The unpleasant theory can be categorized into three parts: the performance of the outcome, the symptoms, and the factors that influence or result in the symptom. The theory was majorly developed to understand the relationship between symptom experience and multiple symptoms (Lee, Vincent & Finnegan, 2017). In theory, symptoms are defined as subjective to be perceived by patients in the health care system. Symptoms, in general, can be determined to be the heart of nursing care. Most of the activities that nurses on matters affecting the patient perform depend on the symptoms that the patients have on a certain illness. The nurses are responsible for assessing the symptom; develop management strategies, and helping the patients overcome the risk. As per the theory of unpleasant symptoms, symptoms are purposed according to the intensity, the distress faced by the patient, timing, and how the patient feels.

            However, it can be noted that two or more symptoms are likely to occur simultaneously in a patient, which can be identified as a symptom cluster. On occasions where two or more symptoms occur together, the cause is likely to be the same or different (Lenz, 2018). In general, the theory of unpleasant symptoms displays the impacts of symptoms on a patient’s wellbeing. In other words, the act of the theory dealing with symptoms displays that it is core to matters of health. The assessment tool that I would use in the patient’s symptoms is the intensity in terms of the pain of the symptom. The intensity of the symptom gives a chance to the nurses to come up with the appropriate management strategy in time. If a patient is in much pain, the nurses have to follow the required procedures to ensure that they treat the patient using the symptoms as first as possible to relieve the patient. It is the responsibility of the nurses to ensure that they have timing on pain of the symptom as the theory requires them.

            In conclusion, the theory of unpleasant symptoms is majorly concerned with dealing with matters of symptoms that affect the patient. As per the theory, the symptom is the core factor in the health care system as nurses or physicians cannot perform their duty without determining the symptoms the patient is suffering from. Moreover, the pain of the symptom determines the duration used for management strategies to be attained.


Lee, S. E., Vincent, C., & Finnegan, L. (2017). An analysis and evaluation of the theory of unpleasant symptoms. Advances in Nursing science, 40(1), E16-E39.

Lenz, E. R. (2018). Application of the theory of unpleasant symptoms in practice: A challenge for nursing. Investigación en Enfermería: Imagen y Desarrollo, 20(1).

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