OBJECTIVES: A key aim of hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatment development is to maximize efficacy while minimizing adverse events that impact on patient health-related quality of life (HRQL) and adherence, a significant issue for HCV treatment efficacy. In order to inform treatment development priorities, this study aimed to capture HRQL impact of flu-like symptoms experienced after peginterferon treatment injections and capture the value to patients of less frequent treatment injections. STUDY DESIGN: An online survey was conducted with 72 patients who were receiving peginterferon treatment. The survey comprised: patient experience of flu-like symptoms as a result of peginterferon treatment injections; utility values for impact of these symptoms on HRQL; patient preferences for treatment attributes of injection frequency, days experiencing flu-like symptoms and efficacy. RESULTS: Over 90% of participants had experienced flu-like symptoms after a peginterferon treatment injection. Mean HRQL for HCV patients with no flu-like symptoms was 0.73, while mean HRQL for HCV patients with current flu-like symptoms was 0.43. Increase in frequency of treatment injections per 4 weeks (odds ratio [OR] 0.57, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.52-0.63, P < 0.001), days per month of experiencing flu-like symptoms (OR 0.73, 95% CI 0.69-0.76, P < 0.001), and percentage treatment efficacy (OR 1.05, 95% CI 1.05-1.06, P < 0.001) were all independent predictors of patient treatment preferences. CONCLUSION: Flu-like symptoms experienced as a result of peginterferon treatment injections have a substantial HRQL impact for patients. This study demonstrates how important avoiding flu-like symptoms and reducing treatment injections are for patients in addition to treatment efficacy.
- discrete choice experiment (DCE)
- patient preferences
- utility values