Brain tumour patients may struggle to express their concerns in the outpatient clinic, creating a physician-focused rather than a shared agenda. We created a simple, practical brain-tumour-specific holistic needs assessment (HNA) tool for use in the neuro-oncology outpatient clinic.
We posted the brain tumour Patient Concerns Inventory (PCI) to a consecutive sample of adult brain tumour attendees to a neuro-oncology outpatient clinic. Participants brought the completed PCI to their clinic consultation. Patients and staff provided feedback.
Seventy seven patients were eligible and 53 participated (response rate = 68%). The PCI captured many problems absent from general cancer checklists. The five most frequent concerns were fatigue, fear of tumour coming back, memory, concentration, and low mood. Respondents used the PCI to formulate 105 specific questions, usually about the meaning of physical or psychological symptoms. Patients and staff found the PCI to be useful, and satisfaction with the instrument was high.
This study demonstrates the clinical utility of the brain tumour PCI in a neuro-oncology clinic. The combination of a brain-tumour-specific concerns checklist and an intervention to focus patient agenda creates a simple and efficient HNA tool.
Rooney AG, Netten A, McNamara S, Erridge S, Peoples S, Whittle I, Hacking B, Grant R. Assessment of a brain-tumour-specific Patient Concerns Inventory in the neuro-oncology clinic. Support Care Cancer. 2014 Apr;22(4):1059-69. doi: 10.1007/s00520-013-2058-2. Epub 2013 Nov 29.