Factors Associated with Depression in Breast Cancer Patients in Saudi Arabia

Mashael F. Dewan, Karen S. Lyons, Minkyoung Song, Dena Hassouneh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background Depressive symptoms in Arab women with breast cancer (AWBC) in Saudi Arabia can be influenced by spirituality, religiosity, social support, and breast cancer's stigma. Understanding the role of these factors can raise awareness and help create policies to improve care for breast cancer patients. Yet, there is limited research addressing the impact of these factors on depressive symptoms in AWBC. Objective The aim of this study was to investigate factors influencing depressive symptoms in AWBC in Saudi Arabia. Methods A cross-sectional design and convenience sampling were used to recruit 59 AWBC from oncology departments in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, who were receiving active treatment to participate in this study. Participants completed an online survey or paper-based survey including questions on sociodemographics, social support, spirituality, religiosity, depressive symptoms, and breast cancer's stigma. Pearson correlation and multiple regression analysis were used to examine the influence of numerous factors on depressive symptoms in AWBC; Student t test statistic was used to distinguish the depressive symptom scores between online and paper-based survey. Results The average age of participants was 49 years (SD = 8.31). The mean (SD) of depressive symptoms was 20.52 (12.36). Pearson correlation analyses indicated that cancer patients with high levels of depressive symptoms were associated with low levels of spiritualty and religiosity, and high levels of breast cancer stigma. Conclusions Religiosity and spirituality work as protective factors against depressive symptoms in AWBC. Implications for Practice Including religiosity and spirituality in the intervention plan should be considered when caring for AWBC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E524-E530
JournalCancer Nursing
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2022


  • Depression
  • Religiosity
  • Social support
  • Spirituality
  • Stigma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Oncology(nursing)


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