52%), and nausea/vomiting (20%) being largely observed. Neutropenia (16%) and febrile neutropenia (8%) were common grade 3-4 hematological events. Aflibercept-related toxicity was managed as per practice guidelines. No grade 5 event was reported. Median PFS was 6.12 months (95% CI, 4.80-7.20) and OS was 12 months (95% CI, 9.80-14.18). The partial response (PR), stable disease (SD), and progressive disease (PD) rates were 25% (95% CI: 23.4-27.0), 37.5% (95% CI: 31.6-43.3), and 37.5% (95% CI: 22.5-52.5), respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: Aflibercept/FOLFIRI can be administered safely in a second line setting to Malaysian patients with mCRC, as the AEs experienced were generally reversible and manageable. The safety and efficacy outcomes were consistent with those observed in Western populations.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty-four patients with clinically node-negative breast cancer were recruited. Combined radiotracer and blue dye methods were used for identification of SLNs. The nodes were thinly sliced and embedded. Serial sectioning and immunohistochemical (IHC) staining against AE1/AE3 were performed if initial HandE sections of the blocks were negative.
RESULTS: SLNs were successfully identified in all patients. Ten cases had nodal metastases with 7 detected in SLNs and 3 detected only in axillary nodes (false negative rate, FNR=30%). Some 5 out of 7 metastatic lesions in the SLNs (71.4%) were detected in initial sections of the thinly sliced tissue. Serial sectioning detected the remaining two cases with either micrometastases or isolated tumour cells (ITC).
CONCLUSIONS: Thin slicing of tissue to 3-5mm thickness and serial sectioning improved the detection of micro and macro-metastases but the additional burden of serial sectioning gave low yield of micrometastases or ITC and may not be cost effective. IHC validation did not further increase sensitivity of detection. Therefore its use should only be limited to confirmation of suspicious lesions. False negative cases where SLNs were not involved could be due to skipped metastases to non-sentinel nodes or poor technique during procurement, resulting in missed detection of actual SLNs.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 450 women newly diagnosed with Stage 1 to 3 invasive breast cancer in a single centre from July 2013 to Dec 2014 were included in this study. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression was used to determine the association between Ki-67 (positive defined as 14% and above) and age, ethnicity, grade, mitotic index, ER, PR, HER2, lymph node status and size. All analyses were performed using SPSS Version 22.
RESULTS: In univariable analysis, Ki -67 index was associated with younger age, higher grade, ER and PR negativity, HER2 positivity, high mitotic index and positive lymph nodes. However on multivariable analysis only tumour size, grade, PR and HER2 remained significant. Out of 102 stage 1 patients who had ER positive/PR positive/HER2 negative tumours and non-grade 3, only 5 (4.9%) had a positive Ki-67 index and may have been offered chemotherapy. However, it is interesting to note that none of these patients received chemotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS: Information on Ki67 would have potentially changed management in an insignificant proportion of patients with stage 1 breast cancer.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 231 OSMF patients were selected and treated with basic regime including topical corticosteroids, oral antioxidants and the icecream-stick exercise regime and allotted randomly to two equal groups A and B. Group-A patients were additionally given MED. Subgroups A1 and B1 patients with an inter-incisal distance (IID) 20-35mm were not given any additional therapy; subgroup A2 and B2 patients (IID 20-35mm) were treated additionally with intra-lesional injections. Subgroups A3 and B3 with IID<20mm were managed surgically. IID was measured at baseline and at 6 months recall. The change in IID measurements was calculated and statistically analyzed using 2-way ANOVA and Tukeys multiple post hoc analysis.
RESULTS: Average improvement in IID after six months of recall visits was observed to be 8.4 mm in subgroup-A1 (n-53) compared to 5.5 mm in B1(n-50) (p<0.01). The IID improvement in subgroup-A2 was found to be 9.3mm (n-46) compared to 5.1 mm in B2 (n-48) (p<0.01). In the surgery group, mouth opening improvement was observed to be 9.6 mm in subgroup A3 (n-18) compared to 4.8 mm for B3 (n-16) (p<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Use of the MED appears to be effective for increasing oral opening in OMSF patients in conjunction with local, injection and/or surgical treatment.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross- sectional study was conducted among 286 non-smokers from two healthcare training centres and two nearby colleges in Malaysia from January 2015 to April 2015. A standardized questionnaire was administered via staff and student emails. The questionnaire collected information on sociodemographic characteristics, support for a tobacco-free policy and perceived respiratory and sensory symptoms due to tobacco exposure. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to estimate the independent effects of supporting a tobacco-free campus.
