UBC Theses and Dissertations
The relationship of belief in control and commitment to life to cancer patients' inclination to use unproven cancer therapies Skinn, Barbara Jean
The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship of belief in control and commitment to life to the adult cancer patient's inclination to use unproven cancer therapies. A convenience sample of 40 lung cancer patients completed the Wallston's Multidimensional Health Locus of Control Scale, Crumbaugh's Purpose in Life Scale, Hiratzka's Alternative Therapy Scale, and a patient information sheet. The majority of participants exhibited a strong internal locus of control orientation and a strong commitment to life. Belief in control, commitment to life, and the degree of inclination to use unproven cancer therapies were not significantly associated. However, age was negatively correlated with inclination to use unproven cancer therapies. The majority of participants had heard of five or more unproven cancer remedies, and exhibited a strong inclination to use these unorthodox therapies. The most frequently used unproven therapies were anti-medicines - imagery, faith-healing, megadose vitamins, and taheebo. The rising popularity of these anti-medicines has been reported in the literature. The findings were discussed in relation to theoretical expectations, other research studies, and the methodological problems inherent in the study. Implications of the findings for nursing practice, theory, and education were suggested. Recommendations for further nursing research were made.
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