Lung cancer is a major cause of death in industrialized countries, yet there have been very few studies of psychosocial issues in this disease. In contrast, in breast cancer, quality of life, supportive care, coping, and a wide range of psychosocial issues have been studied extensively. There are several possible explanations for the limited amount of psychosocial research with lung cancer patients. Metastatic disease is frequent at the time of lung cancer diagnosis, and the limited survival time of these patients diminishes the opportunity for psychosocial investigations. Similarly, psychosocial interventions for patients with cancer are more likely to be applied in patients with longer survival times. In addition, the poor performance status and rapid disease progression in many lung cancer patients inhibits studies that require patient attentiveness and cognitive effort. Lastly, until recently, lung cancer has primarily affected men, and male patients may be more reluctant to participate in psychosocial research in which their emotional concerns are discussed. ampicillin antibiotic
Why is it important to consider the psychosocial aspects of lung cancer? Few lung cancer patients are candidates for curative therapy; therefore, for a large proportion of these individuals, treatment is palliative rather than curative, ie, treatment is restricted to symptom relief with only modest improvement in survival time.