Benefits of immediate versus delayed palliative care to informal family caregivers of persons with advanced cancer: Outcomes from the ENABLE III randomized clinical trial.

Patient and Survivor Care
Session Type and Session Title: 
Clinical Science Symposium, Palliative Care: Interventions That Matter
Abstract Number: 
J Clin Oncol 32:5s, 2014 (suppl; abstr LBA9513)
J Nicholas Dionne-Odom, Andres Azuero, Kathleen Lyons, Zhongze Li, Tor Tosteson, Zhigang Li, Jay Hull, Jennifer Frost, Mark Hegel, Konstantin H. Dragnev, Imatullah Akyar, Marie Bakitas; The University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center, Birmingham, AL; The Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, Hanover, NH; Norris Cotton Cancer Center, Lebanon, NH; Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH; Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH

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Abstract Disclosures


Background: Family caregivers of individuals with advanced cancer experience significant burden and diminished QOL; few interventions have been found to reduce these outcomes. Methods: Randomized clinical trial conducted from 10/11/2010 to 9/5/2013 of immediate versus delayed (initiated 12 weeks after randomization) entry patients (n=207) and caregivers (n=122) into ENABLE (Educate, Nurture, Advise, Before Life Ends), a phone-based concurrent oncology palliative care intervention. QOL (Caregiver Quality of Life-Cancer, lower scores=better QOL), depression (Center for Epidemiological Study-Depression) and burden (Montgomery Borgatta Caregiver Burden Scale; subjective burden [SB], objective burden [OB]; demand burden [DB]) measures were collected at baseline, 6, 12, 18, and 24 weeks, and every 12 weeks until patient death or study completion. Results: Estimated treatment effects (immediate minus delayed) for caregivers from randomization to 12 weeks were (mean [SE]): -3.1 [2.3] for QOL (P=.17), -4.1 [1.3] for depression (P=.003), -1.0 [0.4] for SB (P=.02), 0.3 [0.6] for OB (P=.60), and -0.5 [0.6] for DB (P=.39). Estimated treatment effects (immediate minus delayed) from intervention initiation to 12 weeks were (mean [SE]): -6.4 [3.4] for QOL (P=.06), -7.4 [2] for depression (P<.001), -1.0 [0.6] for SB (P=.08), -0.6 [0.7] for OB (P=.44), and -0.5 [0.8] for DB (P=.50). Estimated treatment effects (immediate minus delayed) measured backwards from the time of patient’s death were (mean [SE]): of -4.9 [2.6] for QOL (P=.07), -3.8 [1.5] for depression (P=.02), -1.1 [0.4] for SB (P=.01), -0.6 [0.6] for OB (P=.26), and -0.7 [0.6] for DB (P=.22). Conclusions: Caregivers in the immediate group had lower depression, SB, and trends towards better QOL in comparisons up to 12 weeks, following initiation of the intervention in both groups, and in the terminal decline analysis. These results suggest that concurrent oncology palliative care should be initiated as early as possible to maximize benefit to caregivers. Clinical trial information: NCT01245621.