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Title: Exploring the cognitions and behaviours associated with vasomotor symptoms (hot flushes and night sweats) in men with prostate cancer undergoing hormone treatment
Author: Eziefula, Chinea
Awarding Body: King's College London (University of London)
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2012
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Objectives: Hot flushes and night sweats (HF/NS) in menopausal women are well-documented; psychological measures and interventions for managing these symptoms have been developed for women. Experiences of HF/NS in men with prostate cancer, which occur due to hormone treatment, are currently under-researched. Thus, this study involves a preliminary qualitative exploration of HF/NS cognitive appraisals and behavioural reactions reported by a sample of these men. Black men of Afro-Caribbean descent, white British/English and Irish men were included in order to consider possible differences relating to ethnicity. Methods: Semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted with 19 men (14 white British/English, 1 white Irish and 4 black British) who were receiving hormone treatment for prostate cancer and experiencing HF/NS. Framework analysis was used to explore HF/NS experiences, generate and categorise emergent themes and explore associations between themes. Results: Ethnicity-related thematic analysis was limited by the small sample of black British men recruited. However, analysis across all men identified a core superordinate theme labelled ’cognitions about HF/NS’, along with eight other themes. There were men who held beliefs about the impact of HF/NS on their masculinity, experienced shame and embarrassment due to concerns about HF/NS salience and perceptions by others and experienced feelings of powerlessness over HF/NS; powerlessness was associated with beliefs about the fatal consequences of discontinuing treatment. Cognitive appraisals (e.g. those associated with perceived control and embarrassment) influenced subsequent coping strategies. Thematic findings supported those identified in previous literature exploring HF/NS in male and female populations. Novel themes highlighted possible influences on HF/NS experiences, including beliefs associated with prostate cancer, general self-perceptions and potential socio-cultural influences. Conclusions: A range of men’s cognitive-behavioural experiences were generated from this qualitative exploration. An index of cognitive-behavioural themes was generated which could be used to inform future research into this under-researched field.
Supervisor: Hunter, Myra Sally Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available