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The experience of financial stress among emerging adult cancer survivors.


Objective: The experience of cancer-related financial stress was examined within the developmental context of emerging adulthood.Methodological approach: This study is a secondary analysis of data drawn from two samples of testicular or hematologic cancer survivors. In-depth interviews from 52 emerging adult (EA) cancer survivors, ages 18-29, were coded by combining thematic analysis with an abductive approach.Findings: Emergent themes included some common to most age groups, including worries about medical costs and availability of health insurance, as well as specific age-related concerns, such as fertility preservation. Financial stress appeared to interrupt developmental tasks of emerging adulthood, including completing an education, establishing independence, and managing relationships. Surprisingly, financial stress was experienced as a benefit for some participants.Conclusion: Financial stress affects EA cancer survivors in unique ways. To provide support, health professionals should consider survivors' developmental life stage to understand their financial stress, and ultimately, to improve quality of life.

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