Treatment Patterns of Bone-targeting Agents Among Solid Tumor Patients With Bone Metastases: An Analysis of Electronic Health Record Data in the United States From 2014 to 2018

January, 01, 2024 | Select Oncology Journal Articles


This study evaluated real-world treatment patterns of approved bone-targeting agents (BTAs) with various mechanisms of action—pamidronate, zoledronic acid, and denosumab—for the prevention of skeletal-related events in patients with bone metastases (BM) from solid tumors.


Adult patients with BM secondary to solid tumors between January 1, 2014, and December 31, 2018, were identified from the Flatiron Health Oncology Services Comprehensive Electronic Records database and categorized by BTA use and therapy type. Time from diagnosis to initiation, persistence (mean time on treatment), and compliance (≥12 administrations/year) with BTA with up to 4 years of follow-up were examined.


This study included 27,268 patients with BM (breast cancer, 32.7%; lung cancer, 16.5%; prostate cancer, 17.2%; and other solid tumors, 33.6%); of these, 41.4% initiated denosumab after BM diagnosis; 21.3%, zoledronic acid; 0.6%, pamidronate; and 36.7% had no treatment record. Mean (SD) time to initiation for denosumab or zoledronic acid was 68.6 (157.0) days (denosumab, 70.3 (160.4) days; zoledronic acid, 65.2 [150.2] days). Mean persistence and compliance (first year of treatment) were significantly higher for denosumab than for zoledronic acid (22.0 vs. 14.9 mo [P<0.0001] and 42.3% vs. 34.8% [P<0.0001], respectively). Treatment compliance was the highest in patients with breast cancer (denosumab, 48.2%; zoledronic acid, 39.1%).


Real-world BTA treatment patterns in the United States suggest that over one-third of patients with BM secondary to solid tumors remain untreated and less than 50% of the patients received ≥12 administrations/year of BTA therapy.

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