Cancer is a leading cause of death in the United States and worldwide. However, people with cancer are also living longer. In order to understand the experience of cancer survivorship in both life-limiting as well as long-term cancer, quality of life (QOL) should be of the utmost concern. QOL is an overarching concept assessing cancer survivor’s well-being and includes domains of physical, psychological, social, and spiritual health. Cancer and its treatment have the potential to significantly impact the QOL of cancer survivors, yet there remain aspects of QOL in cancer survivorship that are understudied and unknown.
The purpose of this dissertation was to examine QOL in cancer survivorship from close to death to long-term survivorship and to examine the relationship between domains of QOL and a previously understudied subdomain of social well-being (perceived financial insecurity). Ferrell’s model of QOL was used as the theoretical framework. The specific aims of this dissertation are to: 1) identify how QOL is defined and measured in a life-limiting cancer
(hepatocellular carcinoma); (2) identify the impact of patient-reported financial insecurity on physical and mental health and symptoms in cancer survivors; and (3) describe and analyze QOL in the long-term cancer survivorship literature.