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Clinical Trial Summary

As the population of cancer survivors increases substantially, meeting the health care and psychosocial needs of this population has become a national priority. After treatment ends, cancer survivors still experience a range of physical and psychological symptoms that require management. The post-treatment period can present new challenges for many survivors as they encounter communication gaps in the transition from oncology to primary care, leaving unmet needs for information and management of lingering symptoms. The role of informal caregivers remains important during this post-treatment period and psychosocial interventions that meet the needs (e.g., information, symptom management) of both members of the dyad are highly valuable to caregivers and survivors. Many geographic and social determinants of health care use (e.g., distance to specialty care centers, available primary care providers, and public transportation) make access to care and adherence to recommended healthcare guidelines difficult for survivors and caregivers, especially those who reside in rural areas. Rural residents with cancer and their caregivers during the post-treatment period are underrepresented in symptom management research. To address the unmet needs (e.g., information, symptom management) of cancer survivors and their caregivers after cancer treatment, this team has developed, tested, and investigated two telephone delivered interventions for survivors and their caregivers: Symptom Management and Survivorship Handbook (SMSH) and Telephone Interpersonal Counseling (TIP-C).

Clinical Trial Description

This randomized control trial will be composed of at least 106 survivors that are ending their treatment or within 2 years of having completed cancer treatment with curative intent and their informal caregivers. This study will include participants of diverse backgrounds (40% Latinx) from urban and rural (approximately 50% each) areas. The dyad (survivor-caregiver) will be randomly assigned to either: 1) Symptom Management and Survivorship Guideline (Handbook) or 2) Attention control. The participants will receive weekly phone calls during 16 weeks where the interventionist will utilize the General Symptom Management Scale (GSDS) to assess their symptoms and level of symptom distress. After the initial 8 weeks in the Handbook group, the survivor's and caregiver's symptom distress will be assessed. If either the survivor or caregiver indicate elevated psychological distress for any two consecutive weeks during weeks 2 through 8, there will be an addition of TIP-C to their Handbook intervention from weeks 8 through 16. The participants in the attention control group will receive a National Cancer Institute brochure: Facing Forward: Life After Cancer Treatment plus, 16 weekly calls to assess their symptoms. Regardless of randomization, all participants will complete a baseline call and two exit interviews at weeks 17 and 24. The specific aims are to: 1. Determine if the adaptive need-based SMSH+TIP-C sequence results in improved outcomes compared to the attention control. Hypothesis 1a. SMSH+TIP-C will result in lower psychological distress and summed severity index of 14 other symptoms (primary outcomes) over weeks 1-17 and 24, more appropriately scheduled and less unscheduled health services use (secondary outcomes) over weeks 1-24 for survivors and caregivers. Hypothesis 1b. Improvements in primary and secondary outcomes will be partially mediated by 1) greater enactment of SMSH strategies in weeks 1-16 and 2) improved perceptions of social support and social isolation by week 17 for survivor and caregivers. 2. Test longitudinal (weeks 1-24) dyadic interdependence in primary and secondary outcomes of survivors and caregivers to determine if there are reciprocating effects between dyad members. 3. Explore if rural versus urban residence and associated Social Determinant of Health factors (e.g., ethnicity, socio-economic status [SES], age, insurance) moderate the effects of the SMSH+TIP-C intervention on primary and secondary outcomes and modify the strength of dyadic interdependence in these outcomes for survivors and caregivers. The interventions will be delivered in English or Spanish, depending on the language preference of the participant. ;

Study Design

Related Conditions & MeSH terms

NCT number NCT05360498
Study type Interventional
Source University of Arizona
Contact Alexis Alvarez
Phone 520-626-0583
Email [email protected]
Status Not yet recruiting
Phase N/A
Start date June 1, 2022
Completion date December 1, 2025

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