Recommended care and care adherence following a diagnosis of Lynch syndrome: a mixed-methods study
Wiesner, Georgia L.
Background Lynch syndrome (LS) is the most common hereditary colorectal cancer (CRC) syndrome. This study assesses trends in diagnosis of LS and adherence to recommended LS-related care in a large integrated healthcare organization (similar to 575,000 members). Methods Electronic medical record (EMR) data (1999-2015) were examined to identify patients with a diagnosis of LS. We examined their LS-associated care recommendations and adherence to these recommendations. Qualitative patient and provider interviews were conducted with the aim of identifying opportunities for improved care delivery. Results We identified 74 patients with a diagnosis of LS; 64% were diagnosed with a LS-related malignancy prior to their diagnosis of LS. The time to LS diagnosis following development of a LS-related cancer decreased over time: before 2009 11% of individuals received a diagnosis of LS within 1 year of developing a LS-related cancer compared to 83% after 2009 (p < 0.0001). Colonoscopy recommendations were documented in the EMR for almost all patients with LS (96%). Documentation of other recommendations for cancer surveillance was less commonly found. Overall, patient adherence to colonoscopy was high (M = 81.5%; SD = 32.7%), and adherence to other recommendations varied. To improve care coordination, patients and providers suggested providing automated reminder prompts for LS-related surveillance, adding a LS-specific diagnosis code, and providing guidelines for LS-related surveillance in the EMR. Conclusions We identified fewer than expected patients with LS in our large care system, indicating that there is still a diagnostic care gap. However, patients with LS were likely to receive and follow CRC surveillance recommendations. Recommendations for and adherence to extracolonic surveillance were variable. Improved care coordination and clearer documentation of the LS diagnosis is needed.