Pain Coping Strategies and Their Relationship with Unpleasant Emotions (Anxiety, Stress, and Depression) and Religious Coping in Cancer Patients

Elahe Ramezanzade Tabriz, Reza Mohammadi, Golam Reza Roshandel, Razieh Talebi, Mehdi Khorshidi


Background: Coping strategies affect patients’ perceptions of pain severity, their ability to tolerate pain, duration of daily activities, and emotions. This study aims to determine the relationship between pain coping and unpleasant emotions, and religious coping in cancer patients.

Methods: This was a cross-sectional survey study. Sampling was conducted from June to December 2016. During that period, 363 cancer patients referred to Omid Hospital in Mashhad city, Iran and 22 Bahman Hospital in Neyshabur city, Iran. Data collection tools included a demographic questionnaire, religious coping scale, pain severity scale, Coping Strategies Questionnaire, and Depression Anxiety Stress Scale. The dataset was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics that included chi-square and one-way ANOVA with SPSS v.16 software.

Results: The majority of cancer patients (231; 63.6%) used the strategy of praying and hoping as their coping mechanisms. There was a significant difference between religious coping and pain coping strategies (P=0.02). Patients with mild depression most frequently used the praying and hoping strategy, whereas those with moderate depression more frequently used the catastrophic strategy (P>0.05).

Conclusion: Designing and performing educational programs for coping with pain can be an effective solution for patients to improve their pain management, as well as control and cope with their illness. These programs would help increase patient quality of life and disease self-management, as well as decreasing psychological and communication problems.

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eISSN: 2008-6687           pISSN: 2008-6709