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Keywords:

  • Chinese nurses;
  • gynaecological cancer;
  • sexuality

zeng y.c., liu x. & loke a.y. (2012) Addressing sexuality issues of women with gynaecological cancer: Chinese nurses’ attitudes and practice. Journal of Advanced Nursing 68(2), 280–292.

Abstract

Aim.  This paper reports a study conducted to describe Chinese nurses’ attitudes and practice in addressing the sexuality concerns of people with gynaecological cancer.

Background.  Women with gynaecological cancer face numerous challenges to their sexuality. The importance of addressing sexuality concerns of people with cancer is emphasized by a growing body of literature in Western countries.

Methods.  This is a descriptive and correlational study. An inventory was adopted to explore Chinese nurses’ attitudes and practice related to sexuality care in nursing. Data were collected from December 2009 to February 2010.

Results.  A sample of 202 nurses working in gynaecological units in China was recruited. Study results revealed that the majority (77·7%) held the attitude that ‘sexuality is too private an issue to discuss with patients’. Only 34·2%‘make time to discuss sexual concerns with patients’. Regression analysis revealed that nurse’ marital status and hospital type in which they were working influenced their practice in sexuality care. Nurses’ conservative attitudes towards sexuality, their prejudices about gynaecological cancer, the lack of availability of private environment, the lack of sexuality care training and the failure to include sexuality care in routine nursing care, were found to be factors that significantly influenced sexual care and nursing practice (adjusted R2 = 0·542, < 0·001).

Conclusions.  The study findings contribute to the understanding of Chinese nurses’ attitudes and practice in addressing the sexuality concerns of people with gynaecological cancer. There is a need to increase Chinese nurses’ awareness of their roles and the importance of equipping themselves with relevant skills in sexuality care in nursing practice.