The association between perceived patient-centered care and symptoms experienced by patients undergoing anti-cancer treatment

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Cancer patients undergoing active anti-cancer treatment experience multiple symptoms concurrently. Over the years, studies to improve patients’ physical and psychological discomfort by focusing on patients’ needs and preferences have reported promising outcomes. This study aims to explore perceived patient-centered care and its association to symptoms experienced by cancer patients undergoing active anti-cancer treatment. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted at an outpatient cancer center between August 2018 and July 2019 among adult cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and biological therapy. Participants were asked by their oncology nurse to complete a self-administered questionnaire which included the three subscales (physical, psychological, and global distress) of the Memorial Symptoms Assessment Scale as well as the perceived patient-centered care questionnaire. To examine the association between participants’ perceived patient-centered care and each of the symptoms scale scores, three hierarchical (block-wise) linear regression models were performed. Results: Of the 125 participants, 57 (45.6%) were diagnosed with breast cancer and were treated with chemotherapy either alone (n = 62, 49.6%), with radiotherapy (n = 4, 3.2%), or with biological therapy (n = 45, 36.0%). Hierarchical regression models found that perceived patient-centered care contributed to 11.3%, β = −.351 (p < 0.001); 8.9%, β = −.311 (p < 0.001); and 10.3% β = −.336 (p < 0.001) of the variance of the global distress index, physical symptoms, and psychological symptoms, respectively. Conclusions: This study shows the importance of perceived patient-centered care in alleviating physical and psychological symptoms and overall distress in cancer patients undergoing active anti-cancer therapy. Our findings call for oncology teams to adopt and implement patient-centered care as part of their routine work.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6279-6287
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.


  • Anti-cancer treatment
  • Cancer patients
  • Perceived patient-centered care
  • Symptom experience
  • Medical Oncology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Humans
  • Patient-Centered Care
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Breast Neoplasms/drug therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology


Dive into the research topics of 'The association between perceived patient-centered care and symptoms experienced by patients undergoing anti-cancer treatment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this