A longitudinal study of coping strategies in men receiving radiotherapy and neo-adjuvant androgen deprivation for prostate cancer: a quantitative and qualitative study

Oonagh McSorley, Eilis McCaughan, Gillian Prue, Brendan Bunting, Kader Parahoo, Joe O'Sullivan

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14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim. This paper reports a study on how men cope with the side-effects ofradiotherapy and neo-adjuvant androgen deprivation for prostate cancer up to1 year after treatment.Background. With early detection and improved treatments, prostate cancersurvivors are living longer with the disease and the side-effects of treatment. Howthey cope affects their long-term physical and mental health.Design. A prospective, longitudinal, exploratory design using both qualitative andquantitative methods was used in this study.Method. Between September 2006–September 2007 149 men who were about toundergo radical radiotherapy androgen deprivation for localized prostatecancer in Northern Ireland were recruited to the study. They completed the BriefCope scale at four time-points.Results. Acceptance, positive reframing, emotional support, planning and, justgetting on with it, were the most common ways of coping. Fewer men usedcoping strategies less at 6 months and 1 year after radiotherapy in comparison topre-treatment and 4–6 weeks after radiotherapy. Interviews with these mendemonstrated that men adapted to a new norm, with the support of their wives/partners and did not readily seek professional help. A minority of men usedalcohol, behavioural disengagement and self blame as ways of coping.Conclusion. Men used a variety of ways of coping to help them deal withradiotherapy and neo-adjuvant androgen deprivation for up to 12 months afterradiotherapy. Interventions need to be developed to take account of the specific needsof partners of men with prostate cancer and single men who have prostate cancer.Keywords: cancer, chronic illness, coping, design, men’s health, mixed method,nursing assessment, radiotherapy
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Volume70
Issue number625-63
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2013

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