Patient preferences in choosing chemotherapy regimens for advanced non-small cell lung cancer

Sarita Dubey, Roger L. Brown, Sarah L. Esmond, Barbara J. Bowers, Janet M. Healy, Joan H. Schiller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


The major difference between cisplatin-based chemotherapy doublets for advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is not in the outcomes of their use - rather, it is in the side effects and toxicities that they cause. The degree to which oncologists involve lung cancer patients in discussions regarding the selection of chemotherapy is unknown. A questionnaire regarding patient concerns about chemotherapy and physician discussions was sent to patients registered in the Alliance for Lung Cancer Advocacy, Support, and Education (ALCASE) database from 2000-2002. About three-quarters of the respondents reported that if they were given the option, they would consider side effects important in choosing a particular regimen - and nausea was the most important side effect that would influence that decision. Female patients were more likely to worry about infection and hair loss resulting from therapy than were men. Further, about two-thirds of patients reported that they had discussed differences in chemotherapy side effects with their physicians, particularly if the physicians were female, although less than half of those patients recalled discussing the selection of a particular regimen based upon its side-effect profile. Different chemotherapy regimens with varied side-effect profiles have been developed, but medical oncologists do not present options for chemotherapy uniformly to their patients based on possible or probable adverse reactions. Better communication between physician and patient about the likelihood of side effects may reduce chemotherapy-related stress for patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-154
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Supportive Oncology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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