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Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2007 Jul-Sep;8(3):383-6.

Knowledge and attitudes of physicians in Iran with regard to chronic cancer pain.

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Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Cardiovascular Surgery And Heart Transplantation Center, Shariaty Hospital, Tehran, Iran.



The knowledge and attitudes of health care professionals with regard to pain and its impact on the patient are among identified barriers that prevent health care professionals from providing effective treatment for pain. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate knowledge about and attitudes towards cancer pain and its management in Iranian physicians with patient care responsibilities.


We surveyed 122 physicians in six university hospitals in Tehran. Fifty-five (45.1%) questionnaires were completed.


The majority of physicians (76%) recognized the importance of pain management priority and about one half of the physicians acknowledged the problem of inadequate pain management in their settings. Most cited inability to access professionals who practice specialized methods in this field, and inadequate staff knowledge of pain management as barriers to good pain management. A large majority of them expressed dissatisfaction with their training for pain management in medical school and in residency. Furthermore a considerable widespread knowledge deficit among all medical subspecialties and all levels of experience was noted which was significantly more profound in the non-oncologists group and only correlated poorly with number of total treated patients in past 6 months.


The most significant barrier to the effective management of pain in cancer patients in Iran is deficit in knowledge as identified in this survey. A combination of an active continuing education program on both the international guidelines with routine professional education and dissemination of guidelines is needed to bring about significant improvement in cancer pain control.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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