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Bone Marrow Transplant. 2018 Mar;53(3):235-245. doi: 10.1038/s41409-017-0027-y. Epub 2017 Dec 15.

Health-care professionals' perspective on discussing sexual issues in adult patients after haematopoietic cell transplantation.

Author information

1
Cancer Center Amsterdam, Department of Hematology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. C.Eeltink@vumc.nl.
2
Cancer Center Amsterdam, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
3
Department of Complementary Health and Wellbeing, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, UK.
4
Department of Haemato-oncology, European Institute of Oncology, Milan, Italy.
5
IOSI-Istituto Oncologico della Svizzera Italiana, Bellinzona, Switzerland.
6
Specialised Cancer Services, Sheffield Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Sheffield, UK.
7
Department of Oncology and Metabolism, University of Sheffield, England, UK.
8
Department of Hematology, Hammersmith hospital, Imperial College, London, UK.
9
Department of Radiation Oncology, Erasmus MC Cancer Institute, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.
10
Department of Hematology, Isala Hospital, Zwolle, The Netherlands.
11
Cancer Center Amsterdam, Department of Clinical Psychology, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
12
Department of Otolaryngology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
13
EMGO+ Institute, Cancer Center Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
14
Department of Hematology, University Hospital Puerta de Hierro, Madrid, Spain.
15
Cancer Center Amsterdam, Department of Hematology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Abstract

The majority of adult patients have sexual concerns after post-haematopoietic cell transplantation. Even so, health-care professionals (HCP) do not routinely discuss these problems. We, therefore, surveyed all the members of the European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation to evaluate the barriers and facilitators to discussing sexual issues. The 73-item web-survey was completed by 166 registered nurses (RNs) and 126 medical doctors (MDs). Sixty-eight percent reported that they seldom discussed sexual issues. Younger MDs (p < 0.001) and those who work in non-western European countries (p = 0.003), RNs with probably less sexual education themselves (p = 0.002), MDs and RNs who have limited knowledge about sexual complications (p < 0.001) and MDs and RNs who feel uncomfortable discussing sexual issues (p < 0.001) are all less likely to discuss these matters. The major perceived barriers were that patients might be embarrassed if sexual issues were discussed in the presence of a relative (60% RNs, 67% MDs) and that professionals prefer patients to raise sexual issues themselves (54% RNs, 44% MDs). The most important perceived facilitator was for the patient to initiate discussion (≥ 90% for RNs and MDs). Overall, haematopoietic cell transplantation survivors may not be receiving the support on sexual issues they probably need.

PMID:
29247220
DOI:
10.1038/s41409-017-0027-y
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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