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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 191-196

Psychosocial factors influencing parental decision to allow or refuse potentially lifesaving enucleation in children with retinoblastoma

Department of Clinical Epidemiology, College of Medicine, University of the Philippines, Manila, Philippines

Correspondence Address:
Rolando Enrique D. Domingo
Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, College of Medicine, University of the Philippines, Manila
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2347-5625.207736

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Objective: Retinoblastoma is the most common malignancy of the eye and ocular adnexa in the Philippines. It is curable when treated early, but delay in enucleation is common due to the parental refusal of surgery for varied reasons. The aim of this study is to identify the psychosocial barriers and facilitating factors for accepting versus refusing enucleation as treatment for retinoblastoma. Methods: This is a cross-sectional descriptive study utilizing structured interviews and a questionnaire. It was conducted at the Retinoblastoma Clinic of the Philippine General Hospital. A†questionnaire using the Likert scale was constructed after performing key informant interviews and focus group discussions. It was pretested and revised before parents of patients with retinoblastoma were invited to participate in the study. Descriptive statistics, quantitative item analyses using inter-item correlations and item-total correlations†was†performed. Results: Factors that correlate with refusal to enucleate are the beliefs that cancer is a fatal illness, the fear of unacceptable esthetic outcome of the surgery, and the cost of treatment. Favorable factors include value of life, high regard for the opinion of medical practitioners, and appreciation of the efficacy of treatment. Conclusions: There are several favorable factors and barriers that health practitioners must consider in facilitating parental decision-making toward enucleation for retinoblastoma.

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