Feasibility and acceptability of a holistic needs assessment intervention employing patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) to support newly diagnosed patients with malignant melanoma

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Introduction Malignant melanoma is now ranked fifth leading cancer in the UK. In spite of this, little is known about the particular needs of this patient population. Negative effects of melanoma include fear of the sun, uncertainty for the future and emotional problems brought on by negative body image. The use of patient-reported outcomes measures (PROMs) are a potential means of identifying the supportive care needs of people diagnosed with malignant melanoma. The collection of PROM data in clinical practice is reported to have a number of benefits for patients. There is literature suggesting that nurses are the most appropriate person to assess PROMs as they are more receptive to and give greater weight to such information. Aims/objectives To assess the feasibility, acceptability and perceived value of a needs assessment intervention for newly diagnosed patients with Stage I or II malignant melanoma. Methodology An exploratory, repeated-measures, single-arm trial conducted in out-patient clinics using a convenience sample of newly diagnosed patients with malignant melanoma. Patients completed an ‘intervention PROM’ which was used by the nurse specialist to guide consultation with patient, this process repeated at clinic visit two months later. Two sets of ‘evaluation PROMs were also completed at these clinics and on two additional occasions by patients at home. A subset of patients were interviewed to further explore patient views of the intervention. Results For the 10 patients recruited to the study, questionnaire and patient interview findings are presented, together with data on recruitment rates, in-clinic patient assessments completed, and data completeness. Discussion/Conclusion This study explores how acceptable and feasible the use of PROMs by nurse specialists may be in the delivery of supportive care to patients with Melanoma. The implications of the findings for clinical practice will be explored.

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