Development of an Instrument to Examine Nursing Attitudes Toward Fertility Preservation in Oncology

Maria C. Grabowski

Deborah A. Spitzer

Sonja Stutzman

DaiWai Olson

oncology nursing, fertility, fertility preservation, adolescent and young adult patients
ONF 2017, 44(4), 497-502. DOI: 10.1188/17.ONF.497-502

Purpose/Objectives: To develop an instrument to measure staff nurse perceptions of the barriers to and benefits of addressing fertility preservation (FP) with patients newly diagnosed with cancer.

Design: A prospective, nonrandomized instrument development approach.

Setting: Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

Sample: 224 RNs who care for patients with cancer.

Methods: The instrument was developed with content experts and field-tested with oncology staff nurses. Responses to a web-based survey were used in exploratory factor analysis. After refining the instrument, the authors conducted a confirmatory factor analysis with 230 web-based survey responses.

Main Research Variables: Self-perceived barriers to providing FP options to patients newly diagnosed with cancer.

Findings: The results supported a 15-item instrument with five domains: (a) confidence, (b) self-awareness, (c) external barriers, (d) time barriers, and (e) perceived treatment barriers.

Conclusions: This instrument can be used to explore oncology nurses’ attitudes toward FP in newly diagnosed people with cancer in their reproductive years.

Implications for Nursing: A more comprehensive understanding of attitudes and barriers related to FP will guide the building of optimal systems that support effective FP options, resources, and programs for individuals with cancer.

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