Use of the word “cured” for cancer patients—implications for patients and physicians: The Siracusa charter

Paolo Tralongo, L. Dal Maso, A. Surbone, A. Santoro, U. Tirelli, V. Sacchini, C. Pinto, S. Crispino, F. Ferraù, G. Mandoliti, G. Tonini, A. Russo, D. Santini, A. Madeddu, V. Panebianco, S. Pergolizzi, D. Respini, C. Rolfo, M. Bongiovanni, F. De LorenzoC. Spatola, F. Di Raimondo, M. Terenziani, M. Peeters, C. Castoro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Long-term survival for adult patients with solid tumours continues to increase. For some cancers, the possibility of recurrence after a number of years is extremely low, and the risk of death becomes similar to that of the general population of the same sex and age. During the Fifth European Conference on Survivors and Chronic Cancer Patients held in Siracusa, Italy, June 2014, oncologists, general practitioners, epidemiologists, cancer patients and survivors, and patient advocates joined to discuss the possible use of the term “cured” in reference to some adult patients with solid tumours. The specific focus was the appropriateness of using the term in communicating with cancer patients, survivors, and their families. Initial results of the discussion, in concert with a review of the published literature on the subject, were later further discussed by all participants through electronic communication. The resulting final statement aims to suggest appropriate ways to use the word “cured” in the clinical and communicative setting, to highlight the potential impact of the word on patients, and to open a critical discussion concerning this timely and delicate matter.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e38-e40
JournalCurrent Oncology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Cure
  • Implications
  • Long-term survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


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