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Quality of Life, Psychological Burden, and Sleep Quality in Patients With Brain Metastasis Undergoing Whole Brain Radiation Therapy

Fatma Teke
Pakize Gamze Erten Bucaktepe
Erkan Kıbrıslı
Melike Demir
Aslıhan Okan Ibiloglu
Ali Inal
CJON 2016, 20(5), AE-02 DOI: 10.1188/16.CJON.AE-02

Background: Patients with brain metastasis (BM) usually suffer from poor quality of life (QOL), anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders in their reduced lifespan.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to evaluate QOL, anxiety, depression, and sleep characteristics in patients with BM at the beginning and end of whole brain radiation therapy (WBRT) and three months after treatment.

Methods: Thirty-three patients undergoing WBRT for BM were featured in this study. The authors used the Karnofsky Performance Status (KPS) scale to measure performance status, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) to evaluate anxiety and depression, the SF-36® to evaluate health-related QOL, and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index to evaluate sleep disorders at the start of WBRT, the end of WBRT, and three months after WBRT.

Findings: Statistically significant improvements were noted in KPS scores from baseline evaluation to the end of WBRT and to three months after WBRT. No significant differences were observed in SF-36 and HADS scores between the start and the end of WBRT. Anxiety scores were negatively correlated with survival at the end of WBRT. Overall survival was better in those who reported better sleep. WBRT improves KPS scores and does not worsen sleep quality or mood, even in patients with poor performance status. When changes in mood and sleep quality are observed, survival and QOL may improve in patients with BM; consequently, nurses should be responsive to these changes.

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