Associations among menopausal symptoms, sleep and fatigue in Taiwanese women with endometrial cancer

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships among menopausal symptoms, sleep quality and fatigue in women with endometrial cancer. Participants were 95 women (mean age = 57.44 ± 10.15 years) diagnosed with endometrial cancer and who had completed their treatment before data collection. Each woman completed three structured questionnaires: the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Endocrine Symptoms (endocrine symptom subscale), the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy-Fatigue. Participants’ worst menopausal symptom was sexual pain. In addition, menopausal symptoms were worse in women with surgical menopause than with natural menopause. The majority of women had poor sleep quality (55%), and women with fatigue reported worse sleep quality and menopausal symptoms than those without fatigue. However, higher fatigue was significantly related to shorter time since diagnosis. Together, three variables (time since diagnosis, menopausal symptoms and sleep quality) explained 39% of the variance in fatigue, with menopausal symptoms being the strongest predictor. Healthcare providers can assess menopausal symptoms and sleep quality during and after treatment of women with endometrial cancer. Such assessments would allow timely interventions to alleviate fatigue and menopausal symptoms in this population, thus improving their quality of life.

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