Patient-Physician Concordance for Quantitative Formats and Treatment Options and the Relationship with State Anxiety
Patient-physician concordance about topics discussed in a clinic visit is essential for effective communication but may be difficult to achieve in cancer care. We conducted a multicenter, observational study at two Midwestern oncology clinics. A sample of 48 English-speaking or Spanish-speaking women with newly diagnosed stage 0-3 breast cancer completed surveys before and after a visit with an oncologist. Patient-physician dyads were coded as concordant if both patient and physician follow-up self-reports agreed whether (or not) specific treatments were discussed (i.e., treatment option concordance; mastectomy, lumpectomy, hormone therapy, neoadjuvant, and adjuvant chemotherapy) and whether risk was described using certain quantitative formats (i.e., quantitative format concordance; percentages, proportions out of 100 and 1000, graphs, pictures, evidence from clinical studies, cancer stage). Agreement was determined using percent agreement and prevalence-adjusted bias-adjusted kappa (PABAK). Pearson's correlations were used to determine relationships between anxiety and each measure concordance. Percent concordance was higher for treatment concordance (73.3%) compared to quantitative format concordance (64.5%), and PABAK scores tended to be higher for treatment options (PABAK = .21-.78). Both treatment and quantitative format concordance were negatively associated with pre-visit state anxiety, but only treatment concordance was statistically significant (treatment: r = - .504, p = .001; quantitative format: r = - .096, p = .523). Our study indicates moderate patient-physician concordance in early breast cancer care communication and that patient anxiety may impact the ability for patients and physicians to agree on the content communicated in a clinic visit.