Instrument that measures quality of life for breast cancer survivors can be used for other cancers

Research Activities, August 2010, No. 360

Survey instruments that measure cancer survivors' health-related quality of life can help researchers gauge the true impact of the disease as well as design interventions to assist these individuals. A new study finds that the 47-item Impact of Cancer, version 2, which was first tested with breast cancer survivors, may also be useful in measuring the effects other cancers have on survivors' quality of life. Version 2, derived from the initial 81-item Impact of Cancer, measures both the negative and positive effects cancer has had on survivors. For example, some survivors report that being diagnosed with cancer helped them grow personally (a positive), and others report suffering from body image issues (a negative).

When researchers gave the survey to 1,188 breast cancer survivors and 652 non-Hodgkin lymphoma survivors, they found that version 2's scales measured important and common concerns both groups of survivors share. Further, because version 2 also pinpointed differences between the two groups, it is useful for differentiating the impacts specific cancers have on survivors. This study was funded in part by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (T32 HS00032).

See "Measuring the impact of cancer: A comparison of non-Hodgkin lymphoma and breast cancer survivors," by Catherine M. Crespi, Ph.D., Sophia K. Smith, Ph.D., Laura Petersen, M.S., and others in the March 2010 Journal of Cancer Survivorship, 4(1), pp. 45-58.

Current as of August 2010
Internet Citation: Instrument that measures quality of life for breast cancer survivors can be used for other cancers: Research Activities, August 2010, No. 360. August 2010. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://archive.ahrq.gov/news/research-activities/aug10/0810RA17.html