Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center Opens New Facility in Foxborough

Press Release

In Partnership With:

Partner | Cancer Centers | <b>Dana-Farber Cancer Institute</b>

Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center opened a new facility in Foxborough, MA, which provides world-class cancer care to patients in southern Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center opened a new facility in Foxborough, MA, on August 11, 2022. The 30,000 square foot space, located at 22 Patriot Place, provides world-class cancer care to patients in southern Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

This Foxborough cancer facility offers medical oncology and hematology care, blood transfusions, clinical trials, and pharmacy. In the coming months, the center will also offer genetic counseling, palliative care and psychosocial support and survivorship. Brigham and Women’s Hospital, located in the adjacent building, offers clinical lab and imaging services.

This new facility has 28 infusion bays, 14 exam rooms, and important support services including access to nutrition and social work services.

“We are so pleased that patients in southern Massachusetts and Rhode Island will now have access to the same services and resources provided to Dana-Farber patients in Boston – including many clinical trials – while maintaining the comfort and convenience of their local community,” said Craig Bunnell, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Dana-Farber.

“We are delighted to bring Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center services to residents in this region, which will allow our specialists to provide care that patients need in a convenient setting, closer to home,” said Charles A. Morris, MD, MPH, deputy chief medical officer, Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Free parking and valet service is available for patients. An onsite cafe in the building adjacent to this new facility has seating overlooking the entrance of Gillette Stadium and is also available to patients and their companions. Additional restaurants and coffee options, as well as shopping and dining, are located within walking distance.

For more information on this new facility, visit https://www.dana-farber.org/about-us/locations/dana-farber-cancer-institute---foxborough/

Sexual dysfunction high among women with lung cancer

Largest study to date evaluating sexual dysfunction in women with lung cancer

Sexual dysfunction is highly prevalent in women with lung cancer with most survey participants reporting little to no interest in sexual activity, according to research led by Narjust Florez (Duma), MD, associate director for the Cancer Care Equity Program at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The research was presented today at the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) World Conference on Lung Cancer 2022.

Reporting results of the Sexual Health Assessment in Women with Lung Cancer (SHAWL) study, researchers show marked differences in sexual desire/interest and vaginal pain/discomfort when comparing before and after lung cancer diagnosis.

“The SHAWL study is about bringing women’s sexuality to the forefront of scientific discussions because it has been significantly understudied,” said Florez, who is also an oncologist in the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology at Dana-Farber. “When comparing the information before lung cancer diagnosis and after lung cancer diagnosis, the difference is staggering. Lung cancer significantly affects the sexual health of these women.”

The SHAWL study is an observational, cross-sectional, international survey administered via the GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer and the Lung Cancer Registry. The study utilized the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS®) Sexual Function and Satisfaction Measures (a validated questionnaire) to evaluate sexual health. The multidisciplinary SHAWL study team is comprised of mostly female health professionals and includes a certified sexuality counselor and 2 lung cancer patient advocates.

Study participants were recruited between June 2020 to June 2021. Participants were asked about sexual activity pre-lung cancer diagnosis and over the “past 30 days” prior to completing the survey.

Of the 249 women completed the survey, most (64%) patients had stage IV lung cancer and 107 (45%) were receiving targeted therapy with 93 of those (87%) taking the medication for more than six months. At the time of survey completion, 78 participants (33%) were taking anti-depressants and 34 (14%) were taking beta-blockers. Within the prior 30 days, 127 (53%) participants had sexual activity with themselves or someone else. 183 (77%) participants reported little to no interest in sexual activity, and 159 (67%) stated rarely or never wanting to have sexual activity. The most common reasons negatively affecting participants' satisfaction with their sex life included fatigue 95 (40%), feeling sad/unhappy 66 (28%), issues with their partners 52 (22%), and shortness of breath 36 (15%).

When comparing before and after lung cancer diagnosis, marked differences were noted in decreased sexual desire/interest (15% vs. 31%, p<0.001) and vaginal pain/discomfort (13% vs. 43%, p<0.001). Out of the 127 participants that had sexual activity in the last 30 days, 75 (59%) reported significant issues with vaginal dryness and 63 (26%) vaginal pain/discomfort during sexual activity.

“Sexual dysfunction is prevalent in women with lung cancer, and we need to remember that sexual health is related to quality of life,” said Florez. “Sexual health should be integrated into thoracic oncology and further research is necessary to develop tailored interventions for patients with lung cancer. Patients whose sexual health is addressed have better quality of life, better pain control, and better relationships with their partners and their healthcare team.”

About Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is one of the world’s leading centers of cancer research and treatment. Dana-Farber’s mission is to reduce the burden of cancer through scientific inquiry, clinical care, education, community engagement, and advocacy. Dana-Farber is a federally designated Comprehensive Cancer Center and a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School.

We provide the latest treatments in cancer for adults through Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center and for children through Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center. Dana-Farber is the only hospital nationwide with a top 5 U.S. News & World Report Best Cancer Hospital ranking in both adult and pediatric care.

As a global leader in oncology, Dana-Farber is dedicated to a unique and equal balance between cancer research and care, translating the results of discovery into new treatments for patients locally and around the world, offering more than 1,100 clinical trials.