Cancer pain as the presenting problem in emergency departments: Incidence and related factors

Shu Ching Tsai, Li Ni Liu, Siew Tzuh Tang, Jih Chang Chen, Mei Ling Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Goals of work: Since emergency departments (ED) are designed to manage people with urgent and life-threatening conditions, cancer patients presenting with pain may not receive the appropriate care in the ED. The purpose of this study was to identify the incidence and factors related to ED visits by cancer patients with pain complaints. Materials and methods: Medical charts selected by stratified random sampling were retrospectively reviewed to obtain information about ED visits by cancer patients during a 1-year period. The sample included 1,179 ED visits by 1,026 cancer patients. Main results: Pain was the most common reason for ED visits by cancer patients. The incidence of ED visits for pain as a presenting problem was 27.8%. The 72-h ED return-visit rate was 8.2% for cancer patients who visited the ED with pain complaints. Patients with gastrointestinal and genitourinary cancers were more likely to visit the ED for pain. Patients who had received radiation therapy were less likely to visit the ED for pain. Conclusion: Effective cancer pain management programs need to be developed and tested to reduce ED visits by cancer patients with pain. More research is needed to explore why cancer patients with pain visit the ED.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-65
Number of pages9
JournalSupportive Care in Cancer
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 01 2010

Keywords

  • 72-h emergency department return visit
  • Cancer patients
  • Chief complaint
  • Emergency department visit
  • Pain

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Cancer pain as the presenting problem in emergency departments: Incidence and related factors'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this