Consent Timing and Experience: Modifiable Factors That May Influence Interest in Clinical Research

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX.
Journal of Oncology Practice 03/2012; 8(2):91-6. DOI: 10.1200/JOP.2011.000335
Source: PubMed


Low rates of participation in cancer clinical trials have been attributed to patient, institutional, and study characteristics. However, few studies have examined factors related to the consent process. We therefore evaluated the impact of consent timing and experience on markers of patient interest in research.
We performed a retrospective analysis of patients enrolled in a cancer center tissue repository. During enrollment, patients were asked if they were willing to be contacted in the future to provide medical follow-up information and/or to participate in other clinical research. We analyzed the association between patient responses to these questions and consent process factors using univariate analysis and multivariate logistic regression.
Of 922 patients evaluated, 85% agreed to be contacted to provide follow-up information, and 83% agreed to be contacted to participate in future research studies. In univariate analysis, willingness to be contacted for future research was associated with consenter experience (P = .01) and had a trend toward association with the timing of enrollment in relation to diagnosis (P = .08), but it was not associated with patient sex, race, or diagnosis. In multivariate analysis, responses remained associated with consenter experience (P = .02).
Factors related to the consent process, including consenter experience and timing of study enrollment, are significantly associated with or have a trend toward association with markers of patient interest in clinical research. These understudied and potentially modifiable variables warrant further evaluation.

14 Reads
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Fewer than 5 % of cancer patients participate in clinical research. Although this paltry rate has led to extensive research on this topic, previous studies have not sought verbatim comments in a real-time, comprehensive manner to understand why patients decline. This study used a low-risk, non-interventional parent study that focused on cancer-associated weight loss to understand patients' reasons for declining research participation. A research assistant wrote down the name and verbatim reason of all patients who declined to participate. These comments with accompanying patient demographic data are the subject of this report. Of the 334 patients, 51 (15 %) declined parent study enrollment; three comment-related themes emerged: (1) a repelling sense of too much institutional research, (2) overwhelming personal health issues, and (3) a low likelihood of returning to the institution. In univariate and multivariate analyses, only age (older) and gender (female) were associated with non-enrollment. Interestingly, 41 patients with fatigue scores of 7 or worse and 26 with pain scores of 7 or worse were enrolled. Although many factors were associated with declining to participate in research, symptom severity was not. Upfront education might help cancer patients better prioritize their participation in research, particularly as some patients felt overwhelmed by too much research in the institution; and for now, investigators should continue to keep asking patients for their participation.
    Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle 03/2014; 5(2). DOI:10.1007/s13539-014-0128-z · 7.32 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Little is known about how cancer patients feel about donating their tissue, especially in a multiethnic population. Structured interviews were conducted with 30 patients recently diagnosed with cancer, referred to the study by six cancer surgeons and oncologists and by other patients in the study. The participants reported a variety of cancers, and the sample reflected the racial distribution of Hawai`i, including Caucasians (23%), Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (27%), Asians (37%), Hispanics (7%), Native Americans (3%), and African Americans (3%). The interview questions and analysis were guided by the Framework Approach, with interview questions based on pre-set aims. Findings suggest that most cancer patients would donate cancer tissue to science, especially if informed that doing so could help researchers find causes of and cures for cancer. Patients varied on when in their cancer journey they would be most receptive to being asked for a donation, however two-thirds thought they would be more receptive if approached after surgery. Only three of the 30 patients said they would want to be re-consented each time their tissue is requested for research. They identified their physician as the preferred messenger regarding tissue donation. No obvious differences were seen by race. Findings confirm those of other researchers who have reported broad support for biobank participation if informed consent and confidentiality could be assured. Given that the physician was seen as the key messenger about biobanking, more education is needed around cancer tissue collection for physicians, as well as for cancer patients.
    Biopreservation and Biobanking 04/2014; 12(2):106-12. DOI:10.1089/bio.2013.0083 · 1.34 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: In oncology clinical trials, the assumption that a prior cancer diagnosis could interfere with study conduct or outcomes results in frequent exclusion of such patients. We determined the prevalence and characteristics of this practice in lung cancer clinical trials and estimated impact on trial accrual. Methods: We reviewed lung cancer clinical trials sponsored or endorsed by the Eastern Oncology Cooperative Group for exclusion criteria related to a prior cancer diagnosis. We estimated prevalence of prior primary cancer diagnoses among lung cancer patients using Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER)-Medicare linked data. We assessed the association between trial characteristics and prior cancer exclusion using chi-square analysis. All statistical tests were two-sided. Results: Fifty-one clinical trials (target enrollment 13072 patients) were included. Forty-one (80%) excluded patients with a prior cancer diagnosis as follows: any prior (14%), within five years (43%), within two or three years (7%), or active cancer (16%). In SEER-Medicare data (n = 210509), 56% of prior cancers were diagnosed within five years before the lung cancer diagnosis. Across trials, the estimated number and proportion of patients excluded because of prior cancer ranged from 0-207 and 0%-18%. Prior cancer was excluded in 94% of trials with survival primary endpoints and 73% of trials with nonsurvival primary endpoints (P = .06). Conclusions: A substantial proportion of patients are reflexively excluded from lung cancer clinical trials because of prior cancer. This inclusion criterion is applied widely across studies, including more than two-thirds of trials with nonsurvival endpoints. More research is needed to understand the basis and ramifications of this exclusion policy.
    JNCI Journal of the National Cancer Institute 11/2014; 106(11). DOI:10.1093/jnci/dju302 · 12.58 Impact Factor
Show more


14 Reads
Available from