Purpose: To estimate patient preferences regarding potential adverse outcomes of local versus systemic corticosteroid therapies for noninfectious uveitis by using a best-worst scaling (BWS) approach.
Methods: Local and systemic therapies are alternatives for noninfectious uveitis that have different potential adverse outcomes. Patients participating in the Multicenter Uveitis Steroid Treatment Trial Follow-up Study (MUST FS) and additional patients with a history of noninfectious uveitis treated at two academic medical centers (Johns Hopkins University and University of Pennsylvania) were surveyed about their preferences regarding six adverse outcomes deemed important to patients. Using "case 1" BWS, patients were asked to repeatedly select the most and least worrying from a list of outcomes (in the survey three outcomes per task).
Results: Eighty-two patients in the MUST FS and 100 patients treated at the academic medical centers completed the survey. According to BWS, patients were more likely to select vision not meeting the requirement for driving (individual BWS score: median = 3, interquartile range, 0-5), development of glaucoma (2, 1-4), and needing eye surgery (1, 0-3) as the most worrying outcomes as compared to needing medicine for high blood pressure/cholesterol (-2, -4 to 0), development of cataracts (-2, -3 to -1), or infection (sinusitis) (-3, -5 to 0). Larger BWS scores indicated the outcomes were more worrying to patients.
Conclusions: Patients with noninfectious uveitis considered impaired vision, development of glaucoma, and need for eye surgery worrying adverse outcomes, which suggests that it is especially desirable to avoid these outcomes if possible. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00132691.)