Measure Yourself Concerns and Wellbeing (MYCaW): an individualised questionnaire for evaluating outcome in cancer support care that includes complementary therapies

Complement Ther Med. 2007 Mar;15(1):38-45. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2006.03.006. Epub 2006 May 3.


Background and aim: Descriptive and experimental evaluations of cancer support services require an outcome questionnaire that is valid, responsive to change, feasible and interpretable. This paper describes the development of such a tool.

Development of the questionnaire: A validated individualised measure MYMOP was adapted and piloted in two centres, and a multidisciplinary research team used this experience to develop the new questionnaire, Measure Yourself Concerns and Wellbeing (MYCaW). MYCaW requires participants to nominate one or two concerns and, using a seven-point scale, to score these concerns and their general feeling of wellbeing. The follow-up questionnaire also includes the open question 'Reflecting on your time with this Centre, what were the most important aspects for you?' INVESTIGATING VALIDITY: During 2003 the two centres administered MYCaW to all new patients, before and after a course of treatment. Patients nominated concerns that spanned physical, emotional and psychosocial concerns. For patients completing follow-up questionnaires (n=254 at the Cavendish Centre and n=267 at the Bristol Cancer Help Centre), the mean change (S.D.) for the first concern score was 2.9 (1.63) and 1.91 (1.58) for the second concern score 2.5 (1.73)/1.77 (1.96) and for the wellbeing score 1.4 (1.8)/0.61 (1.52), respectively. The open question collected valuable extra data.

Discussion: MYCaW is a questionnaire that is appropriate for the service offered, acceptable to patients, practitioners and researchers, and is responsive to change. Further validation work is planned.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Complementary Therapies*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Treatment Outcome