Patient education plan on cancer of the cervix essay sample

  1. Describe the patient

The patient with cervical cancer is 41 years of age, female, single and presently living a sedentary lifestyle. When she was younger, she lived her life as a party girl, fond of going to parties and night-outs. She was a social drinker but at times, drinking more than moderate could not be avoided. In short, she got drunk often during her 20’s. Moreover, she used to be a chain smoker, lighting a stick one after the other. She did that for about 10 years before her health began to deteriorate. In addition, she used to be sexually active having multiple partners occasionally.

Before she had the disease, she worked as an accountant. Most often she worked late and was under stress most of the time especially when meeting deadlines and other requirements in her firm. She often ate meals not on time because of too much work. She even had episodes of ulcer and hyperacidity due to missed meals.

As to her familial background, she is supposed to live alone but because of her illness, she has to live with her mother so someone can monitor her from time to time. Her father has passed away five years ago due to lung cancer though he was not really much of a smoker. She has four siblings, two sisters and two brothers; she is 3 rd in the family.

Medically, her aunt and grandmother died of cervical cancer. Meaning, it runs in their family in her matriarchal side. Though her mother did not show any signs of possible cancer, it is not questionable why she was able to develop the disease. The risk for her and her siblings to develop it is high because of the hereditary factors coupled with harmful lifestyle practices.

In terms of education, the patient studied in a prestigious private school in their state. She graduated on time in high school because she is gifted with more than average intellectual capacities. She is also fond of reading so learning for her is not limited to the school premises only but outside of the classroom as well. In this light, she prefers reading as a method of learning rather than verbal though verbal for her is also an effective learning technique since it is direct and may utilize various instruments.

While assessing her needs, the patient already has an idea of her disease condition however, further explanation and understanding must be imparted for her to fully grasp the pros and cons of cervical cancer. Since this type of cancer is puzzling, the patient must be educated about the basics of the disorder and how is it similar and unique compared to other forms of cancer. She must also be informed how to go about it to minimize its symptoms, best diagnostic procedures and what possible options are in store for her to cure the disease and for a faster recovery with minimal side effects if any.

  1. Introduction to the disease process

First and foremost, the disease – cancer of the cervix – must be introduced properly to the patient by stating its basics which include definition and overview, detection, diagnosis and symptoms, treatment and prevention or screening. The patient must also recognize its risk factors by giving her a possible reason why she may have contacted the disease. Here, the possible causes for cervical cancer may be asserted. Since she is already a cancer patient, disease management may be discussed for her to facilitate her condition.

  1. Age and developmental issues

The patient must be informed that the onset of cancer of the cervix is among women over the age of 40. She should know that the main risk factor is human papillomaviruses (HPVs) found in men and women which can infect the cervix. Further, HPVs can be transferred from one person to another through sexual contacts. Other risk factors which can lead to cervical cancer include lack of regular Papsmear tests, weakened immune system, sexual history (in this case, the patient used to be sexually active with occasional multiple partners), cigarette smoking, using birth control pills for a long time, having many children, and Diethylstilbestrol (DES) exposure.

  1. Impact on quality of life

Though cervical cancer is treatable, its effects in one’s life are something a patient and survivor should be prepared for. The effects include early menopause and the outcomes of radiotherapy. These instances may affect the patient’s sexual life and may therefore constitute major changes in her daily living. This may lead to loss of confidence and self-worth, lack of interest in sex and depression.

  1. The educational needs of the patients, and plan on how they can be met

Patients need to be educated while having the disease and during recovery. This can be done through therapies with medical practitioners, the health care team and with family members. Education should not be limited to the confines of the classroom but at home too. This type of education should not be only informative but should also help the patients get on with life even after having cancer since these people usually have fears after being treated. More educational support should be given to suffering patients since most of them are pessimistic about getting cured.

  1. The patients perceived challenges

Challenges for the patients may constitute living a normal life after being treated as if cancer never really got them, working again like they used to, and being able to regain back the health they once had.

  1. A summary of the process

To be able to render patient education, one must assess the patient first (the cervical cancer patient). Know her history in all aspects of life. Then get acquainted so the educator will be able to introduce the disease process — all the patient needs to know about cervical cancer. After which, the life the patient must face during the disease attack as well as after treatment is rendered. The approach should be optimistic. If possible, fear should be removed in the teaching method.

  1. How will I teach this plan to many women

To be able to reach the most number of women, seminars and orientations can be held to impart teachings on cervical cancer. In this way, those who do not have the illness can prepare themselves to avoid it, so that they will know the risk factors related to it. To those who already have the disease, these events may help them look at the brighter side of life even in the most critical situations. Then those who have undergone treatment may be informed how to face life after cancer of the cervix. These gatherings need not be formal like holding a class; it may be informal to minimize tension and to facilitate more productive learning in the process.


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“ Cervical Cancer (Cancer of the Cervix).” (2007). Retrieved January 3, 2008, from http://www. medicinenet. com/cervical_cancer/article. htm

National Cancer Institute. (n. d.). Cancer Risk: Understanding the Puzzle. Retrieved January 3, 2008, from http://understandingrisk. cancer. gov/a_Cervical/05. cfm

Wells, K. (2005). Cervical Cancer: Save Your Own Life with a Pap Smear. Retrieved January 3, 2008, from http://www. googobits. com/articles/1993-cervical-cancer–save-your-own-life-with-a-pap-smear. html

“ Your Sex Life and Cervical Cancer.” (2006). Retrieved January 3, 2008, from http://www. cancerhelp. org. uk/help/default. asp? page= 2784