Providing care to patients with pancreatic cancer: A retrospective chart review

Heather Wilson, Lorna J. Butler, Gloria Repetto, Jonathan Love


Pancreatic cancer may by considered rare, yet in Canada it is the fourth leading cause of death by cancer in the elderly. This study was conducted in a large tertiary centre to determine the symptoms experienced by patients and the response by health professionals in providing supportive care. This paper reports the results of a retrospective review of health records from patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer (n=99). Results indicate that pain, nausea, vomiting, and anorexia were frequently reported.

There was a lack of consistency in the documentation of nursing care and little evidence of an organised, planned approach for care delivery. The role of the interdisciplinary health care team and its members in managing this devastating disease and its impact on patient quality of life was difficult to ascertain. The development of an integrated approach to the care of patients with pancreatic cancer is presented.

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