Current Psychology

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 174–184 | Cite as

Individual Characteristics and Self-Perceived Burden in Cancer Patients



Past research on self-perceived burden (SPB) has primarily focused on palliative care cancer patients with the scope of the research concentrating on explanations of the construct and identification of correlated variables, such as psychological distress. Little is known, however, about individual differences and how they may contribute to the experience of SPB. This quantitative study was designed to investigate the relationship between SPB and autonomy, environmental mastery, and resiliency, as well as the occurrence of SPB in cancer patients with varying prognoses. Using a cross-sectional survey method, 61 cancer patients were recruited from three regional cancer centers in Central and Southwest Virginia. The findings revealed autonomy and environmental mastery to statistically significantly predict a small amount of variance in SPB scores R 2 = 0.12, adjusted R 2 = 0.09, F (2, 54) = 3.61, p < 0.05. Resilience did not prove to predict SPB. Findings also revealed SPB to be a relatively common occurrence in cancer patient with varying prognoses. The results also demonstrate that cancer patients with varying prognoses are impacted by self-perceived burden increasing their risk of physical, psychological, and existential distress.


Self-perceived burden Personality Cancer Autonomy Environmental mastery Resilience Individual characteristics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Northcentral UniversityPrescott ValleyUSA
  2. 2.Central Virginia Community CollegeLynchburgUSA
  3. 3.IMG PerformanceBradentonUSA
  4. 4.ForestUSA

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