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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 11-17

Association between psychological distress and unmet information needs among female cancer patients in two selected teaching hospitals in South-West Nigeria


Department of Adult Health Nursing, School of Nursing, Babcock University, Ogun State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Chinomso Ugochukwu Nwozichi
Department of Adult Health Nursing, School of Nursing, Babcock University, Ikenne, Ogun State
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/cjhr.cjhr_62_17

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Background: Cancer-related information is a major need among cancer patients. Existing data indicate that cancer patients who are anxious or depressed have poorer treatment outcomes. Aim: The aim of this study is to assess the association between psychological distress and unmet information needs among female cancer patients in two teaching hospitals in Southwest Nigeria. Materials and Methods: Using a descriptive-correlational design, 244 females in the oncology units of two selected Nigerian teaching hospitals were purposively selected to complete a modified psychological distress scale and a self-developed information need questionnaire. Data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics P value set at 0.05. Results: Majority (76%) of the patients were psychologically distressed, 71.3% of the participants wanted specific information on their cancer disease. There is a correlation between cancer patients' level of psychological distress and their unmet information needs (P = 0.027; r = −0.142) and a correlation between cancer patients' information needs and duration of their illness (P = 0.034; r = −0.135). Conclusion: Cancer patients experience psychological distress to some extent. Furthermore, they are interested in finding out information about their cancer disease. Every unmet information needs impact on the psychological distress experienced by patients. It is, therefore, recommended that nurses and other healthcare professionals should endeavor to assess the specific information needs to provide required information and ease their psychological distress.


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