The Patient Care Monitor-Neutropenia Index: Development, Reliability, and Validity of a Measure for Chemotherapy-Induced Neutropenia

James P. Olsen

Scott Baldwin

Arthur C. Houts

ONF 2011, 38(3), 360-367. DOI: 10.1188/11.ONF.360-367

Purpose/Objectives: To provide an initial evaluation of the psychometric properties of the Patient Care Monitor 1.0 Revised-Neutropenia Index (PCM-N), a symptom-based assessment tool designed to measure health-related quality-of-life (HRQOL) changes associated with chemotherapy-induced neutropenia.

Design: Known-groups methodology and self-report instrument validation.

Setting: A large community oncology practice in Memphis, TN.

Sample: 424 patients with cancer in four samples.

Methods: All patients in the first three samples were assessed at baseline of chemotherapy administration and at a point analogous to midcycle. The fourth sample underwent a cross-sectional evaluation of the ability of the PCM-N to distinguish patients with febrile neutropenia, severe afebrile neutropenia, and no neutropenia.

Main Research Variables: PCM-N score, grade of neutropenia, and febrile status.

Findings: Internal consistency reliability and factor analysis supported the single additive scale structure of the 13 items of the PCM-N. The PCM-N demonstrated good known-groups validity and was able to distinguish patients with grades 3-4 neutropenia from those with grades 0-2. The tool also was able to distinguish patients with febrile neutropenia, severe afebrile neutropenia, and no neutropenia. Receiver operating characteristic analyses provided a psychometrically based threshold score.

Conclusions: The PCM-N is a reliable and valid instrument sensitive to changes in HRQOL associated with moderate-to-severe chemotherapy-induced neutropenia.

Implications for Nursing: Nurses can use the PCM-N as a rapid and cost-effective tool for monitoring symptoms of neutropenia in patients with cancer.

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