ARCHIVES OF THE BALKAN MEDICAL UNION

Illness perception in palliative oncogeriatrics field

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Background: Numerous studies have focused on evaluating illness perceptions in patients with cancer and its influence on cope and disease adaptation, observing that changing the cognitive representation of the disease may lead to increase the patients quality of life. Objective: Illness perception may differ in young patients compared to elderly patients, the latter being influenced by the affective memory or associated chronic diseases and their outcomes. Materials and methods: Elderly patients with cancer were evaluated on admission in Oncology – Palliative Care Departement, using Brief Illness Perceptions Questionnaire. Results and discussions: The results showed that the majority of elderly patients shows an average perceptions of the disease, very few shows low illness perceptions and identified as causal factors: stress, smoking and food.

Conclusions: To increase the quality of life of elderly patients with cancer may require early assessment of illness perceptions and early psychoemotional, social and spiritual interventions.

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