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Release: Feb. 8, 2001

UI researcher studies alternate ways to reduce pain in cancer patients

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- University of Iowa researcher Kristine Kwekkeboom, Ph.D., professor in the UI College of Nursing, recently received a UI grant to determine whether music or distraction can help reduce pain for cancer patients.

Kwekkeboom will use the $9,000 UI Central Investment Fund for Research Enhancement (CIFRE) grant to study the effects of non-drug strategies in reducing the pain and anxiety of patients with cancer during medical procedures. Non-drug strategies include nursing interventions such as guided imagery, music, distraction and relaxation. These strategies are used in addition to medications to relieve pain and anxiety.

"I'm working to understand factors that influence whether or not a particular intervention is helpful to specific individuals," Kwekkeboom said. Her research will help lead to the development of a decision-making model to aid nurses in selecting the best intervention for individual patients. The study also will compare the effects of music and distraction to see whether one is more effective than the other.

CIFRE grants are administered by the UI Office of the Vice President for Research. The objective of this program is to provide funding to UI faculty and researchers for work that will aid in developing new initiatives or enhance competitiveness for external funding.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.