Preface

Anew textbook in oncology?! What is different about this book compared to other established texts that have already been published? Why do we need a new book? For anyone in the market for a textbook, the main reason is to keep pace with the knowledge base that is growing ever so rapidly in oncology, a field that is evolving faster than all other medical fields. This book does not attempt to be an encyclopedic summary of that information. Rather, this textbook strives to organize that knowledge into a unified approach that categorizes and summarizes the evidence that is currently available. We realize that clinicians are too busy to keep up with the literature that is published in the many available journals. Therefore, a key feature of this book is the evidence-based tables that collate the best available evidence from the literature, enabling the reader to make decisions on the basis of data. We have chosen current experts to create evidence-based chapters on topics that span the field from basic and translational science to prevention to clinical practice, and ultimately to survivorship, totaling 113 chapters written by more than 250 contributors. The tone of this book is established in the first chapter, "Evidence-Based Approach to Oncology," which reviews the history of evidence-based medicine and describes the different levels of evidence. This book will be informative to residents, fellows, practicing clinicians, and allied health professionals.

This book has several unique features. Section One, "Principles of Oncology," contains several chapters that discuss areas that have only recently matured. The topics include the biologic principles of hematopoietic stem cell therapies; informatics infrastructure; economics of cancer care; and, patient decision making. The section on "Translational Basic Science," includes chapters that review the basic concepts of cancer biology; these are written from the perspective of clinical transla-tional science and how it is relevant to the physician. The chapter entitled "Technologies in Molecular Biology: Diagnostic Applications" is both timely and concise, while exploring the application of genomics to daily clinical practice. In the section on "Cancer Prevention and Control," the chapter, "Behavioral Modification" is unique in the literature. Similarly, the section on "Cancer Imaging" has a chapter on the "Imaging of Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor," which is not found in current oncology textbooks. The chapter on PET imaging investigates the promise of that modality. In the "Practice of Oncology" section, several chapters discuss the care of subpopulations of patients who pose different challenges to the clinician: immuno-suppressed patients; elderly patients; patients with organ dysfunction; and pregnant women. Foremost, an entire section of 13 chapters is devoted to "Cancer Survivorship." These innovative chapters represent a broad and in-depth review of the long-term consequences of cancer treatment with respect to specific malignancies. A chapter on "Cancer Advocacy" from the perspectives of cancer survivors is in this section.

Most of the chapters fall into sections on Solid Tumors, Hematologic Malignancies, and the Practice of Oncology. These sections cover site-specific malignances, treatment toxicities, oncologic emergencies, and supportive care. They focus on the latest multimodality approach to the patient, with an emphasis on the best-available evidence from the literature. Where available, we have asked authors to include Level 1 clinical, treatment, and management data for each site-specific chapter. In those instances where Level 1 evidence may not be available, the best clinical practices based on published clinical experience are summarized. As opposed to review articles or standard textbook chapters, the evidence-based chapters presented in this book strive to present the reader with a thorough search of the evidence, judgment of the scientific quality of the evidence, and lastly a bias-free conclusion of the evidence.

This new book offers readers a user-friendly approach to the vast amount of information in the oncology literature. It is our intention that this book will become a useful tool for the improvement of readers' clinical practices. The Editorial Board would like to acknowledge the outstanding effort of the Springer staff for pulling this project together. In particular, we would like to thank Laura Gillan who initiated this book project, and Paula Callaghan who brought it to its completion.

Alfred E. Chang, MD Patricia A. Ganz, MD Daniel F. Hayes, MD Timothy J. Kinsella, MD Harvey I. Pass, MD Joan H. Schiller, MD Richard M. Stone, MD Victor J. Strecher, PhD, MPH

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