Patient-Provider Collaboration Can Control Breakthrough Cancer Pain

Jeannette Y. Wick, RPh, MBA, FASCP
Friday April 01, 2016
An article published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management indicates that impressions of breakthrough pain differ between patients and providers. The study authors recruited inpatients and outpatients 18 years or older with cancer-related pain, expert-determined breakthrough cancer pain, and regular analgesia who were able to complete the study protocol. Patients used a breakthrough pain assessment tool to determine whether their breakthrough pain was adequately controlled and whether they believed their treatment should be changed. Two experienced clinicians examined these patients and filled out similar questionnaires. Patients repeated these questionnaires a week later with an additional question about changes in breakthrough pain control since the week before.
Initially, 35% of patients rated their breakthrough cancer pain as inadequately controlled, but the clinicians’ impressions of inadequate pain control were more than twice that. A slim majority (53%) of patients reported that they needed changes to their treatment, while the providers’ assessments demonstrated that they thought changes were needed in 72% of the cases. If clinicians determined that a change was needed, they made the change.
At follow-up, 62% of patients described their breakthrough cancer pain as improved, and 57% of the clinicians’ responses reflected improvements, as well. The researchers interpreted this to mean that the prescribing clinicians changed the patients’ expectations. Ten patients reported worsened pain, and the clinicians concurred in 9 cases.
Patient-centered care improved pain control even though patient and provider impressions of breakthrough pain were contrary. Patients content with their care saw improvement when their care was approached through the breakthrough pain assessment tool and guided by the patient-centered care approach.

Current Issue

The Educated Patient

Bethany Rettberg, NPC
Practitioners should get a detailed medical history and conduct a thorough physical to treat sinus infections.
Jennifer L. Hofmann, MS, PA-C
Providing them with advice can improve control of the disease and reduce hospitalizations, morbidity, and unscheduled health care visits.
Emily C. Hayes, PharmD Candidate
Colds, coughs, and a relentless influx of sick patients in retail health clinics keep the health care providers who work there very busy.
Kristen Marjama, DNP, APRN-BC
Although the rate of foot and leg amputation has greatly declined over the past 2 decades, increasing awareness for macrovascular and microvascular complications of diabetes is essential because diabetes is the leading cause of lower-limb amputations in the United States.
$vacMongoViewPlus$ $vAR$
Contemporary Clinic
MJH Associates
American Journal of Managed Care
MD Magazine
Pharmacy Times
Specialty Pharmacy Times
Targeted Oncology
About Us
Contact Us
Terms & Conditions
Pharmacy Healthcare & Communications, LLC
2 Clarke Drive
Suite 100
Cranbury, NJ 08512
P: 609-716-7777
F: 609-257-0701

Copyright Contemporary Clinic 2019
Pharmacy Healthcare & Communications, LLC. All Rights Reserved.