Patient-physician agreement on function and pain is associated with long-term outcomes in sarcoma: findings from a longitudinal study.



The results emphasize the importance of mutual understanding of symptoms and patients' needs and suggest that further consultation in cases of discordance of ratings and opinions might be beneficial for optimal survivorship.


We aimed to describe the level of agreement between patients and physicians on the ratings of daily functioning and pain in a cohort of sarcoma patients and assess how (dis)agreement and its change over time predicted patient-reported outcomes in survivorship.


Data were available for 806 patients (57.7% male, x̄ = 53.3 years) who completed at least one questionnaire. Patient-physician disagreement was common on the level of function (43.4%) and pain (45.7%). Baseline physician-patient agreement was associated with better 12-month outcomes. Improvement in agreement on function over time was significantly associated with daily functioning (F(2, 212) = 3.18, p = 0.043) and quality of life (F(2, 212) = 3.17, p < 0.044). The pattern was similar though less pronounced for the agreement on pain.


We performed secondary analysis of longitudinal data from a sarcoma-specialty clinic in Montreal, Canada. Demographics, clinical characteristics and patient-physician agreement were summarized descriptively. Linear mixed models were used to assess the effects of time, baseline agreement, change in agreement over time, interaction of time and change in agreement and 12-month daily functioning, quality of life, and fatigue.


Our study offers novel insights into the importance of patient-physician agreement and communication's role in long-term patient-reported outcomes in sarcoma.

More about this publication

Journal of cancer survivorship : research and practice
  • Publication date 17-10-2023

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