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Health-Seeking Behaviors and Sexuality in Rectal Cancer Survivors in Taiwan: Associations With Spirituality and Resourcefulness

Tsay-Yi Au

Jaclene A. Zauszniewski

Tai-Ming King

sexuality, colorectal carcinoma, survivors
ONF 2012, 39(5), E390-E397. DOI: 10.1188/12.ONF.E390-E397

Purpose/Objectives: To examine the relationships between two health-seeking behaviors (HSBs), spirituality and resourcefulness, as well as demographics, cancer-related factors, and sexuality indicators, within the context of Schlotfeldt's health-seeking model in rectal cancer survivors.

Design: Secondary analysis, correlational, and cross-sectional.

Setting: A teaching hospital in southern Taiwan.

Sample: 120 adults with rectal cancer.

Methods: Data were collected during face-to-face interviews using the Body-Mind-Spirit Well-Being Inventory-Spirituality scale; Resourcefulness Scale; Sexual Self-Schema Scale (male and female versions); Evaluating and Nurturing Relationship Issues, Communication, Happiness (ENRICH) Couple Scale-Communication; ENRICH Sexual Relationship Scale; International Index of Erectile Function; and the Female Sexual Function Index. Correlational analysis, one-way analyses of variance, and independent sample t tests were used to analyze data.

Main Research Variables: Spirituality, resourcefulness, HSBs, and sexuality.

Findings: Spirituality and resourcefulness were associated with sexual self-concept and sexual satisfaction in men and women. Spirituality was correlated with resourcefulness. Greater resourcefulness was found in women, as well as in men and women who had higher education and fewer comorbid conditions. Spirituality was not associated with gender, education, or number of comorbid conditions. Neither spirituality nor resourcefulness was associated with age, religion, stage of disease, time since surgery, type of cancer treatment, or sexual function.

Conclusions: Resourcefulness and spirituality were associated with the sexuality indicators of satisfaction and self-concept, which may have an impact on the physical and psychological health of adults with rectal cancer.

Implications for Nursing: The findings suggest a need to focus on strengthening HSBs through teaching resourcefulness and encouraging spirituality to enhance sexual self-concept and improve sexual satisfaction in this patient group.

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