Exploring the nature of perceived treatment burden: a study to compare treatment burden measures in adults with cystic fibrosis.

Rana Altabee, Siobhan B. Carr, Janice Abbott, Rory Cameron, Daniel Office, Jessie Matthews, Nicholas Simmonds, Rebecca Cosgriff, David Turner, Jennifer Whitty

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Background: Despite the importance of reducing treatment burden for people with cystic fibrosis (CF), it has not been fully understood as a concept. This study aims to quantify the treatment burden perceived by CF adults and explore the association between different validated treatment burden measures.
Methods: This is a cross-sectional observational study of CF adults attending a single large UK adult center. Participants completed an online survey that contained three different treatment burden scales; CF Questionnaire-Revised (CFQ-R) subscale, CF Quality of Life (CFQoL) subscale, and the generic multimorbidity treatment burden questionnaire (MTBQ).
Results: Among 101 participants, the median reported treatment burden by the CFQ-R subscale was 55.5 (IQR 33.3 – 66.6), the CFQoL subscale was 66.6 (IQR 46.6 – 86.6), and the MTBQ reversed global score was 84.6 (IQR 73.1 – 92.3). No correlation was found between respondents’ demographic or clinical variables and treatment burden measured via any of the three measures. All treatment burden measures showed correlations against each other. More treatments were associated with high treatment burden as measured by the CFQR, CFQoL subscales, and the MTBQ. However, longer treatment time and more complex treatment plans were correlated with high treatment burden as measured by the CFQ-R and CFQoL subscales, but not with the MTBQ.
Conclusions: Treatment burden is a substantial issue in CF. Currently, the only available way to evaluate it is with the CF-specific quality of life measure treatment burden subscales (CFQ-R and CFQoL); both indicated that treatment burden increases with more treatments, longer treatment time, and more complex treatments.
Original languageEnglish
Article number36
JournalNIHR Open Research
Publication statusPublished - 9 May 2022

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