Perceptions of symptom distress in lung cancer patients: I. Congruence between patients and primary family caregivers

J Pain Symptom Manage. 1997 Sep;14(3):136-46. doi: 10.1016/s0885-3924(97)00022-5.


Part I of this two-part paper employs a comparative design to compare primary family caregivers' assessments of lung cancer patients' symptom distress with patients' own perceptions of symptom distress in the home setting. Part II describes the results of the qualitative component of this research. A convenience sample of 37 patient-family caregiver dyads completed the McCorkle and Young Symptom Distress Scale (SDS). Family caregivers' global scores were moderately correlated with patients' global scores (r = 0.71; P < 0.001). No significant differences in ratings were found for ten of the 13 symptoms assessed. Therefore, when the patient is unable to provide a self-report of symptom distress, health-care professionals may seriously consider family caregivers' assessments of patients' symptom distress to be reasonable estimates for at least ten of the 13 symptoms on the SDS.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Caregivers*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain Measurement
  • Perception*