Nursing Theory Term Paper

Pages: 8 (2211 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 5  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Disease

In fact the theory is often used to guide specific types of research into various forms of cancer. For instance, Dirksen et al. (2009) evaluated fatigue-Based Subgroups of Breast Cancer Survivors with Insomnia. The authors explain that one of the unpleasant symptoms experienced by women who have completed treatment for breast cancer is fatigue. Additionally, "Concomitant to the fatigue experienced during survivorship, studies have also found that insomnia, anxiety, and depression are often present and can negatively impact quality of life (Dirksen et al., 2009, 404)." As part of the theoretical framework the authors assert that the theory of unpleasant symptoms conforms to the idea that multiple symptoms can share certain commonalities. As such within the context of the study the theory is utilized to examine "Relationships among patient factors, symptoms, and performance outcomes are viewed as reciprocal, for example severe fatigue may create increased anxiety, leading to difficulties in problem solving (Dirksen et al., 2009, 405)." The finding of this particular study revealed that there are benefits associated with determining the symptoms associated with fatigue. The authors explain that "patient care will benefit through a shift in focus from treatment of a single symptom such as fatigue to the delivery of a tailored intervention that targets multiple symptoms (Dirksen et al., 2009)."

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Barsevick & Kim (2009) also utilized middle range theory of unpleasant symptoms in a study entitled "Predictors of the Intensity of Cluster Symptoms in Patients with Breast Cancer." In this particular study the theory was utilized to explore the "relationship between demographic and clinical factors and the intensity of individual symptoms." These are factors that had not been considered in prior studies and the unpleasant symptoms theory provides an appropriate framework for exploring the topic. The findings of this particular study indicate that

Term Paper on Nursing Theory Within the Field Assignment

"Baseline physical performance status was a consistent predictor of symptom intensity in the psychoneurological cluster across time whereas age and treatment modality were consistent predictors of symptom intensity in the upper gastrointestinal cluster. Poor physical performance at baseline predicted more intense psychoneurological symptoms. Young women and women undergoing chemotherapy experienced more intense gastrointestinal symptoms. In addition, at the second follow-up treatment modality also influenced intensity of symptoms in the psychoneurological cluster and race and baseline physical performance status also influenced the intensity of symptoms in the upper gastrointestinal cluster (158)."

The final study was conducted by Otte et al. (2009) and examined various theories related to Sleep-Wake Disturbances in the Context of Cancer. Amongst these theories was the theory of unpleasant symptoms. The purpose of this particular study was to determine the ways in which the model could explain sleep disturbances in cancer patients. The study found that the features that contribute to sleep-wake disturbances tend to be nonlinear. In addition these factors usually change over time and are inclusive of predisposing, precipitating, and perpetuating factors. Additionally the issues that contribute to sleep disturbance may differ from the factors that contribute to chronic sleep disturbances Otte et al. (2009). With this understood, the model asserts that contributing factors out to be reassessed periodically.


The purpose of this discussion is to investigate the middle range theory of unpleasant symptoms as it relates to cancer patients. The research indicates that the theory is important for clinical practice as it pertains to cancer patients and preventing and/or decreasing unpleasant symptoms. The theory is not difficult to understand or apply in the clinical setting; however, it can be useful in understanding some of the complex reasons from the unpleasant symptoms that cancer patients experience. Nurses who implement this particular theory into practice may be able to assist patients in a more holistic way therefore making them more comfortable which will assist in their ability to survive.

Works Cited

Dirksen, S.r, Belyea, M.J., Epstein, D.R. (2009)Fatigue-Based Subgroups of Breast Cancer Survivors with Insomnia. Cancer Nurs. 32(5): 404 -- 411

Kim, H., Barsevick A.M. (2009) Predictors of the Intensity of Cluster Symptoms in Patients With Breast Cancer J. Nurs Scholarsh. 2009; 41(2): 158 -- 165.

Otte, J.L. And Carpenter J.S. Theories, Models, and Frameworks Related to Sleep-Wake Disturbances in the Context of Cancer. Cancer Nurs. 2009; 32(2): 90 -- 106

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How to Cite "Nursing Theory" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Nursing Theory.  (2011, July 31).  Retrieved July 10, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Nursing Theory."  31 July 2011.  Web.  10 July 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Nursing Theory."  July 31, 2011.  Accessed July 10, 2020.