Assessing the quality of life among patients with breast cancer at Tikur Anbassa specializd hostpital, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.


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Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences

Document type


Master i International Social Welfare and Health Policy


Background: Breast cancer is certainly the most common form of cancer among women in Ethiopia. For a long time the focus has been on clinical management of cancer but nowadays Quality of Life is emerging as an important health outcome which requires to be incorporated in the holistic management of patients. Breast cancer is becoming a major health problem in many developing countries such as Ethiopia. Even though the burden of breast cancer is increasing, there are no studies conducted in Ethiopia that have investigated QoL among breast cancer survivors. Objective: The purpose of this study was to assess the quality of life of Ethiopian women with breast cancer who were patients at Tikur Anbassa Specialized Hospital, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Methods: This study was an institutional based cross-sectional research conducted on 250 breast cancer patients from June to August, 2016. The Amharic version of European organization for research and treatment of cancer QoL questionnaires QLQ-C30 (Quality of Life Questionnaire-Cancer 30) and QLQ-BR23 (Quality of Life Questionnaire- Breast Cancer 23) were used to measure the quality of life. The data entered to EpiData 3.0 and then exported cleaned and analyzed using SPSS 20 version software. Multiple and binary logistic analysis was performed to examine the association between independent variables on QoL. Furthermore, analysis of variance (ANOVAs) and f-test was performed to examine the relationship between independent variables and functional and symptom scales of both questionnaires. Informed consent was obtained from the participants of the study. Results: Overall, the results of this study are based on 250 respondents. On the EORTC-QLQ-C30, participants scored low quality of life (Mean =52.5; SD = 26.0). Functional scale scores ranged from a mean of 52.6 (SD=42.6) for role functioning to a mean of 74.1 (SD=28.59) for social functioning even though the items discriminatory ability was shown to be poor (α =0.32). Except for pain and appetite loss all symptoms scales received scores above 50 implying most of breast cancer patients were symptomatic. Like wises, among QLQ-BR23 scales, the best score was observed for future perspective (mean 82.1, SD 30.3) which indicates that patients have had less worries about their future health. Most of the socio-demographic variables, except the level of income and age of participants, did not show significant association with QoL of the participants. Conclusion: The quality of life among Ethiopian women with breast cancer is poor and measures should be taken to improve this.




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