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Time associated with intravenous zoledronic acid administration in patients with breast or prostate cancer and bone metastasis

Authors Richhariya A, Qian Y, Zhao Y, Chung K

Received 27 October 2011

Accepted for publication 16 December 2011

Published 22 February 2012 Volume 2012:4 Pages 55—60


Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Akshara Richhariya1, Yi Qian2, Yufan Zhao2, Karen Chung1
1Amgen Inc, Global Health Economics, Thousand Oaks, CA, USA; 2Amgen Inc, Global Biostatistical Sciences, Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

Purpose: Intravenous (IV) zoledronic acid (ZA) is commonly used to delay skeletal complications secondary to bone metastases. However, the time associated with ZA administration may represent a significant burden to healthcare providers and patients. This study assessed the time associated with IV ZA infusion in patients with bone metastases secondary to breast or prostate cancer (BC or PC) in the clinic setting.
Methods: Eligible BC or PC patients with bone metastases scheduled to receive IV ZA were observed at seven US-based oncology clinics. Trained observers recorded the time for preinfusion tasks, ZA drug preparation, intravenous infusion, and follow-up activities.
Results: Data are reported for 39 patients (BC: 24; PC: 15). Mean administration time was 69 (standard deviation [SD] 42) minutes for all patients combined, 72 (SD 47) minutes for BC, and 65 (SD 33) minutes for PC. Activity times were comparable between tumor types. Mean time for preinfusion tasks (eg, assessment of vital signs, blood draw) and ZA preparation were 12 (SD 20) minutes and 2 (SD 1) minutes, respectively. Mean time required for intravenous infusion (ZA infusion and hydration, when provided) and follow-up activities were 54 (SD 31) minutes and 2 (SD 1) minutes, respectively.
Conclusion: Infusion time was the greatest time commitment associated with IV ZA administration, representing 78% of the total time on average. Time for preinfusion activities varied substantially. Overall, the mean time for ZA administration represents a notable time burden for healthcare providers and patients.

Keywords: time and motion, bisphosphonates, zoledronic acid, intravenous administration

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