“I would say that these conditions are highly heterogeneous, and we've identified a number of factors that relate to different ways that the disease progresses and different ways that patients feel about the progression of their disease,” says Alisa J. Stephens-Shields, PhD.
In this video, Alisa J. Stephens-Shields, PhD, shares the take-home message of the Journal of Urology study, “Clinically Important Differences for Pain and Urinary Symptoms in Urologic Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome: A MAPP Network Study.” Stephens-Shields is an associate professor of biostatistics, epidemiology, and informatics at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia.
I would say that these conditions are highly heterogeneous, and we've identified a number of factors that relate to different ways that the disease progresses and different ways that patients feel about the progression of their disease. And so patients who start with very severe symptoms have a different requirement for how much they need to change in order to feel better than patients who start with more modest symptoms, or patients who have widespread pain, or localized pain. And so part of it is recognizing that these patient experiences are very different, and the expectations for their change and what is perceptible to them as feeling better, are different according to these phenotypic characteristics. I will also say, though, that even though we did notice this heterogeneity, with regard to the absolute value, the number of points that you need to decrease on these scales in order to feel better, it was pretty consistent across these subgroups that a 30% to 50% reduction was perceptible to patients. And so to the extent that practicing clinicians are using various numerical scales to assess patients' pain and symptom severity, I think we can feel confident that a 30% to 50% reduction is good. And if we see that, that's a good result of a therapy.
This transcription was edited for clarity.