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Clinical Investigations: DIFFUSE LUNG DISEASE |

Cyclophosphamide in the Treatment of Pulmonary Diseases*: Survey of Use, Training, and Practitioner Knowledge Base

Phillip J. Cozzi, MD; Jesse B. Hall, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

*From the Critical Care Section (Dr. Cozzi), Elmhurst Memorial Hospital, Elmhurst, IL; and the Section of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine (Dr. Hall), Department of Medicine, University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine, Chicago, IL.



Chest. 1999;116(5):1159-1162. doi:10.1378/chest.116.5.1159
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Objective: To assess pulmonologists’ use, training in the use, and knowledge base of the drug cyclophosphamide.

Design: Survey through questionnaire. Testing of knowledge base before and after instructional conference.

Participants and methods: Pulmonologists (94 attendings, 31 fellows), selected randomly at the 1996 and 1997 annual meetings of The American Thoracic Society, completed surveys of their use and training in the use of cyclophosphamide. Thirty-five attending at the 1998 meeting completed a test of knowledge base of the drug. Members of the pulmonary teaching service at The University of Chicago Hospitals completed the test before and after a case-based conference designed to educate pulmonologists in the use of the drug.

Results: Forty-three percent of the attending pulmonologists and 55% of the fellows were currently using the drug in the management of their patients; 77% of the attending pulmonologists had prescribed the drug in the past. Nonmalignant diseases for which the drug was prescribed included usual interstitial pneumonitis/desquamative interstitial pneumonitis, vasculitis, collagen vascular disease, constrictive bronchiolitis, sarcoid, and Goodpasture’s disease. Sixty-eight percent of attending pulmonologists and 81% of fellows had no training in the drug’s use. Of the attending pulmonologists who made use of the drug, 64% were prescribing and managing its use themselves. Of those who prescribed and managed the drug’s use themselves, 65% had had no training in its use. Of those fellows who prescribed and managed the drug’s use themselves, 73% had had no training in the drug’s use. On knowledge-based testing, the average correct score was 30 ± 10%. With an educational conference, average pre- and post-test scores rose from 40 ± 10% to 80 ± 10% (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Cyclophosphamide had been used by the vast majority of pulmonologists, either currently or in the past, for a wide variety of lung diseases. Its use is commonly managed by physicians who have no specific training relevant to this agent. Practitioner knowledge base of the drug is poor, and case-based conferences in fellowship may be an effective means of imparting information concerning this drug.


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