Pain: A Descriptive Study in Patients With Cancer

Nadine Matthie

Susan C. McMillan

pain, patterns of pain, pain experience, cancer pain
CJON 2014, 18(2), 205-210. DOI: 10.1188/14.CJON.205-210

Ninety percent of patients with advanced cancer are reported to experience pain at some time during the course of their illness. This pain usually is improperly evaluated because it varies by patient and is difficult to control. Pain often cannot be conceptualized because of the individual nature of patient experience; however, patterns of pain occur in those suffering from similar conditions. This secondary analysis was conducted to examine the characteristics of pain in individuals with advanced cancer. The sample consisted of 717 patients with cancer who were receiving hospice home care in the southeastern United States. An understanding of the total pain experience, including type of pain and pain location, is important for addressing pain in patients with cancer in hospice care. More effective strategies are needed for pain management in this patient population. In addition, steps need to be taken to ensure that hospice care is understood by and made available to minorities.

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