Fatigue in breast cancer survivors: occurrence, correlates, and impact on quality of life.
ABSTRACT To describe the occurrence of fatigue in a large sample of breast cancer survivors relative to general population norms and to identify demographic, medical, and psychosocial characteristics of fatigued survivors.
Breast cancer survivors in two large metropolitan areas completed standardized questionnaires as part of a survey study, including the RAND 36-item Health Survey, Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression Scale, Breast Cancer Prevention Trial Symptom Checklist, Medical Outcomes Study Sleep Scale, and demographic and treatment-related measures.
On average, the level of fatigue reported by the breast cancer survivors surveyed (N = 1,957) was comparable to that of age-matched women in the general population, although the breast cancer survivors were somewhat more fatigued than a more demographically similar reference group. Approximately one third of the breast cancer survivors assessed reported more severe fatigue, which was associated with significantly higher levels of depression, pain, and sleep disturbance. In addition, fatigued women were more bothered by menopausal symptoms and were somewhat more likely to have received chemotherapy (with or without radiation therapy) than nonfatigued women. In multivariate analyses, depression and pain emerged as the strongest predictors of fatigue.
Although the majority of breast cancer survivors in this large and diverse sample did not experience heightened levels of fatigue relative to women in the general population, there was a subgroup of survivors who did report more severe and persistent fatigue. We identified characteristics of these women that may be helpful in elucidating the mechanisms underlying fatigue in this population, as well as directing intervention efforts.
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ABSTRACT: Worldwide, the number of cancer survivors is increasing, owing to improvements in cancer therapy, resulting in an increased need to address the physical and mental sequelae of cancer. This paper introduces a Danish psychosocial cancer intervention and presents the baseline characteristics of the cancer survivors with respect to cancer site, sociodemographic variables, social network, lifestyle, self-rated health and the prevalence of cancer-related late effects. The study is part of the FOCARE research project, in which the long-term effects of the rehabilitation programme are evaluated systematically. The study is based on data from a self-administered baseline questionnaire filled in by 2 174 cancer survivors who registered for a 1-week, publicly paid rehabilitation retreat and were invited to participate in the FOCARE study in the period 25 November 2002 to 31 December 2005. The response rate at baseline was 86% (n = 1876). Most participants were younger women with breast cancer. They were generally well educated and working. The cancer survivors reported having comprehensive social networks and being physically active. Several cancer-related symptoms were reported by women with cancers at selected sites, of which fatigue was the most prevalent. More than half reported good-to-excellent self-rated health, while fair-to-poor health was reported by 40%, most of whom were survivors of lung (56%) and haematological (48%) cancers. The results indicate that Danish cancer survivors experience considerably reduced physical health, possibly as late physical effects of treatment. The problems reported by the cancer survivors suggest that cancer rehabilitation should include these aspects of living after cancer and take account of differences among cancer survivors with regard to cancer site, sex, age, family, working status and social position. These challenges might be addressed optimally in multi-dimensional rehabilitation programmes.Acta Oncologica 02/2008; 47(1):47-55. DOI:10.1080/02841860701418846 · 3.71 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Breast cancer survivors must manage chronic side effects of original treatment. To manage these symptoms, communication must include both biomedical and contextual lifestyle factors. Sixty breast cancer survivors and 6 providers were recruited to test a conceptual model developed from uncertainty in illness theory and the dimensions of a patient-centered relationship. Visits were audio-taped, then coded using the Measure of Patient-Centered Communication (Brown, Stewart, & Ryan, 2001). Consultations were found to be 52% patient-centered. Chi-square Automatic Interaction Detection (CHAID) analysis showed that survivor self-reported fatigue level and conversation about symptoms were associated with survivor uncertainty, mood state, and survivor perception of patient-centered communication. Survivors may want to discuss persistent symptom concerns with providers, due to concerns about recurrence, and discuss lifestyle contextual concerns with others.Health Communication 02/2008; 23(3):207-21. DOI:10.1080/10410230701808376 · 0.97 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: While it has long been recognized that self-reported drug use may be at variance with objectively obtained evidence such as urine toxicology assays, few studies have explored the behavioral correlates of such discrepancies. Here we compared self-reported and objective measures of stimulant drug use for 162 HIV infected individuals and identified a sub-group with discrepancies between data obtained via the two methods. Results showed poorer neurocognitive performance (attention, learning/memory) and lower medication adherence rates for the discrepant group as compared to those who either acknowledged their drug use or accurately denied recent stimulant use. Using the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III, it was also found that those in the discrepant group were more hesitant to reveal psychopathology. Comparisons of self-reported and objectively measured medication adherence data are also discussed.Addictive Behaviors 01/2008; 32(12):2727-36. DOI:10.1016/j.addbeh.2007.04.006 · 2.44 Impact Factor