Decision Support Computer Program for Cancer Pain Management

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The purpose of the study was to develop an initial version of computer software that could assist nurses’ decision making about cancer pain reported by women from diverse cultural groups. This cross-sectional study included two phases: (1) data collection and (2) development of computer software. Data were collected using an Internet survey and e-mail group discussions of 19 faculty members from 10 countries who were self-identified experts in oncology nursing. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and content analysis. The findings indicated ethnic, gender, geographic, and age differences in cancer pain descriptions. Based on the collected data, a decision support computer program for cancer pain management, including (1) a knowledge base generation module, (2) a decision-making module, and (3) a self-adaptation module, was developed. Based on the study findings, suggestions for future research and practice related to cancer pain and expert systems were proposed.

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