Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 21, Issue 5, pp 1219–1225 | Cite as

Spiritual well-being and quality of life in Iranian women with breast cancer undergoing radiation therapy

  • Najmeh Jafari
  • Ziba Farajzadegan
  • Ahmadreza Zamani
  • Fatemeh Bahrami
  • Hamid Emami
  • Amir Loghmani
Original Article



Psychological distress and morbidity are common consequences of diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer and associated with poor quality of life (QOL). Spiritual well-being is an important aspect of QOL, but little is known about the spiritual well-being and its relationship with QOL in patients of different cultures such as Iranian Muslim patients. The aim of this study was to investigate the association of QOL and spirituality among patients with breast cancer undergoing radiation therapy.


This was a cross-sectional study which was conducted in the Breast Cancer Research Center of St. S. Al-Shohada Hospital, Isfahan, Iran. Spiritual well-being was measured using the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy-Spiritual Well-Being Scale (FACIT-Sp12). The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life (EORTC QLQ-C30) and its supplementary breast cancer questionnaire (QLQ-BR23) were used to assess the quality of life of patients. Descriptive analysis, Pearson’s correlation, and multiple regression analysis were performed for statistical assessment.


In all, 68 patients fulfilled the study’s inclusion criteria and were interviewed. The mean global QOL was 41.42 (SD = 18.02), and the mean spiritual well-being was 28.41 (SD = 6.95). There was a significant positive correlation between general QOL and total spiritual well-being scores. Also, spiritual well-being, social functioning, pain, and arm symptoms were significant predictors of global QOL.


The results of this study provide evidence that breast cancer survivors in Iran experience a poor quality of life across a broad spectrum of health domains, particularly social, emotional, and spiritual, indicating that psychosocial–spiritual support should be considered in caring for patients with breast cancer.


Breast cancer Quality of life Spiritual well-being Radiation therapy 



This manuscript is the first report of the dissertation project numbered 389319 founded by the Research Chancellor of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Our heartfelt thanks are extended to all the women who so graciously agreed to participate in this study and to Romina Mannani and Maryam Esmaeilzade who provided their expertise in initiating the study. We thank Dr. Ali Montazeri who kindly afforded the translated EORTC questionnaire. Also, we are greatly thankful to Dr. Fariborz Mokarian and all the staff of the Breast Cancer Research Center for their support throughout the project.

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Najmeh Jafari
    • 1
  • Ziba Farajzadegan
    • 1
  • Ahmadreza Zamani
    • 1
  • Fatemeh Bahrami
    • 2
  • Hamid Emami
    • 3
  • Amir Loghmani
    • 1
  1. 1.Community Medicine Department, School of MedicineIsfahan University of Medical SciencesIsfahanIran
  2. 2.Consultation Department, Psychology SchoolIsfahan UniversityIsfahanIran
  3. 3.Radiotherapy Department, School of MedicineIsfahan University of Medical SciencesIsfahanIran

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