The chest Australia trial: A randomised controlled trial of an intervention to increase consultation rates in smokers at risk of lung cancer
Jon D. Emery
Sonya R. Murray
Fiona M. Walter
Yvonne Kutzer, Edith Cowan UniversityFollow
David John Barnes
BMJ Publishing Group
School of Nursing and Midwifery
Background: International research has focused on screening and mass media campaigns to promote earlier patient presentation and detect lung cancer earlier. This trial tested the effect of a behavioural intervention in people at increased risk of lung cancer on help-seeking for respiratory symptoms.
Methods: Parallel, individually randomised controlled trial. Eligible participants were long-term smokers with at least 20 pack-years, aged 55 and above. The CHEST intervention entailed a consultation to discuss and implement a self-help manual, followed by self-monitoring reminders to encourage help-seeking for respiratory symptoms. The control group received a brief discussion about lung health. Both groups had baseline spirometry. Telephone randomisation was conducted, 1:1, stratified Medical Research Council (MRC) dyspnoea score and general practice. Participants could not be blinded; data extraction and statistical analyses were performed blinded to group assignment. The primary outcome was respiratory consultation rates.
Results: We randomised 551 participants (274 intervention, 277 control) from whom the primary outcome was determined for 542 (269 intervention, 273 control). There was a 40% relative increase in respiratory consultations in the intervention group: (adjusted rates (95% CI) intervention 0.57 (0.47 to 0.70), control 0.41 (0.32 to 0.52), relative rate 1.40 (1.08 to 1.82); p=0.0123). There were no significant differences in time to first respiratory consultation, total consultation rates or measures of psychological harm. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio was $A1289 per additional respiratory consultation.
Conclusions: A behavioural intervention can significantly increase consulting for respiratory symptoms in patients at increased risk of lung cancer. This intervention could have an important role in primary care as part of a broader approach to improve respiratory health in patients at higher risk. © 2019 Author(s) (or their employer(s)).
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Emery, J. D., Murray, S. R., Walter, F. M., Martin, A., Goodall, S., Mazza, D., . . . Murchie, P. (2019). The chest Australia trial: A randomised controlled trial of an intervention to increase consultation rates in smokers at risk of lung cancer. Thorax, 74(4), 362-370. Available here.