Background: Humanistic burden considers the impact of an illness on a patient's health-related quality of life (HRQoL), activities of daily living (ADL), caregiver health, and caregiver QoL. Humanistic burden also considers treatment satisfaction and adherence to treatment regimens. Pompe disease is an autosomal recessive, progressive, multisystemic neuromuscular disease. Approval of enzyme-replacement therapy (ERT) markedly improved prognosis for patients, but considerable morbidity and a substantial humanistic burden remain. This article characterizes the humanistic burden of Pompe disease through a systematic literature review.
Methods: A systematic search of MEDLINE® and Embase® with back-referencing and supplementary literature searches was performed to retrieve data from interventional and non-interventional studies on the humanistic burden of Pompe disease. Publications were screened according to predefined criteria, extracted, and assessed for quality. Extracted data were narratively synthesized.
Results: No publications on the humanistic burden of infantile-onset Pompe disease (IOPD) were identified. As such, of 17 publications included here, all are in patients with late-onset Pompe disease (LOPD). Thirteen publications were initiated after approval of ERT, two were initiated before, and two overlapped the approval of ERT. The review shows that LOPD patients have a significantly lower HRQoL than the general population, even if treated with ERT. On transitioning to ERT, treatment was associated with improvement in the physical component score of the SF-36 and fatigue, although the SF-36 mental component score remained stable. Physical HRQoL remained below population norms after 4 years of ERT. Significantly more ERT-treated patients reported pain than controls, and bodily pain worsened in later years following ERT initiation. Treatment-naïve LOPD patients had significantly poorer ADL functioning compared with the general population, although ERT stabilized deteriorating functioning impairment. ERT studies showed caregivers provide 17.7 h/week informal care on average. Fifty percent, 40% and <20% of caregivers reported mental health, physical health, and financial/relational problems, respectively. In ERT-naïve patients, wheelchair use and home ventilatory support was associated with lower physical HRQoL and ADL functioning. In ERT-treated patients, key factors predicting worse HRQoL and ADL functioning were higher respiratory distress, poorer sleep quality, greater pain, and more fatigue.
Conclusions: Pompe disease has a substantial humanistic burden, with strong inter-relationships among and between humanistic burden parameters and clinical progression.
Keywords: Caregiver burden; Daily living; Humanistic burden; Pompe; Quality of life.