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Assessment of Survivor Concerns (ASC): A newly proposed brief questionnaire

DOI: 10.1186/1477-7525-5-15

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Abstract:

We developed and tested a six-item instrument, the Assessment of Survivor Concerns (ASC). Construct validity was examined in a multiple group confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) with 592 short-term and 161 long-term cancer survivors. Convergent and discriminant validity was examined through comparisons with the PANAS (Positive and Negative Affect Schedule) and the CES-D (Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression) measures.CFA models for the ASC with short- and long-term survivors showed good fit, with equivalent structure across both groups of cancer survivors. Convergent and discriminant validity was also supported through analyses of the PANAS and CES-D. One item (children's health worry) did not perform as well as the others, so the models were re-run with the item excluded, and the overall fit was improved.The ASC showed excellent internal consistency and validity. We recommend the revised five-item instrument as an appropriate measure for assessment of cancer survivor worries.As treatments and detection for cancer improve, life expectancy for cancer survivors is longer than it has ever been before. While this is of course a welcome development, there are potential concerns that need to be addressed. One of these is the constant fear experienced by many cancer survivors that their cancer will return. While the risk of recurrence varies considerably depending on the cancer type, tumor characteristics, and stage at diagnosis, many cancers do return, generally in the first few years following diagnosis, but sometimes even after many years of remission. Fear of cancer recurrence is recognized as having significant negative psychological consequences, and researchers have recently taken a greater interest in the construct. Lee-Jones et al. provided an important review of the work that had been done in this area up to 1997 [1].Northouse reported the first work on the development of a scale specific for measuring fear of cancer recurrence, the 22-item Northouse Fear o

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