The Impact of Husbands' Prostate Cancer Diagnosis and Participation in a Behavioral Lifestyle Intervention on Spouses' Lives and Relationships With Their Partners

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Rossen, Sine
  • Nete Sloth Hansen-Nord
  • Kayser, Lars
  • Michael Borre
  • Mette Borre
  • Ryan Godsk Larsen
  • Antonia Trichopoulou
  • Paolo Boffetta
  • Anne Tjønneland
  • Rikke Dalgaard Hansen
BACKGROUND: A prostate cancer diagnosis affects the patient and his spouse. Partners of cancer patients are often the first to respond to the demands related to their husband's illness and thus are likely to be the most supportive individuals available to the patients. It is therefore important to examine how spouses react and handle their husband's prostate cancer diagnosis.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to explore how the prostate cancer diagnosis and the participation in their partners' behavioral lifestyle intervention program influenced the spouses' life, their relationship with their partner, and how they handle the situation.

METHODS: Interviews were recorded with 8 spouses of potential low-risk prostate cancer patients on active surveillance as part of a clinical self-management lifestyle trial.

RESULTS: We identified 3 phases that the spouses went through: feeling insecure about their situation, coping strategies to deal with these insecurities, and feeling reassured.

CONCLUSIONS: The framework of a clinical trial should include mobilizing spousal empowerment so that they can take on an active and meaningful role in relation to their husband's disease. The observations here substantiate that the framework of active surveillance in combination with a lifestyle intervention in 1 specific prostate cancer clinical trial can mobilize spousal empowerment.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: Creating well-designed clinical patient programs that actively involve the spouse appears to promote empowerment (meaningfulness, self-efficacy, positive impact, and self-determination) in spouses. Spousal participation in clinical patient programs can give spouses relief from anxieties while recognizing them as a vital support for their husband.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCancer Nursing
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2016

ID: 137321844