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Medical Oncology

, Volume 27, Issue 3, pp 607–617 | Cite as

Characteristics and quality of life analysis of caregivers of cancer patients

  • Serap Alptekin
  • Güzin GönüllüEmail author
  • İdris Yücel
  • Füsun Yarış
Original Paper

Abstract

Cancer affects not only the individuals with cancer, but also their families considerably. The aim of this study was to determine the sociodemographic characteristics and home care needs of caregivers of cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and evaluate their quality of life scores. A total of 126 primary caregivers of patients receiving chemotherapy who were eligible for inclusion criteria participated in the study. Data were collected using a questionnaire that included sociodemographic questions for both patients and caregivers and the World Health Organization Quality of Life-Short Form, Turkish Version (WHOQOL-BREF(TR)) for the caregivers. The mean domain scores of WHOQOL-BREF(TR) were 15.3 ± 2.8 for physical, 14.6 ± 2.8 for psychological, 14.4 ± 3.3 for social, 13.7 ± 2.8 for environment, and 14 ± 2.5 for national environment domains. Caregivers were, on average, younger than the patients and the mean age of the caregivers was 45 years. Around 70% of caregivers were living with the patients, 60.3% of caregivers shared the care-giving process with someone else, and his/her children supported in care-giving activities in 20.6%. According to caregivers, patients needed assistance for one or more daily living activities. Caregivers’ higher age, unemployment status, female gender, low education level, their own diagnosed health problems, care duration above 18 months, and having difficulties to continue social activities had negative effects on their quality of life. Cancer patients’ families are also affected from cancer. We may suggest that including caregivers in the context of home care and universalizing home care programs can reduce caregivers’ burden.

Keywords

Cancer Caregiver Quality of life Home care 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We would like to submit our original article entitled ‘Caregivers of cancer patients: Characteristics and quality of life’ for publication in the relevant Medical Oncology. We honestly confirm that this manuscript as a whole or in part had not been sent for publication to any other paper before. It has not been published previously. We thank you very much for your interest and are looking forward to hearing from you soon.

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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Serap Alptekin
    • 1
  • Güzin Gönüllü
    • 2
    Email author
  • İdris Yücel
    • 2
  • Füsun Yarış
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Family MedicineAlaçam HospitalAnkaraTurkey
  2. 2.Department of Medical OncologyOndokuz Mayıs University Medical SchoolSamsunTurkey
  3. 3.Department of Family MedicineOndokuz Mayıs University Medical SchoolSamsunTurkey

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