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Palliat Support Care. 2015 Aug;13(4):849-58. doi: 10.1017/S1478951514000741. Epub 2014 Jun 26.

Nurses' perceptions of depression in patients with cancer.

Author information

1
Clinique La Chavannerie,Groupe Orpea,Chaponost,France.
2
Institut de Psychologie, Université Lyon 2,Bron,France.
3
Laboratoire EA 4129,Santé-Individu-Société,Université Lyon 1,Lyon,France.
4
Centre de Soins palliatifs, Centre Hospitalier Lyon-Sud,Hospices Civils de Lyon,Lyon,France.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Our study aimed at examining nurses' perceptions of depression in cancer patients and their role in its management.

METHOD:

We employed questionnaire-based semi-directed interviews. Participants were asked to classify 22 symptoms (related and specific to depression in cancer patients, related but not specific, and unrelated) as "very important," "important," "less important," or "not important" for the diagnosis of depression in cancer patients at two different timepoints (baseline and after a video education program). They were also asked to complete a questionnaire exploring their perceptions about depression and of their role in its systematic screening. We recruited nurses caring for cancer patients from four different departments (palliative care unit, hematology, medical oncology, and thoracic oncology) at an academic medical center.

RESULTS:

We interviewed 18 nurses and found that they had a good general knowledge of depression in cancer patients, with the majority of them being able to distinguish specific and important symptoms from nonspecific symptoms. Some nurses considered depression as a second-line symptom, and most did not employ a screening tool in their daily practice. All considered that they had a role to play in the management of depression, even as they acknowledged lacking specific training for that task.

SIGNIFICANCE OF RESULTS:

Our results suggest that limited resources—especially lack of training—affects nurses' ability to correctly manage depression in their cancer patients.

KEYWORDS:

Cancer; Depression; Nurses

PMID:
24968136
DOI:
10.1017/S1478951514000741
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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