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Changes in Quality of Life Among Prostate Cancer Patients After Surgery

Lin, Yu-Hua PhD, RN; Yu, Tsan-Jung MD; Lin, Victor Chia-Hsiang MD; Yang, Mei-Sang PhD, RN; Kao, Chia-Chan PhD

doi: 10.1097/NCC.0b013e3182427912

Background: Quality of life (QoL) often is impacted after radical prostatectomy (RP) procedures. Although patients’ QoL scores gradually improve after RP, changes in the QoL score over time after different RP procedures must be examined.

Objective: The aim of this study was to compare the changes in QoL over time of prostate cancer patients who were treated with open RP (ORP) or laparoscopic RP (LRP) procedures.

Methods: A longitudinal study design was used. A convenient sample of 67 prostate cancer patients was recruited after RP (ORP = 34, LRP = 33). QoL scores were assessed at 1, 3, and 6 months after RP using the University of California, Los Angeles, Prostate Cancer Index (UCLA-PCI).

Results: With respect to the PCI mean score between the ORP and LRP groups, there were significant differences in overall PCI and urinary function at time 1 (1 month after RP). However, a mixed-design analysis of covariance on the overall PCI of the 2 groups over time indicated that, after controlling for nerve sparing, there were significant differences in the main effects for group and time, but no interaction effect.

Conclusion: Results indicated that all patients’ QoL scores improved over time. Laparoscopic RP patients’ overall scores were better than ORP patients’ scores, but this may be due to unmeasured preoperative differences in this nonrandom sample, and thus, these findings cannot be attributed to treatment differences alone.

Implications for Practice: Patients’ QoL after either RP surgery is likely to drop but is regained by 6 months. This information should be given to patients undergoing RP who are deciding between various RP procedures.

Author Affiliations: Nursing Department, I-Shou University (Dr Y.-H. Lin); Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, E-Da Hospital (Drs Yu and V.C.-H. Lin); College of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University (Dr Yang); Department of Healthcare Administration, I-Shou University (Dr Kao), Kaohsiung, Republic of China.

Drs Y.-H. Lin and Tang were responsible for the study conception and design. Drs Y.-H. Lin, Yu, V. C.-H. Lin, and Kao performed the data collection and data analysis. Dr Y.-H. Lin was responsible for the drafting of the manuscript.

This study was funded by the National Science Council, Taiwan (NSC 97-2314-B-214-009-MY2).

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Correspondence: Yu-Hua Lin, PhD, RN, Nursing Department, I-Shou University, No. 8, Yida Rd, Yanchao Township, Kaohsiung County 82445, Republic of China (

Accepted for publication November 15, 2011.

© 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.