The Advanced cancer patients (ACP) are expected to get substantial therapeutic benefits from the phase I trials despite having the terminal disease and presumed symptom burdens. The research under consideration focused on examining the associations between symptom burdens and expectations of therapeutic benefit for ACP and spousal caregivers (SC) during phase I trials.

For the research, a prospective cohort of ACP-SC enrolled in phase I trials was assessed at baseline. After that one-month using symptom burden measures evaluating depression, state-trait anxiety, quality of life, global health, post-traumatic coping, and marital adjustment.

52 phase I ACP and 52 SC were assessed separately. The study of 104 patients offered the fundamental insight that was median age 61 years (28-78), 50% male, 100% married, 90% White, and 46% ≥ college education.

SC reported moderate state and mild trait anxiety and good global health with little disability at baseline. Regression analyses revealed negative associations between SC expectation for stabilization and SC anxiety. ACP quality of life was negatively associated with SC expectations for stabilization.

The research’s final result suggested that anxiety at both state and trait impacts couples’ beliefs regarding the likelihood of therapeutic benefit from phase I trial participation.

Ref: https://ascopubs.org/doi/full/10.1200/OP.20.00646