Complementary and alternative medicine use and perceptions of control among women diagnosed with breast cancer Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/gb19f897h

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  • The number of women living with a breast cancer diagnosis will continue to increase with growing breast cancer incidence rates, greater utilization of early detection, and longer length of survival times. The prevalence of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is likely to increase as well, making it important to determine the nature and extent of CAM use in this population. This study explored CAM use and the influence of the control constructs in the context of the theory of cognitive adaptation. Computer-assisted telephone interviews were completed with 551 women diagnosed with breast cancer in Portland, Oregon. Results indicated that two-thirds (66%) of the women used at least one CAM therapy during the past 12 months. The majority of women had high perceptions of cancer control and believed the CAM therapies were important in influencing the course of the cancer. Logistical regression analysis found that significant demographic predictors of CAM use were younger age, higher education, and private insurance. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to refine and test the construct validation of the Cancer Locus of Control scale. Results supported a three-factor model (control over cause of cancer, control over course of cancer, and religious control of cancer) of the scale. Results of multinomial logistical regression indicated that higher perceptions of control over the course of the cancer significantly predicted CAM use in three categories. Religious control over the cancer was not a predictor of CAM use. The findings from this study will help health care professionals and policy makers identify patient needs that go beyond surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, and address patient-centered health-related goals and outcomes for optimal health and recovery from breast cancer.
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