Pro-Self: The Pain Control Program

Subject: Nursing
Pages: 4
Words: 879
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: College


The article highlights the limited knowledge by patients regarding pain control therapies, which acts as a hindrance to managing pain during cancer intervention programs. A majority of patients experience inadequate treatment of their pain from various caregivers, which makes their recuperation difficult (Schmidt, 2012). The education programs that target patients are not effective. Patients are not able to follow the schedule as indicated by their treatment programs properly. Various groups of patients from different settings were studied. The study sought to look at the efficacy of a pain control program known as Pro-Self and how it helps to improve the knowledge of patients regarding pain management (Kim et al. 2004, pp. 1-8).

Research Question/Hypothesis

Do cancer patients have adequate knowledge regarding pain reduction strategies?

Independent Variables

  • The cancer patients
  • Oncology experts
  • Oncology treatment facilities

Dependent Variables

  • Knowledge of the patients
  • Effectiveness of the program
  • Evaluation of increase or reduction in pain
  • Effects of drug administered
  • Teaching methods used
  • Comparison between various demographics in the patient sample
  • Pain intensity
  • Impact of the studies on oncology practice

Other Variables

  • Accessibility by patients to pain control program materials and knowledge
  • Quality of homecare for patients away from caregiving centers
  • Barriers to education and awareness of patients regarding pain management care

Research Design

The study sought to find out the importance of educational programs in assisting cancer patients to manage their pain. The study used random trials targeting clinical procedures, which are used to manage the pain experienced by cancer patients during treatment. The study used various tests to measure the effectiveness of the therapies offered by caregivers to manage patients’ pain. The study also gathered data from patients in a number of caregiving environments and analysed their awareness regarding effective pain management. The knowledge levels of the surveyed patients were also tested to determine their awareness regarding the pain therapies that can be effective for the different types of cancer (Kim et al., 2004, pp. 1-8). The study evaluated the contribution of its findings through tracking the progress and responsiveness of the patients to the pain intervention programs administered to them.

Population and Sample

The population that was surveyed consisted mainly of cancer patients in a variety of settings. The seven outpatient settings, which were surveyed, are located in California. A total of 174 cancer and bone metastasis patients were involved in the final analysis and compilation of the study. The patients were divided into control and experimental groups before the pain education program (PEP) was started. The patients were drawn from different age groups with the intention of finding out their level of knowledge regarding effective pain management. The pain experience scale (PES) tool was used to determine the level of knowledge on cancer pain management among the patients.


The study took place in seven outpatient clinics in Northern California. Randomised clinical trials (RCT) were carried out to deduce the effectiveness of the pain management education programs that the patients had been subjected to at the time they were in the clinics; the results were also recorded.

Target/ Accessible Population

The target population was mainly cancer patients who had heard about pain management therapies in healthcare settings. The accessible population went beyond cancer patients to include bone metastasis patients who also needed pain management education by health care givers.

Sampling Plan

The sampling plan focused on patients who were from eighteen years and above; two hundred and twelve cancer patients were included although only 174 of the total were part of the final compilation and evaluation of the findings. 38 of them failed to complete because of death, severe sickness and absence. The participating patients were literate in English and had a high pain score. The sampling plan was mainly random where the sampled patients’ suitability was determined before the study was conducted.

Ethical Issues

The patients who participated in the study remained anonymous. The demographic questionnaire did not require the patients to fill in their names because of the need to protect their health details and the identity of the patients from unnecessary scrutiny.

Data Collection Procedures

The University of California approved the study.

Nurses asked willing patients to participate.

Participating patients filled a demographic questionnaire and were later divided into Pro-Self and Standard Care Groups.

The PES test was administered to the patients.

Coaching and home visits were done to teach patients on better pain management strategies.

Data Collection Instruments

Questionnaires were used to gather data about demographics.

KPS rating scale was used to gauge if the patients can carry out their routine functions.

The PES scale was used to establish the level of knowledge of patients in managing pain.

Data Analysis

Descriptive statistics and frequency distributions for demographic and cancer related information were used.

Variance analysis was used to look at the differences in sampled populations.

Test of interaction was employed to measure scores between the differences in the study’s items.


PES can be used for educating patients.

Nurses need to educate patients more.

Other methods should be used with PES to educate patients.

There is a need for nurses to use questionnaires to determine patients’ knowledge.

The research article showed the importance of educating patients on ways through which they can reduce their pain.

The research was logical and the findings were well presented.


Kim J. E., Dodd, M., West, C., Paul, S., Facione, N., Schumacher, K.,… Miaskowski, C. (2004). The Pro-Self pain control program improves patients’ knowledge of cancer pain management. Oncology Nursing Forum, 31(6), 1-8.

Schmidt, N. A., & Brown, J. M. (2012). Evidence-based practice for nurses (2nd ed.). Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.