Assessing Patient Preferences for Treatment Decisions for New Direct Acting Antiviral (DAA) Therapies for Chronic Hepatitis C Virus Infections
Advances in Therapy, 2019
The new direct acting antiviral (DAA) therapies are able to effectively treat chronic hepatitis C (CHC). This study elicited the preferences of CHC patients for treatment attributes of new DAAs.
An online discrete choice experiment survey was designed to collect data from adult CHC patients in the USA, UK, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy. Patients were asked to choose from alternative hypothetical DAA options, defined by differing levels of nine attributes [i.e., treatment duration, tablet count and packaging, cure rate, required office visits when on treatment, modifications to statins or to proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), and risks of diarrhea, headache and nausea]. Logistic regression was used to assess preference for the treatment options.
A total of 328 patients with CHC completed the survey (USA, n = 227; European countries, n = 101), with a mean age of 47.7 years (SD = 14.4) and an average 11.2 years since CHC diagnosis; 51% of patients were female. More than half (60%) of the patients had treatment for CHC. Patients significantly preferred a DAA regimen with higher cure rate, shorter treatment duration, lower risks of diarrhea, headache, and nausea (all p < 0.001), reduced need for office visits when on treatment (p = 0.044), and without requiring dose reduction or timing change in PPIs (p = 0.032). Tablet counts were not found to be statistically significant.
Given the overall high cure rates of new DAAs, CHC patients' preferences for therapy may be influenced by treatment attributes other than cure rates and tolerability. Treatments that are more convenient and require less disruption to their daily life (e.g., shorter treatment duration, no modification in PPI use, and fewer office visits when on treatment) are important to patients with CHC and should be considered when making treatment decisions.