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The Cancer Care Program (CSCP) at Stanford's Complementary Medicine Clinic: Initial Evaluation
37th American Society of Clinical Oncology, May 12-15, San Francisco, CA
Ernest H. Rosenbaum, MD, Bita Nouriani, MS, Holly V. Gautier, RN, BSN, Pat Fobair, LCSW, Bernadette Festa, RD, MS, Margaret Hawn, RN, Francine Manuel, RPT, Kathleen Dzubur, MS, Patricia Kramer, RN, MSN, AOCN, Michael Silverberg, David Spiegel, MD
Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA

Abstract: In January 1999 we initiated a free CSCP in the Complementary Medicine Clinic at the Stanford University Medical Center for cancer patients who are recently diagnosed, undergoing therapy or post therapy. The goals of the CSCP are to improve the quality of life of cancer patients and their families by providing information and support, and reducing symptoms, toxicities, and morbidity arising from cancer and its treatment. Providing such support should also save time for physicians and the medical team. This rehabilitation program consists of weekly lectures and workshops, and provides psychological, nutritional, exercise, and fatigue reduction services to provide information and ways of coping with patient problems. Over the past 20 months of classes and workshops, we have had 184 participants, totaling 622 visits. The goal of this research project is to evaluate the effects of our program on the quality of life of our patients. We have conducted a preliminary data analysis on quality of life data collected from 65 of our patients who have agreed to participate in the follow-up evaluation. Forty nine of these patients are female, and 16 are male, with an average age of 59. Patients rated the program favorably, an average of 8 on a 0-10 scale, with 0 being not satisfied at all and 10 being extremely satisfied. Our preliminary observations suggest a decrease in suffering associated with pain while pain levels themselves remained constant, and an increase in physical activity, although the changes were not statistically significant in this small sample. There was a significant inverse relationship between average number of classes attended and intensity of pain experienced as well as the number of sleep interruptions. We plan to conduct further follow-up and analysis, but initial results suggest that the Cancer Supportive Care Program contributes to quality of life among cancer patients.

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