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Symptom Clusters in Patients With High-Grade Glioma

Authors

  • Sherry W. Fox,

    1. Sherry W. Fox, PhD, RN, CNRN, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital; Debra Lyon, RN, PhD, FNP, Associate Professor of Nursing, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Nursing, both in Richmond, VA; Elana Farace, PhD, Associate Professor of Neurosurgery, Director of Clinical Research, Department of Neurosurgery, Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA. Correspondence to Dr. Fox, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital, 5801 Bremo Road South Medical Office Building, Suite 108, Richmond, VA 23226. E-mail: foxsherry@aol.com
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  • Debra Lyon,

    1. Sherry W. Fox, PhD, RN, CNRN, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital; Debra Lyon, RN, PhD, FNP, Associate Professor of Nursing, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Nursing, both in Richmond, VA; Elana Farace, PhD, Associate Professor of Neurosurgery, Director of Clinical Research, Department of Neurosurgery, Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA. Correspondence to Dr. Fox, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital, 5801 Bremo Road South Medical Office Building, Suite 108, Richmond, VA 23226. E-mail: foxsherry@aol.com
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  • Elana Farace

    1. Sherry W. Fox, PhD, RN, CNRN, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital; Debra Lyon, RN, PhD, FNP, Associate Professor of Nursing, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Nursing, both in Richmond, VA; Elana Farace, PhD, Associate Professor of Neurosurgery, Director of Clinical Research, Department of Neurosurgery, Pennsylvania State University, Hershey, PA. Correspondence to Dr. Fox, Director, Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, Bon Secours St. Mary's Hospital, 5801 Bremo Road South Medical Office Building, Suite 108, Richmond, VA 23226. E-mail: foxsherry@aol.com
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Abstract

Purpose: To describe the co-occurring symptoms (depression, fatigue, pain, sleep disturbance, and cognitive impairment), quality of life (QoL), and functional status in patients with high-grade glioma.

Design: Correlational, descriptive study of 73 participants with high-grade glioma in the U.S.

Methods: Nine brief measures were obtained with a mailed survey. Participants were recruited from the online message board of The Healing Exchange BRAIN TRUST, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving quality of life for people with brain tumors.

Findings: Two symptom cluster models were examined. Four co-occurring symptoms were significantly correlated with each other and explained 29% of the variance in QoL: depression, fatigue, sleep disturbance, and cognitive impairment. Depression, fatigue, sleep disturbance, cognitive impairment, and pain were significantly correlated with each other and explained 62% of the variance in functional status.

Conclusions: The interrelationships of the symptoms examined in this study and their relationships with QoL and functional status meet the criteria for defining a symptom cluster. The differences in the models of QoL and functional status indicates that symptom clusters may have unique characteristics in patients with gliomas.

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