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Pancreatic Cancer Patients May Live Longer by Traveling to Academic Hospital for Operation

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New study findings link traveling to an academic medical center for surgical removal of pancreatic or thyroid cancer with higher quality surgical care for both cancers, and longer survival for patients with pancreatic cancer compared with patients who receive treatment at a hospital closer to home.

Despite the advantages, few patients with these cancers travel within the United States for their cancer operations, according to the authors of the study, which is published online as an “article in press” on the Journal of the American College of Surgeons website in advance of print publication.

“Little was known about whether traveling to receive surgical cancer care results in differences in perioperative outcomes and overall survival,” said senior investigator Raymon H. Grogan, MD, FACS, assistant professor of surgery at the University of Chicago Medicine. “Yet, there is a well-established relationship between a surgeon’s high volume of operations and patients’ improved outcomes for pancreatic and thyroid cancer, and most high-volume surgeons in the United States practice in metropolitan settings and academic referral medical centers. Read more . . .

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