New data shows that patient-reported symptom monitoring improves the quality of life in lung cancer patients. The study was published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
Enhancing Life Quality for Lung Cancer Patients
Pleural mesothelioma is an asbestos-related cancer that affects the lungs. Mesothelioma patients have many of the same symptoms as lung cancer patients. Among other things, they tend to suffer from breathing problems, chest pain, cough, weakness, and fatigue.
One recent study focused on how patients’ lives can be improved during and after lung cancer treatment. Researchers were interested in using “patient-reported outcomes measures.” Or PROMs for short. PROMS can monitor how patients are feeling. These PROMs would help keep track of symptoms and make sure that patients were getting the best care possible.
In the past, these PROMs were sent to clinicians, who would decide what to do based on the information. But in this new study, the researchers wanted to see if it would work better to send alerts directly to the patients themselves. This way, patients could be more involved in their own care and treatment.
The main goal of the study was to compare two different ways of using these alerts. In the first way, patients would get an alert if something seemed wrong. This is called the “reactive approach”. In the second way, the clinician would get an alert and then let the patient know what to do. This is called the “active approach”. Researchers wanted to see which approach was better at improving the patient’s quality of life.
Reactive vs. Active: The New Frontier in Mesothelioma Care
What they found was that patients who got alerts directly seemed to benefit just as much as those who had their healthcare providers get the alerts. The “reactive approach” benefited just as much as the “active approach.” This means that patients can play a bigger role in their own care, and this could be a simpler way to make sure they’re feeling their best.
In summary, this study shows that paying attention to symptoms and using alerts can really make a difference for lung cancer patients. It’s like having a little extra help to make sure everything is going well. And what’s even better is that patients can get this help directly, which might be easier for everyone.
Researchers are always finding new ways to improve mesothelioma care. Studies like this one are a big step in the right direction.
Billingy, N. E., N M F Tromp, V., Aaronson, N. K., Hoek, R. J. A., Bogaard, H. J., Onwuteaka-Philipsen, B. D., van de Poll-Franse, L., Hugtenburg, J. G., Belderbos, J., Becker-Commissaris, A., van den Hurk, C. J. G., Walraven, I., & the SYMPRO-Lung Consortium. (2023). Quality of life after patient-initiated versus physician-initiated response to symptom monitoring: The SYMPRO-Lung trial. JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, djad159. https://doi.org/10.1093/jnci/djad159