Hack, Thomas F, Pickles, Tom, Ruether, J. Dean, Weir, Lorna, Bultz, Barry D, Mackey, John and Degner, Lesley F
Predictors of distress and quality of life in patients undergoing cancer therapy: impact of treatment type and decisional role.
Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pon.1590
Purpose: The purpose of this secondary investigation was to examine the impact of the type of treatment received and the perceived role in treatment decision making in predicting distress and cancer-specific quality of life in patients newly diagnosed with breast or prostate cancer.
Method: Participants included 1057 newly diagnosed breast and prostate cancer patients from four Canadian cancer centers who partook in a randomized controlled trial examining the utility of providing patients with an audio-recording of their treatment planning consultation. A MANCOVA was performed to predict distress and cancer-specific quality of life at 12 weeks post-consultation based on control variables (patient age, education, residence, tumor size (breast sample), gleason score (prostate sample), and receipt of an initial treatment consultation recording), predictor variables (treatment type—chemotherapy, hormone therapy, radiation therapy; decisional role—active, collaborative, passive), and interactions between these predictors.
Results: Women who received chemotherapy and reported having played a more passive role in treatment decision making had significantly greater distress and lower cancer-specific quality of life at 12-week post-consultation. There were no statistically significant predictors of these outcomes identified for men with prostate cancer.
Conclusion: Receipt of chemotherapy places women with breast cancer at risk for distress and reduced quality of life, but only for the subset of women who report playing a passive role in treatment decision making. Prospective, longitudinal studies are needed to confirm the present findings and to explicate the antecedents, composition, and consequences of the ‘passive’ decisional role during the treatment phase of the cancer trajectory.
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