Factors supporting cardiomyopathy screening among at-risk adult survivors of pediatric malignancies

Support Care Cancer. 2017 Apr;25(4):1307-1316. doi: 10.1007/s00520-016-3530-6. Epub 2016 Dec 30.


Purpose: Anthracyclines and chest irradiation place adult survivors of childhood cancer at risk of cardiomyopathy; many survivors do not obtain the recommended screening. Based on our recent clinical trial, the addition of telephone counseling to a printed survivorship care plan more than doubled survivors' risk-based screening. Here, we sought to measure the impact of specific factors targeted in the intervention for their impact on survivors' screening participation.

Methods: Study population-survivors participating in a randomized longitudinal intervention trial. Survivor questionnaires and medical records at baseline and 1-year follow-up provided the data. Within- and between-group differences in factors were assessed at baseline and follow-up; structural equation modeling (SEM) identified direct and indirect effects on screening participation.

Results: Of the 411 survivors, 55.3% were female, 89.3% white, 38.9% college graduates, and age 26-59 years (mean = 41 years, SD = 7.68 years). At follow-up, the counseling group demonstrated higher scores for intent to undergo screening (p < 0.001), adherence determination (p < 0.001), autonomous regulation (p < 0.001), competency (p = 0.03), perceived effort warranted for screening (p < 0.001), and perceived value of screening (p = 0.02). SEM identified four factors that directly influenced screening participation (n = 411, RMSEA = 0.02 [90% CI = 0.000-0.05]; CFI = 0.99; TLI = 0.99; WRMR = 0.63): the counseling intervention (p < 0.0001), intrinsic motivation (p < 0.0001), competency (p < 0.0001), and decisional control (p = 0.001); intrinsic motivation was also a mediator (p = 0.002) of screening participation.

Conclusions: Direct interpersonal interaction that focused on multiple modifiable, autonomy-supportive factors powerfully enhances the efficacy of a print survivorship care plan in increasing survivors' screening participation. This finding challenges providers to reach beyond the disease treatment focus and embrace these strategies in their behavior change efforts.

Keywords: Cardiomyopathy; Echocardiogram; Late effects; Pediatric cancer; Survivors.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiomyopathies / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / complications*
  • Neoplasms / mortality
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Survival Rate
  • Survivors / statistics & numerical data