Purpose/Objectives: To retrospectively review data on chemotherapy dose/dose intensity in patients with breast cancer.
Data Sources: Computerized database, published articles, and book chapter.
Data Synthesis: Chart reviews were conducted of 20,106 patients with breast cancer from 1,135 oncology practices throughout the United States. More dose delays, dose reductions, and suboptimal dose intensity occur in patients who are 65 years of age or older. Overall, dose intensity was not achieved in 18.4% of patients, dose reductions occurred in 25.7% of patients, and dose delays occurred in 43.1% of patients. Neutropenia was often the cause of dose delays/reductions.
Conclusions: A substantial number of patients with breast cancer experience chemotherapy dose delays or reductions.
Implications for Nursing Practice: Guidelines may help consistently manage primary and secondary prophylaxis of neutropenia. Nurses' can influence patients' attitudes about prescribed therapies.