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Quality of Life in Women with Cervical Cancer

  • C. RutherfordEmail author
  • R. Mercieca-Bebber
  • M. Tait
  • Linda Mileshkin
  • M. T. King
Chapter

Abstract

Cervical cancer and its treatments can affect quality of life in many ways, both positively and negatively, from diagnosis through to the acute treatment and survivorship phases. In research settings, the collective term used for all these impacts is health-related quality of life (HRQOL). These include psychological distress related to impairment of functioning, body image, sexual function, and fertility. Additional distress often follows surgical, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy treatments as these can cause urinary, gastrointestinal, and neurologic side effects, physical changes, and sexual dysfunction. Some side effects and changes are chronic, such as psychosexual problems after treatment. It is therefore important to assess symptoms, side effects, and various aspects of functioning, all of which impact HRQOL, during and after cervical cancer treatment. HRQOL information collected in clinical trials can complement clinical data to guide improvements in clinical practice and to counsel individual patients about the impact of treatment and assist them to make treatment decisions. Assessment of HRQOL in clinic can facilitate communication about HRQOL-related issues arising from cervical cancer treatment, alerting multidisciplinary health teams to issues requiring management. In this chapter, we introduce terminology and discuss how cervical cancer and its various treatments affect patients’ HRQOL including side effects of treatment, psychosexual problems, and fertility issues. Methods for assessing HRQOL in cervical cancer are discussed, and current ongoing clinical trials are summarised.

Keywords

Health-related quality of life in cervical cancer Cervical cancer quality of life Patient-reported outcomes in cervical cancer Cervical cancer Treatment effects in cervical cancer 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. Rutherford
    • 1
    Email author
  • R. Mercieca-Bebber
    • 1
    • 2
  • M. Tait
    • 1
  • Linda Mileshkin
    • 3
  • M. T. King
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Science, School of PsychologyUniversity of SydneySydneyAustralia
  2. 2.Faculty of MedicineSydney Medical School, Central Clinical School, University of SydneySydneyAustralia
  3. 3.Department of Medical OncologyPeter MacCallum Cancer CentreMelbourneAustralia

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