Priorities of head and neck cancer patients: a patient survey based on the brief ICF core set for HNC

  • Tschiesner U
  • Sabariego C
  • Linseisen E
 et al. 
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The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health
Core Set for Head and Neck Cancer (ICF-HNC) covers the typical spectrum
of problems in functioning experienced by patients with head and neck
cancer (HNC). The major goal of the present work was to evaluate
patients' priorities using the brief ICF-HNC as a starting point. A
priorities assessment checklist consisting of 15 statements was created
based on the 14 validated categories of the brief ICF-HNC. In a
cross-sectional study, patients were requested to select up to 5 items
that were especially important to them. The checklist was sent by mail
to 465 patients at different time points of cancer follow-up and handed
out to 56 patients with recent HNC diagnosis. Altogether 300 (64.51 %)
patients returned the checklist. The top priority of our sample was ``I
want to survive the cancer{''}, followed by ``I want that all the
expenses for cancer treatment, cancer care and any additional follow-up
treatments be covered by my health insurance or by the welfare
system{''}, ``I want to be able to continue performing all daily life
tasks well{''}, ``I want to have trusting relationships with my doctors,
nurses and therapists{''} and ``I want to be able to speak clearly{''}.
Although survival was, as expected, the top priority for patients
enrolled in the study, we show that the weight given to survival and
further symptoms or daily life activities meaningfully changes when the
biopsychosocial perspective proposed in the ICF is adopted.

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  • Uta Tschiesner

  • Carla Sabariego

  • Elisabeth Linseisen

  • Sven Becker

  • Marita Stier-Jarmer

  • Alarcos Cieza

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