Health-related quality of life in cancer patients: A systematic review to measure the reported health-related quality of life in cancer patients ages sixty-five and older who use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) verses chemotherapy

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Kraut, Nicole
Porch, Hannah
Visscher, Madi
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2018-04-20
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Health-related quality of life in cancer patients: A systematic review to measure the reported health-related quality of life in cancer patients ages sixty-five and older who use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) verses chemotherapy
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Abstract
According to the Centers for Disease and Control, in 2014 alone, 1,596,486 new cases of cancer were diagnosed in the United States. In that same year, over half a million Americans died of cancer, deeming the disease the second leading cause of death, only behind heart disease (CDC, 2017). The purpose of this Evidence Based Practice Brief is to research how treating cancer in patients sixty-five years and older with chemotherapy as compared to using complementary and alternative medicine influences their health-related quality of life. “Chemotherapy is a systemic treatment based on chemical compounds that are administered uninterruptedly or in an interval manner according to the treatment schedule” (Furtado, Vilela, Silva, & Freitas, 2017, p. 841). Over 40% of cancer patients report using complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) (Horneber, M. et. al, 2012), which includes any therapy intended to promote health and wellbeing that is considered outside of the scope of western medicine (Taber’s Medical Dictionary, 2018). Chemotherapy and CAM each influence cancer patients’ healthrelated quality of life (HRQoL), which is broken down into the individual’s perception of “having health [to] the highest level in the four aspects of life: physical, social, psychological and spiritual” and “the quality of life in situations of disease or treatment” (Francielle Toneti, B. et. al, 2014, p.1031). By looking at the research regarding patients HRQoL while undergoing cancer treatment, nurses will be able to better educate and offer the benefits of CAM.
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