Currow, DC, Ekström, M, Louw, S, Hill, J, Fazekas, B, Clark, K, Davidson, PM, McDonald, C, Sajkov, D, McCaffrey, N, Doogue, M, Abernethy, AP & Agar, M 2019, 'Sertraline in symptomatic chronic breathlessness: a double blind, randomised trial.', European Respiratory Journal, vol. 53, no. 1.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Does sertraline provide symptomatic relief for chronic breathlessness in people with advanced disease whose underlying cause(s) are optimally treated?223 participants with chronic breathlessness (modified Medical Research Council breathlessness scale ≥2) who had optimal treatment of underlying cause(s) were randomised 1:1 to sertraline 25-100 mg (titrated upwards over 9 days) or placebo for 4 weeks. The primary outcome was the proportion who had an improvement in intensity of current breathlessness >15% from baseline on a 100-mm visual analogue scale.The proportion of people responding to sertraline was similar to placebo for current breathlessness on days 26-28 (OR 1.00, 95% CI 0.71-1.40) and for other measures of breathlessness. Quality of life in the sertraline arm had a higher likelihood of improving than in the placebo arm over the 4 weeks (OR 0.21, 95% CI 0.01-0.41; p=0.044). No differences in performance status, anxiety and depression, or survival were observed. Adverse event rates were similar between arms.Sertraline does not appear to provide any benefit over placebo in the symptomatic relief of chronic breathlessness in this patient population.
Eastman, P, Currow, DC, Fazekas, B, Brown, L & Le, B 2019, 'Oral dexamethasone in the management of cancer-related pain: A feasibility study', PALLIATIVE MEDICINE, vol. 33, no. 4, pp. 477-478.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Matsuoka, H, Allingham, S, Fazekas, B, Brown, L, Vandersman, Z, Clark, K, Agar, MR & Currow, DC 2019, 'Comparability of the Australian National Cancer Symptom Trials (CST) Group's Study Populations to National Referrals to Non-CST Specialist Palliative Care Services Participating in the Palliative Care Outcomes Collaboration.', Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 57, no. 1, pp. e9-e14.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Agar, M, Lawlor, P, Quinn, S, Draper, B, Caplan, G, Rowett, D, Sanderson, C, Hardy, J, Le, B, Eckermann, S, McCaffrey, N, Devilee, L, Fazekas, B, Hill, M & Currow, D 2017, 'Efficacy of Oral Risperidone, Haloperidol, or Placebo for Symptoms of Delirium Among Patients in Palliative Care A Randomized Clinical Trial', JAMA Internal Medicine, vol. 177, no. 1, pp. 34-42.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Importance: Antipsychotics are widely used for distressing symptoms of delirium, but efficacy has not been established in placebo-controlled trials in palliative care.
Objective: To determine efficacy of risperidone or haloperidol relative to placebo in relieving target symptoms of delirium associated with distress among patients receiving palliative care.
Design, Setting, and Participants: A double-blind, parallel-arm, dose-titrated randomized clinical trial was conducted at 11 Australian inpatient hospice or hospital palliative care services between August 13, 2008, and April 2, 2014, among participants with life-limiting illness, delirium, and a delirium symptoms score (sum of Nursing Delirium Screening Scale behavioral, communication, and perceptual items) of 1 or more.
Interventions: Age-adjusted titrated doses of oral risperidone, haloperidol, or placebo solution were administered every 12 hours for 72 hours, based on symptoms of delirium. Patients also received supportive care, individualized treatment of delirium precipitants, and subcutaneous midazolam hydrochloride as required for severe distress or safety.
Main Outcome and Measures: Improvement in mean group difference of delirium symptom score (severity range, 0-6) between baseline and day 3. Five a priori secondary outcomes: delirium severity, midazolam use, extrapyramidal effects, sedation, and survival.
Results: Two hundred forty-seven participants (mean [SD] age, 74.9 [9.8] years; 85 women [34.4%]; 218 with cancer [88.3%]) were included in intention-to-treat analysis (82 receiving risperidone, 81 receiving haloperidol, and 84 receiving placebo). In the primary intention-to-treat analysis, participants in the risperidone arm had delirium symptom scores that were significantly higher than those among participants in the placebo arm (on average 0.48 Units higher; 95% CI, 0.09-0.86; P = .02) at study end. Similarly, for those in the haloperidol arm, delirium symptom scores were on average 0.24 Units h...
