Research and Scholarship

Adherence to Prophylactic Anticonvulsant Guidelines for Newly Diagnosed Brain Tumor Patients: A Quality Improvement Study

Dan Beverly Fu,(1) DNP, MBA, NP-C, Xiao-Tang Kong,(1) MD, PhD, Tener Goodwin Veenema,(2) PhD, MPH, MS, Daniela A. Bota,(1) MD, PhD, and Binu Koirala,(3) PhD, MGS, RN

From (1)University of California Irvine, School of Medicine, Irvine, California; (2)Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, Baltimore, Maryland; (3)Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, Baltimore, Maryland

Authors’ disclosures of conflicts of interest are found at the end of this article.

Correspondence to: Dan Beverly Fu, DNP, MBA, NP-C, 1001 Health Sciences Rd, Irvine, CA 92617 E-mail: dfu@hs.uci.edu


J Adv Pract Oncol 2022;13(8):775–789 | https://doi.org/10.6004/jadpro.2022.13.8.4 | © 2022 Harborside™


  

ABSTRACT

Background and Purpose: Clinical guidelines suggest that prophylactic antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) should be given to newly diagnosed seizure-naive brain tumor patients for up to 1 week after craniotomy. Yet, data suggest that prophylactic AEDs are used up to 12 months after surgery. A quality improvement project was implemented to improve adherence to evidence-based prophylactic AED guidelines. Methods: A quasi-experimental, pre- and post-test intervention design was used to assess the effect of a multiphase intervention on guideline adherence and prophylactic anticonvulsant prescription rates. The 16-week intervention consisted of provider education sessions, provider alerts, documentation templates, and a weekly audit and feedback. Participants included four providers and newly diagnosed seizure-naive brain tumor patients. Measures included guideline adherence rates and AED prescription rates extracted from chart review, and a provider attitude and knowledge survey. Analyses included descriptive statistics, Wilcoxon signed-rank tests, and Chi-square tests. Results: Guideline adherence increased significantly (p < .01) from 4 months before implementation (15.8%) to 1 year before implementation (27.8%) and then to 93.3% after implementation. Provider knowledge showed clinically meaningful decreases in the likelihood to prescribe prophylactic AEDs (–.5 point) and increased understanding of prophylactic AED side effects (+0.5 point), although these were not statistically significant (p = .083). Finally, prophylactic AED prescription rates decreased by 2.2% (p = .119) compared with 4 months and 1 year before implementation (2.6%; p = .072). Conclusion: This project highlights the important role of provider education, provider alerts, a documentation template, and audit and feedback in improving guideline adherence rate. Findings suggest that the combination intervention and weekly audit and feedback strategy can improve guideline adherence to prophylactic anticonvulsant use in seizure-naive newly diagnosed brain tumor patients. Implications: By following prophylactic AED guideline recommendations, clinicians can avoid the potential side effects of anticonvulsant-induced cognitive, behavioral, and psychiatric issues that can impair patients’ quality of life. 




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