Distress and coping in cancer patients: Feasibility of the Icelandic version of BSI 18 and the WOC-CA questionnaires

E. Hjörleifsdóttir*, I. R. Hallberg, I. A. Bolmsjö, E. D. Gunnarsdóttir

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to test the feasibility of two instruments within an Icelandic context, the Brief Symptom Inventory 18 (BSI 18) and the Ways of Coping Inventory - Cancer Version (WOC-CA) with specific focus on gender and type of treatment and coping techniques among cancer patients during time of treatment. The sample consisted of 40 cancer patients in three oncology outpatient clinics in Iceland, 53% were women and 47% men. The majority of the participants belonged to the age group 51-70. Cronbach alpha, means, confidence intervals and standard deviations were used for analysis as well as Mann-Whitney U-test for testing differences between genders in relation to psychological distress and coping. Anxiety was the factor causing the greatest distress, mainly reported by patients receiving chemotherapy. More women experienced depression than men, women (18.4%), men (8.3%). Distancing was the most frequently reported coping strategy, and men seemed to focus on the positive side more often than women did (P < 0.01). Although the results should be approached with caution, as the sample size was small, they do provide support for the strength of the measurements. Also the findings indicate that gender differences should be taken into account.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)80-89
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2006

Other keywords

  • Cancer
  • Chemotherapy
  • coping
  • Measurements
  • Psychological distress
  • Psychometric measure
  • rRdiotherapy


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