The clinical nurse specialist was also diagnosed with stage III invasive lobular breast cancer and was treated with CDK 4/6 inhibitors, giving her the unique opportunity to speak to both the patient and clinical perspective.
Patricia Jakel, RN, MN, AOCN, clinical nurse specialist in the Solid Tumor Program at UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica, was diagnosed with stage III invasive lobular breast cancer and was treated with CDK 4/6 inhibitors, providing her with a unique perspective as both a patient and clinical caregiver.
During CURE®’s Educated Patient Breast Cancer Summit at the 37th Annual Miami Breast Cancer Conference, held March 5-8, 2020 in Miami, Florida, Jakel discussed how other nurses can help patients who are being treated with CDK 4/6 inhibitors, as well as their caregivers.
Assess. Ask the questions. Because oftentimes, you’re, they're going to tell you the tough things, because they don't want the doctor to take them off treatment. And oftentimes, I've taken the family in a different room than the patient to have a conversation with the family. And it's a very different perspective than what the patient has been telling me. So oftentimes, I will split them up and have that conversation, because you could look at the patient and say that they're really struggling, but I think with the CDK 4/6 inhibitors, it is not as tough as it is getting chemotherapy or some of the immunotherapies but it's still really important to assess, have interventions.
I'm guilty of bombarding patients with too much information where they're like the deer caught in the headlights. So, slow it down, back it down, give small amounts at a time, because you're living with terror. So, you're living with cognitive impairment, the anti-estrogens definitely cause cognitive impairment. And all of that makes your short-term memory really not up to par. And I think you have to remember that when you're educating these patients. And find out how they learn, like some patients, I will hand them a whole book. And I'll learn, you know, two months later, well, I never even looked at it, I didn't read it, it was too much reading for me. And maybe sometimes they're not even literate in English in Southern California. So, find out how do you want to get this information? I mean, it's a pretty simple question. And patients will often tell you, just don't forget to ask.