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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 319-327

Determining the Concerns of Breast Cancer Survivors to Inform Practice


1 Cancer Education and Information Service (Research and Data), National Cancer Centre Singapore, Singapore
2 Division of Medical Oncology, National Cancer Centre Singapore, Singapore
3 Division of Surgery and Surgical Oncology, National Cancer Centre Singapore, Singapore
4 Division of Clinic Trials and Epidemiological Sciences, National Cancer Centre Singapore, Singapore

Correspondence Address:
MN, RN Gek Phin Chua
Cancer Education and Information Service (Research and Data), National Cancer Centre Singapore
Singapore
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/apjon.apjon_26_20

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Objective: Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women across all ethnicities, accounting for almost one in three incident cancers in female, and the leading cause of mortality in Singapore. Literature reveals that survivors of breast cancer have many concerns, and these concerns can linger on for decades. The primary aim of this secondary analysis was to establish the concerns of breast cancer survivors and use the data to inform practice. Methods: The present report was part of a bigger data designed to evaluate the concerns of cancer survivors (top six cancers) across the survivorship trajectory. Data of 438 breast cancer survivors were derived from a cross-sectional survey of the self-reported concerns of 1107 cancer survivors, using the questionnaire adopted from the Mayo Clinic Cancer Centre's Cancer Survivors Survey of Needs. Logistic regression models were fitted to estimate the odds ratios to assess the association of various variables with the presence of ≥1 concerned or very concerned issue among patients. Linear regression models were fitted to identify the variables associated with quality of life (QOL). Results: A total of 438 breast cancer survivors responded to this survey. The top five concerns were cancer treatment and recurrence risk (55.5%), followed by fear of recurrence (FOR) (54.6%), long-term effects of treatment (53.4%), osteoporosis/bone health (39.0%), and keeping primary care physicians informed (37.4%). Cancer treatment and recurrence risk, FOR, and long-term treatment effects were among the top concerns across the survivorship trajectory. The mean QOL was 7.5 on a scale of 0–10. Conclusions: Irrespective of the cancer trajectory, survivors of breast cancer have serious concerns that warrant attention. Designing patient care delivery that addresses these concerns identified is critical in assisting them in their coping process and enhancing their QOL.


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