Industry insight

ASCO, 2017: Web-based symptom reporting extends the lives of cancer patients

A randomized clinical trial of 766 patients showed that metastatic cancer patients who used the web-based tool to report their symptoms in real time while receiving chemotherapy survived five months longer compared to patients who received usual care. Findings were presented at the 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting.

The Kaiku® Health follow-up protocols and alert algorithms for metastatic and advanced cancer have been adapted based on the earlier report from the same study, led by Professor Ethan Basch, and they have already been implemented to routine care at first cancer centers in Europe.

In addition to the longer median of overall survival (31.2 months vs. 26 months) the study proofed that patients were willing and able to use a web application to report their symptoms regularly. Severe or worsening symptoms related to chemotherapy were triggered as alerts to the nurses, who were able to take immediate clinical actions. Basch states that without systematic monitoring the doctors and nurses are usually unaware of these symptoms up to half of the time.

“The results presented by professor Basch at ASCO are truly groundbreaking. As professor Basch himself stated the survival benefit of online follow-up based on alerts appeared to be greater than the effect of many new targeted cancer drugs for metastatic cancer.

Together with our medical advisors, we found the earlier results of the study so fascinating that we decided to start implementing the algorithm to Kaiku® Health. These follow-up algorithms should always be based on scientific evidence. Thanks to the configurability of Kaiku Health, we have been able to quickly adapt the model for the follow-up of patients with metastatic cancer ”, says Henri Virtanen, Kaiku® Health Head of Product.

An earlier study report showed that systematic symptom monitoring during routine cancer treatment can lead the better quality of life, and fewer visits to the emergency room due to adverse events. Patients who used web-based tool to report their symptoms were also able to continue chemotherapy longer than the patients receiving usual care.

Study was conducted at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York by Ethan M. Basch, MD, MSc, FASCO, Professor of Medicine at the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center of the University of North Carolina, and funded by the Conquer Cancer Foundation of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).

View the full abstract

View the first study report



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