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01-03-2009 | Uitgave 2/2009

Quality of Life Research 2/2009

Chemotherapeutic impact on pain and global health-related quality of life in hormone-refractory prostate cancer: Dynamically Modified Outcomes (DYNAMO) analysis of a randomized controlled trial

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 2/2009
Carol M. Moinpour, Gary W. Donaldson, Yoshio Nakamura



This paper applies the Dynamically Modified Outcomes (DYNAMO) model to a clinical trial of two chemotherapeutic regimens on global health-related quality of life (GHRQL) in hormone-refractory prostate cancer.


DYNAMO identifies the causal influences operating in a clinical trial and their mediation, moderation, and modulation by uncontrolled variables. The Southwest Oncology Group trial S9916 randomized assignment to mitoxantrone plus prednisone (M + P) versus docetaxel plus estramustine (D + E) treatments. In this application, we examine baseline-adjusted impacts of worst pain (McGill Pain Questionnaire) on GHRQL (EORTC Quality of Life Questionnaire-C30) at 10 weeks.


The average treatment levels of pain did not differ, hence, the average mediated effect of treatment on GHRQL was zero. Nonetheless, M + P reduced the impact (the relational outcome) of pain on GHRQL by 54% relative to D + E. Individual variation in the relational outcome (modulation) was of the same magnitude as the average difference between the groups. Performance status moderated the direct effects of treatment, with D + E being more effective in good, but not poor, performance strata.


The DYNAMO approach comprehensively accounted for treatment effects. Rather than a single average effect, there were three distinct treatment effects: one direct effect for each performance status level and a direct effect on the relationship between pain and GHRQL.

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