Fatigue, physical function, distress tied to social functioning in HSCT-treated cancer survivors
In cancer survivors who received haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) while they were young, distress, fatigue, and physical functioning are strong correlates of social function, a new study has found.
Researchers conducted a cross-sectional analysis of 279 HSCT recipients (52 percent male), who received the transplants between the ages of 15–39 years. The Short Form-36v2, Fatigue Symptom Inventory, Cancer and Treatment Distress, and ENRICHD* Social Support Inventory tools were used to collect patient-reported outcomes.
The mean social functioning score was 48.5±10.5, which was significantly lower than the age-adjusted normal for 25–44-year-olds (p<0.001). Current chronic graft versus host disease (cGVHD) emerged as a significant correlate of social functioning in univariate analysis, as did fatigue, physical functioning, social support, and cancer- and treatment-related distress.
Hierarchical regression analysis confirmed that cGVHD was a significant correlate, explaining 5.5 percent of the variance in social functioning (p≤0.001). Introducing physical function and fatigue in the model accounted for an additional 46.6 percent of the variance (p≤0.001), though it attenuated the role of cGVDH (p=0.68).
Further incorporating social support and cancer- and treatment-related distress accounted for another 7.7 percent of the variance in social functioning (p≤0.001).
In the final regression model, only fatigue, physical function, and cancer- and treatment-related distress remained significantly correlated with social functioning. Taking all variables together explained more than half (59.8 percent) of the variance in social functioning.
“Our findings support the long-term value of building stamina, reducing fatigue, and maintaining active symptom and distress management for long-term cancer survivors who received HSCT as young adults,” researchers said.
* Enhancing Recovery in Coronary Heart Disease Patients