Background & aims: Patients with Crohn's disease (CD) must make decisions about their treatment. We aimed to quantify patients' preferences for different treatment outcomes and adverse events. We also evaluated the effects of latent class heterogeneity on these preferences.
Methods: An online stated-preference survey was completed by 812 individuals with CD in the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation Partners cohort (IBD Partners). Patients were given information on symptoms and severity of active disease; duration of therapy with corticosteroids; and risks of serious infection, cancer and surgery. Patients were asked to assume that their treatment was not working and to choose an alternative therapy. The primary outcome was remission-time equivalents (RTE) of a given duration of symptom severity or treatment-related risk. Latent class choice models identified groups of patients with dominant treatment-outcome preferences and associated patient characteristics with these groups.
Results: Latent class analysis demonstrated 3 distinct groups of survey responders whose choices were strongly influenced by avoidance of active symptoms (61%), avoidance of corticosteroid use (25%), or avoidance of risks of cancer, infection or surgery (14%) when choosing a therapy. Class membership was correlated with age, sex, mean short CD activity index score and corticosteroid avoidance. RTEs in each latent class differed significantly from the mean RTEs for the overall sample, although the symptom-avoidant class most closely approximated the overall sample.
Conclusions: In an online survey of patients with CD, we found substantial heterogeneity in preference for medication efficacy and risk of harm. Physicians and regulators should therefore not assume that all patients have mean-value preferences-this could result in significant differences in health-technology assessment models.
Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02316678.
Keywords: Anti-TNF; Biologic; Corticosteroids; Discrete Choice Experiments.
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