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Symptoms Assessment tools - Assessment Approaches

The Edmonton Symptom Assessment System - Revised (ESAS-r)

Summary

The ESAS is a tool that was developed to assist in the assessment of nine symptoms that are common in palliative care patients: pain, tiredness, drowsiness, nausea, lack of appetite, depression, anxiety, shortness of breath, and wellbeing. The ESAS has been revised to improve ease of understanding and completion for patients and is known as the ESAS-r. The ESAS-r is intended to capture the patient’s perspective on symptoms. However, in some situations it may be necessary to obtain a caregiver’s perspective. The ESAS-r provides a profile of symptom severity at a point in time. Repeated assessments may help to track changes in symptom severity over time. The ESAS-r is only one part of a holistic clinical assessment. It is not a complete symptom assessment in itself.

Tool

References

Watanabe SM, Nekolaichuk C, Beaumont C, Johnson L, Myers J, Strasser F. A multi-centre comparison of two numerical versions of the Edmonton Symptom Assessment System in palliative care patients J Pain Symptom Manage 2011; 41:456-468.

Bruera E, Kuehn N, Miller MJ, Selmser P, Macmillan K. The Edmonton Symptom Assessment System (ESAS): a simple method for the assessment of palliative care patients. J Palliat Care 1991; 7:6-9.

Fraser Health Symptom Assessment Acronym (OPQRSTUV Evaluations)

Summary

The Symptom Assessment Acronym is a tool to aid in a detailed systematic approach to assess palliative or end of life symptoms. This tool guided a consistent and comprehensive symptom assessment in palliative or end of life care.

Tool

Algorithms used for specific symptom managements available at cancercare.on.ca

References

Muir J. (2006). Unrelieved Pain. Nursing BC. October; 38(4):22-5.

Peden J, deMoissac D, MacMillan K, Mushani-Kanji T, editors (2006). 99 Common Questions (and more) about hospice palliative care A nurse’s handbook. 3rd ed. Part I Physical Symptoms. Edmonton, Alberta: Regional Palliative Care Program, Capital Health; p. 2-96.​​​