Prostate cancer diagnosis can occur at a time when men’s work and careers are central to their masculine identity, sense of purpose, and family life. In Canada, an aging male population, along with medical advances, has resulted in increasing numbers of working men being diagnosed with, and treated for, prostate cancer. Little is known about the linkages between men’s work and their experiences of prostate cancer. In this qualitative study, 24 Western Canadian men were interviewed to distil the connections between work, prostate cancer screening, diagnosis, and the decision to undergo radical prostatectomy. Data were analyzed using constant comparison in the context of masculinities theory. The findings demonstrated that work was central to men’s masculine identities and afforded financial security, social status, and a sense of personal growth. However, work-related strain and demands were also found to affect participants’ health and distance them from their families. A diagnosis of prostate cancer tended to diminish the importance of work, wherein participants focused on optimizing their health and strengthening family relations. In deciding on radical prostatectomy as a treatment to eradicate prostate cancer, few men considered the implications for returning to work. The current study findings indicate that clinicians and patients should explicitly explore and discuss how surgery side effects may affect work and career plans during treatment decision-making.
Yu Ko, W. F., Oliffe, J. L., Johnson, J. L., & Bottorff, J. L. (2018). The Connections Between Work, Prostate Cancer Screening, Diagnosis, and the Decision to Undergo Radical Prostatectomy. American Journal of Men’s Health, 12 (5). 1670–1680. https://doi.org/10.1177/1557988318781720
American Journal of Men’s Health
The Connections Between Work, Prostate Cancer Screening, Diagnosis, and the Decision to Undergo Radical Prostatectomy
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