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Concomitant psychiatric symptoms and impaired quality of life in women with cervical cancer: a critical review

Authors Klügel S, Lücke C, Meta A, Schild-Suhren M, Malik E, Philipsen A, Müller HHO

Received 6 June 2017

Accepted for publication 23 August 2017

Published 30 October 2017 Volume 2017:9 Pages 795—805


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Elie Al-Chaer

Stephanie Klügel,1 Caroline Lücke,1 Aurora Meta,1 Meike Schild-Suhren,2 Eduard Malik,2 Alexandra Philipsen,1 Helge HO Müller1,3

1Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg, Bad Zwischenahn, 2Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg, Oldenburg, 3Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany

Abstract: Our aim was to summarize the current relevant literature on concomitant psychiatric symptoms with a focus on anxiety/depression in a population with gynecologic cancer; to identify the predictors, associated factors, and prevention strategies of psychiatric disorders; to examine psychiatric disorders in a population with recurrent gynecologic cancer; and to describe the limitations of the literature and future research areas. Little is known about attending psychiatric disorders in patients with gynecologic and other malignant diseases like cervical or breast cancer. However, patients suffering from other types of gynecologic cancer (eg, genital/cervical cancer) may also have an increased risk of psychiatric symptoms. In this review, we identify the potential information deficits in this field. A two-rater independent literature search was conducted using the PubMed/Google Scholar search engines to systematically evaluate the literature on the research objectives, followed by a critical reflection on the results. Of the 77 screened studies, 15 met the criteria for inclusion in this review. Patients with gynecologic malignancies, especially cervical cancer, had a very high prevalence of psychiatric symptoms including depression (33%–52%). Additionally, the risk groups facing higher rates of concomitant reduced quality of life and increased psychiatric symptoms such as depression were identified. Specifically, low socioeconomic status, sexual inactivity, absence of a partner, and physical symptoms were correlated with an increased risk. Patients suffering from recurrent gynecologic cancer should receive particular attention because of their significantly increased risk of depressive symptoms. Screening programs are needed to detect psychiatric symptoms in cervical cancer patients and the associated high-risk groups. Regular screening should be implemented, and psychosocial care should be provided during follow-up.

Keywords: gynecologic cancer, comorbidity, psychiatric disorders, depression, coping, resilience

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