How Do Patients Perceive Oral Oncology Drugs?

In a poster presented at the ECCO 15 – ESMO 34 Joint Congress, Dr B. Homet and colleagues from the Department of Medical Oncology, Hospital “12 de Octubre,” Madrid, Spain, outlined the results of a study sought to assess patient opinions on both oral and intravenous (IV) cancer treatments.

Although standard chemotherapeutic agents are frequently administered intravenously, oral agents are becoming more prominent. In a poster presented at the ECCO 15 — ESMO 34 Joint Congress, Dr B. Homet and colleagues from the Department of Medical Oncology, Hospital “12 de Octubre,” Madrid, Spain, outlined the results of a study that sought to assess patient opinions on both oral and intravenous (IV) cancer treatments.

A total of 190 patients were enrolled in the study and completed a survey in which they were asked to compare differences in preference, tolerance, and effectiveness between oral and IV chemotherapy. Of these patients, 70% (n = 133) were women with a median age of 60 years at diagnosis (range, 28 to 91 years). The majority (50%) had gynecological tumors, with 90% of these being breast cancer, 30% had gastrointestinal cancer, 18% had lung cancer, and 2% had other neoplasms.

The survey revealed that the majority of patients preferred oral therapy over IV administration (76% vs. 20%; P <.001), but that 60% considered IV chemotherapy to be more effective, while 11% chose oral therapy and 29% found both equally effective (P <.001). Patients generally tolerated oral therapy better than IV chemotherapy (64% vs. 36%; P <.001). The most common adverse event with oral therapy was diarrhea compared with vomiting for IV treatments.

Dr Homet and colleagues concluded that the study demonstrates a patient preference for oral therapy, which is generally tolerated better, but that patients do not perceive oral treatments as being as effective. Clinicians prescribing oral therapies may consider discussing the efficacy of these drugs with their patients.

ECCO/ESMO Poster 1246

To locate this poster, visit www.poster-submission.com/visitor/pstlist.