A secondary analysis of 195 recipients from the randomized, multi-center (n=551) Blood and Marrow Transplant Clinical Trials Network trial (BMT CTN 0201), found that bone marrow (BM) recipients experienced significantly better psychological well-being and less burdensome chronic GVHD symptoms five years after HCT than peripheral blood stem cell (PBSC) recipients did.
Although there were no differences in any of the primary quality of life (QOL) scores in the first 2 years after transplant, mean scores at 5 years on the Mental Health Inventory Psychological Well-Being (p<0.01) and the chronic GVHD symptom scale (p<0.004) were significantly better for BM patients. Of the 7 chronic GVHD subscales, symptoms in the eyes (p<0.001), symptoms in the lungs (p=0.004), and energy level (p=0.003) were significantly better with BM. In addition, at 5 years post-transplant, BM recipients were 50% more likely to have returned to full- or part-time work than were PBSC recipients.
At a median follow up of 73 months (range, 30-121), there were no differences in survival (40% vs. 39%; p=0.84), relapse (32% vs. 29%; p=0.47), or treatment-related mortality (TRM) (29% vs. 32%; p=0.44) between BM and PBSC recipients, respectively.
The researchers concluded that BM recipients had better psychological well-being, less burdensome chronic GVHD symptoms, and were more likely to return to work than recipients of PBSC at 5 years after transplantation. Survival, relapse and TRM results at 5 years were similar.