Nursing professor's prostate cancer study featured on cover of Cancer journal

Woodruff Health Sciences Center | July 16, 2015

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Melva Robertson
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Deborah Watkins Bruner

Deborah Watkins Bruner, RN, PhD, Robert W. Woodruff Professor of Nursing at Emory's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing, is author of a research article featured on the cover of the July issue of Cancer. Cancer is an official journal of the American Cancer Society and reaches over 20 million people worldwide. 

Titled "Preliminary Patient Reported Outcomes Analysis of 3DCRT versus IMRT on the High Dose Arm of the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) 0126 Prostate Cancer Trial," the article focuses on a study of two types of radiation therapy in men with prostate cancer.  Findings suggested that there was no difference in patient-reported symptoms such as urinary or bowel symptoms for similar doses delivered to the prostate with either the newer but more expensive Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) compared with standard and less expensive Three Dimensional Conformal Radiation Therapy (3D-CRT).  The findings have health policy and reimbursement implications.

"We are immensely proud of Dr. Bruner's work and progress in cancer research," says Linda McCauley, RN, PhD, dean of the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing. "We are also grateful to Cancer for recognizing the importance of this research paper. The findings are extremely significant for cancer research and outcomes, and Cancer is the most fitting publication to disseminate Dr. Bruner's findings to the cancer community."

Bruner, an internationally renowned cancer researcher, is associate director of Outcomes Research at Emory's Winship Cancer Institute. In addition, she has worked for over two decades with the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG), and conducted its first clinical trial incorporating quality of life.

"This research led by Dr. Bruner highlights the importance of gathering and analyzing outcomes as reported by the participating patients themselves.  Such results can differ from those reported by the patients' caregivers," said Walter J.  Curran, MD, Winship executive director and the principal investigator of the primary RTOG research grant supporting this research.

Bruner has devoted her research to improving outcomes for cancer patients. Her areas of focus are quality of life and symptom management across cancer sites, as well as decision-making for cancer therapies. She was recently appointed as one of five new members of the National Cancer Advisory Board (NCAB).

To view the latest issue of Cancer featuring Dr. Bruner, please see: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1002/%28ISSN%291097-0142