How do prostate cancer patients navigate the active surveillance journey? A 3-year longitudinal study.

Published on Feb 1, 2021in Supportive Care in Cancer2.635
· DOI :10.1007/S00520-020-05524-8
Paola Dordoni2
Estimated H-index: 2
Paola Dordoni6
Estimated H-index: 6
+ 8 AuthorsLara Bellardita10
Estimated H-index: 10
OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether prostate cancer (PCa) patients' coping strategies (i.e., fighting spirit, anxious preoccupation, fatalism, helplessness/hopelessness, and avoidance) significantly change during the first 3-year follow-up period of active surveillance (AS). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Altogether, 104 patients on AS completed the Mini-Mental Adjustment to Cancer (Mini-MAC) at baseline (T0), at 10 and 12 months after diagnostic biopsy (T1 and T2, respectively) and then at 24- (T3) and 36-month (T4) follow-up. Paired samples T test was used to detect statistically significant changes over time. Changes ≥ 1 point (or ≤ - 1) were hypothesized to be clinically relevant. RESULTS: During the first 3 years on AS, men experienced decreased anxiety, avoidance thoughts/behaviors, and fight-against-cancer attitudes, and these changes were found to be statistically significant. When considering clinically significant changes between inclusion in AS (T0) and 3-year follow-up (T4), avoidance decreased in 19% of patients. CONCLUSIONS: Most patients were observed to have adopted functional coping strategies at baseline, which were maintained through the first 3 years on AS. Overall, men on AS may perceive increasing control over their cancer and comfort with the AS protocol over time and experience slight decreases in anxious preoccupation, cancer-related avoidance thoughts and behaviors, and fight-against-cancer reactions. For those men who find it difficult to cope with AS, psychological monitoring and interventions could be helpful throughout the monitoring journey.
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