Indexed on: 31 May '19Published on: 30 Mar '19Published in: BMC Cancer
There is limited information on changes over time in carcinoid syndrome (CS) symptoms and quality of life (QoL). This study assessed change in CS symptoms and QoL in patients treated with somatostatin analogs (SSAs) using the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General (FACT-G) and Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS)-29 instruments. Patients ≥18 years old with CS symptoms and treated with SSA or non-SSA agents in the United States were recruited through a patient advocacy group to complete a two-part, anonymous online survey. Time point (T) 1 survey was fielded from July-October 2016, and T2 survey followed 6 months later. Clinical characteristics and SSA treatment duration were assessed at T1. FACT-G and PROMIS-29 QoL surveys were administered and CS symptoms were assessed at T1 and T2; proportions of patients not experiencing symptoms were compared by McNemar's test. Healthcare resource utilization (HRU) was assessed for the T1-T2 interval, and mean difference in QoL score from T1 to T2 by SSA duration was calculated. Of 117 participants at T1, 89 (76%) completed the T2 survey and served as the study sample; 11 (13%) were treated with SSAs for > 0-2 years, 37 (42%) for > 2-5 years, and 39 (45%) for > 5 years. A higher proportion of patients at T2 vs. T1 reported the following symptoms as not applicable: diarrhea (16% vs. 7%, p < 0.05), flushing (28% vs. 18%, p < 0.05), wheezing (78% vs 66%, p = 0.008). Most patients (89%) had a physical exam and a mean of 7.2 healthcare provider visits between T1 and T2. Patients treated with SSAs for ≤2 years had a mean positive change of 3.7 in their FACT-G total score between surveys, and 6.0 in an additional set of CS-specific questions. Patients receiving SSAs for > 2 years did not appear to associate with a clinically meaningful improvement in QoL score as assessed by FACT-G between T1 and T2; patients also had no clinically meaningful improvement as assessed by PROMIS-29. There may be clinically important improvement in QoL as measured by FACT-G in patients in earlier years of receiving SSA, which may not appear in later years of SSA treatment.