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Qualitatively comparing the support needs of people with cancer based on their history of anxiety/ depression


Richardson, EM and Scott, JL and Schuz, N and Sanderson, K and Schuz, B, Qualitatively comparing the support needs of people with cancer based on their history of anxiety/ depression, Oncology and Therapy, 5, (1) pp. 41-51. ISSN 2366-1089 (2017) [Refereed Article]



Copyright Statement

The Author(s) 2017. Licensed under Creative Commonns Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)

DOI: doi:10.1007/s40487-017-0045-3


Introduction: Research rarely considers the origin or history of a cancer patient’s anxiety and/or depression, instead assuming that these illnesses are related to the cancer experience. The aim of this study was to compare differences in the support needs of people who have experienced anxiety/depression as part of the cancer experience and people who have not, as well as between people who have experienced episodic anxiety/depression and people who have experienced long-term anxiety/depression.

Methods: Twenty-one semi-structured interviews were conducted with people with a current or previous diagnosis of cancer, and a current or previous experience with anxiety and/or depression. Participants were split into four groups based on their history with cancer and anxiety/depression, and an inductive thematic analysis was conducted to identify themes across groups.

Results: Two superordinate themes (with three and two subordinate themes respectively) were found: ‘coping with cancer’ and ‘health care system support provision’. Important differences were found across groups, with participants who had a history of anxiety/depression that was unrelated to their cancer diagnosis coping better with the combined burden of cancer and anxiety/depression, experiencing less fear of cancer recurrence, and highlighting more positive hospital and support service related experiences, than those whose anxiety/depression was cancer related.

Conclusion: The origin and history of a person’s anxiety/depression is important to consider when determining how they might cope with cancer, what their support needs are, and how much support they may require.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:anxiety, cancer, co-morbidity, depression, needs, support, mental health services
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Clinical and health psychology
Research Field:Health psychology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Richardson, EM (Dr Emma Richardson)
UTAS Author:Scott, JL (Professor Jenn Scott)
UTAS Author:Schuz, N (Dr Natalie Schuez)
UTAS Author:Schuz, B (Dr Benjamin Schuez)
ID Code:116362
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2017-05-08
Last Modified:2018-07-25
Downloads:108 View Download Statistics

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