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J Korean Acad Nurs. 2019 Aug;49(4):375-385. Korean. Original Article.
Lee JR , Oh PJ .
Department of Nursing, Korea Cancer Center Hospital, Seoul, Korea.
Department of Nursing, Sahmyook University, Seoul, Korea.


This study aimed to develop and test a structural model for chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment of breast cancer patients based on a literature review and Hess and Insel's chemotherapy-related cognitive change model.


The Participants consisted of 250 patients who were ≥19 years of age. The assessment tools included the Menopause Rating Scale, Symptom Experience Scale, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, Everyday Cognition, and Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Breast Cancer. Data were analyzed using the SPSS 21.0 and AMOS 21.0 programs.


The modified model was a good fit for the data. The model fit indices were χ²=423.18 (p<.001), χ²/df=3.38, CFI=.91, NFI=.91, TLI=.89, SRMR=.05, RMSEA=.09, and AIC=515.18. Chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment was directly influenced by menopausal symptoms (β=.38, p=.002), depression and anxiety (β=.25, p=.002), and symptom experiences (β=.19, p=.012). These predictors explained 47.7% of the variance in chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment. Depression and anxiety mediated the relations among menopausal symptoms, symptom experiences, and with chemotherapy related cognitive impairment. Depression and anxiety (β=−.51, p=.001), symptom experiences (β=−.27, p=.001), menopausal symptoms (β=−.22, p=.008), and chemotherapy-related cognitive impairment (β=−.15, p=.024) had direct effects on the quality of life and these variables explained 91.3%.


These results suggest that chemotherapy-related toxicity is highly associated with cognitive decline and quality of life in women with breast cancer. Depression and anxiety increased vulnerability to cognitive impairment after chemotherapy. Nursing intervention is needed to relieve chemotherapy-related toxicity and psychological factor as well as cognitive decline for quality of life in patients undergoing chemotherapy.

Copyright © 2019. Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors.