Objective: The decade from 2000 to 2010 was an era of tremendous growth in family caregiving research specific to the cancer population. This research has implications for how cancer family caregiving is conceptualized, yet the most recent comprehensive model of cancer family caregiving was published ten years ago. Our objective was to develop an updated and expanded comprehensive model of the cancer family caregiving experience, derived from concepts and variables used in research during the past ten years. Methods: A conceptual model was developed based on cancer family caregiving research published from 2000 to 2010. Results: Our updated and expanded model has three main elements: 1) the stress process, 2) contextual factors, and 3) the cancer trajectory. Emerging ways of conceptualizing the relationships between and within model elements are addressed, as well as an emerging focus on caregiver-patient dyads as the unit of analysis. Conclusions: Cancer family caregiving research has grown dramatically since 2000 resulting in a greatly expanded conceptual landscape. This updated and expanded model of the cancer family caregiving experience synthesizes the conceptual implications of an international body of work and demonstrates tremendous progress in how cancer family caregiving research is conceptualized.
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