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Pain Severity, Satisfaction With Pain Management, and Patient-Related Barriers to Pain Management in Patients With Cancer in Israel

Pnina Naveh

Rinati Leshem

Yossi Freier Dror

Catherine F. Musgrave

pain, pain assessment, pain management
ONF 2011, 38(4), E305-E313. DOI: 10.1188/11.ONF.E305-E313

Purpose/Objectives: To examine pain severity, satisfaction with pain management, and patient-related barriers to pain management among patients with cancer in oncology units at a teaching hospital in Israel.

Design: Descriptive, cross-sectional, correlational design.

Setting: Oncology, hematology, and bone marrow trans-plantation (BMT) departments; oncology, hematology, and BMT daycare units; and a radiation department in an Israeli hospital.

Sample: Nonprobability convenience sample (N = 144) of ambulatory (n = 76) and hospitalized (n = 68) patients experiencing pain in the past 24 hours.

Methods: Patients who had experienced pain in the past 24 hours completed the Revised American Pain Society-Patient Outcome Questionnaire, the Barriers Questionnaire-Short Form, and a demographic data questionnaire.

Main Research Variables: Pain severity, satisfaction with pain management, and patient-related barriers to pain management.

Findings: A significant inverse relationship was observed between patients' pain severity and their expectation of pain relief. Less-educated patients had significantly higher pain severity scores. Ambulatory patients waited longer for their pain medication than hospitalized patients. The greatest barriers to pain control were fear of addiction and the notion that medication should be saved in case the pain gets worse. In addition, ambulatory patients had higher pain barrier scores than hospitalized patients.

Conclusions: The relationship between pain severity and the expectations of patients with cancer regarding pain relief indicate that patients' expected outcomes and barriers may impede optimal pain relief. This study also identified areas of possible weakness within the hospital's pain palliation program.

Implications for Nursing: Nurses should assess for patients' expectations and barriers that could impede pain relief and provide appropriate interventions.

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