Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy—patient-reported outcomes compared with NCI-CTCAE grade

  • Aaron C. Tan
  • J. Matt McCrary
  • Susanna B. Park
  • Terry Trinh
  • David GoldsteinEmail author
Original Article



Patient-reported outcomes (PRO) are becoming increasingly recognised as essential to comprehensively collect chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) symptom information.

Materials and methods

This study aimed to evaluate the utility and feasibility of CIPN PRO assessment tools in a real-world clinical setting through investigation of the correlation of PRO with NCI-CTCAE assessments particularly in relation to cumulative dose of chemotherapy. Patients receiving oxaliplatin or paclitaxel chemotherapy in Sydney, Australia, completed a questionnaire containing standardised CIPN PRO assessments (EORTC CIPN-20, PRO-CTCAE) via tablet device. PRO assessment scores were correlated with NCI-CTCAE grade determined by nursing assessment and analysed with respect to cumulative dose of chemotherapy.


There were 87 patients who completed a total of 145 questionnaires, 68 in patients receiving oxaliplatin and 77 in patients receiving paclitaxel. CIPN PRO scores were associated with NCI-CTCAE grade, for EORTC CIPN-20 (r2 = 0.19, p < 0.01) and PRO-CTCAE (r2 = 0.41, p < 0.01), although individual patient correlation was poor. PRO assessments, however, identified higher grade symptoms, in particular symptoms causing functional impairment, at lower doses of cumulative chemotherapy compared to NCI-CTCAE.


This study demonstrated that CIPN PRO may provide complementary information to nursing assessed NCI-CTCAE grade, particularly in earlier stages of chemotherapy and can be considered an important component in the comprehensive assessment of neuropathy.


Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy CIPN Patient-reported outcomes PRO 


Funding information

This study was supported by a Cancer Institute NSW Program Grant (14/TPG/1-05) and a National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC) Project Grant (#1080521). SP is supported by a NHMRC Career Development Fellowship (#1148595).

Compliance with ethical standards

The study was approved by the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District (SESLHD) Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC) and patients provided informed signed consent.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


There are no relevant disclosures.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medical OncologyRoyal North Shore HospitalSydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Prince of Wales Clinical SchoolUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia
  3. 3.Brain and Mind CentreUniversity of SydneySydneyAustralia
  4. 4.Department of Medical Oncology, Nelune Cancer CentrePrince of Wales HospitalSydneyAustralia
  5. 5.Level 4, Lowy Cancer Research CentreUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia

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