Survey of nurses’ assessment of cancer-related fatigue


Gillian Knowles Department of Clinical Oncology, Western General Hospital, The Lothian University Hospital NHS Trust, Crewe Road, Edinburgh EH4 2XU, UK.


Fatigue is now widely recognised as a significant problem for patients with cancer. While research effort into this subject has grown considerably in recent years, the exact mechanisms underlying fatigue remain unclear. Therefore assessing and managing this symptom can be problematic. This paper describes the findings from a survey evaluating how nurses (n = 84) in a Cancer Centre in Edinburgh currently define and assess fatigue. The results demonstrate that while the problems associated with fatigue are acknowledged, assessment tools are not widely used and the majority of nurses report that they would benefit from further education on the subject to assist in the care of patients.