Background: Our study aimed to explore how survivors of osteosarcoma of the lower extremity experience physical and psychosocial late effects several years after undergoing arduous treatment. A qualitative, phenomenological and hermeneutic approach was applied.
Materials and methods: Osteosarcoma survivors (n=8) previously treated at the Norwegian Radium Hospital, Oslo University Hospital, participated in the study. In-depth and semi-structured interviews were conducted. The interviews were analyzed using inductive thematic analysis.
Results: Three to ten years after diagnosis, the majority of participants had experienced both negative and positive consequences following treatment. Changes in activity and exclusion from participation in different areas were the most challenging consequences. Several of their experiences are similar to those described by people with disabilities.
Conclusion: It is important to understand osteosarcoma survivors' own experiences in order to assist those who struggle to reorient in life and to construct a new identity for themselves.
Keywords: Bone cancer; cancer survivors; disability; osteosarcoma; post-traumatic growth; qualitative.
Copyright© 2015 International Institute of Anticancer Research (Dr. John G. Delinassios), All rights reserved.