Self-reported Measures May Accurately Identify Cancer-Related Fatigue

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Brief screening indices derived from self-report fatigue measures can accurately identify cancer-related fatigue (CRF) in patients with breast cancer and survivors, according to an article published online in the journal Psycho-Oncology.

Participants in the study included patients with breast cancer (n=385) who completed a fatigue diagnostic interview and various self-report fatigue measures at three different times: after initial adjuvant therapy (post-treatment [post-Tx] 1 assessment), after completing radiotherapy for women receiving chemotherapy + radiotherapy (post-Tx 2 assessment), and 6 months after completing all adjuvant therapy (6-month post-Tx assessment).

Results showed out of the 385 women, 104 (27%) met CRF criteria after receiving initial adjuvant therapy.

For all indices, the area of the curve was determined to exceed 0.80, sensitivity exceeded 0.80, and specificity exceeded 0.57.

Furthermore, all the indices, except for the index based on SF-36, accurately identified CRF cases at both the post-Tx 2 and 6-month post-Tx assessments.

The authors noted the “most severity” and “work interference” items on the two-item composite index based on the Fatigue Symptom Inventory had the best performance.


Brief screening indices derived from self-report fatigue measures can accurately identify cancer-related fatigue in breast cancer.
A total of 104 women (27%) met CRF criteria after initial adjuvant therapy. Six two-item screening indices were identified. For all indices, area under the curve exceeded 0.80, sensitivity exceeded 0.80, and specificity exceeded 0.57. Cross-validation suggested that, except for the index based on SF-36, all the indices continued to accurately identify CRF cases at the post-Tx 2 and 6-month post-Tx assessments.
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