Examining the Predictive Role of Emotional Self-Regulation in Quality of Life and Perception of Suffering among Patients with Breast Cancer
Background: Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer and second leading cause of death in women after lung cancer. The World Health Organization has reported that breast cancer, with 502,000 deaths in 2005, surpassed lung, stomach, colorectal, and cervical cancers as the leading cause of death in women. The main objective of the current study was to examine the predictive role of emotional selfregulation in quality of life and perception of suffering among patients with breast cancer.
Methods: This was a descriptive-analytical study followed by a correlational design. The sample population consisted of 42 patients with breast cancer selected by the census method. Participants completed questionnaires on emotional self-regulation, quality of life (Aaronson et al., 1987), and perception of suffering. The obtained data was statistically analyzed using the Pearson correlation coefficient and regression analysis via SPSS 22.
Results: There was a significant, positive association between emotional selfregulation and the functional and general dimensions of quality of life. A significant, inverse correlation existed between emotional self-regulation and the symptoms dimension of quality of life. The results of the enter regression analysis showed that selfregulation respectively predicted 0.18 of variance in the functional, 0.26 in symptoms, and 0.37 of the variance in the general health dimensions of the quality of life. Emotional self-regulation had a significant, diverse relationship to the physical, psychological, and existential dimensions of perception of suffering. The results of the regression analysis carried out to predict perception of suffering indicated that emotional self-regulation respectively predicted 0.33 of variance in the physical, 0.19 in psychological, and 0.06 of the variance in the existential dimensions of perception of suffering.
Conclusion: A major step forward can be taken towards improving the level of quality of life among breast cancer patients through the use of books and educational brochures, individual and group counseling sessions associated with emotional self-regulation, and encouragement of patients to participate in cultural and sports activities.
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