Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
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The psychological distress of gastrointestinal cancer patients and its association with quality of life among different genders.

BACKGROUND: Psychological distress is a prevalent unpleasant experience faced by many cancer patients. However, the psychological distress among gastrointestinal (GI) cancer patients is scarcely explored. Moreover, the association between psychological distress and quality of life in different genders has yet to be explored.

AIMS: To explore the psychological distress among GI cancer patients and examine its association with quality of life among different genders.

METHODS: This study was a cross-sectional study. A total of 237 gastrointestinal cancer patients completed the distress thermometer and the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy-General.

RESULTS: The mean score of psychological distress of the participants was 3.04 (SD = 2.90). A greater proportion of female gastrointestinal cancer patients (52.8%) had clinically relevant psychological distress compared to males (35.9%). The quality of life was negatively associated with their psychological distress (B =  - 1.502, 95%CI: - 2.759 to - 0.245, p = 0.019) among gastrointestinal cancer patients. Such association was stronger among males compared to females in gastrointestinal cancer patients (Interaction term, B =  - 1.713, 95%CI: - 3.123 to - 0.303, p = 0.017).

CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that healthcare providers should attach their attention to gastrointestinal cancer patients' psychological distress, especially females. Longitudinal studies could adopted to track the changes in psychological distress and its association with quality of life over time among different genders. In future intervention studies, the focus of psychological interventions needs to be gender-specific.

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