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EP034/#855  Association between cancer stigma and depression among tunisian patients following breast and gynecologic cancers
  1. Sofiene Fendri1,
  2. Yosra Berrazaga1,
  3. Seif Haddaoui1,
  4. Haifa Rachdi2,
  5. Myriam Saadi2,
  6. Nouha Daoud1,
  7. Nesrine Mejri2 and
  8. Boussen Hammouda2
  1. 1Abdrahman Mami Hospital, Medical Oncology, Ariana, Tunisia
  2. 2Aberrahmen Mami Hospital, Medical Oncology Deparetment, Tunis, Tunisia


Introduction Cancer stigma can have a significant impact on cancer patient’s mental health with risk of depression. Our study aimed to explore cancer stigma aspects among patients following breast and gynecologic cancers and to evaluate the association between cancer stigma and depression.

Methods Patients (n=61) treated for breast or gynecologic cancers were asked to answer a questionnaire adapted from the ‘’Cancer stigma scale’’. The ‘’Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale’’ was used to measure depression.

Results Median age was 47.1 years. About 75% of patients had at least a high school educational level (EL). Around 78% of patients were urban and 32% reported low socioeconomic status. Breast cancer was the most common primary cancer (80%), followed by endometrial (10%) and ovarian (7%) cancers. About 29% of patients reported significant depressive symptoms. Fifty six percent of patients experienced at least one form of cancer stigma. Thirty nine percent of patients believed in the impossible total recovery after cancer experience and 46% held stereotypical views of themselves. About 33% reported social discrimination due to their cancers. Patients who experienced cancer stigma were 4.4 times more likely to have depression than patients with positive attitudes (p=0.001). Depression were more registred in young (under 55 years) (OR=2.24, p=0.029) and rural patients (OR=4.94, p=0.001) with lower EL (OR=5.6, p=0.001) and socioeconomic status (OR=3.5, p=0.001).

Conclusion/Implications Cancer patients who experienced cancer stigma are at increased risk of developing depression. Thus, it’s important for healthcare providers to be aware of this relationship and provide an appropriate support.

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