Publications by authors named "Anne K Aarstad"

11 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Personality and educational level determine self-reported health-related quality-of-life and distress in patients with renal tumors awaiting radical surgery.

Scand J Urol 2020 Aug 5;54(4):304-312. Epub 2020 Jun 5.

Department of Urology, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway.

Data on preoperative distress and health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) is lacking for patients with newly diagnosed renal tumors. This study aims to compare HRQoL within this group with the general population and to study the relationship between distress, HRQoL, personality, coping, and patient/tumor-related factors. Between January 2011 and June 2014, 153 patients (100 males/53 females), scheduled for surgery were prospectively included. Distress was determined by the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ), HRQoL by EORTC-QLQ-C30 questionnaire, personality by Eysenck Personality Inventory and coping by COPE questionnaire. HRQoL-data from an age and gender matched Norwegian reference population was used for comparison. The study patients had significantly poorer HRQoL than the reference population. GHQ and HRQoL sum scores had a common variance (CV = r) of 29-35%. In regression models, the measured variables accounted for 33% of the variance for the GHQ score. Significant predictors of the measured variance were neuroticism (18%), education level (3%) and avoidant coping (2%). Similarly, the measured variables accounted for 33-44% of the variance for the HRQoL sum scores. For all HRQoL sum scores, neuroticism predicted 17-28%, while education predicted 4-11% of the measured variance. Large tumor size, comorbidity, performance status and CRP predicted 2-7% of individual sum scores. For both preoperative distress and HRQoL, personality traits such as neuroticism and education level were the most important predictors. Tumor-related factors and other preexisting conditions seemed to be of lesser importance. Thus, preoperatively screening of psychological factors could be helpful to identify those at risk of poor outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21681805.2020.1773528DOI Listing
August 2020

Development of a disease-specific health-related quality of life (HRQoL) questionnaire intended to be used in conjunction with the general European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) Quality of Life Questionnaire (QLQ) in renal cell carcinoma patients.

Acta Oncol 2016 7;55(3):349-56. Epub 2015 Aug 7.

a Department of Urology , Haukeland University Hospital , Bergen , Norway.

Background: Studying health-related quality of life (HRQoL) following cancer treatment has become part of a growing number of standardized treatment protocols. The European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) has developed HRQoL questionnaires aimed at cancer patients. A disease-specific part is not available for renal cell carcinoma (RCC) patients, and the present aim was to develop an EORTC-compatible RCC-specific HRQoL questionnaire.

Material And Methods: In total 413 RCC patients were treated with radical or partial nephrectomies in Western Norway during the period from 1997 to 2010. Three hundred and nine patients with histologically proven cancer were still alive at the inclusion time point and 185 RCC patients (71% response rate) returned the questionnaires. We determined HRQoL by the EORTC-QLQ C30 questionnaire. We also asked 13 candidates questions aimed at constituting a disease-specific part. Furthermore, we tested parts of personality by the Eysenck Personality Inventory and coping by the COPE questionnaire. Given tumor treatment, TNM stage, alcohol consumption level and smoking levels were also determined from the hospital records.

Results: A factor analysis showed that five factors were formed: one general symptomatic, one general functional, one with disease-specific questions (flank pain, blood in the urine, flank edema, urinary tract infection), one about sexuality and one about weight loss or gain. Ten RCC-specific HRQoL questions were derived from a factor analysis, including four questions related particularly to pain, mobility and social functioning, also representing a short version of the EORTC C30. The psychometric properties and the relation to other psychological and clinical variables were further determined to be satisfactory.

Conclusions: The suggested disease-specific EORTC-QLQ-style RCC10 version adds important information about the HRQoL of RCC patients, providing additional apparent value to the general questionnaire and personality variables, as well as being psychometrically satisfactory. The questionnaire has a potential as a "stand alone" HRQoL questionnaire among RCC patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/0284186X.2015.1063776DOI Listing
December 2016

Health-related quality of life, personality and choice of coping are related in renal cell carcinoma patients.

Scand J Urol 2015 17;49(4):282-9. Epub 2014 Dec 17.

Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Bergen , Bergen.

Objective: To investigate whether health-related quality of life (HRQoL) depends on psychosocial factors, rather than on factors related to the cancer treatment, this study explored the associations between HRQoL, personality, choice of coping and clinical parameters in surgically treated renal cell carcinoma (RCC) patients.

Materials And Methods: After exclusions (e.g. death, dementia), 260 patients were found to be eligible and invited to participate. The response rate was 71%. HRQoL was determined by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30), personality by the Eysenck Personality Inventory and coping by the COPE Questionnaire. Given tumour treatment, TNM stage and patient-reported comorbidity were also determined. The HRQoL indices were also summarized in general quality of life/health, functional sum and symptom sum scores.

