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Japanese patient preferences regarding intermediate to advanced hepatocellular carcinoma treatments

Authors Chiba T, Hiraoka A, Mikami S, Shinozaki M, Osaki Y, Obu M, Ohki T, Mita N, Ledesma D, Yoshihara N, Beusterien K, Amos K, Bridges JFP, Yokosuka O

Received 15 December 2018

Accepted for publication 3 April 2019

Published 30 April 2019 Volume 2019:13 Pages 637—647


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Tetsuhiro Chiba,1 Atsushi Hiraoka,2 Shigeru Mikami,3 Masami Shinozaki,4 Yukio Osaki,5 Masamichi Obu,6 Takamasa Ohki,7 Naoyuki Mita,8 Dianne Ledesma,8 Nariaki Yoshihara,8 Kathleen Beusterien,9 Kaitlan Amos,9 John FP Bridges,10 Osamu Yokosuka11

1Department of Gastroenterology and Nephrology, Chiba University Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba, Japan; 2Gastroenterology Center, Ehime Prefectural Central Hospital, Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture, Japan; 3Department of Internal Medicine, Kikkoman General Hospital, Noda-shi, Chiba Prefecture, Japan; 4Department of Gastroenterology, Numazu City Hospital, Shizuoka, Japan; 5Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Osaka Red Cross Hospital, Osaka, Japan; 6Department of Gastroenterology, Kimitsu Chuo Hospital, Kisarazu City, Chiba Prefecture, Japan; 7Department of Gastroenterology, Mitsui Memorial Hospital, Tokyo, Japan; 8Market Access, Bayer Yakuhin, Ltd., Tokyo, Japan; 9ORS Health, Washington DC, USA; 10Department of Biomedical Informatics and Department of Surgery, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus, OH, USA; 11Japan Community Health care Organization Funabashi Central Hospital, Funabashi, Chiba Prefecture, Japan

Purpose: This study aimed to evaluate Japanese patient preferences regarding features of intermediate or advanced (Progressed) hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) treatments: transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), hepatic arterial infusion chemotherapy (HAIC), and oral anti-cancer therapy.
Methods: Patients with HCC, recruited from clinical sites and a patient panel in Japan, completed a cross-sectional web-based survey. Preferences were quantified using best–worst scaling, where patients identified the best and worst among 13 treatment features. Direct elicitation was used to identify preference for TACE, HAIC, or oral therapy, including the likelihood of trying each. Additional items asked for the willingness to try an oral medication that delays progression by six months but has an 8% or 21% risk of severe hand-foot skin reaction (HFSR).
Results: The sample (N=119; 29 early stage; 90 Progressed) most preferred “oral medication”, “artery branches plugged”, and “prevents formation of new blood vessels”, and least preferred “risk of liver damage” and “risk of catheter-related complications”. Overall, 51%, 40%, and 8% preferred oral therapy, TACE, and HAIC, respectively (p<0.05), and the mean likelihood of trying each were 59%, 52%, and 35%, respectively (p<0.001). Patients with sorafenib or TACE experience most preferred what they had received; however, both groups were equally willing to try the other treatment. Patients preferring oral therapy favored “oral medication” over “artery branches plugged”, “surgery is repeated as required when the cancer grows again”, and “risk of liver damage”, compared to those preferring TACE (p<0.05). Sixty-eight percent would probably try therapy with an 8% risk of severe HFSR, compared to 50% with a 21% risk.
Conclusion: Treatment type, mode of action, and risks may drive HCC patient preferences. Such features likely should be incorporated into physician–patient interactions regarding treatment decision-making.

Keywords: hepatocellular carcinoma, patient preference, best-worst scaling

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