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Practices and Hindrances in Cancer Pain Management: Results of a National Multi-Cancer Center Survey Among Healthcare Professionals in China

Authors Su C, Chen M, Chen G, Li Y, Li N, Hu Z, Hu X, Zhao Y, Yu Q, Jiang W

Received 4 November 2020

Accepted for publication 22 January 2021

Published 18 February 2021 Volume 2021:13 Pages 1709—1717


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Eileen O'Reilly

Cuiyun Su,1,* Maojian Chen,1,* Guanxuan Chen,2,* Yajun Li,3 Ning Li,4 Zhihuang Hu,5 Xiao Hu,6,7 Yuanyuan Zhao,8– 10 Qitao Yu,1 Wei Jiang1

1Department of Respiratory Oncology, Guangxi Medical University Cancer Hospital, Nanning, Guangxi, 530021, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Intensive Care Unit, Shandong Cancer Hospital Affiliated to Shandong University, Jinan, Shandong, 250117, People’s Republic of China; 3Department of Lymphoma and Hematology, Hunan Cancer Hospital & the Affiliated Cancer Hospital of Xiangya School of Medicine, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, 410013, People’s Republic of China; 4Department of Oncology, Henan Cancer Hospital & the Affiliated Cancer Hospital of Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, 450008, People’s Republic of China; 5Department of Medical Oncology, Fudan University Shanghai Cancer Center, Shanghai, 200032, People’s Republic of China; 6Department of Radiation Oncology, Cancer Hospital of the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences & Zhejiang Cancer Hospital, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, 310022, People’s Republic of China; 7Department of Radiation Oncology, Institute of Cancer Research and Basic Medical Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, 310022, People’s Republic of China; 8Department of Medical Oncology, Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510060, People’s Republic of China; 9State Key Laboratory of Oncology in South China, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510060, People’s Republic of China; 10Collaborative Innovation Center for Cancer Medicine, Guangzhou, Guangdong, 510060, People’s Republic of China

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Correspondence: Wei Jiang; Qitao Yu Department of Respiratory Oncology
Guangxi Medical University Cancer Hospital, No. 71, Hedi Road, Qingxiu District, Nanning, Guangxi, 530021, People’s Republic of China
Tel/Fax +86 0771 5334953

Background: Inadequate control of cancer-related pain in China is an ongoing problem. This study investigated the practices of cancer pain (CP) management at major cancer centers in China and perceived hindrances and knowledge of CP management among health professionals.
Methods: From September to October 2019, a survey was conducted using electronic questionnaires via the internet to investigate the practices, and perceived hindrances and knowledge in managing CP among healthcare professionals from 7 provincial cancer centers in China. The questionnaire included demographic data, the professionals’ practices among their own patients, their opinions regarding hindrances to CP management, and knowledge of CP management.
Results: We gathered validated responses from 411 anonymous healthcare professionals, with 82.2% (411/500) of response rate. Based on the analysis of these 411 questionnaires, the results demonstrated that CP was prevalent among patients with cancer, while moderate-to-severe pain took a great proportion. CP management was inadequate for a significant proportion of the patients with CP. Pain assessment, analgesic treatment, attention to adverse effects of analgesic, and multidisciplinary management were usually ineffectual in many cases. The duration of work experience did not significantly affect CP management. The respondents considered that both patients and healthcare professionals were responsible for the undermanagement of CP. Only 26 (6.3%) respondents were able to answer correctly all 10 of the professional questions regarding CP.
Conclusion: CP is commonly undermanaged in China. Effective pain control requires the implementation of standards, and the sufficient attention and training of healthcare professionals.

Keywords: cancer pain, pain control, pain treatment, quality of life, electronic questionnaire

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