Quality of Life Research

, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 371–381

Assessing longitudinal quality of life in prostate cancer patients and their spouses: a multilevel modeling approach

  • Lixin Song
  • Laurel L. Northouse
  • Thomas M. Braun
  • Lingling Zhang
  • Bernadine Cimprich
  • David L. Ronis
  • Darlene W. Mood
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11136-010-9753-y

Cite this article as:
Song, L., Northouse, L.L., Braun, T.M. et al. Qual Life Res (2011) 20: 371. doi:10.1007/s11136-010-9753-y

Abstract

Purpose

This study aimed at examining the relationship between quality of life (QOL) in prostate cancer (PCa) patients and partners and how baseline demographics, cancer-related factors, and time-varying psychosocial and symptom covariates affect their QOL over time.

Methods

Guided by a modified Stress-Coping Model, this study used multilevel modeling to analyze longitudinal data from a randomized clinical trial that tested a family-based intervention to improve QOL in couples managing PCa. Patients and partners from the usual-care control group (N = 134 dyads) independently completed the measurements at baseline, and at 4-, 8-, and 12-month follow-ups.

Results

Correlations of QOL between patients and partners over time were small to moderate. Patients’ lower education level, partners’ older age, higher family income, and localized cancer at baseline were associated with better QOL in couples. Over time, couples’ QOL improved as their social support and cancer-related dyadic communication increased and as couples’ uncertainty, general symptoms, and patients’ prostate cancer-related sexual and hormonal symptoms decreased.

Conclusions

Evidence indicates that couples’ QOL during cancer survivorship is affected by multiple contextual factors (e.g., baseline demographics and time-varying psychosocial factors and symptoms). Intervention research is needed to explore comprehensive strategies to improve couples’ QOL during the continuum of PCa survivorship.

Keywords

Prostate cancerSymptomFamilyQuality of lifeMultilevel modelCommunicationUncertainty

Abbreviations

PCa

Prostate cancer

QOL

Quality of life

MLM

Multilevel modeling

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lixin Song
    • 1
  • Laurel L. Northouse
    • 2
  • Thomas M. Braun
    • 3
  • Lingling Zhang
    • 4
  • Bernadine Cimprich
    • 2
  • David L. Ronis
    • 2
    • 5
  • Darlene W. Mood
    • 6
  1. 1.University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill School of NursingChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.University of Michigan School of NursingAnn ArborUSA
  3. 3.University of Michigan School of Public HealthAnn ArborUSA
  4. 4.University of Michigan, Center for Statistical Consultation and ResearchAnn ArborUSA
  5. 5.VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, Health Services Research & DevelopmentAnn ArborUSA
  6. 6.College of NursingWayne State UniversityDetroitUSA