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Pancreatic Cancer Risk Perception and Worry in Familial High-risk Patients Undergoing Endoscopic Ultrasound for Surveillance

Silver, Erica (2012) Pancreatic Cancer Risk Perception and Worry in Familial High-risk Patients Undergoing Endoscopic Ultrasound for Surveillance. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Pancreatic cancer is a devastating disease with a five-year survival rate of 5.6%. Approximately 5 – 10% of cancer diagnoses are due to a hereditary predisposition. While some cancer syndromes have been shown to increase the risk for pancreatic cancer above the population risk of ~2%, a gene for familial pancreatic cancer has not been identified. In either of these situations, surveillance for high-risk individuals has not been well established as compared to other more common cancers associated with hereditary cancer syndromes. The goal of this study is to identify familial individuals’ top motivation for attending the high-risk pancreas clinic, and for those individuals who elect endoscopic ultrasound, assess if their feelings about their cancer risk and level of worry change after the procedure.
For this study, a high-risk, unaffected population was recruited, along with a comparison group of individuals referred for endoscopic ultrasound due to a pancreatic abnormality. Using the Health Belief Model as a framework, participants were asked to complete two validated questionnaires pertaining to their cancer risk perception and level of worry about pancreatic cancer. The first questionnaire was completed before the endoscopic ultrasound, and the second questionnaire was sent home with the participant after the procedure for completion.
Data analysis revealed both similarities and differences in the two cohorts. Both populations showed similar trends in the benefits of the endoscopic ultrasound and the fear of the procedure due to a potential negative outcome. Family history and familial support demonstrated the largest difference in trend values between the case and comparison cohorts.
This study has public health importance because of the serious consequences of pancreatic cancer. High-risk individuals are looking for surveillance options to improve the early detection of pancreatic cancer, and to date, there is not an established surveillance protocol. As more research is done, a better understanding of the psychosocial impact of surveillance in this population can be better understood.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairBrand, Randallbrandre@upmc.eduREB53
Committee MemberGrubs, Robinrgrubs@pitt.eduRGRUBS
Committee MemberSolomon,
Committee MemberTerry, Marthamaterry@pitt.eduMATERRY
Date: 2 July 2012
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 30 March 2012
Approval Date: 2 July 2012
Submission Date: 19 April 2012
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 83
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Genetic Counseling
Degree: MS - Master of Science
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: pancreatic cancer, level of worry, risk perception, endoscopic ultrasound
Date Deposited: 02 Jul 2012 13:33
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2016 14:38


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