Absenteeism and presenteeism (A/P) are scales related to health problems and professional activity in patients and in healthy individuals. For cancer patients in the age of maximum labor productivity (18 to 65 years old), A/P are possibly affected by quality of care, type of cancer, and selection of treatments. The objectives of this study were to clarify via questionnaire the association between quality-of-life (QOL) and A/P, as well as the changes of A/P during clinical course in cancer patients.
A/P were measured using the validated Japanese version of the World Health Organization Health and Work Performance Questionnaire (WHO-HPQ). QOL was measured using the 5-level EQ-5D version via a portable device with the Apple ResearchKit app.
We received 3983 survey results (healthy individuals, 297; cancer patients, 3686). Presenteeism was clearly different between cancer patients and healthy individuals (absolute/relative presenteeism: 59.3/0.93 and 65.8/1.01, respectively). Examination of the relationship between QOL and A/P using Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient analysis indicated that QOL is significantly correlated with relative presenteeism (r = 0.40, P < 0.001). The labor performance of pancreatic carcinoma patients was low (absolute/relative absenteeism: 68.7/0.29, absolute/relative presenteeism: 43.8/0.68). The A/P in patients with receiving chemotherapy were not maintained compared to in patients receiving surgical treatment (absolute/relative absenteeism: 39/8/0.16 vs. 17.8/0.02, p = 0.04, absolute/relative presenteeism: 55.5/0.83 vs. 62.8/0.95, p < 0.001, respectively).
WHO-HPQ can be used to measure the labor performance in cancer patients. Moreover, A/P was strongly affected by type of cancers and selection of treatments.
Clinical trial identification
The research was supported by Project Mirai Cancer Research Grants and Health Labour Sciences Research Grant.
Legal entity responsible for the study
Project Mirai Cancer Research Grants and Health Labour Sciences Research Grant.
All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.