Results: EORTC C30 sum scores were negatively associated with the personality trait of neuroticism [common variance (CV) 19-36%]. Avoidant choice of coping inversely accounted for 9-18% of the total HRQoL variance, while reported coping by humour was to some extent negatively associated with HRQoL score (CVmax 4%). Indeed, all of the quality of life indices except for one were significantly negatively correlated with neuroticism and avoidance coping. Patients with low HRQoL due to treatment, secondary to flank or open surgery, reported a closer association between problem-focused choice of coping and HRQoL than the other patients. Moreover, present comorbidities were uniquely associated with a lowered HRQoL.

Conclusions: HRQoL is related to treatment-related factors in RCC patients, but shown here to be more strongly associated with psychological factors and present comorbidity. These findings suggest that attention should be paid to supportive treatment of RCC patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/21681805.2014.990051DOI Listing
April 2016

Level of distress predicts subsequent survival in successfully treated head and neck cancer patients: a prospective cohort study.

Acta Otolaryngol 2014 Feb 21;134(2):211-9. Epub 2013 Nov 21.

Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Bergen.

Conclusion: Our findings indicate a unique survival prediction from general health questionnaire (GHQ) sum scores in successfully treated head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients and also to some extent with inclusion of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) scores.

Objective: To examine the survival prediction from the level of distress, measured by GHQ scores obtained from at inclusion successfully treated HNSCC patients.

Methods: Structured interviews were conducted for 135 successfully treated cognitive functioning HNSCC patients 67 ± 31 (mean ± SD) months after diagnosis following a regular follow-up visit. GHQ scores, alcohol consumption history, smoking status, present comorbidities, level of neuroticism, choice of psychological coping with the cancer disease, and HRQoL scores (EORTC QLQ-C30 and -H&N35) were determined. The TNM stage, treatment provided and tumour site were obtained from the hospital records. Forty-three deaths were noted during a minimum 8.5 years of observation.

Results: The GHQ sum scores predicted survival in univariate (p < 0.05) and multivariate analyses with the above-mentioned covariates included (p < 0.01). Using clinically relevant cut-off levels, GHQ scores predicted survival in both univariate (hazard ratio (HR) 1.9; p = 0.05) and multivariate Cox regression analyses (HR 3.8; p = 0.001). We also demonstrated survival prediction from GHQ scores when adjusted by HRQoL scores.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/00016489.2013.841989DOI Listing
February 2014

Prediction of survival by pretreatment health-related quality-of-life scores in a prospective cohort of patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2013 Jan;139(1):14-20

Department of Surgical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Bergen, Bergenm Norway.

Objective: To evaluate the association between pretreatment health-related quality-of-life (HRQOL) scores and survival in a heterogeneous cohort of patients with newly diagnosed head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).

Design: Prospective cohort study.

Setting: University hospital and referral center in Western Norway.

Patients: A total of 106 patients with intact cognitive functioning who were younger than 78 years, were diagnosed as having HNSCC, and underwent treatment with curative intent from November 1, 2002, through June 30, 2005.

Main Outcome Measures: Overall survival and HRQOL scores obtained at the time of diagnosis.

Results: All dichotomized HRQOL sum scores except the functional score (P = .20) were significantly predictive of survival in univariate analyses. The hazard ratios of the dichotomized general symptom, global quality-of-life, and head and neck sum score were 3.66, 0.31, and 2.28, respectively. All sum scores except the dichotomized functional score remained predictive of survival after sequential adjustment for sociodemographic and clinical characteristics, neuroticism, choice of psychological coping, current smoking and alcohol consumption, and comorbidities. Similar findings were found for specific HRQOL indices of physical functioning, dyspnea, sleep disturbance, appetite loss, swallowing, and social eating from the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer 30-Item Core Quality of Life Questionnaire, version 3.0, and the Quality of Life-Head and Neck Cancer Module. Moreover, patients in the highest scoring quartiles for the symptom sum scores and/or the lowest scoring quartile for the global score had overall mortality rates of 50% to 64% compared with 23% to 26% among the other patients.

Conclusion: The HRQOL sum scores and specific indices among HNSCC patients predict survival independently of established known prognostic factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamaoto.2013.1056DOI Listing
January 2013

Stability of distress and health-related quality of life as well as relation to neuroticism, coping and TNM stage in head and neck cancer patients during follow-up.

Acta Otolaryngol 2013 Feb 26;133(2):209-17. Epub 2012 Nov 26.

Department of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery, Haukeland University Hospital.

Conclusion: Distress and to some extent health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients was found to be stable during follow-up. About one-third of the distress and HRQoL variances were accounted for in the present investigation with one-third from T stage, one-third directly from neuroticism and one-third from neuroticism via choice of coping response. In addition, choice of coping response predicted directly 5% of the HRQoL variance.

