The following is a summary of “Functional Goals and How Palliative Patients With Cancer Managed Pain” published in the October 2022 issue of Pain Management by Ehrlich et al.


The high prevalence of pain in people with advanced cancer reduces their quality of life. Cancer pain has been shown to be difficult to treat, and studies have uncovered some of the reasons why. However, there is a dearth of literature on the specific motivations and coping mechanisms of those experiencing pain due to cancer. The purpose of this analysis is to detail the drivers behind people’s pain management strategies and the ways in which they employ those strategies. Analysis of content’s quantitative aspects. Palliative care is an outpatient service that consists of 27 people experiencing suffering due to cancer.

Researchers evaluated anonymous audio recordings of people talking about their experiences with motivational interviewing for functional pain. A priori conceptual categories were used to categorize the data: There are 5 main topics covered in this section: Pain as a Challenge, Living with Managed Pain, What Previously Helped Pain, Tips Used to Control Pain, and Patient Seeking Assistance. Each individual’s set of thoughts, feelings, and actions was tallied and sorted into their respective categories. A total of 108 interviews were analyzed, and the median frequency of each notion discussed fell somewhere between 0.5 and 3. 

Based on their personal motives, “Getting Help” was the topic that was talked about the least, while “Controlling Pain” was mentioned the most. Nursing’s ability to deliver individualized care is hampered by current cancer pain assessment techniques do not capture the specific intricacies of cancer pain influencing behaviors or personal functional goals. To determine if and how intrinsic factors could improve cancer pain treatment for specific patients, nurses must rely on their own knowledge and experience until a measure with sufficient granularity to capture individual patient goals is established.

Source: sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1524904222000108