The relationships between mood disturbances and pain, hope, and quality of life in hospitalized cancer patients with pain on regularly scheduled opioid analgesic

J Palliat Med. 2010 Mar;13(3):311-8. doi: 10.1089/jpm.2009.0294.


Objective: The study purposes were to describe the percentage of patients in one of four mood groups (i.e., neither anxiety nor depression [NEITHER], only anxiety [ANX], only depression [DEP], both anxiety and depression [BOTH]) and to evaluate how differences in mood states are related to pain, hope, and quality of life (QOL).

Methods: Oncology inpatients (n = 225) completed Brief Pain Inventory, Herth Hope Index (HHI), and the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Core QOL Questionnaire-C30. Research nurses completed Symptom Severity Checklist, Karnofsky Performance Status score, and medical record reviews. Data were analyzed using chi(2), Kruskal-Wallis, one-way analyses of variance (ANOVAs), and analyses of covariance (ANCOVA).

Results: Thirty-two percent of patients were categorized in the NEITHER group, 12% in the ANX group, 12% in the DEP group, and 44% in the BOTH group. Younger patients and women were more likely to be in the BOTH group. While only minimal differences were found among the mood groups on pain intensity scores, patients in the NEITHER group in general, reported lower pain interference scores than those in the other three groups. Significant differences were found in HHI scores between the patients in the NEITHER group and the BOTH group. In addition, patients with both mood disorders reported significantly poorer QOL scores.

Conclusions: Because 44% of the patients had both anxiety and depression, clinicians need to evaluate patients for the co-occurrence of these two symptoms, evaluate its impact on pain management, hope, and QOL, and develop appropriate interventions to manage these symptoms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analgesics, Opioid / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inpatients / psychology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mood Disorders*
  • Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Pain / drug therapy*
  • Quality of Life / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Analgesics, Opioid