Objective: To investigate the stability of distress and HRQoL as related to neuroticism and choice of coping response in HNSCC patients during a follow-up period of 4 years.

Methods: We determined distress by the general health questionnaire (GHQ), HRQoL, personality by the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ) and choice of coping response. All patients younger than 78 years with new HNSCC in Western Norway in the period 1992-2001 following successful treatment were interviewed. We determined GHQ and EORTC QLQ C30/H&N35 a second time after 4 years.

Results: The GHQ scores were stable, whereas the HRQoL sum scores declined slightly (p < 0.001). The GHQ and the HRQoL scores were predicted by neuroticism, avoidant coping pattern, T stage and smoking history, but primarily H&N-specific HRQoL was predicted by treatment-derived factors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/00016489.2012.720032DOI Listing
February 2013

Comorbidity is an independent predictor of health-related quality of life in a longitudinal cohort of head and neck cancer patients.

Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2013 May 9;270(5):1721-8. Epub 2012 Oct 9.

Department of Surgical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Bergen, 5020 Bergen, Norway.

The aims of this study were to evaluate the validity and reliability of self-reported measurements of comorbidity, as well as the impact of comorbidity on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) scores, obtained at the time of diagnosis and at 18 months follow-up, among head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients treated with curative intent. One hundred and six (106) patients were available for analyses at the time of diagnosis and 72 patients at 18 months follow-up. HRQoL was assessed with the EORTC QLQ-C30/H&N35 inventories. The presence of comorbidities was assessed with a self-reported eight-question-based questionnaire at the time of diagnosis and after 18 months, as well as retrospectively with the Adult Comorbidity Evaluation (ACE-27) scale. The self-reported eight-question-based assessments of comorbidity showed high reliability with the chart-based ACE-27 inventory at both time points (r = 0.611, p < 0.001 and r = 0.612, p < 0.001). Significant correlations with comorbidity were determined for the functional (r = -0.194, r = -0.269) and the general symptom HRQoL sum score (r = 0.257 and r = 0.334) at the time of diagnosis and after 18 months; in particular present lung disease explained these associations. The covariates marital status, smoking status, alcohol consumption, and tumor stage were also found to be significantly associated with HRQoL sum scores at both time points. In conclusion, we have demonstrated that it is possible to assess comorbidity in HNSCC patients by self-reported questionnaires. Moreover, comorbidities, in particular present lung disease, appear to have an important and unique influence on HRQoL scores.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00405-012-2207-0DOI Listing
May 2013

Personality, choice of coping and T stage predict level of distress in head and neck cancer patients during follow-up.

Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2012 Sep 27;269(9):2121-8. Epub 2011 Dec 27.

Department of Surgical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Bergen, 5021 Bergen, Norway.

The aim of the present study was to investigate to what extent TNM stage, treatment level, personality, choice of coping, mood and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) scores predicted distress as measured by general health questionnaire (GHQ) in successfully treated head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients. All patients younger than 80 years who had been diagnosed with HNSCC in western Norway in the period from 1992 to 1997, and who had survived until 1999, were sampled. Ninety-six patients (90% response rate) were included 48 ± 2 months after diagnosis. We determined personality by the Eysenck personality inventory, coping by the COPE questionnaire; HRQoL by EORTC QLQ questionnaire; and mood by Beck depression inventory (BDI). Fifty-five of 58 eligible patients were interviewed a second time 47 ± 1 months after the first interview where neuroticism and GHQ-30 questionnaires were answered. Both HRQoL [explained variance (EV), 9-40%] and BDI (EV 26-30%) scores predicted the GHQ scores. Numerical T stage was inversely associated with GHQ scores (EV ~10%). High neuroticism generally predicted high GHQ scores (EV 16-28%). Avoidance focused, problem focused, drinking to cope predicted GHQ scores (EV 8-14%) and high alcohol consumption (EV ~8%) predicted GHQ scores. The present association pattern could still be shown when adjusted for gender, age and educational level when studied by multiple regression analyses. In conclusion, lowered HRQoL, low mood, a high T stage, high alcohol consumption, high neuroticism, coping by avoidance and coping by problem solving directly predicted worse distress as measured by high GHQ scores, whereas neuroticism was also associated with GHQ through choice of coping.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00405-011-1884-4DOI Listing
September 2012

Head and neck specific Health Related Quality of Life scores predict subsequent survival in successfully treated head and neck cancer patients: a prospective cohort study.

Oral Oncol 2011 Oct;47(10):974-9

Department of Surgical Sciences, University of Bergen, N-5021 Bergen, Norway.

