Goals of work: The aim of this study was to (1) assess the quality of life (QoL) of testicular cancer survivors (TCSs) by comparing them to a reference group; (2) investigate the relationship between the QoL of TCSs and sociodemographics, cancer-related variables, and life events; and (3) identify TCSs at risk for an impaired QoL.
Patients and methods: Of the TCSs approached, 50% (n=354) participated and completed a generic QoL questionnaire (RAND-36) once. Time since completion of treatment varied from 3 months to 24 years.
Main results: (1) TCSs had significantly higher mean scores on the subscales physical functioning (p=0.02) and pain (p=0.001), but lower mean scores on mental health (p=0.04) and vitality (p<0.001) than a reference group of men. The effect sizes of these differences were small to insignificant. (2) Employment status and chronic disease were the main correlates of the QoL of TCSs. Age, negative life events, type of treatment, and the experience of a second cancer event were moderately associated with some subscales as well. (3) The joint burden of unemployment and a chronic disease was the strongest predictor for an impaired functioning.
Conclusions: On a group level, TCSs experience a good QoL, but a small group appeared to be at risk for an impaired functioning, namely, those who were unemployed and had a chronic disease. The variance explained by the variables studied was low, indicating that more important predictors remain to be identified.