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Cancer. 2018 Oct 1;124(19):3918-3923. doi: 10.1002/cncr.31647. Epub 2018 Sep 11.

Lifestyle factors and health-related quality of life in adult survivors of childhood cancer: A report from the St. Jude Lifetime Cohort Study.

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Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts.
Department of Epidemiology and Cancer Control, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee.
Department of Oncology, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee.
Department of Global Pediatric Medicine, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee.
Department of Psychology, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee.
Center for Outcomes Research, JPS Health Network, Fort Worth, Texas.



Survivors of childhood cancer report poor health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Modifiable lifestyle factors such as nutrition and physical activity represent opportunities for interventions to improve HRQOL.


The authors examined the association between modifiable lifestyle factors and HRQOL among 2480 adult survivors of childhood cancer in the St. Jude Lifetime Cohort Study. Dietary intake, physical activity, cigarette smoking, and alcohol consumption were assessed through questionnaires. Weight and height were measured in the clinic. HRQOL was evaluated using the Medical Outcome Study 36-Item Short Form Survey. The physical component summary (PCS), mental component summary (MCS), and 8 domain scores of HRQOL were calculated. Multivariable linear regression models were used to estimate regression coefficients (β) associated with HRQOL differences.


Being physically active (PCS β = 3.10; and MCS β = 1.48) was associated with higher HRQOL whereas current cigarette smoking (PCS β = -2.30; and MCS β = -6.49) and obesity (body mass index ≥30 kg/m2 ) (PCS β = -3.29; and MCS β = -1.61) were associated with lower HRQOL in both the physical and mental domains. Better diet (Healthy Eating Index-2015) was associated with higher physical HRQOL (PCS β = 1.79). Moderate alcohol consumption was associated with higher physical (PCS β = 1.14) but lower mental (MCS β = -1.13) HRQOL (all P <.05). Adherence to multiple healthy lifestyle factors demonstrated a linear trend with high scores in both physical and mental HRQOL (highest vs lowest adherence: PCS β = 7.60; and MCS β = 5.76 [P for trend, <.0001]).


The association between healthy lifestyle factors and HRQOL is cumulative, underscoring the importance of promoting multiple healthy lifestyles to enhance HRQOL in long-term survivors of childhood cancer.


childhood cancer survivors; health-related quality of life (HRQOL); lifestyle; nutrition; physical activity

[Available on 2019-10-01]

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