21.11.2019 | Ausgabe 1/2020
Psychological stress in long-term testicular cancer survivors: a Danish nationwide cohort study
Journal of Cancer Survivorship
- Michael Kreiberg, Mikkel Bandak, Jakob Lauritsen, Klaus Kaae Andersen, Julie Wang Skøtt, Christoffer Johansen, Mads Agerbaek, Niels V. Holm, Cathrine Juel Lau, Gedske Daugaard
Long-term cancer survivors may develop psychological late effects. The aim of the present study was to determine prevalence of high level of stress in testicular cancer survivors (TCS) compared with the general population and prevalence of high level of stress among TCS stratified by type of treatment (surveillance, bleomycin, etoposide and cisplatin (BEP), or abdominal radiotherapy (RT)).
In this large, nationwide and population-based, cross-sectional study, a total of 2252 TCS filled in a questionnaire between 2014–2016 covering psychological stress (Perceived Stress Scale (PSS)), sociodemographic factors, and physical health variables. Results were compared with a reference population. The reference population consisted of 61,927 men without prior or present cancer and sampled at random from the central population. High level of stress was defined as a PSS score ≥ 16, equivalent to the highest scoring quintile in the reference population. Logistic regression models adjusted for relevant covariates were used to estimate prevalence ratios of high level of stress.
Distribution of TCS was: surveillance, n = 1134; BEP, n = 807; and RT, n = 311 (median time since diagnosis was 19 years). TCS were more likely to have high level of stress compared to the reference population with a prevalence ratio of 1.56 (95% CI, 1.40–1.73). Individually, surveillance, BEP and RT groups had higher level of stress compared to the reference population.
TCS are more likely to have high level of stress. Screening programs for psychological stress should be considered as part of the follow-up program.
Implications for cancer survivors
A higher level of stress is observed in TCS irrespective of treatment.