Authors: Odejide OO, Li L, Cronin AM, Murillo A, Richardson PG, Anderson KC, Abel GA
Title: Meaningful changes in end-of-life care among patients with myeloma.
Journal: Haematologica 103(8):1380-1389
Date: 2018 Aug
PubMed ID: 29748440
Abstract: Patients with advanced myeloma experience a high symptom burden particularly near the end of life, making timely hospice use crucial. Little is known about the quality and determinants of end-of-life care for this population, including whether potential increases in hospice use are also accompanied by "late" enrollment (≤ 3 days before death). Using the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End-Results-Medicare database, we identified patients ≥ 65 years diagnosed with myeloma between 2000 and 2013 who died by December 31, 2013. We assessed prevalence and trends in hospice use, including late enrollment. We also examined six established measures of potentially aggressive medical care at the end of life. Independent predictors of late hospice enrollment and aggressive end-of-life care were assessed using multivariable logistic regression analyses. Of 12,686 myeloma decedents, 48.2% enrolled in hospice. Among the 6111 who enrolled, 17.2% spent ≤ 3 days there. There was a significant trend in increasing hospice use, from 28.5% in 2000 to 56.5% by 2013 (Ptrend <0.001), no significant rise in late enrollment (12.2% in 2000 to 16.3% in 2013, Ptrend =0.19), and a slight decrease in aggressive end-of-life care (59.2% in 2000 to 56.7% in 2013, Ptrend =0.01). Patients who were transfusion-dependent, on dialysis, or survived for less than one year were more likely to enroll late in hospice and experience aggressive medical care at the end of life. Gains in hospice use for myeloma decedents were not accompanied by increases in late enrollment or aggressive medical care. These findings suggest meaningful improvements in end-of-life care for this population.