Supportive Care in Cancer

, Volume 26, Issue 5, pp 1645–1654 | Cite as

Incongruence in treatment decision making is associated with lower health-related quality of life among prostate cancer survivors: results from the PiCTure study

  • Frances J. Drummond
  • Anna T. Gavin
  • Linda Sharp
Original Article



We investigated associations between treatment decision making (TDM) and global health-related-quality-of-life (gHRQoL) among prostate cancer (PCa) survivors.


Postal questionnaires were sent to 6559 PCa survivors 2–18 years post-diagnosis, identified through population-based cancer registries in Ireland. The Control Preference Scale was used to investigate respondents’ ‘actual’ and ‘preferred’ role in TDM. The TDM experience was considered ‘congruent’ when actual and preferred roles matched and ‘incongruent’ otherwise. The EORTC QLQ-C30 was used to measure gHRQoL. Multivariate linear regression was employed to investigate associations between (i) actual role in TDM, (ii) congruence in TDM, and gHRQoL.


The response rate was 54% (n = 3348). The percentages of men whose actual role in TDM was active, shared or passive were 36, 33 and 31%, respectively. Congruence between actual and preferred roles in TDM was 58%. Actual role in TDM was not associated with gHRQoL. In multivariate analysis, after adjusting for socio-demographic and clinical factors, survivors whose TDM experience was incongruent had significantly lower gHRQoL than those who had a congruent experience (− 2.25 95%CI − 4.09, − 0.42; p = 0.008). This effect was most pronounced among survivors who had more involvement in the TDM than they preferred (− 2.69 95%CI − 4.74, − 0.63; p = 0.010).


Less than 6 in 10 PCa survivors experienced congruence between their actual and preferred roles in TDM. Having an incongruent TDM experience was associated with lower gHRQoL among survivors. These findings suggest that involving patients in TDM to the degree to which they want to be involved may help improve PCa survivors’ gHRQoL.


Treatment decision making Prostate cancer Health-related quality of life Survivors Treatment Adverse effects 



This work was supported by Health Research Board in the Republic of Ireland (RoI) and by Prostate Cancer UK and Research & Development office of Public health Agency in Northern Ireland. Additional funding was provided by the National Cancer Control Programme (RoI). The authors would like to thank the healthcare professionals who helped to screen the men for eligibility and those who cooperated in obtaining ethical approval. We would like to thank the Men Against Cancer support group, all those who commented on the survey during development and those who pre-tested it. Finally, we would like to thank the men who completed the survey.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

520_2017_3994_MOESM1_ESM.odt (17 kb)
Supplementary Table 1 (ODT 17.2 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frances J. Drummond
    • 1
  • Anna T. Gavin
    • 2
  • Linda Sharp
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Epidemiology and Public HealthUniversity College CorkCorkIreland
  2. 2.Northern Ireland Cancer Registry, Centre for Public HealthQueen’s University BelfastBelfastUK
  3. 3.Institute of Health and SocietyNewcastle UniversityNewcastle upon TyneUK

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