RESULTS: The percentage of individuals supporting completely tobacco-free facilities was 83.2% (N=238), as opposed to 16.7% (N=48) in support of partially tobacco-free facilities. Compared to the supporters of partially tobacco-free facilities, non-smokers who supported completely tobacco-free health facilities were more likely to be female, have higher education levels, to be very concerned about the effects of other people smoking on their health and to perceive a tobacco-free policy as very important. In addition, they perceived that tobacco smoke bothered them at work by causing headaches and coughs and, in the past 4 weeks, had experienced difficulty breathing. In the multivariate model, after adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics and other factors, only experiencing coughs and headaches increased the odds of supporting a completely tobacco-free campus, up to 2.5- and 1.9-fold, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: Coughs and headaches due to other people smoking at work enhances support for a completely tobacco-free campus among non-smokers.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was an experimental before and after study performed between October 2014 and March 2015. Five hundred and eighty students were randomly assigned into intervention and control groups. All were required to complete both pre-intervention and post-intervention questionnaires. Those in the intervention group were given an information leaflet to read before answering the post-intervention questionnaire.
RESULTS: Almost half (48.3%) of the students had poor knowledge, with a score less than 5, and only 51 (8.8%) exhibited good knowledge, with a score of 11 and above. After educational intervention, the number of students with poor knowledge was reduced to 177 (29.3%) and the number of students who exhibited good knowledge increased to 148 (25.5%). Students from the intervention group demonstrated significant higher total scores in knowledge regarding 'HPV infection and cervical cancer' (p=0.000) and 'HPV vaccination and cervical cancer prevention' (p=0.000) during post-intervention as compared to the control group.
CONCLUSIONS: Knowledge on HPV infection and vaccination is low among pre-university students. Educational intervention in the form of information leaflets appears effective in creating awareness and improving knowledge.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 195 Thin Prep Pap smear samples from HPV negative and cancer free females were randomly selected as controls while 106 formalin fixed paraffin embedded samples from females with invasive cervical cancer were randomly selected for the cases group. The polymorphisms were identified using restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) PCR.
RESULTS: We found no significant associations between CYP1A1 MspI polymorphism and cervical cancer in the general Malaysian female population. However, upon ethnic stratification, the variant C/C genotype was significantly associated with a 4.66-fold increase in cervical cancer risk in Malay females (95% CI= 1.21-17.9; p=0.03). No significant association was observed in the Chinese and Indian females. Additionally, there were no significant associations in the dominant model and allele frequency model analysis in both the general and ethnically stratified female population of Malaysia.
CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that the C/C genotype of CYP1A1 MspI polymorphism is associated with the development of cervical carcinoma in the Malay females of Malaysia.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Participants were 303 consecutive adult cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy in an academic medical center. The short form Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale (MSAS-SF), which covers three domains of symptoms (global distress, physical- and psychological symptoms) was used to cross-sectionally measure symptom frequency and associated distress via self-reporting. One-way ANOVA and t-tests were used to test mean differences among MSAS-SF subscale scores.
RESULTS: Complete data were available for 303 patients. The mean number of symptoms was 14.5. The five most prevalent were fatigue, dry mouth, hair loss, drowsiness and lack of appetite. Overall, symptom burden and frequency were higher than in other published MSAS-SF studies. Higher symptom frequency was also found to be significantly related to greater distress in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS: Patients undergoing chemotherapy suffer from multiple physical and psychological symptoms. Better symptom control or palliative care is needed. Greater frequency of reported symptoms may also indicate a subconscious bid by patients for care and reassurance - thus tailored intervention to manage distress should be offered.
OBJECTIVES: The objectives of this study were to investigate the CELSR3 hypermethylation level in oral squamous cell carcinomas (OSCCs) using methylation-sensitive high-resolution melting analysis (MS-HRM) and to correlate CELSR3 methylation with patient demographic and clinicopathological parameters.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Frozen tissue samples of healthy subjects' normal mucosa and OSCCs were examined with regard to their methylation levels of the CELSR3 gene using MS-HRM.
RESULTS: MS-HRM analysis revealed a high methylation level of CELSR3 in 86% of OSCC cases. Significant correlations were found between CELSR3 quantitative methylation levels with patient ethnicity (P=0.005), age (P=0.024) and pathological stages (P=0.004). A moderate positive correlation between CELSR3 and patient age was also evident (R=0.444, P=0.001).
CONCLUSIONS: CELSR3 promoter hypermethylation may be an important mechanism involved in oral carcinogenesis. It may thus be used as a biomarker in OSCC prognostication.