Anxiety and Depression Common Among Patients With Sarcoma

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Patients who required counseling were referred to a specialist who works with patients with their particular complaint.
Patients who required counseling were referred to a specialist who works with patients with their particular complaint.

Poor quality of life (QoL), depression, and anxiety are common among patients diagnosed with sarcoma, according to an oral presentation at the Connective Tissue Oncology Society (CTOS) 2017 Annual Meeting.1

QoL can affect patient adherence to medication and overall clinical outcomes. For this survey-based study, researchers at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance used email and web screening to determine patient QoL and psychological comorbidities (eg, anxiety and depression) after a sarcoma diagnosis.

Patients who required counseling were referred to a specialist who works with patients with their particular complaint.

Of 486 enrolled patients, over half did not provide an email (26.7%) or did not respond (25.5%). Patients who did not provide an email or respond to the survey were more likely to be minorities, less likely to speak English, and less likely to have commercial insurance.

Of the 47.7% of patients who responded, the mean QoL was 77.2, which is considered low though consistent with that of patients with other cancer types.

Over a quarter of patients who responded had depression, anxiety, or both depression and anxiety.

The authors concluded that poor QoL “and distress among sarcoma patients is relatively common, particularly among patients referring for treatment. Unfortunately, those most likely to find distress screening burdensome are also most likely to benefit.” Different screening techniques, including surveys that are not web-based, are needed to better reach all patient populations.

Reference

Loggers ET, Pollack SM, Kane G, et al. Quality of life and distress in sarcoma patients presenting to a tertiary referral center. Oral presentation at: Connective Tissue Oncology Society (CTOS) 2017 Annual Meeting. November 8-11, 2017; Maui, Hawaii.

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