Introduction Patients living with biliary tract cancer (BTC) experience a decline in health-related quality of life (HRQoL). This study aimed to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the patient experience of BTC-related signs/symptoms and the impacts of these on daily functioning and HRQoL. Methods Patients with BTC participated in qualitative semi-structured concept elicitation interviews. Signs/symptoms and impacts of BTC were initially explored by targeted literature searches and interviews with five clinicians. Patient interviews were transcribed and coded using qualitative research software. Concept saturation was assessed over five interview waves. A sign/symptom or impact was defined as “salient” if mentioned by ≥ 50% of patients, with a mean disturbance rating of ≥ 5 (0–10 scale). A conceptual model of the patient experience of BTC-related signs/symptoms and impacts was produced. Results Twenty-three patients from the USA (78% women; median age: 54 years), diagnosed as having early (n = 3), locally advanced (n = 11) or metastatic (n = 9) disease, were interviewed. Sixty-six signs/symptoms and 12 impacts were identified. Of these, 46 signs/symptoms and 8 impacts were not identified from the targeted literature or clinician interviews. Concept saturation was reached by the fourth of five interview waves. Fourteen disease-related signs/symptoms (including fatigue/lack of energy, abdominal pain, lack of appetite, insomnia and diarrhoea) and three impacts (physical, emotional and cognitive impacts) were deemed “salient”. The conceptual model included 50 signs/symptoms and 12 impacts. Conclusion Patients with BTC reported a range of signs/symptoms and impacts that negatively affect daily functioning and HRQoL.
Biliary tract cancer; Interview study; Qualitative research
Patel N, Lie X, Gwaltney C, Rokutanda N, Barzi A, Melisi D, et al. Understanding Patient Experience in Biliary Tract Cancer: A Qualitative Patient Interview Study. Oncol Ther. 2021 Dec;9:557–573.
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