Background. The emergency caused by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic exacerbated psychological distress. Our aim was to investigate the impact of breast cancer on patients' lives during the Italian lockdown. Methods. Sixty-five female breast cancer patients were studied, assessing the level of psychological distress with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the impact of the cancer diagnosis (Impact of Event Scale-Revised-IES-R). In addition, we compared these data with a matched group of breast cancer patients enrolled in 2019. Results. Patients enrolled in 2020 had statistically higher levels of anxious symptomatology and higher levels of traumatic symptomatology due to the cancer diagnosis. A mediation analysis was performed to determine how the experience of distress due to COVID-19 negatively impacted the level of anxiety and amplified the impact of the diagnosis with a significant increase in traumatic symptoms. Conclusions. Considering the vulnerability of these patients and the serious and novel situation that the healthcare system is currently facing, we would like to point out the importance of structured and organised psychological support for these patients.

Psychological Distress in Breast Cancer Patients during the Italian COVID-19 Pandemic

Ghiggia, Ada
2022-01-01

Abstract

Background. The emergency caused by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic exacerbated psychological distress. Our aim was to investigate the impact of breast cancer on patients' lives during the Italian lockdown. Methods. Sixty-five female breast cancer patients were studied, assessing the level of psychological distress with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the impact of the cancer diagnosis (Impact of Event Scale-Revised-IES-R). In addition, we compared these data with a matched group of breast cancer patients enrolled in 2019. Results. Patients enrolled in 2020 had statistically higher levels of anxious symptomatology and higher levels of traumatic symptomatology due to the cancer diagnosis. A mediation analysis was performed to determine how the experience of distress due to COVID-19 negatively impacted the level of anxiety and amplified the impact of the diagnosis with a significant increase in traumatic symptoms. Conclusions. Considering the vulnerability of these patients and the serious and novel situation that the healthcare system is currently facing, we would like to point out the importance of structured and organised psychological support for these patients.
2022
Pubblicato
https://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/19/18/11433
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/3046320
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