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January 4, 2012

Time-Limited Trials

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Duke Cancer Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina (Dr Abernethy) (amy.abernethy@duke.edu); and Department of Palliative and Supportive Services, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia (Dr Currow).

JAMA. 2012;307(1):33-34. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.1954

To the Editor: The Commentary on time-limited trials (TLTs) of treatment by Drs Quill and Holloway underscores the need for an explicit process to better manage “major interventions in circumstances in which the outcome is uncertain.”1 The basic tenets of the authors' proposal included measurement of end points; agreement on a time point for reevaluation of an individual's therapeutic response; and reconsideration of the intervention, with possible continuation, dose reduction, or cessation based on response.

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