Background: This prospective, cohort study is the first to describe 5 health behaviors of head and neck cancer patients the first year after diagnosis.
Methods: Patients (N = 283) were recruited in otolaryngology clinic waiting rooms and asked to complete written surveys. A medical record audit was also conducted. Descriptive statistics and multivariate analyses were conducted to determine which variables were associated with the 5 health behaviors.
Results: Half of the patients smoked and 25% were problem drinkers. Over half of the smokers and drinkers quit 1 year post-diagnosis. Smoking and problem drinking were highly associated and both were associated with lower body mass index (BMI) (p < .01). Moreover, physical activity and sleep were associated with each other (p < .01). Low SLEEP (Medical Outcomes Study Sleep Scale) scores were common and highly associated with depression (p < .01).
Conclusion: The health behaviors of head and neck cancer patients are interrelated, and assessing and treating these behaviors together may be beneficial.
Copyright (c) 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.