Independent anxiety and psychological distress in women with breast cancer and their partners

Department of Communication, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA.
Psycho-Oncology (Impact Factor: 2.44). 07/2007; 16(7):634-43. DOI: 10.1002/pon.1111
Source: PubMed


The purpose of this study was to determine the extent of interdependence on anxiety within dyads where one person was undergoing treatment for breast cancer. Perceptions of relationship quality were expected to mitigate the anxiety experienced by both members of the dyad. 96 dyads participated in a 3-wave longitudinal study that took place over 10 weeks. Dyads were composed of a woman with stage I-III breast cancer who was currently undergoing treatment, and a partner who she nominated to participate in the study along with her. Results indicated that anxiety felt by women with breast cancer was consistently associated with that of her partner. Structural equation analyses suggest that the within-dyad influence runs mostly from partners' anxiety to the anxiety of women with breast cancer. Partners' anxiety was also associated with other indicators of the women's well being including depression, fatigue, and symptom management. Perceptions of relationship quality from women with breast cancer and their partners were negatively associated with partners' anxiety. However, women's anxiety was only correlated with their partners', but not their own, perceptions of relationship quality. These findings underscore the benefit of having partners who are able to cope with or get help for their own personal distress as women cope with the stress of breast cancer and its treatment.

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    • "In some contexts, the rate of anxiety among cancer caregivers exceeds the prevalence of anxiety among patients [3] [4] and the general population [5]. These findings are of concern, as caregivers with higher anxiety report a decrease in their own health and well-being [3] [6] [7]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Examine the psychometric properties of the Appraisal of Caregiving Scale (ACS). Data were collected as part of the FOCUS Program trial in Michigan (N=484 caregivers). Exploratory factor analysis found the ACS measured Threat, General Stress, and Benefit appraisals. Cronbach's alphas for all subscales exceeded 0.70. Construct validity analyses indicated the Threat subscale correlated significantly with concepts of avoidant coping, burden, and dyadic support (r>0.30). General Stress correlated significantly with burden (r=0.348) and dyadic support (r=-0.373), and the Benefit subscale correlated significantly with active coping (r=0.444). Known group analyses indicated that depressed caregivers had higher Threat and General Stress scores than non-depressed caregivers. Also, younger caregivers reported significantly higher scores on the General Stress subscale than older caregivers. Predictive validity analyses found appraisal scores at baseline accounted for 33.3% of the variance in hopelessness and 27.8% of the variance in depression at Time 2. The ACS is a reliable measure of Threat, General Stress, and Benefit appraisals, with some support for its validity. Health professionals may find the ACS useful for guiding intervention development. Future research should continue to examine the ACS' validity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Patient Education and Counseling 01/2015; 98(5). DOI:10.1016/j.pec.2015.01.009 · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    • "Partners reported high levels of anxiety and high levels of supportive care needs (Hodgkinson et al. 2007b). The anxiety felt by women undergoing treatment was significantly associated with the anxiety felt by their partners (Segrin et al. 2007). Anxiety has often been investigated in a broader context of psychological problems. "
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    ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: This study aimed at gaining insight into supportive care needs and cancer treatment-related symptoms, and to determine factors associated with supportive care needs. Breast cancer and its treatment cause emotional trauma and health complaints. These lead to supportive care needs in some patients, while others are more able to cope with these consequences themselves. To be able to address these needs, it is important to identify patients' needs at the time they arise. METHODS: Women (n = 175) with newly-diagnosed breast cancer, under treatment in two Swiss breast cancer clinics, participated in a cross-sectional survey. Standardized instruments were used: Supportive Care Needs Survey, Cancer- and Cancer Treatment-related Symptom Scale, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, Distress Thermometer, and Interpersonal Relationship Inventory. RESULTS: The patients' most needed help with psychological issues. Many had treatment-related symptoms like fatigue (87.7%), hot flashes (71.5%), and a changed body appearance (55.8%). The majority suffered from distress (56.2%), fewer from anxiety (24.1%) and depression (12.1%). Physical and social impairment, impaired body image, distress, anxiety and depression, a lack of social support and conflicts in their personal relationships were associated with supportive care needs. CONCLUSIONS: The findings can help to identify more vulnerable patients with unmet needs and a higher demand for support. Assessment of patients enables health care professionals to provide support and counselling. In these assessments, the patients' relationship to close relatives should also be addressed.
    European journal of oncology nursing: the official journal of European Oncology Nursing Society 03/2012; 17(1). DOI:10.1016/j.ejon.2012.02.003 · 1.43 Impact Factor
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    • "These results are in accordance with some literature that has shown partners to have higher anxiety than cancer patients but did not differ on depressive symptoms (Manne et al., 2003). Partners' anxiety has also been associated to depression and fatigue in patients with breast cancer (Segrin et al., 2007). "
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    ABSTRACT: This study examines the impact of different modes of treatment on depression, anxiety, traumatic stress and quality of life in colorectal cancer patients and their partners. The sample was comprised of 114 oncology patients and 67 partners. All patients were diagnosed with colorectal cancer. Participants were recruited from an Oncology Hospital in the North of Portugal and had been submitted to three modes of treatment: surgery, surgery plus chemotherapy or surgery followed by radiotherapy. The results showed that patients who received only surgery, as treatment, had lower levels of depression, anxiety and traumatic stress symptoms when compared with patients who received surgery and chemotherapy or surgery plus radiotherapy. Partners of surgical patients presented lower levels of state anxiety and traumatic stress symptoms when compared with the other two groups. Patients with more depression had partners also more depressed. No relationship was found between anxiety and traumatic stress symptoms in patients and partners. Patients who received a diagnosis longer than 12 months had more traumatic stress, intrusion and hypervigilance. Patients with illness recurrence showed more traumatic symptoms. Anxiety and depression were the main predictors of patient's quality of life. Traumatic stress was a predictor of symptom distress - pain/bowel pattern. This study highlights the importance of providing psychological interventions for cancer patients and their partners. Chemotherapy patients and those diagnosed over a year, as well as their partners, are more at risk.
    European journal of oncology nursing: the official journal of European Oncology Nursing Society 07/2011; 16(3):227-32. DOI:10.1016/j.ejon.2011.06.006 · 1.43 Impact Factor
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