Illusions in advanced cancer: The effect of belief systems and attitudes on quality of life

Beadle, G. F., Yates, P. M., Najman, J. M., Clavarino, A., Thomson, D., Williams, G., Kenny, L., Roberts, S., Mason, B. and Schlect, D. (2004) Illusions in advanced cancer: The effect of belief systems and attitudes on quality of life. Psycho-oncology, 13 1: 26-36. doi:10.1002/pon.722

Author Beadle, G. F.
Yates, P. M.
Najman, J. M.
Clavarino, A.
Thomson, D.
Williams, G.
Kenny, L.
Roberts, S.
Mason, B.
Schlect, D.
Title Illusions in advanced cancer: The effect of belief systems and attitudes on quality of life
Journal name Psycho-oncology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1057-9249
Publication date 2004
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1002/pon.722
Volume 13
Issue 1
Start page 26
End page 36
Total pages 11
Editor J. C. Holland
M. Watson
Place of publication United Kingdom
Publisher John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Collection year 2004
Language eng
Subject C1
321015 Oncology and Carcinogenesis
730306 Evaluation of health outcomes
Abstract Patients with advanced cancer frequently express positive attitudes and can be unduly optimistic about the potential benefits of treatment. In order to evaluate an illusory domain in the context of advanced cancer, we developed a scale of will to live and characterized the beliefs that patients held about the curability of their cancer, and how committed they were to using alternative treatments. A measure of quality of life was used as the dependent variable in order to assess the association between these attributes. After a preliminary exploration confirmed the presence of an illusory domain, these concepts were prospectively tested in 149 ambulant patients with advanced cancer who attended for palliative systemic treatment, radiation treatment or supportive care. The scale of global quality of life was reliable (Cronbach's alpha coefficient 0.72). The distribution of the scores of will to live was skewed, with no respondent scoring poorly, and the scale was reliable (Cronbach's alpha coefficient 0.82). The scale of belief in curability showed diverse beliefs. In some cases, there was a discrepancy between respondents' beliefs in curability and what they believed to be the report by their doctors. There was also an association between a committed use of alternative treatments and a belief in the curability of the cancer (p<0.001). In a multiple regression analysis, both will to live and performance status remained associated with better quality of life scores after adjustment for other relevant variables (p<0.05 and <0.001, respectively). These results suggest that positive illusory beliefs can be measured and are an important component of adaption for some patients with advanced cancer. Furthermore, this illusory domain may influence the perception and measurement of quality of life. Copyright (C) 2003 John Wiley Sons, Ltd.
Keyword Oncology
Psychology, Multidisciplinary
Social Sciences, Biomedical
Functional Assessment
Prognostic Value
Q-Index Code C1

Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 12 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 16 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 02:28:48 EST