Knowledge of, attitudes toward, and barriers to pharmacologic management of cancer pain in a statewide random sample of nurses



The knowledge of, attitudes toward, and perceived barriers to pharmacologic management of cancer pain were examined in a random statewide sample of nurses (N = 790), using an 82-item questionnaire. Although only 7% of the nurses reported working in oncology settings, 59% of the nurses reported having worked with patients with cancer in the last 6 months. The scores on the knowledge test ranged from 11% to 93% correct, with a mean percent correct of 56. 4% (+/- 0. 92). Nurses reported relatively liberal attitudes toward pain management, yet also reported believing that 22% of patients overreport pain. Results are discussed with respect to implications for practice and education.