Perspectives on returning to work of multiple myeloma patients: A qualitative interview study

Christine Bennink*, Marjolein van der Klift, Hans Scheurer, Pieter Sonneveld, Saskia F.A. Duijts

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
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Objective: Multiple myeloma (MM) is a rare and incurable disease. Because new treatments improved survival rates, return to work (RTW) became more relevant to MM patients of working age. Also, (health care) experts may be confronted with specific obstacles in guiding MM patients' RTW. Therefore, we aimed to qualitatively explore perspectives and experiences of MM patients and (health care) experts regarding RTW and participation at work. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with patients (N = 9) and (health care) experts (N = 15). Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using thematic analysis. Results: Four themes resulted from the interviews with patients and (health care) experts: (1) severity of diagnosis and treatment impact RTW, (2) step-by-step reintegration facilitates RTW, (3) meaning of work differs between MM patients and experts and (4) lack of tailored counselling by experts. Conclusion: Although MM patients' work ability may be limited due to the severity of diagnosis and side effects from treatment, most patients consider RTW important. Both patients and (health care) experts emphasise the benefits from early work ability assessment (in the hospital setting) and specialised RTW counselling, especially in those with physically demanding jobs.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere13481
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer Care
Issue number6
Early online date21 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
PS received research grants from Amgen, Celgene, Janssen, Skyline Dx. Honoraria from Amgen, Celgene, Janssen, Karyopharm, Seagen, Skyline Dx. Chairman of European Myeloma Network, Chairman of HOVON Myeloma Working Group. HS is the Chairman of Myeloma Patients Europe (MPE). CB, MK, and SD declared no conflict of interest.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors. European Journal of Cancer Care published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


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