Hope as a Predictor of Anxiety and Depressive Symptoms Following Pediatric Cancer Diagnosis

Julie N. Germann, David Leonard, Corey L. Heath, Sunita M. Stewart, Patrick J. Leavey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Objective: To examine hope and its components of agency and pathways as predictors of anxiety and depressive symptoms in children receiving cancer treatment. Methods: Sixty patients (mean standard deviation age=13.3 (2.7); 57% male) completed Snyder's Hope Scales, the Children's Depression Inventory, and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory at diagnosis and 3 month intervals for 1 year following pediatric cancer diagnosis. Parents also completed Snyder's Hope Scales. Linear mixed-effect regression was used to assess hope's role in longitudinal models of symptoms of depression and anxiety. Results: Agency was a significant predictor of between-patient differences and within-patient changes in symptoms of depression and anxiety. Neither patient pathways nor either component of parent hope was predictive of symptoms of depression or anxiety. Patients who were more likely to have depressive symptoms at baseline were older, diagnosed with leukemia, and non-Hispanic White as opposed to Hispanic. Patient demographics were not predictive of anxiety. Conclusion Patient agency is a potential target for intervention to prevent or reduce anxiety and depressive symptoms following pediatric cancer diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)152-161
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of pediatric psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2018


  • adjustment
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • hopepediatric cancer
  • resilience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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