Self-management strategies of cancer survivors: who does what and why? A mixed methods study

Shneerson, Catherine L. (2015). Self-management strategies of cancer survivors: who does what and why? A mixed methods study. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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This thesis examined self-management (SM) strategies of cancer survivors from pre-diagnosis, through treatment and into survivorship. A healthcare definition of SM as a lifestyle modifying behaviour potentially impacting on cancer survivors’ health, wellbeing and quality of life (QoL) was given. Due to a lack of existing literature, a systematic review and meta-analyses investigating whether complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) improves cancer survivors’ QoL was undertaken, finding moderate to poor quality evidence of this.
A mixed methods study explored SM patterns over time. The questionnaire study examined the prevalence and distribution of SM patterns, finding SM uptake was highest in survivorship. Subgroup analyses found SM uptake was highest in breast cancer and chemotherapy respondents, whilst correlation analysis revealed significant associations between SM uptake and both QoL and internal health locus of control (HLC), but none between SM uptake and work ability.
The interview study explored how and why cancer survivors made decisions about incorporating SM practices into their daily lives. The concept of normality in survivorship emerged, with cancer survivors assembling a new health-related normality to adapt to their new lives post-cancer. A theoretical framework proposed that cancer survivors use SM as a supportive mechanism to attain their new health-related normality.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Medical & Dental Sciences
School or Department: School of Health and Population Sciences
Funders: National Institute for Health Research
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)


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