Purpose: To assess breast cancer patients' quality of life six months after the completion of adjuvant chemotherapy, and to investigate factors affecting this.
Methods: The study was conducted in one large hospital located in a major Greek city. A convenience sample of 61 breast cancer outpatients was recruited. A questionnaire, including the SF-36 scale and questions regarding demographic and clinical information, was used to collect data.
Results: The mean age of the patients was 51.52 ± 12.10. The effect of age on the physical role was significant (p = 0.003). Τhe effect of menopausal status on physical role was also found to be significant (p = 0.003); this might be explained by age. Regarding the treatment type, patients who received hormone therapy in addition to surgery and chemotherapy reported a significantly higher quality of life in terms of bodily pain (p = 0.04) and vitality (p = 0.04) than patients who underwent only surgery and chemotherapy.
Conclusions: Quality of life is affected by factors such as age, menopausal status, and previous therapy. Health care professionals should be more aware of the factors that influence the quality of life domains (physical role, bodily pain, vitality) within this group of cancer patients in order to meet their needs following acute treatment.
Keywords: breast cancer; chemotherapy; quality of life.