Financial Toxicity (FT) is increasingly recognized as a major contributor to morbidity and mortality in a variety of cancers. Previous research has demonstrated patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs) exhibit a substantial comorbidity burden and have an increased risk of mortality. The purpose of this study was to define rates of FT and the implications on morbidity and mortality in this population using patient reported data.
All patients seen at the Levine Cancer Institute, a tertiary hospital-based specialty practice, were surveyed prior to their visit over a six-month period. All patients were aged ≥18 years and diagnosed with Philadelphia chromosome−negative classical MPNs including myelofibrosis (MF), polycythemia vera (PV), and essential thrombocythemia (ET). The survey consisted of the PROMIS Global-10 measure and two questions from the COST measure. FT was defined as scoring 4 or less (maximum: 10) in agreement with the COST questions: "I know that I have enough money in savings, retirement, or assets to cover the costs of my treatment" and "I am satisfied with my current financial situation." Patient disease and treatment characteristics were summarized with frequencies and proportions for categorical variables and medians and ranges for continuous variables. Correlation of numerical FT scores with PROMIS scores was assessed with Pearson correlation coefficients and ANOVA regression. Additionally, model selection was carried out using logistic regression to identify factors impacting the incidence of financial toxicity (where FT score <=4). Kaplan Meier methods were used to estimate overall survival distributions and log rank tests were used to compare between groups.
A total of 51 patients were surveyed. Disease type consisted of 45.1% MF, 31.4% PV, and 23.5% ET. Median age was 62 years. Most patients were high risk by disease specific scoring systems (58.8%), Caucasian (82.4%), and had commercial insurance (56.9%). Median distance from the clinic was 21 miles and median time from diagnosis was 2.2 years. Of the 51 patients surveyed, 20 (39.2%) met the predefined definition of exhibiting severe FT. Lower FT scores (indicating a higher degree of FT) were associated with lower global physical (p < .001) and mental (p < .002) scores by the PROMIS measures (Figure 1). There was no statistically significant difference in survival between patients with FT scores >4 compared to patients with FT scores <=4; however, there was a trend toward decreased survival in those with lower FT scores. The rate of mortality in those with FT score ≤4 was 15.0% compared to 3.2% in those with FT score >4 (p =.287). There also appeared to be a separation of the survival curves when looking at both time from diagnosis and time from survey administration (Figures 2 and 3). Age, race, gender, insurance type, distance from the hospital, disease type, disease specific risk classification, medications utilized, and history of blood/marrow transplant were not found to be significantly different in the two groups.
Patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms represent an extremely vulnerable population for financial toxicity with quantifiably increased distress related to this toxicity increasing morbidity and potentially mortality. These findings should be validated in a larger patient cohort and interventions devised to reduce financial distress.
Knight:Foundation for Financial Planning: Research Funding. Ai:InCyte: Speakers Bureau; Amgen: Speakers Bureau. Trivedi:Incyte: Speakers Bureau. Avalos:Best Practice-Br Med J: Patents & Royalties: receives royalties from a coauthored article on evaluation of neutropenia; Juno: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees. Symanowski:Boston Biomedical: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Carsgen Therapeutics: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Eli Lilly: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees; Immatics: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees. Grunwald:Amgen: Consultancy; Novartis: Research Funding; Genentech/Roche: Research Funding; Pfizer: Consultancy; Daiichi Sankyo: Consultancy; Trovagene: Consultancy; Agios: Consultancy; Incyte: Consultancy, Research Funding; Cardinal Health: Consultancy; Forma Therapeutics: Research Funding; Abbvie: Consultancy; Celgene: Consultancy; Merck: Consultancy; Medtronic: Equity Ownership; Janssen: Research Funding.
Asterisk with author names denotes non-ASH members.