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Evaluating the Use of an Informational Head and Neck Cancer Website.

2020-02-17 18:20:50 | BioPortfolio

Summary

It can be difficult for head and neck cancer patients and their families to fully understand the impact that cancer procedures and treatments can have on the cancer patients life. Procedures used to treat head and neck cancer may result in significant changes to the patients' physical appearance and/or functional abilities (talking, eating, and breathing). The lack of understanding as it relates to the effects of cancer treatments can have a significant impact on the patients post-operative success.

In an effort to help educate head and neck cancer patients and their families during this difficult time, the UIC department of Otolaryngology-HNS has created an informational website. The website is designed to educate cancer patients and their families regarding various cancer treatments and therapies.

Description

Head and neck cancer patients and their families often struggle to fully understand the degree to which cancer procedures and treatments may have on the cancer patient's life. The procedures involved in cancer treatment may result in significant changes to the patient's physical appearance and/or functional abilities (talking, eating, and breathing). Unfortunately, healthcare workers have a limited amount of time to spend educating their patients on all of the possibilities that may result from cancer related treatments. This lack of patient education and understanding can increase patient anxiety, compromise patient compliance, and result in less than optimum long-term outcomes.

Many patients are using the internet to educate themselves and to help them make their health care related decisions. However, for head and neck cancer patients, the information available on head and neck cancer websites is somewhat limited. In many cases, the information fails to provide adequate details as to the life changing, and at times disfiguring, results that head and neck cancer related treatments can have.

In an effort to help educate head and neck cancer patients and their families during this difficult time, the UIC department of Otolaryngology-HNS has created an informational website. The website includes information and educational videos about what to expect during the cancer treatment process. Specifically, the website is designed to educate cancer patients and their families on 1) the procedures that may be used to treat their specific cancer, 2) the side effects and post-operative hospital care of various treatments, 3) the physical changes that are possible as a result of their treatment, 4) functional changes that may occur as a result of their surgery/treatment, and 5) potential therapies that can be used to help improve their long-term outcome. The purpose of the website is to provide an educational and informative format, centered on head and neck cancer patients, that will help improve patient knowledge, understanding, and expectations during the course of cancer treatment and recovery.

Currently there are no studies that evaluate and or measure a change in patient/family member knowledge about head and neck cancer surgeries based on internet based information. However, there has been significant research related to the increased use of the internet for health care related decisions. These studies show that patients and families are more frequently turning to the internet and other forms of social media to learn about their diagnosis in order to make informed decisions about their medical care. Studies have also shown that websites are often written at a level well above the recommended reading level thereby inhibiting patient education.

3.0 Objectives/Aims

The objectives of this research are to evaluate 1) the change in subject knowledge before and after using the study head and neck cancer website, and 2) to determine whether a head and neck website is beneficial to study subjects in providing information that will result in improved compliance and ultimately long-term outcomes. Specifically, the PI's will be evaluating how the website educates cancer patients and their families on 1) the procedures that may be used to treat their specific cancer, 2) the side effects and post-operative care of various treatments, 3) the physical changes that are possible as a result of their treatment, 4) functional changes that may occur as a result of their surgery/treatment, and 5) potential therapies that can be used to minimize the physical and functional changes that may result from their cancer care.

Study Design

Conditions

Head and Neck Cancer

Intervention

Educational website

Location

University of Illinois at Chicago
Chicago
Illinois
United States
60612

Status

Recruiting

Source

University of Illinois at Chicago

Results (where available)

View Results

Links

Published on BioPortfolio: 2020-02-17T18:20:50-0500

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