To examine the survival prediction of head and neck (H&N) Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) scores among successfully treated and cognitive functioning H&N squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients. Through structured interviews, self-reported questionnaires were given to 139 successfully treated HNSCC patients, 67 ± 32 months following diagnosis. HRQoL-scores, measured with the EORTC QLQ-H&N35 inventory, self-reported levels of neuroticism, avoidance focused coping, coping by suppression of competing activity, alcohol consumption, smoking status, and heart and lung disease, as well as gender, age, TNM-stage, and tumor site were determined. The mean observation period was 75 ± 4 months among the survivors. Twenty-four deaths were observed. A EORTC QLQ-H&N 35 sum score, including a dichotomized version (HR 2.73-3.67), was predictive of survival, both directly and after adjustment for all of the above mentioned variables. The H&N HRQoL indices "feeling ill", "sexuality", "open mouth", "swallowing", and "pain" specifically predicted survival. The dichotomized H&N HRQoL sum score compared the 4th upper quartile to the three lower quartiles, and a cut off value of 28.5 was designated. Analyses demonstrated that a high risk group with 33% mortality may include only one quarter of the patient population as opposed to 12.5% mortality among the other patients. Our findings indicate a unique survival prediction from EORTC QLQ-H&N 35 sum scores in successfully treated HNSCC patients. HRQoL scores, in particular, related to oral health, predicted survival. Furthermore, HRQoL-scores may be a screening tool for identifying patients with high mortality risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.oraloncology.2011.07.010DOI Listing
October 2011

Distress, quality of life, neuroticism and psychological coping are related in head and neck cancer patients during follow-up.

Acta Oncol 2011 Apr 15;50(3):390-8. Epub 2010 Sep 15.

Department of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway.

Unlabelled: The aim of the present study was to study the relation between distress, quality of life (QoL), personality and choice of coping in successfully treated head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients, and to study whether distress could be regarded as a QoL variable.

Material And Methods: We determined present distress by the general health questionnaire (GHQ), QoL by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of life Questionnaire (EORTC-QLQ) C30/H&N35, personality by the Eysenck Personality Inventory and coping by the COPE questionnaire. All patients younger than 80 years who had been diagnosed with HNSCC in Western Norway in the period from 1992 to October 2001, and who had survived at least 12 months without evidence of disease were interviewed. In addition, treatment level, TNM stage, alcohol consumption level as well as smoking level were determined. One hundred and thirty-nine patients (96.5% response rate) were included.

Results: Distress and QoL indexes were scored with a common variance (CV) between 20% and 35%. The measured variables account for 40-48% of the variance of the QoL/GHQ scores. Between 3% and 10% of the GHQ/general QoL scores and 10% of the variance of the H&N35 QoL scores were predicted by the TNM stage. The measured psychological factors accounted for 20% of the H&N35 QoL scores and 40% of the measured variance of the general QoL and GHQ responses. High neuroticism (CV≈20-35%), present avoidance coping (CV≈10-30%) and coping by suppression of competing activity (CV≈10-20%) were associated with low QoL and high distress.

Conclusion: GHQ and QoL scores are scored similar, and are to some extent predicted by treatment related factors, but between 2.5 and 10 times more closely associated with psychological factors. Distress may possibly also be regarded as a QoL variable.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/0284186X.2010.504227DOI Listing
April 2011

Personality and choice of coping predict quality of life in head and neck cancer patients during follow-up.

Acta Oncol 2008 ;47(5):879-90

Department of Surgical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway.

Introduction: The aim of the present study was to investigate to what extent personality and choice of coping predicted self-reported quality of life (QoL) in successfully treated head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) patients.

Materials And Methods: We determined QoL by the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of life Questionnaire (EORTC-QLQ) C30/H&N35, personality by the Eysenck Personality Inventory and coping by the COPE questionnaire. All patients younger than 80 years who had been diagnosed with HNSCC in Western Norway in the period from 1992 to1997, and who had survived until 1999, were sampled. Ninety-six patients (90% response rate) were included 48+/-2 months after diagnosis. Fifty-five of 58 eligible patients were interviewed a second time 47+/-1 months after the first interview where neuroticism and QoL questionnaires were answered.

Results: Numerical T stage was inversely associated with the second QoL scores (CV: 10-24%). High neuroticism generally predicted low secondary QoL scores both directly (common variance: 17-25%) and adjusted by the QoL values measured simultaneously as the neuroticism (CV: 11-25%). Avoidance focused, problem focused, drinking to cope and coping by humor all predicted QoL scores (CV: 8.5-15%). The present association pattern could still be shown when adjusted for gender, age and educational level when studied by multiple regression analyses.

Conclusion: In conclusion, a high T stage, high neuroticism, coping by humor and coping by problem solving directly predicted low QoL whereas neuroticism was also associated with QoL through avoidance coping.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02841860701798858DOI Listing
September 2008
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