Coping together and apart: exploring how patients and their caregivers manage terminal head and neck cancer Journal of Psychosocial Oncology. 2011 May;29(3):308-26 "Head and neck cancer (HNC) challenges the physical, social, and psychological well-being of the individual, and their family and friends, with 50% of patients facing the prospect of dying within 5 years of diagnosis. To enhance care at the end of life, further understanding of how patients and their loved ones cope is needed. Findings from a qualitative study are presented which suggest that patients with terminal HNC and their caregivers cope individually, with support and as a dyad. Relationship qualities which might facilitate coping together as a dyad are described. These may aid distinction between coping together and acts of social support."
QoL Health Related Quality of Life Scores in long-term Head and Neck Cancer survivors predict subsequent survival; a prospective cohort study. Clinical Otolaryngology. 2011 May 28 "A general symptom sum score was significantly predictive of survival directly and after sequential adjustment for self-reported levels of neuroticism, avoidance focused coping, coping by suppression of competing activity, alcohol consumption, smoking status, and heart/lung disease, as well as gender, age, time between diagnosis and inclusion, TNM-stage, and tumour site. Similar results were found for the HRQoL indices “fatigue,”“dyspnoea,” and “sleep disturbance.”"
Health-related Quality of life in 640 head and neck cancer survivors after radiotherapy using EORTC QLQ-C30 and QLQ-H&N35 questionnaires BMC Cancer. 2011 Apr 12;11:128 "The technological advance of RT [radiotherapy] substantially improves the head-and-neck related symptoms and broad aspects of HR-QoL for HNC survivors."
Distress Predictors of emotional distress in patients with head and neck cancer Head & Neck. 2011 Mar 11 "Emotional distress is more common in patients with head and neck tumors; this is largely a result of the psychosocial context the patients live in, especially the amount of social support received."
Exercise Predictors of adherence to an exercise program for shoulder pain and dysfunction in head and neck cancer survivors Supportive Care in Cancer. 2011 Feb 24 "...exercise adherence rate for the trial was 91%...The high adherence achieved was likely due to the select and highly motivated sample of HNC survivors as well as to factors associated with trial design such as the support offered to participants. The findings of this trial need to be further explored and confirmed in a larger study that includes a more diverse sample of HNC survivors."
Thyroid cancer patients survey
CPOP Talk, November 2010 - The Thyroid Cancer Alliance recently surveyed
nearly 2,400 patients from 40 countries about their experiences with
treatment and support; 274 of those patients were Canadian. The findings
were presented in poster format at the September 2010 International
Thyroid Conference in Paris. Patients said the most difficult time was
the diagnostic stage, and that they wanted more information - about the
disease and support groups - early in the process. Most people looked
for information on the Internet. The London Free Press and the Globe & Mail reported on the results; links to both are on the Thyroid Cancer Canada site.
Recent research headlines
The mediating effects of social support and self-efficacy on the relationship between social distress and emotional distress in head and neck cancer outpatients with facial disfigurement Psychooncology. 2010 Dec 20