Depressive Symptoms and Quality of Life Associated With the Use of Monoclonal Antibodies in Breast Cancer Treatment

Macarena Cáceres

Demetrio Pérez-Civantos

Jorge Guerrero-Martín

Marta Delgado

Casimiro López-Jurado

Noelia Durán-Gómez

chemotherapy, monoclonal antibodies, depression, quality of life, breast cancer
ONF 2021, 48(5), 535-545. DOI: 10.1188/21.ONF.535-545

Objectives: To assess the relationship between (a) chemotherapy and monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments and (b) depressive symptoms and quality of life (QOL) in patients with breast cancer.

Sample & Setting: 182 women with breast cancer in Spain who were undergoing chemotherapy with or without mAbs.

Methods & Variables: An observational, cross-sectional study was carried out. The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) QOL Questionnaire–Core 30 and the EORTC QOL Questionnaire–Breast Cancer were used to assess QOL. Patients were screened for depressive symptoms using the Beck Depression Inventory-II.

Results: No relationship was found between the use of mAbs with chemotherapy and QOL, except for incidence of diarrhea. However, depressive symptoms had a negative and highly significant influence on the majority of the QOL parameters.

Implications for Nursing: The presence of depressive symptoms negatively affects QOL. Used concurrently, mAbs and chemotherapy do not negatively influence QOL, but some adverse effects, such as diarrhea, are common.

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