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Oncologist and Patient Preferences for Novel Agents in First-Line Treatment for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia: Commonalities and Disconnects

Authors Le H, Ryan K, Wahlstrom SK, Maculaitis MC, Will O, Mulvihill E, LeBlanc TW

Received 29 October 2020

Accepted for publication 7 January 2021

Published 22 January 2021 Volume 2021:15 Pages 99—110


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Hannah Le,1 Kellie Ryan,1 Svea K Wahlstrom,2 Martine C Maculaitis,3 Oliver Will,4 Emily Mulvihill,5 Thomas W LeBlanc6

1US Medical Affairs, AstraZeneca, Gaithersburg, MD, USA; 2US Patient Safety, AstraZeneca, Wilmington, DE, USA; 3Kantar, Health Division, New York, NY, USA; 4Kantar, Health Division, Horsham, PA, USA; 5Kantar, Health Division, St. Louis, MO, USA; 6Division of Hematologic Malignancies and Cellular Therapy, Duke University, Durham, NC, USA

Correspondence: Martine C Maculaitis Email

Purpose: Treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) has changed dramatically with the approval of novel agents. Information regarding how patients and oncologists make trade-offs across attributes of novel therapies is limited. The purpose of this study was to understand how variations in attributes impact treatment choice among patients and oncologists.
Patients and Methods: In this study, 371 participants (patients [n=220] and oncologists [n=151]) completed an online discrete choice experiment (DCE) to quantify preferences for first-line (1L) CLL treatment with novel agents; participants chose between hypothetical treatment profiles consisting of eight attributes with varying levels taken from published literature. Hierarchical Bayesian models were used to estimate attribute level preference weights. The weights were used to compute relative importance, a measure of how influential an attribute is to treatment choice.
Results: Increasing 2-year progression-free survival (PFS) from 75% to 95% had the greatest impact on preferences in 1L CLL treatment, accounting for 40% and 30% of the variation in preferences among patients and oncologists, respectively. Risk differences in atrial fibrillation (AF), infection, and discontinuation due to adverse events (AEs) were also important to patients and oncologists. Among both groups, risk differences in tumor lysis syndrome (TLS) and bleeding were least influential in treatment choice. Oncologists required 2– 4 times higher increases in 2-year PFS than patients to accept increased risks of AF, discontinuation due to AEs, bleeding, TLS, and arthralgia/myalgia.
Conclusion: Patient–oncologist communication may be improved by a more focused discussion on the risks of AEs, relative to treatment outcomes, with patient goals in mind.

Keywords: leukemia, lymphocytic, chronic, B-cell, progression-free survival, tumor lysis syndrome, oncologists

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