From Surviving Cancer to Getting on With Life: Adult Testicular Germ Cell Tumor Survivors' Perspectives on Transition From Follow-Up Care to Long-Term Survivorship

Sandrien Weda, Danielle Zweers, Britt B M Suelmann, Richard P Meijer, Sigrid C J M Vervoort*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

With an increasing incidence and a high cure rate, a growing number of testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) survivors require specialized follow-up care. However, knowledge of these patients' needs is lacking, leaving TGCT survivors with unmet care needs at risk of symptom burden when transitioning to long-term survivorship. This grounded theory study aimed to understand the perspectives of TGCT survivors' transition from follow-up care to long-term survivorship. A total of 12 adult TGCT survivors in follow-up care or completion less than a year were in-depth semi-structured interviewed. Interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. Transcripts were analyzed by constant comparison, and the core category "Dealing with back-and-forth forces" emerged in the integrated concepts. Two comparative processes in dealing with those forces were identified: the process of Living beyond the sword of Damocles involved the transition from feeling threatened by cancer to overcoming those threats; the process of Getting on with one's life can be described as transitioning from a period where cancer overruled their lives to carrying on with everyday life. The processes toward long-term survivorship follow general characteristics; the transition itself is an individual journey that depends on (life) experiences. The constructed model can guide healthcare professionals and researchers involved in TGCT survivorship to understand TGCT survivors' individual and ensuing needs. When TGCT survivors receive individualized and tailored follow-up care, it can assist in preventing and reducing long-term and late effects on long-term survivorship.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-726
Number of pages12
JournalQualitative Health Research
Volume33
Issue number8-9
Early online date5 Jun 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023

Keywords

  • AYA
  • cancer survivors
  • cancer survivorship
  • testicular germ cell tumor
  • testicular neoplasms

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