Post-transplant multimorbidity index and quality of life in patients with chronic graft-versus-host disease—results from a joint evaluation of a prospective German multicenter validation trial and a cohort from the National Institutes of Health

Abstract

Comorbidity after allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (alloHSCT) impairs quality of life (QoL), physical functioning, and survival. We developed a new standardized measure to capture comorbidity after transplantation, the Post-transplant Multimorbidity Index (PTMI) in a cohort of 50 long term survivors. We subsequently evaluated the content validity and impact on survival and QoL within a multicenter trial, including 208 patients (pts) after alloHSCT, who were prospectively evaluated applying the FACT-BMT, the Human Activity Profile (HAP), the SF-36 v.2, PTMI and the Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation-Comorbidity Index (HCT-CI). The most prevalent comorbidities were compensated arterial hypertension (28.4%), ambulatory infections (25.5%), iron overload (23%), mild renal function impairment (20%), and osteoporosis (13%). Applying the PTMI 13% of patients had no comorbidity, while 37.1% had 1–3 comorbidities, 27.4% had 4–6 comorbidities, and 13.5% had > 6 comorbidities. Chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGvHD) was significantly associated with the PTMI, while age and prior acute GvHD were not. In contrast, the HCT-CI was not associated with the presence of cGvHD. cGvHD was significantly associated with depression (r = 0.16), neurological disease (r = 0.21), osteoporosis (r = 0.18) and nonmelanoma skin cancer (r = 0.26). The PTMI demonstrated strong measurement properties and compared to the HCT-CI captured a wider range of comorbidities associated with cGvHD.

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Fig. 1: Impact of platelets at diagnosis of cGvHD on survival.

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Acknowledgements

The trial was supported by the Else Kröner-Fresenius Foundation. Moreover, DW received personal support by the Deutsche Jose Carreras Stiftung. We thank Christin Krause for their work on the statistical analysis.

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Wolff, D., Herzberg, P.Y., Herrmann, A. et al. Post-transplant multimorbidity index and quality of life in patients with chronic graft-versus-host disease—results from a joint evaluation of a prospective German multicenter validation trial and a cohort from the National Institutes of Health. Bone Marrow Transplant (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41409-020-01017-8

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