Understanding Treatment Burden and Quality of Life Impact of Participating in an Early-Phase Pediatric Oncology Clinical Trial: A Pilot Study

Stacey Crane, Lori Backus, Beth Stockman, Janet Carpenter, Li Lin, Joan Haase

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: Early-phase clinical trials (EPTs) have led to new, more effective treatment options for children with cancer. Despite the extensive use of EPTs in pediatric oncology, little is known about parent and child experiences during EPT participation. The purposes of this pilot study were to assess the feasibility and preliminary results of having children with cancer and their parents complete measures of treatment burden and quality of life (QOL) concurrent with EPT participation. Methods: In this descriptive, longitudinal, pilot study, parents and children were followed for the first 60 days of an EPT. Feasibility was assessed by participant enrollment and retention and completion of measures. Measures completed included the following: demographic form (completed at baseline); Diary of Trial Experiences to capture treatment burden (completed ongoing); and PedsQL™ Quality of Life Inventories, Cancer Modules, and Family Impact Module (completed at baseline, post–first disease evaluation, and off-study). Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: Feasibility goals of enrollment, retention, and measure completion were partially met. Preliminary treatment burden and QOL results are provided. Conclusions: While QOL assessments may provide insight into EPT experiences, future studies need to be conducted at multiple sites and enrollment goals must account for participant attrition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-35
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Pediatric Oncology Nursing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018



  • pediatric oncology
  • phase I clinical trial
  • quality of life
  • treatment burden

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics
  • Oncology(nursing)

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