Stress and its related factors in families of patients with cancer
Keywords:Traumatic Stress Disorders, Family, Cancer, Chronic Disease
BACKGROUND: Cancer is one of the most common kinds of chronic diseases. In addition, it is a cause of stress in the family members of the patient. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the amount of stress and its related factors in families of patients with cancer.
METHODS: In this descriptive study, 96 family members of cancer patients admitted to 3 hospitals in Ahvaz, Iran, were recruited in the study. Data gathering tools consisted of the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-14), and a researcher-made questionnaire for demographic data and factors associated with caregiver stress. Collected data were analyzed using SPSS software.
RESULTS: A total of 55 (57.3%) subjects showed moderate stress levels and 20 subjects (20.8%) showed severe stress levels. There was a significant relationship between the levels of stress and age of less than 30 years and female gender. Moreover, a significant relationship was observed between the level of stress and factors such as uncomfortable treatment environment, feeling dissatisfied with staff, fear of recurrence, difficulties in everyday life, no spiritual practice, negative attitudes toward treatment outcome, refusing to participate in favorite activities, changes in interactions with others, lack of leisure time, imbalance between daily responsibilities and care, inadequate income, and lack of appropriate facilities (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: There were several factors causing stress in patients’ families. It is recommended that nurses and the medical team be informed of these factors in order to manage stress in patients and their families.
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