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Research finds identifies social needs of young people with cancer
Date:5/9/2013

New Orleans, LA Research conducted by Xiao-Cheng Wu, MD, PhD, Associate Professor and Director of the Louisiana Tumor Registry at the LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans School of Public Health, and colleagues, reports adolescents and young adults with cancer may be at higher risk for social isolation and that a substantial proportion of them have unmet social needs that could adversely affect their health. The research is published online in the Journal of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology. More than 500 participants in the Adolescent and Young Adult Health Outcomes and

Patient Experience (AYA HOPE) Study completed a survey 6-14 months after diagnosis that included questions about two social information needs how to talk about their cancer experience with family and friends and meeting other adolescents or young adult cancer patients/survivors. Patients were identified through seven Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) program sites: the states of Iowa and Louisiana; the metropolitan areas of Detroit, Michigan and Seattle/Puget Sound, Washington; and three metropolitan areas in California: Los Angeles County, San Francisco/Oakland, and Sacramento County. The participants were 15 to 39 years old at diagnosis and were diagnosed with cancers prevalent in that age group. The researchers examined such variables as age at diagnosis, gender, race/ethnicity, education, and health insurance status at diagnosis. They looked at clinical factors including treatment (radiation, chemotherapy, and surgery), current general health, overall quality of care, and the number of symptoms experienced in the previous month. Participants were asked about the overall impact of their cancer on specific areas of their lives.

The research team found that social information needs were higher among those who were in their 20s at diagnosis with 25% reporting needing help to talk about their cancer. About 43% of those of Hispanic or "other" race/ethnici
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Contact: Leslie Capo
lcapo@lsuhsc.edu
504-568-4806
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center
Source:Eurekalert

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