Discovering What Treatment Options are Most Important to Patients With Psoriatic Arthritis

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Despite recent advances in the treatment of psoriatic arthritis (PsA), for some who live with the condition, available treatments do not supply adequate relief for their most troublesome symptoms. To help improve lives, new treatments need to address these unmet needs. Meeting patients’ needs first requires understanding them. To accomplish this, AbbVie and RTI Health Solutions researchers and others conducted a study to evaluate PsA patients’ disease experiences and treatment preferences.

bullet list iconCreation of a Web-Based Survey

Researchers created a web-based survey that was sent to patients with PsA in the ArthritisPower registry. Participants were presented with a series of questions that asked them to identify the PsA symptoms that bothered them the most and the symptoms that bothered them the least. Survey participants were also asked which PsA disease impacts were the most and least important to improve.

The sets of symptoms and impacts measured in this study were developed based on the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology (OMERACT) core outcome set and input from clinical experts, a patient living with PsA, and patient advocates. The survey instrument also included questions about preferences for mode and frequency of administration (oral tablet once daily, oral tablet twice daily, biweekly injections, or monthly injections), preferences for treatment regimens that included methotrexate, and for those reporting a preference, the reasons behind their preferences. 

Study Results

The study results showed that the most bothersome symptom was joint pain. Other high-burden symptoms were lower back/spine pain, tender or painful tendons or ligaments, and fatigue. The ability to perform physical activities was ranked as the most important impact of the disease to improve, followed by improving the ability to function independently and the improvement of sleep quality.

Overall, survey results demonstrated that participants felt that musculoskeletal symptoms were the most bothersome and that it was most important to improve the ability to perform physical activities. The results also indicated that the most preferred mode and frequency of treatment administration was oral, once-daily medication (preferred by 38% of respondents), and 74% prioritized therapies that significantly improved joint-related symptoms versus psoriasis-related symptoms. The majority of respondents (65%) preferred PsA treatment regimens that did not include methotrexate.

Key Takeways

Kelley Myers, Research Economist in the Health Preference Assessment group at RTI Health Solutions shares, "Understanding patient treatment preferences is critical to identifying unmet needs and to demonstrating what is meaningful and salient to patients when it comes to treatment outcomes." The results of this study can help drug developers know where to focus their research. Furthermore, understanding patient preferences can help inform both patients and healthcare providers when making treatment decisions. This greater understanding has the potential to improve shared decision-making between patients and healthcare providers. 

This study was sponsored by AbbVie. To learn more about the methods used in this study and view detailed study results, read the study publication here -

Learn more about how RTI Health Solutions provide survey solutions for healthcare and pharmaceutical research here

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