Feasibility of Implementing the Patient-Reported Outcomes Version of the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events in a Multicenter Trial: NCCTG N1048

J Clin Oncol. 2018 Sep 11;36(31):JCO2018788620. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2018.78.8620. Online ahead of print.


Purpose The US National Cancer Institute (NCI) Patient-Reported Outcomes version of the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (PRO-CTCAE) was developed to enable patient reporting of symptomatic adverse events in oncology clinical research. This study was designed to assess the feasibility and resource requirements associated with implementing PRO-CTCAE in a multicenter trial. Methods Patients with locally advanced rectal cancer enrolled in the National Cancer Institute-sponsored North Central Cancer Treatment Group (Alliance) Preoperative Radiation or Selective Preoperative Radiation and Evaluation before Chemotherapy and Total Mesorectal Excision trial were asked to self-report 30 PRO-CTCAE items weekly from home during preoperative therapy, and every 6 months after surgery, via either the Web or an automated telephone system. If participants did not self-report within 3 days, a central coordinator called them to complete the items. Compliance was defined as the proportion of participants who completed PRO-CTCAE assessments at expected time points. Results The prespecified PRO-CTCAE analysis was conducted after the 500th patient completed the 6-month follow-up (median age, 56 years; 33% female; 12% nonwhite; 43% high school education or less; 5% Spanish speaking), across 165 sites. PRO-CTCAE was reported by participants at 4,491 of 4,882 expected preoperative time points (92.0% compliance), of which 3,771 (77.2%) were self-reported by participants and 720 (14.7%) were collected via central coordinator backup. Compliance at 6-month post-treatment follow-up was 333 of 468 (71.2%), with 122 (26.1%) via backup. Site research associates spent a median of 15 minutes on PRO-CTCAE work for each patient visit. Work by a central coordinator required a 50% time commitment. Conclusion Home-based reporting of PRO-CTCAE in a multicenter trial is feasible, with high patient compliance and low site administrative requirements. PRO-CTCAE data capture is improved through centralized backup calls.