Fear of recurrence in postoperative lung cancer patients: Trajectories, influencing factors and impacts on quality of life

Xiaoyan Yang,Yonglin Li, Jialing Lin,Jianqing Zheng, Huimin Xiao,Weiti Chen,Feifei Huang


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AimsTo investigate the trajectory, influencing factors and dynamic relationships between fear of cancer recurrence (FCR) and quality of life (QOL) in lung cancer patients.DesignProspective longitudinal study.MethodsLongitudinal data from 310 lung cancer patients across three hospitals in China were assessed at 1, 3, 6 and 12 months postoperatively (T1-T4). Descriptive statistics characterised patient demographics, clinical characteristics, levels of FCR and QOL. A linear mixed-effects model was employed to analyse FCR trajectories, identify influencing factors on these trajectories, and predict the impact of FCR on QOL.ResultsFCR changed significantly over time, with a slight decrease during T1-T2, an increase at T3 and gradual decline at T4. Higher fear levels were associated with female sex, suburban or rural residency, being a family breadwinner, presence of comorbidities and negative coping behaviours, and low family resilience. QOL negatively correlated with FCR, and FCR predicted lower QOL.ConclusionsAt 3 and 6 months postoperatively, lung cancer patients, especially women, suburban or rural residents, family breadwinners, those with comorbidities, negative coping behaviours and low family resilience, reported high levels of FCR. Healthcare providers should pay special attention to lung cancer patients especially during the period of 3-6 months post-surgery and offer tailored interventions to improve their QOL.Implications for the Profession and Patient CareUnderstanding the FCR trajectories, its influencing factors and its negative impacts on QOL can guide the development of targeted interventions to reduce fear and enhance well-being in patients with cancer.ImpactIdentifying the trajectories and influencing factors of fear of lung cancer recurrence in patients at different time points informs future research on targeted interventions to improve QOL.Reporting MethodThe study adhered to the guidelines outlined in the Statement on Reporting Observational Longitudinal Research.
change trajectory,fear of cancer recurrence,longitudinal studies,lung cancer,quality of life
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