Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 23, Issue 6, pp 1679–1688 | Cite as

Cancer survivors’ perceived need for supportive care and their attitude towards self-management and eHealth

  • Femke Jansen
  • Cornelia F. van Uden-Kraan
  • Valesca van Zwieten
  • Birgit I. Witte
  • Irma M. Verdonck-de LeeuwEmail author
Original Article



The aim of this study was to explore the perceived need for supportive care including healthy lifestyle programs among cancer survivors, their attitude towards self-management and eHealth, and its association with several sociodemographic and clinical variables and quality of life.


A questionnaire on the perceived need for supportive care and attitude towards self-management and eHealth was completed by 212 cancer survivors from an online panel.


Highest needs were reported regarding physical care (66 %), followed by healthy lifestyle programs (54 %), social care (43 %), psychological care (38 %), and life question-related programs (24 %). In general, cancer survivors had a positive attitude towards self-management and eHealth. Supportive care needs were associated with male gender, lower age, treatment with chemotherapy or (chemo)radiation (versus surgery alone), hematological cancer (versus skin cancer, breast cancer, and other types of cancer), and lower quality of life. A positive attitude towards self-management was associated with lower age. A more positive attitude towards eHealth was associated with lower age, higher education, higher income, currently being under treatment (versus treatment in the last year), treatment with chemotherapy or (chemo)radiation (versus surgery alone), prostate and testicular cancer (versus hematological, skin, gynecological, and breast cancer and other types of cancer), and lower quality of life.


The perceived need for supportive care including healthy lifestyle programs was high, and in general, cancer survivors had a positive attitude towards self-management and eHealth. Need and attitude were associated with sociodemographic and clinical variables and quality of life. Therefore, a tailored approach seems to be warranted to improve and innovate supportive care targeting cancer survivors.


Supportive care Self-management eHealth Cancer survivors 



We would like to thank Lonneke Gijsbers and Madeleine Wallien (Motivaction) for their contribution in drafting the study-specific questionnaires and in the data collection. This study is supported by a grant from Achmea Healthcare Foundation (SAG).

Conflict of interest

There was no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Femke Jansen
    • 1
  • Cornelia F. van Uden-Kraan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Valesca van Zwieten
    • 1
  • Birgit I. Witte
    • 3
  • Irma M. Verdonck-de Leeuw
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck SurgeryVU University Medical CenterAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of Clinical PsychologyVU UniversityAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Epidemiology and BiostatisticsVU University Medical CenterAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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