An eight-week online symptom self-management program, which can be facilitated by a nurse, significantly improves symptom burden, sense of control, and quality of life (QOL) among patients with ovarian cancer. Researchers reported the evidence in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Patients access the WRITE Symptoms (Written Representational Intervention to Ease Symptoms) on the internet, either guided by a nurse or self-directed (SD), to develop management plans for three targeted symptoms. In a randomized controlled trial, researchers assigned 497 patients to one of three groups: Nurse-WRITE, SD-WRITE, or enhanced usual care. All three groups completed baseline assessments for symptom burden, controllability, and QOL. At both 8 and 12 weeks, all three groups experienced significant improvement in symptom burden and QOL. When the researchers looked at the data grouped by time, patients in the WRITE programs had significant improvements in symptom controllability compared to those in the enhanced usual care group.
“The computer-mediated SD-WRITE is an efficient and scalable intervention with potential for implementation in clinical settings,” the authors concluded.
ONS On-CallTM is a similar but more robust tool that both clinicians and patients use to report, assess, and make clinical decisions about patients’ cancer-related symptoms. Designed by nurses, this cloud-hosted tool ensures best practices by providing nurses with guided, comprehensive, and evidence-based assessments that illuminates the causative factors of the patient’s symptoms and experience.