Rationale: The level of adherence to lung cancer treatment guidelines in the United States is unclear. In addition, it is unclear whether previously identified disparities by racial or ethnic group and by age persist across all clinical subgroups.Objectives: To assess the level of adherence to the minimal lung cancer treatment recommended by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines (guideline-concordant treatment) in the United States, and to assess the persistence of disparities by racial or ethnic group and by age across all clinical subgroups.Methods: We evaluated whether 441,812 lung cancer cases in the National Cancer Database diagnosed between 2010 and 2014 received guideline-concordant treatment. Logistic regression models were used to assess possible disparities in receiving guideline-concordant treatment by racial or ethnic group and by age across all clinical subgroups, and whether these persist after adjusting for patient, tumor, and health care provider characteristics.Results: Overall, 62.1% of subjects received guideline-concordant treatment (range across clinical subgroups = 50.4-76.3%). However, 21.6% received no treatment (range = 10.3-31.4%) and 16.3% received less intensive treatment than recommended (range = 6.4-21.6%). Among the most common less intensive treatments for all subgroups was "conventionally fractionated radiotherapy only" (range = 2.5-16.0%), as was "chemotherapy only" for nonmetastatic subgroups (range = 1.2-13.7%), and "conventionally fractionated radiotherapy and chemotherapy" for localized non-small-cell lung cancer (5.9%). Guideline-concordant treatment was less likely with increasing age, despite adjusting for relevant covariates (age ≥ 80 yr compared with <50 yr: adjusted odds ratio = 0.12, 95% confidence interval = 0.12-0.13). This disparity was present in all clinical subgroups. In addition, non-Hispanic black patients were less likely to receive guideline-concordant treatment than non-Hispanic white patients (adjusted odds ratio = 0.78, 95% confidence interval = 0.76-0.80). This disparity was present in all clinical subgroups, although statistically nonsignificant for extensive disease small-cell lung cancer.Conclusions: Between 2010 and 2014, many patients with lung cancer in the United States received no treatment or less intensive treatment than recommended. Particularly, elderly patients with lung cancer and non-Hispanic black patients are less likely to receive guideline-concordant treatment. Patterns of care among those receiving less intensive treatment than recommended suggest room for improved uptake of treatments such as stereotactic body radiation therapy for subjects with localized non-small-cell lung cancer.

Additional Metadata
Keywords guideline adherence, healthcare disparities, lung neoplasms, physicians’ practice patterns
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1513/AnnalsATS.201901-094OC, hdl.handle.net/1765/124449
Journal Annals of the American Thoracic Society
Rights no subscription
Citation
Blom, E.F. (Erik F.), ten Haaf, K, Arenberg, D.A. (Douglas A.), & de Koning, H.J. (Harry J.). (2020). Disparities in Receiving Guideline-Concordant Treatment for Lung Cancer in the United States. Annals of the American Thoracic Society, 17(2), 186–194. doi:10.1513/AnnalsATS.201901-094OC