An Exploratory Study of Head and Neck Cancer Quality of Life in Survivorship
The purpose of this study was to explore the quality of life experiences of head and neck cancer (HNC) survivors. Researchers recruited survivors from an HNC support group at UT Southwestern Moncreif Cancer Institute. Each of the survivors was then interviewed using a set of four interview questions designed to investigate each of the survivor?s experiences with HNC. Transcripts of these interviews were then analyzed using qualitative methods to create a list of themes, categories, and phrases. Five themes emerged from this analysis: gastrointestinal symptoms, importance of information, the need to support the caregiver, feelings of isolation, and changing with the diagnosis. The survivors? also provided advice for healthcare professionals, caregivers, and other HNC survivors. This information illustrates the experiences and emotions of the survivors, which can both help survivors anticipate how their diagnosis will affect their lives and guide future research and nursing practice to better support HNC survivors and their caregivers.