27.06.2019 | Ausgabe 4/2019
A comparison of two models of follow-up care for adult survivors of childhood cancer
Journal of Cancer Survivorship
- K. Reynolds, M. Spavor, Y. Brandelli, C. Kwok, Y. Li, M. Disciglio, L. E. Carlson, F. Schulte, R. Anderson, P. Grundy, J. Giese-Davis
Few studies have compared follow-up-care models for adult survivors of childhood cancer (ASCCs), though choice of model could impact medical test adherence, and health-related quality of life (QOL). This study compared two follow-up-care models, cancer-center-based versus community-based, for ASCCs in Alberta, Canada, to determine which model would demonstrate greater ASCC adherence to guideline-recommended medical screening tests for late effects, QOL, physical symptoms, and adherence to yearly follow-up.
ASCC discharged to a community model (over 15 years) and those with comparable birth years (1973–1993) currently followed in a cancer center model were recruited via direct contact or multimedia campaign. Chart review identified chemotherapeutic and radiation exposures, and required medical late effect screening tests. ASCCs also completed questionnaires assessing QOL, physical symptoms, and follow-up behavior.
One hundred fifty-six survivors participated (community (n = 86); cancer center (n = 70)). Primary analysis indicated that cancer center ASCCs guideline-recommended total test adherence percentage (Mdn = 85.4%) was significantly higher than the community model (Mdn = 29.2%, U = 3996.50, p < 0.0001). There was no significant difference in QOL for cancer center ASCCs (M = 83.85, SD = 20.55 versus M = 77.50, SD = 23.94; t (154) = 1.77, p = 0.078) compared to community-based ASCCs. Cancer center–based ASCCs endorsed from 0.4–7.1% fewer physical symptom clusters, and higher adherence to follow-up behavior in comparisons using effect sizes without p values.
This study highlights the cancer center model’s superiority for adherence to exposure-based medical late effect screening guidelines, cancer-specific follow-up behaviors, and the reporting of fewer physical complaints in ASCCs.
Implications for cancer survivors
ASCCs followed in a cancer center model likely benefit from earlier late-effects detection and opportunities for early intervention.