Changes in patients’ quality of life during radiotherapy and 1 month after treatment

  • Osamu TanakaEmail author
  • Yuka Kunishima
  • Takuya Taniguchi
  • Kousei Ono
  • Masayuki Matsuo
original report



The EORTC QLQ-C30 quality of life (QOL) questionnaire is designed to measure cancer patients’ physical, psychological, and social functions. There are few reports on the impact of radiotherapy (RT) on QOL; thus, we investigated QOL changes during the RT period and 1 month after RT.


We scored EORTC QLQ-C30 (version 3.0) questionnaires from 66 patients. The questionnaire contained 30 items, including 1 item on financial concerns, a global health domain, 5 functional domains, 3 symptom domains, and 5 single-symptom items. Assessments were performed before RT, at the end of the day after RT, and 1 month after RT. Correlations between the patients’ characteristics (e.g., age, sex, organ, RT response) and QOL change were evaluated.


No specific patient characteristic significantly correlated with a QOL change during RT. In 15 QLQ-C30 items, those items in which the change in score achieved statistical significance (P < 0.05) were the following: physical function was improved from the end of RT to 1 month after RT; role function worsened from the end of RT to 1 month after RT; and emotional function worsened from the start of RT to 1 month after RT.


The QOL was poorest at the end of RT. If treatment was completed, physical function improved, but role function and emotional function worsened just 1 month after treatment. For role and emotional function, observation by medical staff is necessary.


Radiotherapy Quality of life Cancer Patient-reported outcome Emotional function 


Conflict of interest

O. Tanaka, Y. Kunishima, T. Taniguchi, K. Ono, and M. Matsuo declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Radiation OncologyAsahi University HospitalGifu cityJapan
  2. 2.Division of NursingAsahi University HospitalGifu cityJapan
  3. 3.Department of RadiologyGifu University HospitalGifu cityJapan

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