A Meta-Analytic Review of the Influence of Pediatric Cancer on Parent and Family Functioning

Ahna L.H. Pai, Rachel Neff Greenley, Amy Lewandowski, Dennis Drotar, Eric Youngstrom, Catherine Cant Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

289 Scopus citations


This study used meta-analytic methods to compare the functioning of parents of children with cancer to parents of physically healthy children or normative samples. A meta-analysis using fixed effects, weighted least squares methods was conducted on 29 studies examining psychological distress and marital and family functioning among parents of children with cancer. Mothers and fathers of children newly diagnosed with cancer reported significantly greater distress than comparison samples. Mothers reported greater distress than fathers up to 12 months postdiagnosis. Mothers of children with cancer reported higher levels of family conflict than mothers of healthy children. Findings suggest that pediatric cancer impacts parents' perceptions of self- and family functioning, especially within the 1st year following diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-415
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • childhood cancer
  • family functioning
  • psychological distress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'A Meta-Analytic Review of the Influence of Pediatric Cancer on Parent and Family Functioning'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this