Objective: This study assessed quality of life in long-term cervical cancer survivors eligible for health care in the military health system.
Methods: TRICARE beneficiaries who were diagnosed as having cervical cancer in 1980 to 2000 completed self-administered questionnaires including standardized measures of quality of life, distress, and sexuality.
Results: Forty-one women (72% of those who received questionnaire packets) provided questionnaire data. More than 2,500 questionnaires were undeliverable, with no forwarding address. Data indicated that quality of life, cervical cancer-related stress, and intimacy concerns were comparable to population normative values. Survivors received more cancer screenings than the general population. Nearly one-half of respondents reported no effect of cancer on their sexual relationships, whereas approximately one-half said that cancer had a negative impact.
Conclusions: Although cervical cancer survivors overall reported a high quality of life, many experienced significant decrements in sexual functioning. The Automated Central Tumor Registry presents challenges and potential for conducting this kind of research.