Ardith Z. Doorenbos: Tailoring pain strategies to individual patients

Ardith Z. Doorenbos

Ardith Doorenbos, PhD, RN, FAAN, knows about pain. She has been studying it for years.

Her early career in oncology nursing, where she cared for patients dying of blood cancers, led her to pursue research into how people manage pain. Today, she carries a grant portfolio of more than $11 million to support her quest, and she is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame

“Pain is one of those most troubling symptoms that affects quality of life,” says Doorenbos, a Nursing Collegiate Professor, who is also director of palliative care at the University of Illinois Cancer Center.

Nursing Collegiate Professorships are made possible by unrestricted donations to the college’s Annual Fund. Created in fall 2016, the honor is meant to reward and retain outstanding faculty.

Currently, Doorenbos is working with a grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to develop a “bio bank for pain,” collecting physiological markers, such as blood, saliva and urine, to tailor pain strategies to individual patients.

“I am very, very grateful to UIC for adopting me and making a home for me,” she says.