Advanced prostate cancer is cancer that has spread to another part of the body. Advanced prostate cancer cannot be cured, but the symptoms can be controlled with treatment, sometimes for several years. Many possible treatments exist, and new ones are becoming available. Each treatment has its own benefits and drawbacks. Yet little is known about how men with newly diagnosed advanced prostate cancer choose which treatment to have.
Together with researchers at Imperial College London, we have created a study to find out what men think about the treatment options and the outcomes for advanced prostate cancer. The study aims to better understand:
- men’s preferences for current and new treatments for advanced prostate cancer.
- whether men are willing to accept the drawbacks of extra treatments, such as side effects or more hospital visits, if they have better survival or cancer progression-free benefits.
The study is called MATTER and there is more detail at the trial website on ClinicalTrials.gov. The research is funded by the Wellcome Trust and the University College London Hospitals (UCLH) Charity.
In this study, we are using a discrete choice experiment (DCE) to find out men’s preferences for different features of advanced prostate cancer treatments. In a DCE, we use surveys to ask people to make trade-offs between different options. In this way, we can find out what people value about their healthcare. DCEs are described in this short HERU video.
We based the DCE on a systematic review of published research and interviews with clinicians and patients. This helped us to find and describe the most key features of treatment. These features were then used in a survey that asks men to complete a set of DCE choice tasks. In each task, men are asked to choose between two possible, but hypothetical, treatments for advanced prostate cancer.
At the moment, we are recruiting patients to complete the DCE survey from 30 centres in England, Scotland, and Wales. Eligible patients are men who are newly diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer. We will learn what matters to patients with newly diagnosed advanced prostate cancer when they choose their treatment. Our results will be useful to understand if men will accept the benefits of new treatments. If we know more about men’s views, this may change the treatments that are developed and offered to patients in the future.
Follow updates on the MATTER trial on Twitter @MatterTrial
HERU is supported by the Chief Scientist Office (CSO) of the Scottish Government Health and Social Care Directorates (SGHSC). The views expressed here are those of the Unit and not necessarily those of the CSO.