Changes of quality of life and related factors in newly diagnosed advanced lung cancer patients’ family caregivers – a 6-month prospective study (#241)
Background: The threats of advanced lung cancer may lead severe impacts on caregivers’ quality of life (QOL). Relatively limited information has been reported in this field. The purposes of this study were to (1) explore the first 6 month changes of QOL, and (2) identify the factors associated to the changes in family caregivers taking care of newly diagnosed advanced lung cancer patients.
Methods: A prospective longitudinal study was conducted to recruit 149 newly diagnosed lung cancer patients and family caregiver dyads in a medical center in Northern Taiwan. Patients were assessed of their symptoms and physical function. Family caregivers were assessed of their QOL (by Caregiver Quality of Life Index-Cancer; CQOLC), anxiety and depression (by Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale; HADS), and self-efficacy in coping with cancer (Cancer Behavior Inventory- Brief Version; CBI-B) at four time points, including pre-treatment and 1, 3, 6 months from receiving treatments (T1- T4, respectively).The Generalized Estimating Equation (GEE) was applied to identify the factors related to caregivers’ QOL changes.
Results: The results showed that family caregiver had moderate levels of overall QOL ranged from 94.9 (19.7) to 100.8 (17.4) (in 0-140 scoring system). Patients’ fatigue symptom and physical function were significantly associated with family caregivers’ QOL in selected time points. The results showed that caring for female patients, having others to share the caregiving task, higher caregivers’ baseline QOL, having lower levels of anxiety and higher levels of self-efficacy in coping with cancer are significantly related to better QOL in family caregivers.
Conclusion: For better improving lung cancer caregivers’ QOL, research to guide caregivers to handle their anxiety and depression and enhance the self-efficacy abilities to cope with lung cancer is urgently needed and should be tested.
Acknowledge: This study is supported by National Health Research Institute (NHRI) in Taiwan (grant from 2009-2013).