Electronic Patient-reported Outcomes During Breast Cancer Adjuvant Radiotherapy

Laura Takala, Tuuli-Elina Kuusinen, Tanja Skyttä, Pirkko-Liisa Kellokumpu-Lehtinen, Maarit Bärlund

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) have become extremely important in following patients’ health-related quality of life during cancer treatments. The aim of this study was to assess the usefulness of electronic PROs (ePROs) during adjuvant radiotherapy (RT) in patients with early breast cancer. Materials and Methods: A registry trial was conducted with a total of 253 patients with breast cancer receiving RT. Adverse event data were collected from 9 items on the ePRO questionnaires that were administered before RT (N = 253), at the end of RT (± 3 days; N = 234), 1 month after RT (N = 230), and 3 months (N = 225) after RT. The patient characteristics and treatment details were collected from the medical records. Results: The patients have started actively using the ePRO system, and the response rates were high (82.6%). During RT, 39.3% of the ePRO responses were about symptoms, and 60.7% were about treatment-related questions or advice. Patients treated with hypofractionated RT reported fewer local adverse events such as skin symptoms (P = .001) and pain (P = .002) than those who received conventional RT. One of the main findings of this study was that tiredness, fatigue, and anxiety were commonly reported on the patients’ ePRO questionnaires, but they were rarely recorded in the medical records. Conclusion: Patients were motivated to use the ePRO system, and the response rates were high. Additionally, patients seemed to find that the ePRO system was an easy way to contact their own health care professionals. More attention should be paid to mental well-being during visits to the clinic. Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) have become extremely important in following patients’ health-related quality of life during cancer treatments. The present study assessed electronic PROs during adjuvant radiotherapy in a real-world setting. The study was conducted with a total of 253 patients with early breast cancer. The patients have started actively using the ePRO system, and the response rates were high (82.6%).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e252-e270
JournalCLINICAL BREAST CANCER
Volume21
Issue number3
Early online date20 Oct 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • Patient-reported outcomes
  • PROs
  • Radiotherapy
  • Real-world data

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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