Purpose/Objectives: To summarize the current empirical knowledge base on depression in men with prostate cancer to inform psychosocial supportive care interventions for this population and chart directions for future research.
Data Sources: Reports in English of quantitative studies that included measures of depression or mood in samples of men with prostate cancer published from 1988-2004.
Data Synthesis: Nurse researchers are playing a key role in establishing the scientific knowledge base upon which a better understanding of the relative importance of depression in men with prostate cancer will emerge. This review indicates that (a) predictable risk factors exist for depression among men with prostate cancer, (b) different prostate cancer treatments do not tend to be associated with differential outcomes in depression or mood, and (c) overall, men with prostate cancer report fewer depressive symptoms than women with breast cancer.
Conclusions: The small body of research addressing depression in men with prostate cancer is methodologically inadequate to estimate the overall prevalence of depression among men with prostate cancer and determine the clinical significance of psychoeducational interventions targeting depression or mood in this population.
Implications for Nursing: Nurses can use current knowledge to identify men with prostate cancer who are most at risk for depression. Evidence supporting the benefit of psychoeducational interventions for depression in other cancer populations (e.g., women with breast cancer) may be applicable to men with prostate cancer.