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Revista Colombiana de Obstetricia y Ginecología

Print version ISSN 0034-7434


SANCHEZ-PEDRAZA, Ricardo; SIERRA-MATAMOROS, Fabio  and  MORALES-MESA, Olga Lucía. Relationship between quality of life and palliative care provision in women with cancer in Colombia: A cross-sectional study. Rev Colomb Obstet Ginecol [online]. 2017, vol.68, n.1, pp.25-34. ISSN 0034-7434.


To compare quality-of-life levels (QoL) among patients who received or did not receive palliative care (PC) and had a diagnosis of breast cancer or other types of gynaecological cancers.

Materials and methods:

Cross-sectional study conducted in a referral institution for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer (National Cancer Institute in Bogota, Colombia). Bivariate analyses to measure the association between PC and demographic and clinical variables were performed in a non-probabilistic sample of 114 female patients with a hystopathological diagnosis of breast cancer or some form of gynaecological cancer who agreed to participate in the study. Scores for QoL dimensions were compared between the two groups using range tests with sign. Logistic regression models were usted to assess the association between receiving PC and QoL domains.


There were 49 cases of cervical cancer (42,98 %), 30 cases (26,32 %) of breast cancer, 24 cases (21,05 %) of ovarian cancer, 10 cases (8,77 %) of endometrial cancer and 1 case (0.88 %) of vulvar cancer. Of the total number of patients, 13 % (n = 15) received PC (95 % CI: 8 % - 20 %). Among those that received PC there was a higher proportion of patients with advanced stages. QoL scores were lower in patients referred to PC, especially for the physical wellness and functional domains. The estimators for QoL/PC association were: physical (OR = 0.97; 95 % CI 0.83-1.12); social/family (OR = 1.02; 95 % CI 0.82-1.27); emotional (OR = 1.10; 95 % CI 0.91-1.33); functional (OR = 0.72; 95 % CI 0.60-0.87).


The frequency with which PC was provided in this sample is low. The indication for PC appears to be related more to QoL compromise (specifically in the functionality domain) than to the clinical stage of the disease. PC is more frequent among patients with a higher level of education, which may be related to their greater participation in decision-making.

Keywords : Quality of life; palliative care; healthcare provision; neoplasms; staging of neoplasms; age groups.

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