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Title: The influence of treatment type and psychological factors on fear of recurrence, distress, and health behaviours amongst breast cancer survivors
Author: Grozdziej, Anna Ewa
ISNI:       0000 0004 5371 7240
Awarding Body: University of Bath
Current Institution: University of Bath
Date of Award: 2015
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Objective: The present study sought to investigate the extent and role of health anxiety, mental defeat, self-compassion and health related coping behaviours in relation to fear of cancer recurrence (FCR), psychological distress amongst breast cancer survivors, according to whether or not they had had chemotherapy as part of treatment. This comparison was carried out to build upon previous research findings that have pointed an especially adverse psychological impact of chemotherapy treatment. Methods: A total of 77 breast cancer survivors were recruited, and completed questionnaires in order to investigate whether more intensive treatment (i.e. including chemotherapy alongside radiotherapy and surgery) will be associated with higher levels of health anxiety, mental defeat, fear or recurrence, and psychological distress. Results: Group comparison demonstrated significantly higher levels of health anxiety, FCR, mental defeat and psychological distress amongst patients who have undergone more chemotherapy. Multiple regression analysis indicated that health anxiety, psychological distress and age, were the strongest predictors of fear of recurrence; while mental defeat and fear of recurrence were strongest for psychological distress. In addition, mental defeat was inversely associated with higher self-compassion. Conclusions: These results suggest that FCR, health anxiety and mental defeat is significantly elevated amongst breast cancer survivors, in particular those who have undergone chemotherapy, and is associated with increased levels of longer-term psychological distress. Cognitive-behavioural interventions, which target these variables, should be evaluated in these patients.
Supervisor: Medley, Andrew ; Salkovskis, Paul Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available