Characteristics and impact of the most-cited palliative oncology studies from 1995 to 2016

Corbin Eule, Nizar Bhulani, Mary E Paulk, Ramona L Rhodes, Muhammad S Beg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Palliative care, as a relatively young field within medicine, has increasingly used original research to validate and standardize its practice. In particular, palliative care has been incorporated into oncology to better address end-of-life decisions and care. The goal of this study is to identify seminal studies in the field of palliative oncology while more broadly characterizing the trends across the literature. Methods: The publication databases Scopus and Web of Science were queried using predefined search terms to identify palliative oncology studies published between 1995 and 2016. The 100 most-cited articles from the time periods 1995-2005 and 2006-2016 were selected and analysed for publication data and study content. Results: Palliative oncology studies were found to primarily examine patients with multiple rather than single cancer types and rarely were randomized controlled trials. Early research topics of pain, symptoms, and survival studies have been replaced by the issues of access to care, healthcare utilization, and religion and spirituality. Conclusions: By identifying and analyzing notable studies in palliative oncology, we found areas of research that are commonly investigated or overlooked and identified model studies that highlight the need for additional disease-specific randomized control trials to provide high quality clinical evidence in the field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1281
JournalBMC Cancer
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 22 2018


  • Oncology
  • Palliative medicine
  • Palliative oncology
  • Research trends

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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