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Table 5 Radiotherapy (RT) and psychological adjustment

From: Psychological adjustment of men with prostate cancer: a review of the literature

Study Design Characteristics of the sample Major findings
Caffo et al. (1996) • Retrospective "ad hoc" QOL questionnaire inquiry following RT • 70 patients with localized PCA • Psychological adjustment and relational well-being good
• Level of available information about PCA and RT correlate with adjustment
Joly et al. (1998) • Retrospective, controlled study of health-related QOL (EORTC) • 71 patients with localized disease treated with combined external beam RT and brachytherapy • Treatment has no adverse effects
• Patients and controls similar on a range of measures but sexual and urinary symptoms more common in patients
Artebery et al. (1997) • Retrospective questionnaire (EORTC Prostate) study following brachytherapy • 51 patients with localized PCA • Only a minority report psychological distress or disrupted social/family life
• Return rate to work – 93%
• 100% would recommend treatment to others
Monga et al. (1997) • Prospective
• Aim was to determine cause of fatigue in PCA patients receiving RT through questionnaire (Beck Depression Inventory and 2 sleep scales) and measure of neuromuscular efficiency (NME)
• 13 patients with localized PCA • Significant but transient decline in NME, independent of psychological status; thus fatigue physically – based rather than influenced by depression
Monga et al. (1999) • Prospective evaluation, including fatigue, at 4 points – before, during and after RT
• Same measures as in Monga et al. (1997)
• 36 patients with localised PCA • Fatigue scores significantly higher at end of treatment
• Not associated with psychological status eg. depression or with sleep.
• May be secondary to decline in neuromuscular efficiency and increased muscle fatigue
Greenberg et al. (1993) • Prospective study of fatigue and mood (Beck Depression Inventory) during treatment • 15 patients with localised PCA • Fatigue increases with treatment, but independent of depression
• Fatigue associated with increased interleukin – 1 which could be a marker for fatigue associated with RT