Patient Perspectives Regarding the Value of Total Skin Electron Beam Therapy for Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma/Mycosis Fungoides: A Pilot Study

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Purpose:Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) represents a group of lymphoid malignancies involving the skin with mycosis fungoides being most common. This prospective study was initiated to evaluate perceptions of total skin electron beam therapy (TSEBT) by patients with mycosis fungoides who had failed at least 3 prior therapies.Materials and Methods:Before the start of TSEBT, at 1 month and 6 months after the completion of treatment, patients completed an anonymous questionnaire for each of the prior therapies and for TSEBT. It identified the following: (1) success of the therapy, (2) difficulty in the therapy, (3) ability to recover from the therapy, (4) risk/benefit ratio of the therapy, and (5) willingness to repeat the therapy or therapies in question. Mean values for each question were compared using the paired t test.Results:Thirteen patients were enrolled in the study. At 1- and 6-months posttreatment, patients thought that TSEBT was more difficult to undergo and recover from in comparison to other therapies. At 6-months posttreatment, patients also opposed the repeat therapy with TSEBT compared with other treatments. Patients perceived TSEBT as more successful than other therapies, but this difference in perception was not statistically significant.Conclusions:TSEBT is perceived by patients to be a successful treatment. TSEBT is thought to be a difficult treatment to undergo and recover from compared with other treatments.

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