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How should we assess patient-reported outcomes in the onco-hematology clinic?

Cannella, Lauraa; Efficace, Fabioa; Giesinger, Johannesb

Current Opinion in Supportive and Palliative Care: December 2018 - Volume 12 - Issue 4 - p 522–529
doi: 10.1097/SPC.0000000000000386
BLOOD, BONE MARROW AND LYMPHATICS: Edited by Christopher Dalley

Purpose of review The improvement of clinical outcomes in hematologic malignancies has paved the way for a more systematic patient-reported outcomes (PROs) assessment in routine clinical practice. PROs help to narrow the gap between patients’ and healthcare professionals’ view of patient health and treatment success. This review outlines key aspects of planning and performing PRO assessments in daily routine such as the selection of PRO instruments, electronic PRO data collection, and the presentation and interpretation of PRO results.

Recent findings A substantial body of literature has demonstrated that careful planning, adequate logistics, and elaborate methodology allow to successfully integrate the patients’ experience in routine care. Several examples exist of the clinical benefits of systematically collecting PRO information in daily care of patients with solid tumors. These include improved patient–physician communication, better symptom management, and, in patients with advanced disease, also fewer hospitalizations and prolonged survival. However, sparse evidence based data are available for patients with onco-hematologic diseases.

Summary Data collected through PRO instruments provide unique information that complements traditional clinical examinations and may help improving patients’ management in clinical practice. Major efforts are now needed to implement PRO instruments in daily practice of patients with hematologic malignancies.

aData Center and Health Outcomes Research Unit, Italian Group for Adult Hematologic Diseases (GIMEMA), Rome, Italy

bInnsbruck Institute of Patient-centered Outcome Research (IIPCOR), Innsbruck, Austria

Correspondence to Laura Cannella, MD, Health Outcomes Research Unit, Italian Group for Adult Hematologic Diseases (GIMEMA), GIMEMA Data Center, Via Benevento, 6, 00161 Rome, Italy. Tel: +39 06 441 639837; e-mail:

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