Joanne Bird

DNACPR discussions with patients and families: do you feel adequately prepared?

Advance care planning and the tools that can help you ask patients what matters to them

Managing the side effects of sunitinib: a guide to empowering the patient

In June 2007, 12 research nurses involved in the clinical trials of sunitinib in the UK met to discuss the common side effects they had encountered with the drug. This article represents their efforts to document these side effects and provide practical guidance on how to prevent or manage them, so that nurses who are less familiar with sunitinib will be aware of its toxicities and be confident about dealing with the side effects as the drug begins to move out of the clinical trial setting and into the clinic.

Selection of pain measurement tools

Background Although pain measurement tools have been available for a number of years their reliability and validity cannot be presumed because none holds psychometric stability in every environment. To select the most appropriate tool for an individual patient, nurses need to be aware of those available and their limitations. This article discusses the use of selected tools with specific patient groups. Conclusion A variety of tools are currently used for measuring pain, and each one has its merits and limitations. It is difficult to choose the most suitable tool for clinical settings in which a standard tool is to be used. Patient populations are diverse and can include adults of any age, with acute, chronic or malignant pain and cognitive or physical impairments of varying origin. There will be occasions when the tool used is inappropriate for an individual patient or a patient cannot complete the tool. Patients and nurses need to be educated about pain measurement tools to ensure their successful use.