Goals of work: The aim of the study is to determine the predictors for seeking a second opinion and the utilization of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) among gynecologic cancer patients.
Patients and methods: Patients attending a gynecologic cancer clinic of a tertiary referral center were recruited over a period of 1 year. A survey was conducted for all the participants in a one-on-one basis.
Main results: One hundred ninety-one patients were recruited. Eighty patients (41.9%) had consulted other health-care professionals (HCP) for a second opinion after they were diagnosed to have cancer and 89 (46.6%) had utilized CAM. In multivariate analysis, late-stage disease (OR=2.65, 95% CI 1.26-5.58), treatment with radiotherapy (OR=2.27, 95% CI 1.19-4.33) and tertiary education (OR=11.28, 95% CI 3.06-41.54) were independent predictors for seeking a second opinion from other HCP and utilization of CAM. Patients who sought a second opinion from other HCP were more likely to utilize CAM (OR=6.12, 95% CI 3.24-11.54). Eighty percent of the patients did not inform their usual caregiver their utilization of CAM.
Conclusions: Seeking a second opinion from other HCP is common in gynecologic cancer patients. Patients who seek a second opinion are more likely to utilize CAM.