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J Pain Symptom Manage. 2001 Jun;21(6):456-66.

Predictors of pain and fatigue in the year following diagnosis among elderly cancer patients.

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  • 1Department of Family Practice, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA.


Using data obtained from an inception cohort of 841 patients aged 65 or older newly diagnosed with breast, colon, lung, or prostate cancer, and observed at 6-8, 12-16, 24-30, and 52 weeks, three questions related to patients' experiences with pain and fatigue were posed. First, how do numbers of patients reporting neither pain nor fatigue, either symptom, or both change during the observation year? Second, did number of comorbid conditions, site and stage of cancer, treatment modalities, symptom management medication, and time affect the presence of these two symptoms? Third, do pain and fatigue predict the numbers of co-occurring other symptoms? Findings indicate that during the year patients improved with respect to their reports of pain and/or fatigue. Stage, more comorbidity, and lung cancer were related to both pain and fatigue. Chemotherapy was related to reports of fatigue, but did not have an extended effect on fatigue.

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