[Information to cancer patients prior to participation in clinical trials. Evaluation of a structured information program].
ABSTRACT Informing patients before starting of antineoplastic treatment is important due to the legal aspects of clinical trials and the anxiety and uncertainty felt by the patients. This study evaluates a structured information programme used in a clinical trial. Thirty-four women were interviewed three months after receiving information about trial, using a tape-recorded structured interview. Results showed that the information was well remembered. The patients were glad to have brought a relative to the two consultations, and the time for deliberation in between was well received. The patients viewed written information as an important source of reinformation. The information provided was positively evaluated. Open and detailed information did not undermine the doctor-patient relationship. Instead it allowed patients to understand and participate in treatment decision and helped to reduce their pre-therapy anxiety and uncertainty. The results support expanding structured information programmes to include not only those patients asked to participate in the clinical trial, but all patients beginning longlasting cancer therapy.