Ways of Coping With Stress and Perceived Social Support in Gynecologic Cancer Patients

Yilmaz S. D. , Bal M. D. , Beji N. K. , Arvas M.

CANCER NURSING, cilt.38, sa.2, 2015 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier identifier


Background: Stress is commonly encountered among cancer patients and may be a challenge affecting immune system resistance. Social support may contribute positively to the health of cancer patients, playing a role in coping with stress. Objective: The aim of this study was to determine whether ways of coping are related to social support given to women with gynecologic cancer. Methods: The study was performed as a cross-sectional design in a university hospital in Istanbul, Turkey, with 221 women with gynecologic cancer; the data were collected via 3 questionnaires, the first with sociodemographic and clinical features, the second with multidimensional scale of perceived social support, and the third with the scale of ways of coping with stress. Results: Women with gynecologic cancer who were employed and declared their incomes as balanced and reported more years of education were more likely to perceive higher social support and to use the ineffective coping ways with stress at a lower rate (P < .05) than other participants. Based on correlational analysis, effective coping ways with stress increase as perceived social support from family, friends, significant other, and total increases (P < .05). Conclusions: Social support from family members is the mainstay of coping with stress by women with gynecologic cancer. Implications for Practice: Nurses are indispensable in increasing social support required by women with gynecologic cancer. Well-trained clinical nurses via in-service programs should be experienced and aware of women diagnosed with gynecologic cancer in need of social support during hospital visits and provide necessary guidance.