Estimating global treatment toxicity burden from adverse-event data.

Author(s): Lee SM,  Hershman DL,  Miao J,  Zhong X,  Unger JM,  Cheung YKK

Journal: Cancer

Date: 2018 Feb 15

Major Program(s) or Research Group(s): NCORP

PubMed ID: 29112232

PMC ID: PMC5801103

Abstract: BACKGROUND: A summary measure that reflects the global toxicity burden of a treatment is essential for comparing therapies. Current toxicity summaries are ad hoc and do not distinguish among the severities and types of toxicities. Here a clinically feasible method for estimating the toxicity burden, based on a prospective evaluation of the toxicity profile of a randomized clinical trial of 746 prostate cancer patients conducted by SWOG, is proposed. METHODS: For 308 patients who experienced severe toxicities, 2 physicians randomly selected from 14 physicians evaluated each toxicity profile and assigned a visual analogue scale score (0-10) based on their impression of the global burden of toxicities. With mixed-effects models, severity scores and a 10-point toxicity burden score (TBS) were derived from 27 predictors accounting for severe (grade 3) and life-threatening (grade 4) toxicities for each organ class of the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events. RESULTS: For most organ classes, grade 3 toxicities had a TBS of 4.14 (95% confidence interval [CI], 3.65-4.63), but infections, cardiovascular events, and pulmonary events had a higher TBS with differences of 0.87 (95% CI, 0.53-1.21), 0.88 (95% CI, 0.51-1.25), and 0.73 (95% CI, 0.22-1.24), respectively. Moreover, most grade 4 events had a higher TBS than grade 3 events, except for hemorrhaging, pain, metabolic events, and musculoskeletal events. The intrarater and interrater correlations were 0.91 and 0.59, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The burden of toxicity grades differs with toxicity types. A TBS provides a toxicity burden summary that incorporates physicians' perspectives and differentiates between severe and life-threatening toxicities and organ classes. Cancer 2018;124:858-64. © 2017 American Cancer Society.