Positive personal changes in the aftermath of head and neck cancer diagnosis: A qualitative study in patients and their spouses
Article first published online: 8 JAN 2009
Copyright © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Head & Neck
Volume 31, Issue 4, pages 513–520, April 2009
How to Cite
Ruf, M., Büchi, S., Moergeli, H., Zwahlen, R. A. and Jenewein, J. (2009), Positive personal changes in the aftermath of head and neck cancer diagnosis: A qualitative study in patients and their spouses. Head Neck, 31: 513–520. doi: 10.1002/hed.21000
- Issue published online: 11 MAR 2009
- Article first published online: 8 JAN 2009
- Manuscript Accepted: 1 AUG 2008
- head and neck cancer;
- posttraumatic growth;
- qualitative study
There is increasing evidence that serious and life-threatening illnesses such as malignant tumors not only can lead to increased psychological stress, but also can lead to positive changes.
In this qualitative study, 31 patients with head and neck cancer and 25 women partners were interviewed with regard to positive personal changes (posttraumatic growth). The audiotaped responses were analyzed using qualitative context analysis.
A total of 25 patients (81%) and their women partners (84%) reported positive changes. Qualitative content analysis revealed 3 different categories of growth: attitudes toward life, personal strength, and relationships. Partners reported significantly more positive changes in relationships, especially, within the partnership. The total amount of positive change was almost equal.
Positive personal changes are frequently reported by patients and by significant others. The total amount of positive change is almost equal in patients and their women partners, but wives experience more positive changes within the partnership. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Head Neck 2009