Symptom Burden: Experiences of Puerto Rican Men With Prostate Cancer Prior to External Beam Radiation Therapy.

Clinical journal of oncology nursing

PubMedID: 28107324

Gonzalez VJ, McMillan SC, Groer M, Imbert S, Pedro E, Tome J. Symptom Burden: Experiences of Puerto Rican Men With Prostate Cancer Prior to External Beam Radiation Therapy. Clin J Oncol Nurs. 2017;21(1):104-112.
BACKGROUND
Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men in Puerto Rico, and external beam radiation therapy (EBRT) is a popular treatment. Although symptom management is a clinical priority of comprehensive oncology care, symptom assessment at the time of primary or adjuvant EBRT has received limited attention.

OBJECTIVES
This article examines the prevalence and severity of symptoms experienced by 54 Puerto Rican men prior to EBRT.

METHODS
Participants completed a demographic form and the MD Anderson Symptom Inventory. Descriptive statistics were generated.

FINDINGS
Most participants had received hormonal treatment, and about a third had received no treatment prior to EBRT. About a third of those who received hormonal treatment reported experiencing side effects before EBRT, and disturbed sleep, numbness and tingling, fatigue, and dry mouth were the most severe. Puerto Rican men with prostate cancer who receive hormonal treatment are at increased risk for experiencing symptom burden prior to EBRT. Greater need for symptom surveillance, treatment, and control may be needed among this population.