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Patient Educ Couns. 2008 Oct;73(1):121-6. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2008.05.007.

An interactive CD-ROM to inform patients about stem cell transplantation.

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  • 1Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam, Department of Oncology/Hematology, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



Cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or a Stem Cell Transplantation (SCT) are in need of information about their disease, treatment options and side effects. Patient education usually has to be given within limited time. Under these circumstances, patients may find it difficult to completely understand and to retain the information given.


As a supplement to standard information methods we developed an interactive CD-ROM with information on SCT. This CD-ROM provides both medical information and more subjective patients' experiences. Part one provides information regarding the treatment course from diagnosis through to post-discharge care. The second part consists of interviews with former patients and describes their experiences. As the system is interactive, it can be utilised according to the patient's individual preferences. The CD-ROM comprises audio, video, animations, pictures, and text. Printing of certain sections is optional. The technical format of the CD-ROM makes it relatively simple to utilise the information and to make it suitable for other institutions or even other treatments. In this preliminary study the acceptability of the interactive CD-ROM by patients undergoing a SCT is described.


Patients' overall evaluations of the interactive CD-ROM were highly positive. For example, 90.2% (N=51) found it interesting, clear, useful and valued getting information by means of a CD-ROM. Most patients would recommend the interactive CD-ROM to other patients in the same situation.


The content of the CD-ROM on SCT as well as the computer-based interactive method are well accepted by patients.


Computer-based education may enhance patient education and thus the quality of patient care. We must now establish the program's effectiveness. Moreover, plans have been developed to disseminate the information on SCT over the Internet. Future development of comparable programs and their evaluation should be encouraged to promote the well-being of cancer patients.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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