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J Behav Med. 2011 Feb;34(1):41-52. doi: 10.1007/s10865-010-9285-5. Epub 2010 Aug 4.

Review of health behaviors and their correlates among young adult cancer survivors.

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Miriam Hospital and Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Coro Building West, Suite 500, 1 Hoppin Street, Providence, RI 02903, USA.


It is imperative that young adult cancer survivors address any modifiable risk factors, given their increased health risks. Unfortunately, few behavioral interventions have been developed for this population. The literature on physical activity, smoking, and alcohol and drug use among young adult cancer survivors was reviewed in order to identify the behaviors most in need of intervention, the most vulnerable subsets of the population, and the health behavior theories that might guide intervention development. This literature indicates that young adult cancer survivors are not meeting physical activity recommendations though smoking and risky drinking appear less pervasive than in the general population. Several demographic and medical characteristics are associated with health behaviors, indicating subsets of the population particularly in need of intervention. The literature also indicates that a few different theories and models (e.g., social cognitive theory, self-determination theory) might be useful in guiding the development of interventions for this population.

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