Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Surgery & Cancer

Honorary Lecturer



+44 (0)20 3312 1658alex.king Website




Department of Clinical Health PsychologyClarence WingSt Mary's Campus





Publication Type

11 results found

Cotter P, Holden A, Johnson C, Noakes S, Urch C, King Aet al., 2022, Coping With the Emotional Impact of Working in Cancer Care: The Importance of Team Working and Collective Processing, FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY, Vol: 13, ISSN: 1664-1078

Journal article

LeBoutillier C, Urch C, King A, Barry C, Mansfield L, Archer Set al., 2022, ‘Still living with it even though it’s gone’: Using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis to explore shared experiences of living with and beyond breast, prostate, and colorectal cancer, European Journal of Oncology Nursing (EJON), Vol: 56, ISSN: 1462-3889

Purpose:Living with and beyond cancer is an increasingly common experience. While research is uncovering valuable individual experiences of those living with and beyond cancer, it has been argued that this idiographic approach is limited in outlook, reach and impact. This study contributes to the understanding of what it means to live with and beyond cancer by complementing idiographic knowledge with multiple perspectives from a group of participants who are living with and beyond cancer, to explore how individual experiences may be relevant to others.Method:Semi-structured interviews were conducted with people who had received treatment for breast (n = 6), prostate (n = 6) or colorectal cancer (n = 6). Data were analysed using interpretive phenomenological analysis. The early findings were then shared with a wider group of people who had received treatment for breast, prostate or colorectal cancer (n = 26) in six focus groups, to explore whether they had similar experiences.Results:While individual accounts of living with and beyond cancer detail unique features specific to each person's experience, focus group discussions illustrated how participant life worlds interact and overlap. The findings identified thematic similarities within and between individual and group levels and across cancer types. Three super-ordinate themes describe the shared experience of living with and beyond cancer: i) the cancer shock, ii) managing cancer and getting through and iii) getting over cancer.Conclusions:A multiple perspective approach informs our understanding of shared experiences of living with and beyond cancer. This knowledge can be used to direct, design, and deliver relevant supportive cancer care.

Journal article

Marcus D, King A, Yazbek J, Hughes C, Ghaem-Maghami Set al., 2021, Anxiety and stress in women with suspected endometrial cancer: Survey and paired observational study, Psycho-Oncology: journal of the psychological, social and behavioral dimensions of cancer, Vol: 30, Pages: 1939-1400, ISSN: 1057-9249

ObjectiveTo determine the anxiety and stress levels of women with suspected endometrial cancer and factors affecting this.MethodsProspective survey and paired observational study of consecutive women with suspected endometrial cancer in a rapid access gynaecology clinic. Structured questionnaire including a GAD-7 anxiety test and a modified stress thermometer were used. Patients ranked their perception of a cancer diagnosis on 0-5 Likert scale (0 = confident not cancer and 5 = cancer). Patients requiring an endometrial tissue biopsy were asked to rank their pain on a visual analogue scale (VAS), this was paired with the survey results.Results250 patients completed the study and 23 of which underwent an endometrial tissue biopsy. The median age was 50-59 years old and 59% of women spoke English as their first language. 32% of patients had significant levels of anxiety with GAD-7 score ≥10. The median stress score was three out of five on Likert scale. GAD-7 anxiety scores were higher in women who perceived that they received insufficient information prior to clinic (sufficient information 5 vs. insufficient information 9.5, P = 0.00036) or had a disability (disability 9 vs. no disability 5.5, P = 0.00374). The median VAS score from the biopsies was seven out of 10 (range 1-10). Patients with higher anxiety levels (GAD-7 scores) were more likely to believe they had cancer P <0.00001.ConclusionsThese findings confirm high levels of anxiety and stress in women with suspected endometrial cancer. Adequate pre-clinic information is essential, particularly for minority groups.

Journal article

Le Boutillier C, Archer S, Barry C, King A, Mansfield L, Urch Cet al., 2019, Conceptual framework for living with and beyond cancer: A systematic review and narrative synthesis, Psycho-Oncology, Vol: 28, Pages: 948-959, ISSN: 1057-9249

ObjectiveThe concept of living with and beyond cancer is now emerging in policy and literature. Rather than viewing this notion simply as a linear timeline, developing an agreed understanding of the lived experience of people affected by cancer will aid the development of personā€centred models of care.MethodsA systematic review was conducted. The review question was “What does the term ‘living with and beyond cancer’ mean to people affected by cancer?” The protocol for the review was preregistered in the PROSPERO database (PROSPERO CRD42017059860). All included studies were qualitative, so narrative synthesis was used to integrate descriptions and definitions of living with and beyond cancer into an empirically based conceptual framework.ResultsOut of 2345 papers that were identified and 180 that were reviewed, a total of 73 papers were included. The synthesis yielded three interlinked themes: Adversity (realising cancer), Restoration (readjusting life with cancer), and Compatibility (reconciling cancer), resulting in the ARC framework.ConclusionsThree themes describe the experience of living with and beyond cancer: adversity, restoration, and compatibility. The ARC framework provides an empirically informed grounding for future research and practice in supportive cancer care for this population.

Journal article

Halliday L, Wynter-Blyth V, Osborn H, King A, Moorthy Ket al., 2017, Adherence to prehabilitation in oesophago-gastric cancer patients, Clinical Nutrition ESPEN, Vol: 19, Pages: 90-90, ISSN: 2405-4577

Journal article

Wynter-Blyth V, Halliday L, King A, Osborn H, Moorthy Ket al., 2017, The role of self-efficacy in prehabilitation and its impact on post-operative recovery, Clinical Nutrition ESPEN, Vol: 19, Pages: 89-89, ISSN: 2405-4577

Journal article

King A, 2017, Behind the bright headlines, mind the long shadows, PSYCHO-ONCOLOGY, Vol: 26, Pages: 588-592, ISSN: 1057-9249

Journal article

King A, 2016, Making connections for a biopsychosocial future in cancer care, FUTURE ONCOLOGY, Vol: 12, Pages: 2767-2769, ISSN: 1479-6694

Journal article

King A, 2016, The next challenge for psycho-oncology in the UK: targeting service quality and outcomes, FUTURE ONCOLOGY, Vol: 12, Pages: 2811-2816, ISSN: 1479-6694

Journal article

Munro H, Scott SE, King A, Grunfeld EAet al., 2015, Patterns and predictors of disclosure of a diagnosis of cancer, PSYCHO-ONCOLOGY, Vol: 24, Pages: 508-514, ISSN: 1057-9249

Journal article

King A, Hulbert-Williams N, Flynn S, 2015, Psychological Care and Support for People affected by Cancer, Cancer and Cancer Care, Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd, Pages: 327-342

Book chapter

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