Prospective preference assessment of patients' willingness to participate in a randomized controlled trial of intensity-modulated radiotherapy versus proton therapy for localized prostate cancer - Abstract

PURPOSE:To investigate patients' willingness to participate (WTP) in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) comparing intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) with proton beam therapy (PBT) for prostate cancer (PCa).

METHODS AND MATERIALS: We undertook a qualitative research study in which we prospectively enrolled patients with clinically localized PCa. We used purposive sampling to ensure a diverse sample based on age, race, travel distance, and physician. Patients participated in a semi-structured interview in which they reviewed a description of a hypothetical RCT, were asked open-ended and focused follow-up questions regarding their motivations for and concerns about enrollment, and completed a questionnaire assessing characteristics such as demographics and prior knowledge of IMRT or PBT. Patients' stated WTP was assessed using a 6-point Likert scale.

RESULTS: Forty-six eligible patients (33 white, 13 black) were enrolled from the practices of eight physicians. We identified 21 factors that impacted patients' WTP, which largely centered on five major themes: altruism/desire to compare treatments, randomization, deference to physician opinion, financial incentives, and time demands/scheduling. Most patients (27 of 46, 59%) stated they would either "definitely" or "probably" participate. Seventeen percent (8 of 46) stated they would "definitely not" or "probably not" enroll, most of whom (6 of 8) preferred PBT before their physician visit.

CONCLUSIONS: A substantial proportion of patients indicated high WTP in a RCT comparing IMRT and PBT for PCa.

Written by:
Shah A, Efstathiou JA, Paly JJ, Halpern SD, Bruner DW, Christodouleas JP, Coen JJ, Deville C Jr, Vapiwala N, Shipley WU, Zietman AL, Hahn SM, Bekelman JE. Are you the author?
Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.

Reference: Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2012 May 1;83(1):e13-9.
doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2011.11.072

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 22381899