Patient-reported outcomes of once-daily oral deferasirox (Exjade) in iron-overloaded patients with beta-thalassemia not achieving successful chelation with prior deferoxamine and/or deferiprone were investigated in a prospective, open-label, 1-year, multicenter study in the Middle East (ESCALATOR). The initial dose of deferasirox was 20 mg/kg/day, with subsequent dose adjustments. At baseline and the end of study (EOS), patients (n = 237) completed a 5-point rating scale for treatment satisfaction and convenience, and recorded time lost to treatment. At EOS, 90.7% of patients were 'satisfied'/'very satisfied' with their iron chelation therapy (ICT) versus 23.2% at baseline. 92.8% (EOS) versus 21.5% (baseline) of patients considered their therapy to be 'convenient'/'very convenient'. Time lost to therapy for daily activities was substantially reduced (3.2 +/- 8.6 [mean +/- SD; EOS] vs. 30.1 +/- 44.2 [baseline] h/month). Patients reported greater satisfaction and convenience, and lower impact on daily activities, with deferasirox than with previous ICT. This may help improve adherence to lifelong ICT in iron-overloaded beta-thalassemia patients.
2010 S. Karger AG, Basel.