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Table 5 Summary of findings for the main comparison

From: The impact on quality of life from informing diagnosis in patients with cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Totally informed of diagnosis versus uninformed of diagnosis
Patient: cancer patients
Intervention: totally informed of diagnosis
Comparison: uninformed of diagnosis
Outcomes Sample Size (Number + Study Design) Evidence Grade Relative Effect (95% CI) Prospective Absolute Effect (95%CI)
General Quality of Life 1593 (10 cohort studies) Very Low1 SMD 0.12 [− 0.09, 0.34] SMD 0.12 SD higher (− 0.09 lower to 0.34 higher)
Role Functioning 1250 (9 cohort studies) Low MD 0.17 [−0.05, 0.39] MD 0.17 higher (− 0.05 lower to 0.39 higher)
Cognitive Activity 1150 (8 cohort studies) Very Low2 SMD 0.61 [− 0.06, 1.28] SMD 0.61 higher (− 0.06 lower to 1.28 higher)
Vitality 212 (3 cohort studies) Very Low2 3 4 SMD 2.22 [0.11, 4.33] SMD 2.22 higher (0.11 lower to 4.33 higher)
Emotional Function 1793 (14 cohort studies) Very Low 5 SMD 0.13 [−0.20, 0.47] SMD 0.13 higher (−0.20 lower to 0.47 higher)
Social Function 2045 (17 cohort studies) Very Low 6 SMD 0.58 [0.11, 1.05] SMD 0.58 higher (0.11 lower to 1.05 higher)
Physical Function 1733 (13 cohort studies) Low 7 SMD 0.03 [−0.26, 0.32] SMD 0.03 higher (− 0.26 lower to 0.32 higher)
Nausea and Vomiting 1250 (9 cohort studies) Very Low 8 SMD − 0.13 [− 0.46, 0.20] SMD − 0.13 higher (− 0.46 lower to 0.20 higher)
Pain 1541 (13 cohort studies) Very Low9 SMD − 0.24 [− 0.61, 0.14] SMD − 0.24 higher (− 0.61 lower to 0.14 higher)
Dyspnea 1250 (9 cohort studies) Low SMD − 0.01 [− 0.12, 0.10] SMD − 0.01 higher (− 0.12 lower to 0.10 higher)
Fatigue 1250 (9 cohort studies) Very Low10 SMD 0.07 [− 0.23, 0.38] SMD 0.07 higher (− 0.23 lower to 0.38 higher)
Financial Difficulty 1123 (9 cohort studies) Very Low8 SMD 0.14 (0.01 ~ 1.47) SMD 0.14 higher (0.01 lower to 1.47 higher)
Diarrhea 1250 (9 cohort studies) Very Low11 SMD − 0.03 [− 0.21, 0.15] SMD − 0.03 higher (− 0.21 lower to 0.15 higher)
Constipation 1250 (9 cohort studies) Low SMD 0.04 [− 0.12, 0.20] SMD 0.04 higher (− 0.12 lower to 0.20 higher)
Appetite Loss 1250 (9 cohort studies) Low SMD 0.06 [− 0.05, 0.17] SMD 0.06 higher (− 0.05 lower to 0.17 higher)
Insomnia 1250 (9 cohort studies) Low SMD 0.08 [− 0.05, 0.21] SMD 0.06 higher (− 0.05 lower to 0.17 higher)
Partly informed of diagnosis versus uninformed of diagnosis
Patient: cancer patients
Intervention: partly informed of diagnosis
Comparison: uninformed of diagnosis
General Quality of Life 219 (3 cohort studies) Very Low12 SMD 0.23 [− 0.26, 0.72] SMD 0.23 higher (− 0.26 lower to 0.72 higher)
Pain 217 (3 cohort studies) Very Low3 4 SMD − 0.15 [− 0.42, 0.13] MD − 0.15 higher (− 0.42 lower to 0.13 higher)
Physical Function 286 (4 cohort studies) Very Low3 4 SMD 0.01 [− 0.22, 0.25] SMD 0.01 higher (− 0.22 lower to 0.25 higher)
Social Function 296 (4 cohort studies) Very Low3 4 SMD 0.18 [− 0.15, 0.51] SMD 0.18 higher (− 0.15 lower to 0.51 higher)
Emotional Function 296 (4 cohort studies) Very Low3 4 SMD − 1.24 [− 2.75, 0.26] SMD − 1.24 higher (− 2.75 lower to 0.26 higher)
  1. CI Confidence interval, SMD Standardized mean difference
  2. GRADE Working Group grades of evidence
  3. High quality: Further research is very unlikely to change our confidence in the estimate of effect
  4. Moderate quality: Further research is likely to have an important impact on our confidence in the estimate of effect and may change the estimate
  5. Low quality: Further research is very likely to have an important impact on our confidence in the estimate of effect and is likely to change the estimate
  6. Very low quality: We are very uncertain about the estimate
  7. Reasons for downgraded:
  8. 1. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 70%
  9. 2. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 97%
  10. 3. The sample sizes were fewer than 300 participants included in the total
  11. 4. The 95% confidence interval was too wide
  12. 5. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 91%
  13. 6. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 96%
  14. 7. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 88%
  15. 8. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 89%
  16. 9. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 92%
  17. 10. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 86%
  18. 11. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 60%
  19. 12. The confidence interval’ overlaps were low and I2 was 67%