Imiquimod has been studied as a noninvasive pharmacological treatment alternative to large loop excision of the transformation zone (LLETZ) for high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), to prevent long-term obstetric complications from surgical treatment. This study aims to investigate womens' preferences for treatment of high-grade CIN with imiquimod or LLETZ. A labeled discrete choice experiment was conducted among 100 women with abnormal cervical cytology in 5 hospitals in the Netherlands between March 2014 and December 2015. Participants were asked to choose between imiquimod treatment or standard surgical treatment in 9 separate scenarios, based on the following treatment characteristics: treatment success rate, rate of side effects, risk of premature birth in subsequent pregnancies, and risk of subfertility after treatment. The levels of these characteristics differed for the imiquimod alternatives. Women assigned a positive utility to LLETZ compared with imiquimod. When making a choice for imiquimod, women preferred a higher treatment success rate and a lower risk of premature birth, infertility and side effects. The choice for imiquimod treatment was also influenced by the intention of a future pregnancy. Subgroup analyses revealed that a lower efficacy regarding imiquimod might be more acceptable for women who desired a future pregnancy compared with women who did not desire a future pregnancy. Women with a future pregnancy wish may prefer treatment of high-grade CIN with imiquimod cream over LLETZ, if the risk of subfertility and premature birth is low.
- cervical intraepithelial neoplasia
- patient preferences