Western Regional Blog – BC, YK, AB, NWT and Nunavut
“Older adults comprise the majority of persons in Canada with cancer. The lower hope scores found in this age group compared with their younger counterparts underscore the importance of further research.”
Wendy Duggleby, Sunita Ghosh, Dan Cooper, Lynne Dwernychuk
Hope is important to cancer patients as it helps them deal with their diagnosis. Little is known about hope in newly diagnosed cancer patients.
Based on the Transcending Possibilities conceptual model of hope, the purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of hope with pain, energy, and psychological and demographic characteristics in newly diagnosed adult oncology outpatients.
Data from 310 New Patient Assessment Forms from cancer outpatients’ health records were collected. Health records from the first six months of 2009 were reviewed and data were collected on hope, energy, pain, depression, anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, and demographic variables. A generalized linear modeling approach was used to study the relationship of hope scores with these variables. Hypothesized variables and variables that were significant at the P = 0.01 level from the univariate analysis were entered into the multivariate model, with hope scores as the dependent variable.
Hope scores were significantly negatively related to age (P = 0.02). More specifically, oncology patients who were 65 years of age or older had significantly less hope than those under the age of 65 years (P = 0.01). Gender (P = 0.009) also was a significant factor, with men having higher hope scores than women. No other variables were significant.
Older adults comprise the majority of persons in Canada with cancer. The lower hope scores found in this age group compared with their younger counterparts underscore the importance of further research. This study provides a foundation for future research in this important area for oncology patients.