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Support Care Cancer. 2011 Jun;19(6):757-64. doi: 10.1007/s00520-010-0871-4. Epub 2010 Apr 20.

Spiritual well-being and health-related quality of life in colorectal cancer: a multi-site examination of the role of personal meaning.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Social Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, 625 North Michigan Ave., 27th Floor, Chicago, IL 60611, USA. j-salsman@northwestern.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Individuals diagnosed and treated for cancer often report high levels of distress, continuing even after successful treatment. Spiritual well-being (SpWB) has been identified as an important factor associated with positive health outcomes. This study had two aims: (1) examine the associations between SpWB (faith and meaning/peace) and health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes and (2) examine competing hypotheses of whether the relationship among distress, SpWB, and HRQL is better explained by a stress-buffering (i.e., interaction) or a direct (main effects) model.

METHODS:

Study 1 consisted of 258 colorectal cancer survivors (57% men) recruited from comprehensive cancer centers in metropolitan areas (age, M=61; months post-diagnosis, M=17). Study 2 consisted of 568 colorectal cancer survivors (49% men) recruited from a regional cancer registry (age, M=67; months post-diagnosis, M=19). Participants completed measures of SpWB (functional assessment of chronic illness therapy-spiritual well-being (FACIT-Sp)) and HRQL (functional assessment of cancer therapy-colorectal) in both studies. Measures of general distress (profile of mood states-short form) and cancer-specific distress were also completed in study 1 and study 2, respectively.

RESULTS:

After controlling for demographic and clinical variables, faith and meaning/peace were positively associated with HRQL. However, meaning/peace emerged as a more robust predictor of HRQL outcomes than faith. Planned analyses supported a direct rather than stress-buffering effect of meaning/peace.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study provides further evidence of the importance of SpWB, particularly meaning/peace, to HRQL for people with colorectal cancer. Future studies of SpWB and cancer should examine domains of the FACIT-Sp separately and explore the viability of meaning-based interventions for cancer survivors.

PMID:
20405147
PMCID:
PMC4474154
DOI:
10.1007/s00520-010-0871-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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