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Journal of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 37, Issue 4, pp 698–708 | Cite as

Appraisal of emerging symptoms of colorectal cancer: associations with dispositional, demographic, and tumor characteristics

  • Stephen L. RistvedtEmail author
  • Sandi L. Pruitt
  • Kathryn M. Trinkaus
Article

Abstract

The time it takes for individuals to realize that their emerging colorectal cancer (CRC) symptoms are serious is often an impediment to expeditious help-seeking. Tailored educational efforts to hasten symptom appraisal time would benefit from knowledge of the characteristics of individuals who tend to neglect their symptoms as well as the nature of symptoms that are most often neglected. In a sample of 112 CRC patients, we investigated associations between duration of symptom appraisal and: (1) trait anxiety, and (2) tumor location, which affects symptomatology. Symptom appraisal duration was associated with a sex-by-anxiety interaction (p = 0.007). The longest times (in weeks) were among high anxiety females (Mdn = 26.0) and low anxiety males (Mdn = 17.0), with shorter times among low anxiety females (Mdn = 9.0) and high anxiety males (Mdn = 2.0). Symptom appraisal times were also longer for patients with distal (vs. proximal) tumors (p = 0.036).

Keywords

Colorectal cancer Symptom appraisal Trait anxiety Sex differences Common-sense model 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This research was supported in part by National Institute of Health grant CA102177 and the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Foundation (SLR), and a postdoctoral fellowship from the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center Prevention and Control Program (SLP) and career development award from the National Center for Research Resources Washington University-ICTS (KL2 RR024994) (SLP). The authors wish to acknowledge the support of the Biostatistics Core, Siteman Comprehensive Cancer Center and NCI Cancer Center Support Grant P30 CA091842.

Supplementary material

10865_2013_9519_MOESM1_ESM.docx (17 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 17 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen L. Ristvedt
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sandi L. Pruitt
    • 2
  • Kathryn M. Trinkaus
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA
  2. 2.Division of Outcomes and Health Services Research, Department of Clinical Sciences, Southwestern Medical CenterUniversity of TexasDallasUSA
  3. 3.Division of BiostatisticsWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA

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