, Volume 27, Issue 3, pp 546-558

Understanding the Psychosocial Issues of African American Couples Surviving Prostate Cancer

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Abstract

African Americans are disproportionately affected by prostate cancer, yet less is known about the most salient psychosocial dimensions of quality of life. The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of African American prostate cancer survivors and their spouses of psychosocial issues related to quality of life. Twelve African American couples were recruited from a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center registry and a state-based non-profit organization to participate in individual interviews. The study was theoretically based on Ferrell’s Quality of Life Conceptual Model. Common themes emerged regarding the psychosocial needs of African American couples. These themes were categorized into behavioral, social, psychological, and spiritual domains. Divergent perspectives were identified between male prostate cancer survivors and their female spouses. This study delineated unmet needs and areas for future in-depth investigations into psychosocial issues. The differing perspectives between patients and their spouses highlight the need for couple-centered interventions.