HealthDay News — Independence is valued over survival among adult patients with neuroendocrine tumors (NETs), according to a study published in the December issue of the Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.
Daneng Li, M.D., from City of Hope in Duarte, California, and colleagues examined patient values toward treatment goals and competing health outcomes among adults with well-differentiated, grade 1 or 2, advanced NETs. Sixty patients starting a new systemic therapy completed four tools: the Health Outcomes Tool; Attitude Scale; Now versus Later Tool; and Prognosis and Treatment Perceptions Questionnaire.
The researchers found that most patients reported maintaining their independence as the most important health outcome, followed by survival, freedom from pain, and freedom from symptoms (46.7, 30.0, 11.7, and 11.7 percent, respectively). Sixty-seven percent of patients agreed with the statement “I would rather live a shorter life than lose my ability to care for myself;” 85 percent agreed with the statement “It is more important to maintain my thinking ability than to live as long as possible.” Overall, 48.3 and 40.0 percent of patients valued their quality of life one and five years in the future, respectively, more than their current quality of life. About half of patients (51.7 percent) perceived that their physician’s treatment goals aligned with their own.
“We hope that our study sheds light on the need for better communication between care providers and patients with neuroendocrine tumors in order to fully develop personalized treatment plans that are truly in line with the goals of each patient,” Li said in a statement.
Two authors disclosed financial ties to the biopharmaceutical industry.