The impact of radical prostatectomy on the social well-being of prostate cancer survivors: A qualitative meta-synthesis.

The impact of radical prostatectomy on the social well-being of survivors remains poorly understood. This meta-synthesis therefore aimed to integrate the findings of qualitative research evaluating the impact of surgery on the patient relationships with partners, family and wider societal interactions.

Medline, CINAHL, PsycINFO and Embase were searched for qualitative studies evaluating social well-being dimensions. A thematic meta-synthesis was conducted to inductively construct descriptive themes and overarching analytical themes.

Thirty-one articles were included, with seven descriptive themes under two analytical themes generated to describe the experiences of 469 participants. 'Pathway to Conversion' encompassed three themes on the evolving social behaviour of men with both partners and family to adapt to their new normality postoperatively. 'A Man on My Own' discussed four themes focussing on both intimate and wider social relations, describing the stigma, shame and embarrassment felt by patients due to changes in their perceived body image and physical function. This resulted in men feeling alone, unsupported and seeking isolation.

Radical prostatectomy's impact on survivors' social well-being extends beyond surgery and causes a shift in their relationship dynamics with partner and family, highlighting the importance of preoperative and postoperative clinician's counselling to both patient and partner.

European journal of cancer care. 2022 Jun 26 [Epub ahead of print]

Omar Eymech, Oliver Brunckhorst, Matthew Deacon, Callum James, Jessica Bowie, Prokar Dasgupta, Kamran Ahmed

MRC Centre for Transplantation, Guy's Hospital Campus, King's College London, King's Health Partners, London, UK., Department of Urology, King's College Hospital, London, UK.

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