• cancer;
  • employment;
  • retirement;
  • survival;
  • quality of life


A pilot telephone survey was administered to 253 cancer survivors, ages 35–75, 5–7 years after their diagnosis of breast, colorectal, lung, or prostate cancer. These survivors reported their demographic characteristics and, if they had retired, reasons for retirement and their impression of the retirement experience. Retirees were older, had less education and lower incomes, and fewer had health insurance through their current/former employer relative to employed survivors. Those who had retired, regardless of whether they retired before or after a cancer diagnosis, were similar in age, race/ethnicity, health insurance status, household income, and impressions of retirement. The results suggest that cancer may not negatively affect survivors' decision to retire or the quality of the retirement experience. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc. Res Nurs Health 28:126–135, 2005