Purpose: Availability of targeted oral anticancer agents (OAAs) has transformed care for patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC). Our objective was to identify patterns and predictors of OAA use within 12 months after mRCC was detected to understand real-world adoption of OAAs.
Methods: We used a novel, North Carolina cancer registry-linked multipayer claims data resource to examine patterns of use of five oral therapies among patients with mRCC diagnosed in 2006-2015, with claims through 2016. Patients were required to have 12 months of continuous enrollment before metastatic index date. Log-Poisson models estimated unadjusted and adjusted risk ratios (RRs) for associations between patient characteristics and OAA use. In sensitivity analyses, we used a competing risk framework to estimate adjusted risk differences in OAA use.
Results: Our population-based study of 713 patients demonstrated low (37%) OAA use during the first year after metastatic index date among both publicly and privately insured patients, with shifting patterns of use consistent with regulatory approvals over time. Compared with patients age 18-49 years, patients age 70-74 years were half likely to use OAAs (95% confidence limit [CL], 0.34 to 0.78) and patients age 80+ years were 71% less likely to use OAAs (95% CL, 0.17 to 0.50). Patients with two comorbidities (RR, 0.73; 95% CL, 0.55 to 0.98) and those with 3+ comorbidities (RR, 0.68; 95% CL, 0.50 to 0.91) were less likely to receive OAA than those without comorbidities. Patients with higher frailty also had lower OAA utilization (RR, 0.67; 95% CL, 0.52 to 0.85).
Conclusion: These findings suggest a need to better understand the system-level and provider-level drivers of OAA underuse, as well as OAA adherence and associated survival.