Purpose: This study was performed to examine the relationship of social adjustment with occupation and life changes in patients with laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer, from before laryngectomy to 1 year after hospital discharge. Methods: The subjects were 27 patients with laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer who were admitted to hospital for laryngectomy and provided informed consent for participation in the study. The patients answered questionnaire surveys before surgery, and 3, 6, and 12 months after hospital discharge. Regarding social adjustment, social functioning (SF) and mental health (MH) in SF-36V2 were used as dependent variables, and time, occupation status, age, family structure, and sex as independent variables. Repeated measures analysis of variance was used to examine the main effect, and second- and third-order interactions were also examined. Results: The age of the subjects was 62.9 ± 6.4 years and about 30% had an occupation. Loss of voice was the reason for 30% leaving work. In an examination of the main effects of the four variables, only age was significant regarding SF, and SF was favorable in subjects aged ≥ 64 years old. Regarding MH, age and family structure were significant, and MH was higher in older subjects who lived alone. The interaction between time and the other 3 variables was not significant. Only time/age/occupation was significant for MH. Regarding SF, a weak interaction was suggested, but it was not significant. Conclusion: Older subjects showed better social adjustment, and those who lived alone had better MH. These findings may have been due to a reduced environmental influence. MH of subjects with an occupation decreased more at 3 months or later after hospital discharge, compared to those without an occupation. Especially for younger patients, development of new approaches is required to allow families and colleagues of patients to understand the difficulties of patients with laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas