Study of Cancer Survivors, the NCI’s Prostate Cancer Outcomes Study, the Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urologic Research Endeavor (CaPSURE), and studies of the NCI-sponsored Cancer Care Outcomes Research and Surveillance (CanCORS) Consortium. Cohorts may also be identified from patients treated at cancer centers. Two examples of such efforts are the long-term follow-up experience of individuals with Hodgkin’s disease who were treated at Stanford University Medical Center in California and a collaborative study of a cohort of survivors of childhood cancer. Although survivors of childhood cancer are not the focus of this study,1 the cohort study of childhood cancer is described here because it can possibly serve as a model for a comparable study of adult cancer survivors.

ACS Study of Cancer Survivors

The ACS’s intramural Behavioral Research Center is conducting two surveys of cancer survivors. The first is the Study of Cancer Survivors–I (SCS–I), a longitudinal study of quality of life of adult cancer survivors. Participating survivors complete questionnaires at 1, 2, 5, and 10 years after diagnosis, allowing a comparison of changes over time and an assessment of the long-term impact of cancer on survivors. The study’s sample includes adults diagnosed with 1 of 10 common cancers (breast, prostate, lung, colorectal, bladder, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, cutaneous melanoma, kidney, ovarian, and uterine). SCS-I also includes a family caregiver research component to explore the impact of the family’s involvement in cancer care on the quality of life of the cancer survivor and the caregiver.

The second survey of cancer survivors is the Study of Cancer Survivors–II (SCS–II), a national cross-sectional study of 2-, 5-, and 10-year cancer survivors that also focuses on quality of life. Survivors of breast, prostate, colorectal, bladder, cutaneous melanoma, and uterine cancer are participating in this study. The results will provide a basis for advocacy and planning by the ACS as well as by other health organizations and agencies.

The participants in both studies are selected with the cooperation of state cancer registries from the lists they maintain of people diagnosed with cancer. As of 2005, nearly 10,000 participants had been enrolled in the combined studies. Preliminary analyses of the cross-sectional data have provided information on the quality of life problems faced by survivors. The SCS–II study is expected to complete accrual of participants in the spring of 2005, while SCS–I will continue for several years.


For more information on survivors of childhood cancer, see the IOM report Childhood Cancer Survivorship: Improving Care and Quality of Life (IOM, 2003a).

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