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Korean J Women Health Nurs > Volume 18(1); 2012 > Article
Korean Journal of Women Health Nursing 2012;18(1):1-16.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4069/kjwhn.2012.18.1.1    Published online March 31, 2012.
Experiences of Changes in Cognitive Function for Women treated with Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer
Bok Yae Chung, Hye Sun Byun, Gyung Duck Kim, Kyung Hae Kim, Eun Hee Choi
1College of Nursing, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, Korea.
2Department of Nursing, Daegu Polytechnic College, Daegu, Korea. bbhhsun@dpu.ac.kr
3Department of Nursing, Dongyang University, Yeongju, Korea.
4Department of Nursing, Kimcheon Science College, Gimcheon, Korea.
5Department of Nursing, Yeungnam College of Science and Technology, Daegu, Korea.
The purpose of this study was to describe the experiences of the process of the change in cognitive function for women treated with chemotherapy for breast cancer.
There were ten participants in total in this study. Data were gathered utilizing in-depth interviews over 3 times from September 2010 to January 2011. Data were analyzed by employing Strauss and Corbin's (1998) grounded theory methodology.
Findings indicate that causal conditions of these results were 'side effects of chemotherapy' and 'menopausal state', including contextual conditions as, 'mental fatigue' and 'anxiety about recurrence'. The core category was identified as 'confronting with unexpected chaos'. Intervening conditions were 'support from other people', 'lack of information on cognitive impairment'. Interaction strategies were 'changing the habit of life', 'making efforts for living life' and 'seeking for medical information'. Consequences of the process were 'physical restriction', 'difficulty in social life', 'disturbed working ability' and 'psychological distress'.
The results of this study show that nurses should recognize there is a notable difference between individual patient's contextual conditions and interactive strategies. Furthermore educational information and individualized intervention should be provided to improve cognitive function for women with breast cancer.
Key Words: Chemotherapy; Cognition; Breast neoplasms; Women

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