Introduction: Follow-up surveillance after curative treatment for colorectal cancer (CRC) patients is recommended to detect early cancer recurrences and improve survival outcomes. However, a substantial proportion of CRC patients do not undergo cancer surveillance. Several demographic and disease-related factors have been associated with cancer surveillance adherence. Thus far, patient centered communication has not been studied as a determinant for undergoing cancer surveillance. The purpose of this study is to determine whether patient–clinician information engagement (PCIE) influences patients’ self-reported adherence to recommended CRC surveillance procedures.
Methods: The study was a longitudinal survey among Pennsylvanian patients diagnosed with CRC in 2005. CRC patients who were eligible for surveillance and participated in both the baseline and 1-year follow-ups surveys were included in this analysis (n 305). The main outcome measure was self-reported adherence to physical examination, carcinoembryonic antigen testing, and colonoscopy according to recommended guidelines.
Results: Controlling for potential confounders, higher PCIE at baseline predicted a higher odds for CRC patients reporting adherence to recommended surveillance 1 year later by 2.8 times. Other significant predictors of adhering to recommended surveillance were a higher education level and having received systemic therapy.
Discussion: In this longitudinal study among CRC patients who received curative treatment, greater patient engagement with clinicians about cancer-related information was found to improve patients’ subsequent adherence to recommended surveillance. This finding provides support for encouraging greater patient–physician communication among CRC patients.
Published in Volume 17, Issue 9, pages 1155-1162