Psychological distress in lung cancer: patient selfassessment versus lung cancer nurse specialist (LCNS) judgement (2023)

Type of publication:
Conference abstract

Walker S.; Lamonby V.; Orwin R.; *McAdam J.; Bate G.; Vick J.; Elrick N.; Shepherd P.; Flint A.; Dalrymple P.

Lung Cancer. Conference: 21st Annual British Thoracic Oncology Group Conference 2023. Belfast United Kingdom. 178(Supplement 1) (pp S76), 2023. Date of Publication: April 2023.

Aims: Distress Thermometer (DT) tool compares LCNS' clinical judgment of patients' psychological distress to patients' self-reported assessment. Method(s): Few studies examine nurses' abilities assessing distress in patients, only one focusing lung cancer. They suggest Nurse Specialists within cancer settings struggle identifying distress using clinical judgement. The Distress Thermometer, a self-reported validated tool, can be used to screen for distress in cancer patients, but cannot replace comprehensive assessment. LCNUK members were surveyed May 2022. 44% used validated assessment tools and 75% confirmed these influenced management. LCNS each assessed 12 patients using The Distress Thermometer, face to face or telephone, occurring following first patient contact. The LCNS used DT tool assessing their perception of patient's distress level. Patients were asked to assess themselves using the same tool. Result(s): 45% assessments scored were identical 36.7% LCNS scored higher than patient 18.3% LCNS scored lower than patient 68.3% LCNS assessments within one DT point of patient Average difference of score between patient and LCNS was 0.4. 93.8% telephone assessments within 1 DT point 54.5% F2F assessments within 1 DT point Conclusion(s): LCNS's have excellent clinical judgement assessing patient distress, comparable to patient's self-assessment in most cases.