Effectiveness of Symptom Management Intervention for Improving the QOL of Cancer Patients

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Community Health Nursing, Manipal College of Nursing, Manipal Academy Higher Education, Manipal, Karnataka, India.

2 Department of Child Health Nursing, Manipal College of Nursing, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, Karnataka, India.


Background: Managing the symptoms of cancer patients is challenging for health care providers and interventions individually designed are required to improve the quality of life (QOL) of cancer patients. Objective: to assess the efficacy of symptom management intervention on symptom reduction and the QOL of cancer patients. Methods: A Quasi-experimental study using pre and post-test design was conducted among 200 cancer patients selected by a convenient sampling technique from the selected cancer hospitals. The intervention group received symptom management intervention and the control group received routine clinical care. The data were collected from individuals who had been diagnosed with breast/head and neck cancer and were in the third or fourth stages of cancer, using symptom assessment and Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy (FACT) QOL tool. After the pre-test, symptom management intervention was provided, and a post-test was conducted at one month and three months after the intervention. Results: The mean age was 50.93 years among the participants. Fifty-two percent and 68% of them were in stage IV cancer in the intervention group and control group respectively. The mean QOL score of head and Neck cancers in the intervention group increased from 20.76 (1.82) to 97.03 (3.33) and the mean scores of QOL of breast cancer patients in the intervention group increased from 22.44 (2.92) to 94.39 (8.30). Repeated measure ANOVA showed that the intervention program was effective in enhancing symptom reduction and QOL among cancer patients (Head and Neck cancers F(1.3, 114) =391.62, p< 0.001 and Breast cancer F (1, 75) =177.41.41, p=.001). Conclusion: Nurses play a vital role in providing care to cancer patients and improving their quality of life since nurses are more involved in care.


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