Factors affecting patients’ decision-making about treatment for cancer: a literature review
evidence and practice    

Factors affecting patients’ decision-making about treatment for cancer: a literature review

Charlotte Hayter Staff nurse, Royal Bournemouth General Hospital, Bournemouth, England
Tanya Andrewes Lecturer (academic), adult nursing, Bournemouth University, Bournemouth, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To explore recent research into patients with cancer and decision-making about treatment

  • To enhance your understanding of how patients make decisions about treatment for cancer

  • To increase your awareness of skills and tools that can support informed patient decision-making

Decision-making about cancer treatment relies on effective communication between healthcare professionals and patients. It is also a common point of communication breakdown. Nurses are expected to support patients in the decision-making process, but to do this they need to understand the factors that affect decision-making.

A review of the literature shows that there are a range of factors at play, including communication and information giving from healthcare professionals, the influence of children and relatives, patients’ hopes, and weighing the benefits of treatment against the risks of side effects. The findings reinforce the importance of nurses using effective communication skills and a person-centred approach to provide information on cancer treatment to patients, support them to understand that information and empower them to make informed decisions about treatment.

Cancer Nursing Practice. doi: 10.7748/cnp.2021.e1769

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

@AndrewesTanya

Correspondence

tandrewes@bournemouth.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Hayter C, Andrewes T (2021) Factors affecting patients’ decision-making about treatment for cancer: a literature review. Cancer Nursing Practice. doi: 10.7748/cnp.2021.e1769

Published online: 16 June 2021

Want to read more?

Subscribe for unlimited access

Try 1 month’s access for just £1 and get:

Your subscription package includes:
  • Full access to the website and the online archive
  • Bi-monthly digital edition
  • RCNi Portfolio and interactive CPD quizzes
  • RCNi Learning with 200+ evidence-based modules
  • 10 articles a month from any other RCNi journal
Subscribe
RCN student member? Try Nursing Standard Student
Already subscribed? Log in

Alternatively, you can purchase access to this article for the next seven days. Buy now

Or