Purpose: Endoscopic surveillance for Barrett’s oesophagus is undertaken to detect dysplasia and early cancer, and to facilitate early intervention. Evidence supporting current practice is of low quality and often influenced by opinion. This study investigated the preferences of patients for surveillance of Barrett’s oesophagus in an Australian cohort. Methods: Four Barrett’s oesophagus surveillance characteristics/attributes were evaluated within a discrete choice experiment based on literature and expert opinion: (1) surveillance method (endoscopy vs a blood test vs a novel breath test), (2) risk of missing a cancer over a 10-year period, (3) screening interval, and (4) out-of-pocket cost. The data from the discrete choice experiment was analysed within the framework of random utility theory using a mixed logit regression model. Results: The study sample comprised patients (n = 71) undergoing endoscopic surveillance for Barrett’s oesophagus of whom n = 65 completed the discrete choice experiment. The sample was predominantly male (77%) with average age of 65 years. All attributes except surveillance method significantly influenced respondents’ preference for Barrett’s oesophagus surveillance. Policy analyses suggested that compared to the reference case (i.e. endoscopy provided annually at no upfront cost and with a 4% risk of missing cancer), increasing test sensitivity to 0.5% risk of missing cancer would increase participation by up to 50%; surveillance every 5 years would lead to 26% reduction, while every 3 to 3.5 years would result in 7% increase in participation. Respondents were highly averse to paying A$500 for the test, resulting in 48% reduction in participation. None of the other surveillance methods was preferred to endoscopy, both resulting in 11% reduction in participation. Conclusion: Test sensitivity, test frequency and out-of-pocket cost were the key factors influencing surveillance uptake. Patients prefer a test with the highest sensitivity, offered frequently, that incurs no upfront costs.
- Barrett’s oesophagus
- Discrete choice experiment