Prevalence and correlates of high fear of cancer recurrence in late adolescents and young adults consulting a specialist adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer service.
van der Graaf, WTA
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OBJECTIVE: High fear of cancer recurrence (FCR) is a frequently reported problem among cancer patients. Previous research has shown that younger age is associated with higher levels of FCR. However, little attention has been given to date about how FCR manifests itself among adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer patients. This study explores the prevalence, correlates of high FCR, and its association with HRQoL in cancer patients in their late adolescence or young adulthood. METHODS: Seventy-three AYA cancer patients, aged 18-35 years at diagnosis, consulted the AYA team of the Radboud University Medical Center completed questionnaires including the Cancer Worry Scale (CWS), Quality of Life-Cancer Survivors (QOL-CS), and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Sociodemographic and medical data was collected by self-reported questionnaire. RESULTS: Forty-five participants experienced high FCR (62%), which was higher than the 31-52% reported in previous studies among mixed adult cancer patient samples. Sociodemographic and medical variables were not associated with levels of FCR. High FCR was significantly associated with lower levels of social and psychological functioning and overall HRQoL and higher levels of anxiety and psychological distress. CONCLUSION: Results illustrate that FCR is a significant problem among AYA cancer patients consulting an AYA team, with participants reporting higher levels of FCR than cancer patients of mixed ages. Health care providers should pay specific attention to this problem by screening and the provision of appropriate psychosocial care when needed.
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Adolescent and young adult cancer
Fear of cancer recurrence
Quality of life
Clinical and Translational Sarcoma
License start date
Support Care Cancer, 2017