Interdependent Subjective Experience of the Disease in Couples Facing Breast Cancer

  • C. Duprez
  • V. Christophe
  • A. Congard
  • E. Fournier
  • P. Antoine
  • L. Vanlemmens

Abstract

Background: We aimed to identify the impact of the patient’s and partner’s anxiety and depression on her/his own subjective experience of the disease and on her/his partner’s subjective experience, as well as the links between their experiences. Methods: 112 couples in which the woman had a non-metastatic breast cancer completed a self-administered questionnaire assessing 1) the perceived impact of the disease and treatments (Vanlemmens et al., 2013), 2) anxiety (STAI) and 3) depression (CESD). Findings: Patient’s subjective experience in terms of management of children and of daily life, feeling of couple cohesion, and body image and sexual life is predicted by her own emotional distress and by her partner’s experience on these dimensions. Similar results are found in partner except for his feeling of couple cohesion, predicted only by the patient’s experience of cohesion. Also, the support from close relatives he perceives is predicted only by the patient’s anxiety. Discussion: Partner’s experience seems to be more influenced by the patient’s experience than reverse. This suggests paying more attention to him –and to the couple– in support care.
Published
2014-12-01
Section
Oral presentations