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Chemotherapy-Induced Peripheral Neuropathy Assessment Tools: A Systematic Review

Haryani Haryani
Susan Jane Fetzer
Ching-Lin Wu
Yu-Yun Hsu
ONF 2017, 44(3), E111-E123 DOI: 10.1188/17.ONF.E111-E123

Problem Identification: Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) is a dose-limiting chemotherapy toxicity, which has a long-lasting effect and decreases quality of life. Although several tools have been developed to detect CIPN, the study quality, psychometric properties, and practicality of CIPN assessment tools have not been systematically reviewed.


Literature Search: Electronic searches using keywords were conducted in Medline, PubMed, CINAHL®, and Cochrane Library for articles published from 1980–2015. Eligible studies were included if they involved patients with cancer receiving chemotherapy, provided CIPN assessment tools with psychometric properties, and were published in English.


Data Evaluation: Data were extracted, and study quality was assessed. CIPN tools were evaluated in terms of psychometric properties and practicality.


Synthesis: A total of 19 studies describing 20 tools were reviewed. The quality of studies varied from strong to weak. The validity ranged from low to high, and the reliability with internal consistency ranged from 0.56–0.96. Poor inter-rater agreement was found. Not all of the tools were deemed practical.


Conclusions: Considering the psychometric properties and practicality, two tools (Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy/Gynecologic Oncology Group–Neurotoxicity [FACT/GOG-Ntx] and Total Neuropathy Score [TNS]) are recommended for assessing CIPN.


Implications for Nursing: Routine assessment of CIPN and choosing appropriate assessment tools are imperative. The FACT/GOG-Ntx and TNS are recommended for clinical use.

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