Colon Cancer Survivorship Experiences

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Virginia Tech


The purpose of this project is to explore potential social cognitive and psychosocial predictors of lifestyle changes, including diet and physical activity behaviors, in a sample of colorectal cancer survivors who are at high risk of developing a second colorectal cancer. Participants, recruited from Georgetown University's Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, are colorectal cancer survivors from families at high or confirmed risk of having a hereditary colorectal cancer syndrome. Results indicate that, at the bivariate level, many of the psychosocial and social cognitive variables of interest are significantly associated with one another as well as with various health behaviors and health behavior changes. Correlational data indicate that lower distress is associated with higher psychosocial functioning, self-efficacy, and self-regulatory ability. In addition, the data also suggest that individuals with higher self-efficacy display higher self-regulation and more positive outcome expectations related to health behaviors. Overall, participants were more likely to increase healthy behaviors or remain consistent with moderately healthy lifestyles practiced prior to their colorectal cancer diagnosis and treatment, and decrease unhealthy behaviors. Implications and directions for future research are discussed within the paper.



Social Cognitive Theory, Health Behaviors, Quality of Life, High Risk, Cancer