Factors associated with risk of body image–related distress
The findings of this JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery suggest that although certain demographic and oncologic characteristics are associated with head and neck cancer (HNC)-related Body image–related distress (BID), other risk factors appear to exist and should be explored in future studies.

The aim was to assess the association of demographic and oncologic characteristics with HNC-related BID using the Inventory to Measure and Assess imaGe disturbancE-Head & Neck (IMAGE-HN), a validated, multidomain, patient-reported outcome measure of HNC-related BID.

This cross-sectional study assessed 301 adult survivors of surgically managed HNC at 4 academic medical centers.

Of the 301 participants, 181 underwent free flap reconstruction. Graduation from a college or graduate school was associated with lower IMAGE-HN social avoidance scores compared with less than high school education.

Compared with paid work, unemployment was associated with higher IMAGE-HN other-oriented appearance, personal dissatisfaction with appearance, and global scores. Compared with no reconstruction, free flap reconstruction was associated with higher IMAGE-HN global scores and all subdomain scores.

Higher IMAGE-HN distress with functional impairment scores was found in those who received surgery and adjuvant radiation or chemoradiotherapy compared with surgery alone. The multivariable regression model accounted for a modest proportion of variance in IMAGE-HN global and subdomain scores.

In this cross-sectional study, factors associated with the risk of HNC-related BID included free flap reconstruction, lower educational attainment, unemployment, and multiple treatment modalities.

Source: https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaotolaryngology/article-abstract/2781813