BACKGROUND/AIM: A considerable number of patients with lung cancer are scheduled for definitive or adjuvant radiotherapy. Prevalence and potential risk factors of pre-radiotherapy sleep disturbances were evaluated.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: Nineteen factors were retrospectively investigated for associations with pre-radiotherapy sleep disturbances in 77 lung cancer patients. Factors included COVID-19 pandemic; age; gender; performance score; comorbidity index; history of another malignancy; distress score; number of emotional, physical or practical problems; patient's request for psychological support; histology; tumor stage; upfront surgery; chemotherapy; and type of radiotherapy.
RESULTS: Thirty-one patients (40.3%) reported sleep disturbances that were significantly associated with distress score 6-10 (p=0.019), ≥2 emotional problems (p=0.001), ≥5 physical problems (p<0.001), and request for psychological support (p=0.006). Trends were found for female gender (p=0.064) and stereotactic body radiation therapy (p=0.057).
CONCLUSION: Many lung cancer patients assigned to radiotherapy reported sleep disturbances. Risk factors can be used to identify patients in need of psychological support already before treatment.