Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

VA Health Systems Research

Go to the VA ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Positive changes among patients with advanced colorectal cancer and their family caregivers: a qualitative analysis.

Mosher CE, Adams RN, Helft PR, O'Neil BH, Shahda S, Rattray NA, Champion VL. Positive changes among patients with advanced colorectal cancer and their family caregivers: a qualitative analysis. Psychology & Health. 2017 Jan 1; 32(1):94-109.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions


OBJECTIVE: This study assessed positive changes in patients with advanced colorectal cancer and their family caregivers following diagnosis. We compared self-reported positive changes within patient-caregiver dyads as well as self-reports and patient reports of positive changes in caregivers. DESIGN: Individual, semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with 23 patients with advanced colorectal cancer and 23 caregivers. A theoretical thematic analysis of interview transcripts was framed by posttraumatic growth theory. RESULTS: Patients and caregivers described five positive changes: closer relationships with others, greater appreciation of life, clarifying life priorities, increased faith, and more empathy for others. Additionally, only caregivers reported better health habits following the cancer diagnosis, and a minority of patients and caregivers reported no positive changes. In about half of cases, patients reported at least one positive change that was identical to that of their caregiver. However, in most cases, patient and caregiver reports of the caregiver's positive change were discrepant. CONCLUSION: Findings suggest that positive changes are a shared experience for many patient-caregiver dyads and obtaining both patient and caregiver reports of caregiver positive changes provides a more comprehensive understanding of their experience. Interventions may capitalise on positive changes to promote meaningful living in the context of advanced cancer.

Questions about the HSR website? Email the Web Team

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.