Context: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is considered one of the most challenging tumors with high incidence, prevalence, and mortality rates. Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) is one of the emerging therapeutic modalities used for the minimally invasive treatment in the management of early-stage HCC.
Aim: This study aimed to assess the effect of self-care guidelines on quality of life for patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma undergoing Radio Frequency Ablation.
Methods: A quasi-experimental design was used to achieve the aim of this study. This study was conducted at the Interventional Radiology Unit, affiliated to Ain Shams University Hospital, on a purposive sample of 50 patients with hepatocellular carcinoma; 25 randomly allocated to the study group, and 25 allocated to the control group. A structured interview questionnaire for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma undergoing radiofrequency ablation was used to collect the study data. It comprises three parts: Sociodemographic characteristic, assessment of patients' medical health, and knowledge about HCC and RFA. The second tool was the quality of life of cancer survivors questionnaire (pre /posttest), and finally, a patient-reported self-care practices assessment checklist (pre /posttests).
Results: There were statistically significant differences between the study and control groups regarding their total knowledge about hepatocellular carcinoma and radiofrequency ablation therapy pre and post-implementation of self-care guidelines. There were highly statistically significant differences between both groups regarding the total quality of life, pre and post-implementation of self-care guidelines. In addition, there were highly statistically significant differences regarding total self-care practice, pre, and post-implementation of self-care guidelines. A positive correlation was revealed between total knowledge with total self-care practice and total quality of life (pre/posttest). Also, a significant correlation was revealed between the total quality of life and self-care practices post self-care guidelines implementation at (p<0.001).
Conclusion: Implementation of self-care guidelines were improved patients' knowledge, quality of life, and self-care practices for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma undergoing radiofrequency ablation. A simplified, illustrated, and comprehensive Arabic booklet including self-care guidelines should be available for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma undergoing radiofrequency ablation. Replication of the current study on a larger probability sample is recommended to achieve generalization of the results. Further studies are recommended to assess factors affecting the quality of life for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma undergoing radiofrequency ablation.
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