Understanding Psychosocial Distress and the Distressing Items on the Distress Thermometer Problem List: A cross-sectional Study from Nepal

Authors

  • Roshan Prajapati Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal
  • Sudip Thapa B & B Hospital Pvt.Ltd, Gwarko, Lalitpur, Nepal https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6139-0493
  • Samikcha Pokhrel Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal
  • Rajeev Sharma B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal
  • Pradeep Thapa Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal

Keywords:

Cancer, Distress thermometer, Nepal, Risk factors

Abstract

Introduction: Psychosocial distress is common in cancer patients and there are various risk for it. Unfortunately, the prevalence and risk of psychosocial distress are not uniform within the studies. Understanding the prevalence and risk of psychosocial distress could be an effective for its prevention and management. The objective of this study is to evaluate the prevalence and most distressing items for psychosocial distress.

Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study was done in a tertiary cancer center. A total of 253 heterogeneous cancer patients were enrolled in this study. Information regarding socio-demographic and clinical characteristics, psychosocial distress and source of most distressing problems were collected subjectively. Distress thermometer accompanied with problem checklist described their perceived distress and sources of distressing problems respectively. Descriptive statistics was used to analyze the variables. Statistical analysis was done using SPSS version 20.

Results: 51.8% of study cohorts were distressed. Among the problems category, most frequent were physical and emotional domains. The most distressing items were fatigue, worry, financial constraints and family health issue.

Conclusion: Psychosocial distress is commonly prevalent among cancer patients. These patients need regular screening and appropriate intervention for psychosocial concerns accordingly. Healthcare professionals should prioritize and address vulnerable issues that could be beneficial for preventing psychosocial distress.

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Author Biographies

Roshan Prajapati, Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal

Department Medical Oncology

Sudip Thapa, B & B Hospital Pvt.Ltd, Gwarko, Lalitpur, Nepal

Department Medical Oncology

Samikcha Pokhrel, Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal

Department Medical Oncology

Rajeev Sharma, B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal

Department Medical Oncology

Pradeep Thapa, Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, Dudhpati, Bhaktapur, Nepal

Department Medical Oncology

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Published

2023-08-23

How to Cite

Prajapati, R., Thapa, S., Pokhrel, S., Sharma, R., & Thapa, P. (2023). Understanding Psychosocial Distress and the Distressing Items on the Distress Thermometer Problem List: A cross-sectional Study from Nepal. Annapurna Journal of Health Sciences, 3(2), 7–13. Retrieved from https://www.nepjol.info/index.php/ajhs/article/view/57851

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Original Articles