Evaluation of a Nurse-Delivered Pre-Chemotherapy Educational Intervention to Increase Knowledge and Reduce Anxiety Among Ethnically Diverse Patients

J Cancer Educ. 2021 Aug;36(4):728-734. doi: 10.1007/s13187-020-01695-4.


Patients who are undergoing chemotherapy for cancer often have high-unmet information and psychological needs at the beginning of their treatment. Pre-chemotherapy education is an oncology nursing standard of care. However, few pre-chemotherapy education interventions have reported on their effectiveness among ethnically diverse samples. The aim of the study was to evaluate the implementation of an oncology nurse-led pre-chemotherapy intervention delivered to an ethnically diverse sample of patients treated at a comprehensive cancer center on day one of their first chemotherapy cycle. The aim of the intervention was to increase knowledge about treatment in order to improve patient self-management and to reduce treatment-related anxiety. We found that the intervention was effective in improving patient self-reported knowledge and decreasing treatment-related anxiety; however, differential effects were found for Hispanic/Latino patients, whose anxiety increased post-intervention, as well as for patients who reported poorer health status. These findings suggest that further research should investigate what factors trigger an increase in anxiety among diverse patient populations, and how these factors can be mitigated through development of tailored and culturally competent interventions.

Keywords: Cancer; Chemotherapy; Education; Nursing intervention.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety*
  • Humans
  • Knowledge
  • Neoplasms*
  • Oncology Nursing