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Chemotherapy-induced Emesis: Experienced Burden in Life, and Significance of Treatment Expectations and Communication in Chemotherapy Care
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Caring Science, Caring Science. Region Hospital of Sundsvall-Härnösand, County Council of Västernorrland, Sundsvall, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8764-9328
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Caring Science, Caring Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9457-9521
Region Kalmar, Research Section, Kalmar, Sweden.
University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Caring Science, Caring Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1289-9896
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2023 (English)In: Integrative Cancer Therapies, ISSN 1534-7354, E-ISSN 1552-695X, Vol. 22Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Objective: Because antiemetics have become more effective and integrative therapies such as acupuncture are used in combination with antiemetics, people receiving chemotherapy for cancer today might expect less emesis than in the past. It is not previously described if and how people receiving modern antiemetics during chemotherapy experience emesis. The objective of this study was to describe experiences regarding emesis among persons undergoing emetogenic chemotherapy, and how it affects their quality of life, daily life and work. A further aim was to describe views on the significance of treatment expectations and communication with healthcare personnel while undergoing chemotherapy for cancer.

Method: Fifteen participants (median age 62 years, n = 1 man and n = 14 women, with breast (n = 13) or colorectal (n = 2) cancer) undergoing adjuvant or neo-adjuvant highly or moderately emetogenic chemotherapy were interviewed individually. The data were then analyzed using inductive thematic analysis.

Results: Three themes described the participants’ experiences: “Your whole life is affected, or continues as usual,” covering descriptions of emesis limiting some participants’ everyday lives, while others experienced no emesis at all or had found ways to manage it. Overall, participants described satisfaction with their antiemetic treatment. “Experiences and expectations more important than information”, that is, the participants reported wanting all the information they could get about possible adverse effects of treatment, although they believed previous experiences were more important than information in creating expectations about treatment outcomes. The participants reported that being seen as a unique person was of utmost importance: “Meet me as I am.” This creates trust in healthcare personnel and a feeling of safety and security in the situation.

Conclusions: These findings underline the importance of person-centered care and support in creating positive treatment expectations. Future research is called for regarding the potential antiemetic effects of positive communication regarding strengthening positive treatment expectations during emetogenic chemotherapy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
SAGE , 2023. Vol. 22
National Category
Cancer and Oncology
Research subject
Health-Promoting Work, Inkluderande arbetsliv
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-43484DOI: 10.1177/15347354231217296ISI: 001125792800001PubMedID: 38098295Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85179678460OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-43484DiVA, id: diva2:1821096
Available from: 2023-12-19 Created: 2023-12-19 Last updated: 2024-04-26Bibliographically approved

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Widgren, YlvaSilén, MaritLindberg, MagnusEfverman, Anna

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