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A Comparison Study

The Risk Factors in the Lifestyles of Thyroid Cancer Patients and Healthy Adults of South Korea

Yoo, Yang Gyeong PhD, RN; Yu, Boas J. EdD, RN, FNP-BC, CNE, GCNS; Choi, Eun-Hi PhD, RN

doi: 10.1097/NCC.0000000000000449
ARTICLES: ONLINE ONLY
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Background: In South Korea, there has been a rapid increase in thyroid cancer diagnoses, and the thyroid cancer incidence rate is the highest in the world. This study explored possible risk factors that may influence the development of thyroid cancer by comparing life habits of thyroid cancer patients and healthy adults.

Objective: The aims of this study were to identify lifestyle and habit differences in thyroid cancer patients and healthy adults and to investigate risk factors that influence the development of thyroid cancer.

Methods: The study was designed as a retrospective comparison survey study of thyroid cancer patient group and healthy adult group. One hundred two thyroid cancer patients in a university hospital and 115 healthy adults were recruited for this study. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, χ2 test/t test, and logistic regression with SPSS program.

Results: Previous smoking history, lower physical activity level, higher stress, and unhealthy eating habits (consumption of instant food products) were shown to be risk factors in the development of thyroid cancer.

Conclusion: Based on the results of this study comparing thyroid cancer patients and healthy adults, it is recommended to encourage an increase in physical activity, minimize both direct and indirect exposure to smoking, develop healthy eating habits of consuming more vegetables, and effectively manage stress levels.

Implications for Practice: Lifestyle preferences and habits may influence the development of thyroid cancer. It is imperative to identify and modify the risk factors in order to prevent thyroid cancer development.

Author Affiliations: Department of Nursing, Kunsan National University, Gunsan, South Korea (Dr Yoo); Henry P. Becton School of Nursing and Allied Health, Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ (Dr Yu); and Department of Preventive Medicine, College of Medicine, the Catholic University of Korea, Seoul (Dr Choi).

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

Correspondence: Boas J. Yu, EdD, RN, FNP-BC, CNE, GCNS, Henry P. Becton School of Nursing and Allied Health, Fairleigh Dickinson University, 1000 River Rd, Teaneck, NJ 07666 (byu@fdu.edu).

Accepted for publication October 5, 2016.

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