Indian Journal of Palliative Care
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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 44--50

Prevalence and intensity of dyspnea in advanced cancer and its impact on quality of life

Department of Palliative Medicine, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Anuja Damani
Department of Palliative Medicine, Main Building, G 75, Tata Memorial Hospital, Parel, Mumbai - 400 012, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_114_17

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Context: Dyspnea is a subjective, multidimensional experience of breathing discomfort, commonly seen in patients with advanced cancer. To find the impact of dyspnea on the quality of life in this population, it is important to understand the prevalence and factors influencing dyspnea. Aims: This study aimed to determine the prevalence, intensity, and factors influencing dyspnea in advanced cancer and determine its impact on overall quality of life. Settings and Design: This was a prospective cross-sectional study. The prevalence of dyspnea and its impact on quality of life was determined in 500 patients registered with palliative medicine outpatient department. Subjects and Methods: The patients were asked to fill a set of questionnaires, which included the Cancer Dyspnea Scale (translated and validated Hindi and Marathi versions), visual analog scale for dyspnea and EORTC QLQ C 15 PAL. Details of demographics, symptomatology, and medical data were collected from the case record sheets of the patients. Statistical Analysis Used: Descriptive statistics, univariate, and multiple regression analysis were used to calculate the results. Results: About 44.37% of the patients experienced dyspnea. Dyspnea increased with worsening anxiety, depression, fatigue, appetite, well-being, pain, lung involvement by primary or metastatic cancer, performance status, and deteriorating overall quality of life and emotional wellbeing. Conclusions: The prevalence of dyspnea in advanced cancer patients is as high as 44.37% and has a negative impact on their overall quality of life.


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