Table of Contents
ISRN Otolaryngology
Volume 2011, Article ID 250142, 4 pages
Research Article

The Influence of Support Groups on Quality of Life in Head and Neck Cancer Patients

Division of Head and Neck Surgery (Otolaryngology), David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1624, USA

Received 4 August 2011; Accepted 19 September 2011

Academic Editors: A. D. Rapidis, M. P. Robb, and C.-H. Wang

Copyright © 2011 Sarah E. Mowry and Marilene B. Wang. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. To compare quality of life in head and neck cancer (HNC) patients following treatment. Methods. The Short Form-36 Version 2 (SF-36v2) was utilized to measure patient quality of life. Results. For all 8 parameters measured by the SF-36V2, HNC patients had lower mean scores than the US population means. Support group patients had significantly worse scores than US population norms in role-physical, social functioning, and role-emotional. There were no significant differences between support group and control patients for the 8 parameters measured by the SF-36v2. Conclusions. HNC patients report significantly worse quality of life than US population norms in several physical and emotional areas. Our study did not demonstrate improved quality of life for support group patients. The increased incidence of oropharyngeal cancer and chemotherapy treatment in the support group patients in our study were factors which were likely to have lowered the overall scores in these patients.