Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 28, Issue 3, pp 281-293

First online:

Coping with Prostate Cancer: A Meta-Analytic Review

  • Scott C. RoeschAffiliated withSan Diego State UniversityDepartment of Psychology, San Diego State University Email author 
  • , Linda AdamsAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Amanda HinesAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Alan PalmoresAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Pearlin VyasAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Cindy TranAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Shannon PekinAffiliated withCalfornia State Polytechnic University
  • , Allison A. VaughnAffiliated withSan Diego State University

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The present meta-analytic review assessed the relations between coping categories and indices of adjustment in men with prostate cancer. Relevant methodological and statistical information was extracted from 33 target studies (n = 3,133 men with prostate cancer). Men with prostate cancer who used approach, problem-focused, and emotion-focused coping were healthier both psychologically and physically, although the effect sizes for problem-focused coping and emotion-focused coping were more modest. For approach coping these effect sizes were particularly strong for measures of self-esteem, positive affect, depression, and anxiety. Conversely, men with prostate cancer who used avoidance coping experienced heightened negative psychological adjustment and physical health, and particularly for measures of positive mood and physical functioning. The findings of this study suggest that active approaches to coping with prostate cancer are beneficial psychologically, physically, and are positively associated with a return to pre-cancer activities.

Key Words

coping cancer adjustment meta-analysis