A Qualitative Exploration of Prostate Cancer Survivors Experiencing Psychological Distress: Loss of Self, Function, Connection, and Control

Lauren Matheson, Johana Nayoan, Carol Rivas, Jo Brett, Penny Wright, Hugh Butcher, Anna Gavin, Adam Glaser, Eila Watson, Richard Wagland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

PURPOSE: To explore the experiences of men with prostate cancer identified as having psychological distress and to identify factors influencing distress.

PARTICIPANTS & SETTING: 28 men with prostate cancer diagnosed 18-42 months earlier, identified as having psychological distress on survey measures.

METHODOLOGIC APPROACH: Semistructured telephone interviews were conducted. Thematic analysis using a framework approach was used.

FINDINGS: Men with psychological distress had strong perceptions of loss toward self (identity, sexuality/masculinity, self-confidence), function (physical activities), connection (relational, social, community), and control (future, emotional). Psychological vulnerability appeared heightened in particular groups of men. Maladaptive strategies of emotional concealment, help-seeking avoidance, and withdrawal appeared to contribute to distress.

IMPLICATIONS FOR NURSING: Distress in men with prostate cancer is multifaceted. Men with distress should be identified and offered support. Nurse- or peer-led interventions are required.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-330
JournalOncology Nursing Forum
Volume47
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 May 2020

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