(HealthDay)—Four in 10 colorectal cancer survivors report cancer-related financial stress or strain, which is significantly associated with low health-related quality of life, according to a study published in the January issue of Diseases of the Colon & Rectum.
Linda Sharp, Ph.D., from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom, and colleagues assessed both objective cancer-related financial stress (impact of cancer on household ability to make ends meet) and subjective cancer-related financial strain (feelings about household financial situation) and their association with health-related quality of life among 493 colorectal cancer survivors diagnosed six to 37 months prior.
The researchers found that 41 percent of participants reported cancer-related financial stress and 39 percent cancer-related financial strain, while 32 percent reported both financial stress and financial strain. The odds of low health-related quality of life were significantly higher in those who reported cancer-related financial stress post-diagnosis versus those who reported no change in financial stress post-cancer (odds ratio [OR], 2.54), after adjustment for sociodemographic and clinical variables. Those with worse financial strain post-diagnosis had significantly lower odds of health-related quality of life (OR, 1.73). For those with both cancer-related financial stress and cancer-related financial strain, the OR was 2.59.
"Four in 10 colorectal cancer survivors reported an adverse financial impact of cancer," the authors write. "To inform support strategies, additional research is needed to better understand how both objective and subjective financial distress influence survivors' health-related quality of life."
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