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Gac Sanit. 2014 Mar-Apr;28(2):129-36. doi: 10.1016/j.gaceta.2013.09.002. Epub 2014 Jan 14.

Health status and health resource use among long-term survivors of breast, colorectal and prostate cancer.

Author information

  • 1Catalonian Institute of Oncology (Instituto Catalán de Oncología), Department of Clinical Sciences, IDIBELL, Fundamental Nursing Department, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain. Electronic address:
  • 2Catalonian Cancer Strategy, Department of Health, Barcelona, Spain.
  • 3Clinic Hospital of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.
  • 4Catalonian Institute of Oncology (Instituto Catalán de Oncología), Barcelona, Spain.
  • 5Parc Sanitari Mar Hospital, Barcelona, Spain.
  • 6Catalonian Cancer Strategy, Department of Health, Department of Clinical Sciences, IDIBELL, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.



The growing number of long-term cancer survivors poses a new challenge to health care systems. In Spain, follow-up is usually carried out in oncology services, but knowledge of cancer survivors' health care needs in this context is limited. The purpose of this study was to ascertain the health status of long-term survivors of breast, prostate, and colorectal cancer and to characterize their use of health care services.


Retrospective multicenter cohort study. We collected data from patients' clinical histories and through telephone interviews, using a specially designed questionnaire that included the SF-36v2 Quality of Life and Nottingham Health Profile scales.


The questionnaire was completed by 51.2% (n= 583) of the potential sample. No significant differences were observed between 5-year and 10-year survivors. Overall, more than 80% of respondents were undergoing drug treatment for morbidity related to advanced age. Quality of life was good in most patients, and cancer-related morbidity was low and of little complexity. For the most part, participants reported using primary care services for care of chronic diseases and opportunistic treatment of sequelae related to the cancer treatment. Oncological follow-up was centralized at the hospital.


Survivors of breast, prostate and colorectal cancer with tumoral detection at an early stage and without recurrences or second neoplasms experienced little morbidity and enjoyed good quality of life. This study proposes exploration of a follow-up model in the Spanish health system in which primary care plays a more important role than is customary in cancer survivors in Spain.

Copyright © 2013 SESPAS. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.


Breast cancer; Calidad de vida; Colorectal cancer; Cáncer colorrectal; Cáncer de mama; Cáncer de próstata; Follow-up; Healthcare delivery; Larga evolución; Long-term; Prostate cancer; Provisión servicios sanitarios; Quality of life; Seguimiento; Supervivencia; Survivorship

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