Childhood cancer: diagnosis impact analysis

Fernanda Rosalem Caprini, Alessandra Brunoro Motta


A cancer diagnosis significantly impacts both patients and their families, as potential stressors place them in a vulnerable condition. In order to analyze the psycho­social impact of a cancer diagnosis, this study included 12 children aged between 6 and 12 years old (M = 8.75, SD = 2.05) and their respective caregivers in a hospital located in Grande Vitória, in the State of Espírito Santo, in Brazil. Coping with hospitalization (Coping with Hospitalization Scale) and psychosocial risk (Psychosocial Assessment To­ol/PAT) were assessed. Socio-demographic and clinical data were obtained through medical records. Data were submitted to descriptive statistical analysis. The psychoso­cial risk of families was at the clinical level. Regarding the need of coping, adaptive strategies were found, such as distraction and social support, as well as less adaptive strategies, such as brooding. This study contributes to the field of coping among chil­dren and indicates potential sources of psychological intervention.

Keywords: coping; childhood cancer; psycho-oncology; psychosocial risk; pediatric psychology.

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ISSN 1980-6906 (on-line)