Essay Example on The paper to be reviewed is a longitudinal quantitative Study

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The paper to be reviewed is a longitudinal quantitative study which examines the changes in psychological adjustment for breast cancer patients before and after adjuvant treatment in relation to the nature of social support received to them by friends and family Breast cancer is a traumatic and distressing experience in which individuals respond in numerous ways these strategies can later predict psychological adjustment to the disease In the literature the concept of psychological adjustment is difficult to define and complex Previously scholars described psychological adjustment to illnesses as the absence of an extreme negative mood or psychological disorder Stanton Collins Sworowski 2001 as cited in Baum Revenson Singer 2012 However recently researchers have a more multidimensional approach arguing that adjustment should also consider other factors of functioning such as emotional behavioural and cognitive domains not solely the management of physical and medical challenges which patients of the disease face Larsen Lubkin 2013 Although both men and women can be diagnosed with breast cancer many studies investigate the experience of women


The chronic illness is life threatening and remains to be the most common form of cancer in females Cordova et al 2007 Ferlay et al 2010 Studies have found the impact of breast cancer has the most significant effect on women s adjustment to the disease immediately following the diagnosis Schroevers Ranchor Sanderman 2006 Schwarz et al 2008 It is estimated that more than 1 68 million women in 2012 were diagnosed with breast cancer worldwide In the UK during 2014 55 200 new cases of breast cancer were recorded with 54 800 cases of diagnosis being women Each year in the UK between 2012 and 2014 almost half of breast cancer cases are diagnosed in individuals aged over 65 and above Cancer Research UK Breast cancer is also the third most common cause of death within the UK these deaths have been commonly associated with women in England living in deprived areas However in the last forty years the survival of breast cancer patients is improving and even doubled in the UK with 65 of women in England and Wales surviving the disease for twenty years or further between 2010 and 2011 Cancer Research UK The most common forms of breast cancer develop in the ducts which carry milk to the nipple or the glands which produce breast milk however other types of breast cancer can form from different parts of the breast American Cancer Society 2017 Cells within the breast can begin to rapidly mutate grow out of control and cause abnormal changes forming a tumour which many individuals feel and describe as a lump Some tumours can be benign in which they are not dangerous to an individual's health or malignant possessing the ability to be potentially dangerous Breastcancer org 2016 The cancerous cells can then invade and spread to surrounding tissues and areas of the body this can categorise the stage of cancer which in an individual is undergoing 



The importance of social support and interventions to support cancer patients throughout their journey from transition to the end and after their treatment is highlighted in many studies Salmon Clark McGrath and Fisher 2015 emphasised the extreme psychological impact a cancer diagnosis can have years after the treatment of a patient has ended As a result of diagnosis breast cancer patients can experience many forms of psychological distress such as low self esteem depression social isolation anxiety and body image concerns Helms O Hea Corso 2008 Holland et al 2013 found that patients with cancer who reported psychological suffering showed distress as vital sign over the course of treatment in their psychological adjustment to the disease Further studies have shown how distress levels within the first eight months after treatment can be a predictor to the psychological outcomes which patients experience Lam Shing Bonanno Mancini Fielding 2012 Challenges to patients sense of identity beliefs goals and psychological functioning are presented during and after treatment Montazeri et al 2008 Support received by patients may be from a variety of different sources from friends family partners and resources provided by the National Health Care System NHS It has been shown that the appropriate support received by patients has a vital impact on short term and long term psychological adjustment in particular support by spouses Symister Friend 2003


Social support provided by friends and family has demonstrated a key role in the reduction of cancer related distress facilitating psychological adjustment and improving the quality of life of individuals before and after treatment Smith et al 2011 Leung Pachana McLaughlin 2014 Boyle 2006 highlighted that women are believed to cope better with their disease when the perceived quality accessibility and type of support is appropriate leading to an improvement in psychological adjustment The different types of support which a cancer patient can receive has also been believed to have an effect on the psychological adjustment over the course of treatment for breast cancer Leung et al 2014 found an important factor in improving adjustment at the end of treatment was the availability of emotional informational support and positive social interaction However patients may not necessarily receive positive support from significant others The lack or withdrawal of this support can cause depression and anxiety leading to a negative effect on the patients psychological adjustment Normand Lasry Margolese Perry Fleiszer 2004 Few studies have conducted research on depressive symptoms and intrusive thoughts which may occur to patients due to negative support which can include avoidance of discussion of the disease however it has been examined in the current study Negative support from significant others has been revealed to possibly worsen the psychological adjustment and potentially be counter productive for breast cancer patients Shiozaki et al 2011


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