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An Original Research about: The Associations of Depression and Fatigue with Quality of Life among Palestinian Patients with Cancer

Mu'taz M. Dreidi, Imad Tawfiq Asmar and Belal Al-Rjoub

Purpose: To explore the relationships between depression, fatigue and QoL among patients diagnosed with cancer in the West Bank.

Method: This was a descriptive, correlational study. 172 patients with lung, breast, colon, prostate and stomach cancer participated in the study. Depression, fatigue and quality of life were assessed for patients who undergoing chemotherapy. All instruments were reliable and valid.

Results: The mean score for depression was 22 (SD=8). This indicated that many patients in this study experienced depression. The participants had moderate fatigue 51 (SD=39). The same results were found in quality of life dimensions, as the mean score for functional scales and global health status ranged from 50 to 73 and for symptom scales ranged from 27 to 45. Regarding the correlation, the results showed that there were significant correlation between depression and fatigue and all quality of life dimensions (all p<0.05).

Conclusion: Depression and fatigue were significantly correlated with QoL. The impact of depression should be taken into consideration by health care workers when designing or planning interventions to improve QoL for patients with cancer through accurate and early assessment. The moderate fatigue that patients with cancer experienced by the disease or by the treatment should also be taken into account. Each one of the key variables negatively affects QoL in separate. The occurrence of them simultaneously may increase the worse effect on QoL for patients with cancer. Based on that, depression and fatigue should be assessed for each patient with cancer.