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Discrete choice experiment to evaluate preferences of patients with cystic fibrosis among alternative treatment-related health outcomes: a protocol
  1. Charlie McLeod1,2,
  2. Richard Norman3,
  3. Andre Schultz4,
  4. Steven Mascaro5,
  5. Steve Webb6,7,
  6. Tom Snelling1,8
  1. 1 Infectious Diseases, Perth Children's Hospital, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia
  2. 2 School of Medicine, University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia
  3. 3 School of Public Health, Curtin University, Bentley, Western Australia, Australia
  4. 4 Respiratory Medicine, Perth Children's Hospital, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia
  5. 5 Clayton School of IT, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria, Australia
  6. 6 Intensive care, St John of God Hospital, Subiaco, Western Australia, Australia
  7. 7 School of Population Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  8. 8 Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines & Infectious Diseases, Telethon Kids Institute, West Perth, Western Australia, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Charlie McLeod; charlie.mcleod{at}


Introduction Clinical decision-making is a complex process. Patient preference information regarding desirable health states should inform treatment and is critical to agreeing on goals of therapy. Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a common, inheritable multisystem disorder for which the major manifestation is progressive, chronic lung disease. Intermittent pulmonary exacerbations are a hallmark of disease and these drive lung damage that results in premature death. We suspect that clinicians make assumptions, most likely implicit assumptions, about outcomes that are desired by patients who are treated for pulmonary exacerbations. The aim of this study is to identify and quantify the preferences of patients with cystic fibrosis regarding treatment outcomes.

Methods and analysis We will develop a discrete choice experiment (DCE) in collaboration with people with CF and their carers, and evaluate how patients make trade-offs between different aspects of health-related status when considering treatment options.

Ethics and dissemination Ethics approval for all aspects of this study was granted by the Western Australia Child and Adolescent Health Service Human Research Ethics Committee [RGS903]. Weighted preference information from the DCE will be used to develop a multiattribute utility instrument as a measure of treatment success in the upcoming Bayesian Evidence-Adaptive Trial to optimise management of CF. Dissemination of results will also occur through peer-reviewed publications and presentations to relevant stakeholders and research networks.

  • cystic fibrosis
  • discrete choice experiment
  • patient preferences
  • endpoint determination
  • outcome assessment
  • attitude to health

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  • Contributors TS was responsible for the overall study concept. TS, CM, RN, AS, SM and SW elaborated the study protocol. CM drafted the manuscript. All authors revised and approved the final manuscript. All authors meet the ICMJE criteria for authorship.

  • Funding This work was supported by the Perth Children’s Hospital Foundation (New Investigator grant; 2017). Fellowship support was provided by the NHMRC (GNT1150996), the Wesfarmers Centre (top-up grant) and the Perth Children’s Hospital (Top-up grant).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval All aspects of this study were approved by the Child and Adolescent Health Service Human Research Ethics Committee [RGS903].

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement There are no data in this work.

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