, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp 256-265
Date: 24 Jun 2010

A controlled study of risk factors for disease and current problems in long-term testicular cancer survivors

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Abstract

Introduction

To compare risk factors for disease and current problems in long-term testicular cancer survivors (TCSs) and age-matched population-based controls (NORMs).

Methods

The study was cross-sectional and concerned 1,291 Norwegian TCSs followed up after a mean of 11 years, and 6,455 NORMs. Both TCSs and NORMs completed questionnaires and had a clinical examination. Indices for risk factors and current problems were calculated. Outcome measures were: visits to general practitioners last year, poor self-rated health, and poor quality of life (QoL).

Results

The mean risk score was significantly lower and the mean current problem score significantly higher in TCSs compared to NORMs without reaching clinical significance. The risk for future fatal cardiac events did not differ between the groups. TCSs had a higher risk for visiting a general practitioner than NORMs (OR 3.58, 95% CI 3.09–4.15), while no significant difference was observed for self-rated health. Poor QoL in TCSs was significantly associated with more current problems than risk factors. Previous treatment for mental problems, presence of severe somatic disease and musculo-skeletal problems were significantly associated with all three outcome measures. Musculo-skeletal problems were most strongly associated with visits to general practitioners among TCSs.

Conclusions

Several risk factors for preventive clinical interventions and current problems that eventually should be treated were identified in TCSs.

Implications for cancer survivors

TCSs show several risk factors and current problems that are relevant for visits to general practitioners, poorer self-rated health, and poorer QoL. These should get attention from health personnel caring for TCSs.