Now, researchers in the University of Missouri School of Health Professions have studied the lives of breast cancer patients following chemotherapy and found that their environments and available support systems help determine the quality of their lives.
"A lot of times people get mentally and emotionally ready to deal with chemotherapy and they receive a lot of support during that time," said Stephanie Reid-Arndt, an assistant professor of health psychology in the School of Health Professions. "Then they go home and everyone feels like it's over, but the patients still have worries and fears about the changes they've been through and what it means for the future."
The study found that people reluctant to seek out social support, including therapy and informal support networks, following chemotherapy reported a lower quality of life and higher incidences of depression. A lot of people have trouble reaching out to a support network, don't know how, don't want to bother people or simply don't want to share their problems, Reid-Arndt said.
The patients' homes also were found to be a factor as the study reported a lower quality of life and functional well-being for women returning to rural areas after chemotherapy. Women in rural areas also reported increased breast cancer related symptoms such as body-image issues and fatigue.
It isn't all bad news for patients from rural communities though. People in rural communities value close relationships with family, the community and religious organizations and find solace in these support systems after chemotherapy, according to research on this topic.
"There tends to be strong community support for patients in rural areas that will accommodate varying levels of function," Reid-Arndt said. "Unfortunately, while this informal support system provides great comfort to patients, it lacks formal mental health and health issues knowledge available from health care professionals."
Reid-Arndt hypothesizes that due to proximity to more mental health services, those returning home to urban areas after breast cancer treatment may suffer less symptoms of depression and a higher quality of life, provided they seek professional support.
Christian Basi | EurekAlert!
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The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
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The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
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Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
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The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
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