Understanding Domains of Health-related Quality of Life Concerns of Singapore Chinese Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Qualitative Analysis

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Understanding Domains of Health-related Quality of Life Concerns of Singapore Chinese Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Qualitative Analysis
Title:
Understanding Domains of Health-related Quality of Life Concerns of Singapore Chinese Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Qualitative Analysis
Journal Title:
Supportive Care in Cancer
Publication Date:
13 August 2015
Citation:
Abstract:
Purpose: Quality of life concerns in patients with advanced diseases might be different from other patients and are shaped by sociocultural context. The objective of this qualitative study was to identify domains and themes of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) that Chinese patients with advanced cancer in Singapore considered relevant and important. Methods: English- and Chinese-speaking patients with advanced solid cancer were recruited from a tertiary cancer center and a community-based hospice for in-depth interview or focused group discussion. Thematic analysis was used to identify subthemes, themes, and domains from the transcripts. Results: Forty-six ethnic Chinese (aged 26–86, 48 % male) participated in the study. Six domains of HRQoL concerns were identified: pain and suffering, physical health, social health, mental health, financial well-being, and spiritual health. Pain and suffering are not limited to the physical domain, reflecting the multidimensional nature of this concept. Pain and suffering must also be understood within the cultural context. Healthcare relations (i.e., social health), existential well-being and religious well-being (i.e., spiritual health), and suffering (i.e., pain and suffering) are not fully captured in the existing HRQoL instruments. In addition, financial issues and the practice of secrecy in interpersonal relationships emerged as unique features possibly arising from our sociocultural context and healthcare financing landscape. Conclusion: Socioculturally specific issues not measured by the existing HRQoL instruments for use in patients with advanced cancers or terminal diseases were found in our study. These are non-physical pain and suffering, meaning of illness, meaning of death, financial issues, and practice of secrecy in interpersonal relationships.
License type:
PublisherCopyrights
Funding Info:
This work was supported in part by the Duke-NUS Signature Research Program funded by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), Singapore and the Ministry of Health, Singapore, and in part by the Lien Center for Palliative Care Grant (LCPC(ER)/2012/0003).
Description:
The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00520-015-2886-3
ISSN:
0941-4355
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