Quality of life as an outcome variable in the management of cancer pain

Betty R. Ferrell, Cheryl Wisdom, Carol Wenzl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

164 Scopus citations


Valid measurement tools are needed by oncology researchers to help in the evaluation of the effectiveness of pain relief methods used in the treatment of cancer patients. A study was conducted to assess the validity and reliability of a tool designed to evaluate quality of life as a measure of pain management outcome in the individual patient. Items in the tested quality of life survey represented the areas of psychologic well‐being, physical well‐being, general and specific symptom control, and degree of social support. Using the test instrument, two oncology nurses interviewed subjects in three groups, each consisting of 50 subjects: cancer patients with pain, cancer patients without pain, and subjects with no cancer. Statistical analysis of the interview results revealed that the instrument has test‐retest reliability, internal consistency, and interrater reliability, as well as content and construct validity for the major factors, psychologic well‐being, worry, and nutrition. Further revision of the instrument is needed to restructure its subscales. The quality of life tool will enable researchers to evaluate a treatment regarding not only its effect on pain intensity but also its impact on the total individual.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2321-2327
Number of pages7
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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