Aim: The aim of this study was to systematically review the nursing studies, published in Turkey between January 2003 and December 2013, on the control of symptoms seen in patients receiving chemotherapy for cancer.
Methods:A computer-assisted screening of the international (PubMed, Ovid, Ebscohost and Blackwell-Synergy) and national (Turkish Medical Directory and National Thesis Center) databases was performed in January 2014. We searched for the cancer, chemotherapy symptom, symptom control/management, nursing, 19 studies that met the study inclusion criteria.
Results:There were 4 semi-experimental, 11 experimental and 4 randomized, controlled, and experimental studies among those within the scope of our study. The sample consisted of patients with breast cancers and other cancers in 13, AML and ALL in 3, lung cancer in 1, and GIS cancer in 2 studies. Various scales and follow-up forms were used as the data collection tool in all the studies. The effects of the use of massage, scent therapy, aromatherapy massage, ginger, music therapy, nursing interventions/training on symptom control, relaxation training, acupressure use, standard oral care, and oral cryotherapy on the control of unwanted chemotherapy effects were evaluated. According to the results, massage, music therapy, training of the patient/relatives, nursing interventions, relaxation training, scent therapy and aromatherapy massage had positive effects on fatigue, anxiety, weakness, sadness and pessimism, difficulty sleeping, and quality of life. Standard oral care practices, training of the patient/relatives regarding oral care, and oral cryotherapy practices were found to prevent the development of oral mucositis. Study results also showed that the use of ginger, acupressure and music therapy had positive effects on the control of nausea and vomiting.
Conclusions:Various nonpharmacological procedures were found to have a positive effect in studies on symptom control. Health care personnel should therefore continue to conduct randomized and controlled experimental studies and use the results in patient care.