Author on Call

The function of the “Author on Call” blog is to allow our readers and authors to interact with each other in a unique way. A few select authors will be chosen to share on the blog aspects of their papers that were especially meaningful to them personally or points that may not have made it into their published report. Readers will then have the opportunity to provide comments and questions, to which the authors will respond.

At times, as seen in our first entry, we will also post separate entries to the blog on various special topics that we feel would be informational or that we welcome your feedback on.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Author on Call (35:3)

We invite you to take a moment to review the article "Perceived Control and Hot Flashes in Treatment-Seeking Breast Cancer Survivors and Menopausal Women" published in CANCER NURSING Volume 35 Issue 3 (Carpenter et al). Please enjoy the following dialogue between Dr. Hinds, Editor-in-Chief, and Dr. Carpenter regarding this article:



Dr. Hinds: One explanation was offered for why the two groups had similar levels of hot flash frequency, severity, both and interference despite the BCS group being more likely to be using hot flash treatment. Would you suggest an alternative explanation?


Dr. Carpenter: The two groups had similar levels of perceived control over hot flashes and hot flash frequency, severity, bother and interference. The BCS were using one more additional treatment than the menopausal women. This additional therapy might have been needed to decrease their hot flashes (some due to adjuvant hormonal therapies like tamoxifen or aromatase inhibitors) to a level that was comparable for menopausal women.


Dr. Hinds: Could the number of hot flash treatments being used by each woman be a factor in hot flash characteristics?


Dr. Carpenter: Yes, the number of hot flash treatments could be a factor in the hot flash characteristics or experience. All of these women were seeking treatment for hot flashes and thus the study would have excluded women whose hot flashes were well controlled on hormonal or non-hormonal therapies.


The article "Factors Associated with Self-care Self-efficacy Among Gastric and Colorectal Cancer Patients" was also published in CANCER NURSING Volume 35 Issue 3 (Yuan and Qian).


Dr. Hinds: A discussion point raised by the authors was that findings imply that there may be an unmeasured variable in the measurement model. Given your strong knowledge of quality of life in adults with cancer, would you offer a well-informed opinion on what the unmeasured variable or variables might be?


Dr. Yuan: The purpose of this study was to identify the demographic and disease-related, physical, psychological, and social factors associated with the level of self-care self-efficacy among Chinese gastric and colorectal cancer patients. Selected variables and measurements are the key components of success for this study. The more precise the variables were determined and measured, the easier the identification of the vulnerable population will be. In our study, a total of 23 variables were considered: demographic (age, gender, ethic, martial status, education, life style, employment status, income, profession, personality and type of payment) and disease-related variables stage of disease, duration of disease, treatment regimens, complications, recurrence and the presence of other chronic diseases, self-care self-efficacy, social support, function status and well-being, anxiety and depression, which we hope to be able to benefit care-providers to draw a clear portrait of a target population. Of course, even more variables are welcomed to continue to contribute to the better prediction of self-care self-efficacy for patients with cancer. In this case, we hypothesized that there are unmeasured variables existing, such as health-related religion, level of hope, culture background, patient expert demonstration (i.e, positive encouraged successful models from the patients with the same disease), previous lifestyle, health-related knowledge, etc. on which we are expecting further studies in future. Meanwhile, we are expecting the improvement in measurements for each variable.


Do you have any thoughts on the authors' comments? Or after reading these two articles, do you have any questions of your own for Dr. Carpenter or Dr. Yuan? Please comment on our blog! The authors have graciously agreed to respond to whatever questions you may have. We look forward to hearing from you!