Clinical predictors of early trial discontinuation for patients participating in phase i clinical trials in oncology

Joeri A. J. Douma, Laurien M. Buffart, Ramy Sedhom, Mariette Labots, Willemien C. Menke-van der Houven van Oordt, Mikkjal Skardhamar, Anthony de Felice, Esther Lee, Divya Dharmaraj, Nilofer S. Azad, Michael A. Carducci*, Henk M. W. Verheul*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Despite stringent eligibility criteria for trial participation, early discontinuation often occurs in phase I trials. To better identify patients unlikely to benefit from phase I trials, we investigated predictors for early trial discontinuation. Data from 415 patients with solid tumors who participated in 66 trials were pooled for the current analysis. Early trial discontinuation was defined as (i) trial discontinuation within 28 days after start of treatment or (ii) discontinuation before administration of the first dosage in eligible patients. Multilevel logistic regression analyses were conducted to identify predictors for early trial discontinuation. Eighty-two participants (20%) demonstrated early trial discontinuation. Baseline sodium level below the lower limit of normal (OR = 2.95, 95%CI = 1.27–6.84), elevated alkaline phosphatase level >2.5 times the upper limit of normal (OR = 2.72, 95%CI = 1.49–4.99), performance score ≥ 1 (OR = 2.07, 95%CI = 1.03–4.19) and opioid use (OR = 1.82, 95%CI = 1.07–3.08) were independent predictors for early trial discontinuation. Almost 50% of the patients with hyponatremia and all four patients in whom all four predictors were present together discontinued the trial early. Hyponatremia, elevated alkaline phosphatase level, performance score ≥1 and opioid use were identified as significant predictors for early trial discontinuation. Hyponatremia was the strongest predictor and deserves consideration for inclusion in eligibility criteria for future trials.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2304
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2 May 2021

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