Currow, D, Watts, GJ, Johnson, M, McDonald, CF, Miners, JO, Somogyi, AA, Denehy, L, McCaffrey, N, Eckert, DJ, McCloud, P, Louw, S, Lam, L, Greene, A, Fazekas, B, Clark, KC, Fong, K, Agar, MR, Joshi, R, Kilbreath, S, Ferreira, D, Ekström, M & Australian national Palliative Care Clinical Studies Collaborative (PaCCSC) 2017, 'A pragmatic, phase III, multisite, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-arm, dose increment randomised trial of regular, low-dose extended-release morphine for chronic breathlessness: Breathlessness, Exertion And Morphine Sulfate (BEAMS) study protocol.', BMJ Open, vol. 7, no. 7, pp. 1-19.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
INTRODUCTION: Chronic breathlessness is highly prevalent and distressing to patients and families. No medication is registered for its symptomatic reduction. The strongest evidence is for regular, low-dose, extended- release (ER) oral morphine. A recent large phase III study suggests the subgroup most likely to benefit have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and modified Medical Research Council breathlessness scores of 3 or 4. This protocol is for an adequately powered, parallel-arm, placebo-controlled, multisite, factorial, block-randomised study evaluating regular ER morphine for chronic breathlessness in people with COPD. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The primary question is what effect regular ER morphine has on worst breathlessness, measured daily on a 0-10 numerical rating scale. Uniquely, the coprimary outcome will use a FitBit to measure habitual physical activity. Secondary questions include safety and, whether upward titration after initial benefit delivers greater net symptom reduction. Substudies include longitudinal driving simulation, sleep, caregiver, health economic and pharmacogenetic studies. Seventeen centres will recruit 171 participants from respiratory and palliative care. The study has five phases including three randomisation phases to increasing doses of ER morphine. All participants will receive placebo or active laxatives as appropriate. Appropriate statistical analysis of primary and secondary outcomes will be used. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethics approval has been obtained. Results of the study will be submitted for publication in peer-reviewed journals, findings presented at relevant conferences and potentially used to inform registration of ER morphine for chronic breathlessness. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT02720822; Pre-results.
Hardy, J, Quinn, S, Fazekas, B, Agar, M & Currow, D 2013, 'Can the LANSS scale be used to classify pain in chronic cancer pain trials?', SUPPORTIVE CARE IN CANCER, vol. 21, no. 12, pp. 3387-3391.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Greene, A, Aranda, S, Tieman, JJ, Fazekas, B & Currow, DC 2012, 'Can assessing caregiver needs and activating community networks improve caregiver-defined outcomes? A single-blind, quasi-experimental pilot study: Community facilitator pilot', PALLIATIVE MEDICINE, vol. 26, no. 7, pp. 917-923.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Currow, D, Louw, S, Hill, J, Fazekas, B, Clark, K, Davidson, P, Mcdonald, C, Sajkov, D, Mccaffrey, N, Doogue, M, Abernethy, A & Agar, M 2018, 'Sertraline in symptomatic chronic breathlessness: a double blind, randomised trial', EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY JOURNAL, International Congress of the European-Respiratory-Society, EUROPEAN RESPIRATORY SOC JOURNALS LTD, Paris, France.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Currow, DC, Glare, PA, Watts, G, Louw, S, Martin, P & Clark, K 2018, 'Treating anorexia in people with advanced cancer. a randomised, double blind, controlled trial of megestrol acetate, dexamethasone or placebo', JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY, AMER SOC CLINICAL ONCOLOGY.View/Download from: Publisher's site
Hosie, A, Phillips, J, Lam, L, Kochovska, S, Brassil, M, Noble, B, Kurrle, S, Cumming, A, Caplan, G, Chye, R, Le, B, Ely, EW, Lawlor, P, Bush, S, Davis, JM, Lovell, M, Brown, L, Fazekas, B, Cheah, SL, Edwards, L & Agar, M 2018, 'A phase II cluster randomised controlled trial of a multicomponent non-pharmacological intervention to prevent delirium for in-patients with advanced cancer (The PRESERVE pilot study)', ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF CLINICAL ONCOLOGY, WILEY, pp. 166-166.