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Sample records for palliative patienters gastrointestinale

  1. Palliative care in patients with heart failure.

    PubMed

    McIlvennan, Colleen K; Allen, Larry A

    2016-01-01

    Despite advances in cardiac therapy, heart failure (HF) remains a progressive, highly symptomatic, and deadly disease that places great demands on patients, caregivers, and healthcare systems. Palliative care is a multidisciplinary approach to care that focuses on communication, shared decision making, and advance care planning; provides relief from pain and other distressing symptoms; integrates psychological and spiritual aspects of care; and offers a support system to help families cope during illness and bereavement. Palliative care has applications across the stages of heart failure, including early in the course of illness, often in conjunction with other therapies that are intended to prolong life. However, the incorporation of palliative care into the management of heart failure has been suboptimal for several reasons: uncertainty in the disease trajectory, failure to reward communication between healthcare providers and patients, siloed care, lack of knowledge, overlay of comorbidity and frailty, life saving devices with complex trade-offs, and a limited evidence base. This review will summarize the current literature on the emerging role of palliative care in patients with heart failure and the challenges and opportunities for its integration into routine care. It will discuss current initiatives and future directions of the collaborative relationship between the palliative care and heart failure disciplines. PMID:27079896

  2. Research sensitivities to palliative care patients.

    PubMed

    Addington-Hall, J

    2002-09-01

    This paper considers the methodological challenges of researching the health care experiences of palliative care patients and their families. Difficulties in defining a 'palliative care patient' are highlighted, and the question of whether there are specific ethical issues when researching palliative care explored. Methodological issues are discussed, including the negotiation of access via health professionals, the choice of appropriate data collection methods and tools, the consequences of high attrition rates and the use of retrospective surveys of bereaved relatives. Key areas for research are identified. These include patients' and families' experiences of research participation, the impact of being approached on those who decline, how the characteristics of those who participate differ from those who do not and the likely impact of this on findings. Research is also needed into patient and family motivations for participation, and whether and how these change as the disease progresses. To ensure that the voices of palliative care patients and their families are heard by both service providers and policy-makers, research in this area needs to address the methodological challenges raised in this paper, as well as continuing to explore users' views. PMID:12296842

  3. The oncological patient in the palliative situation.

    PubMed

    Eychmueller, Steffen; Zwahlen, Diana; Fliedner, Monica

    2014-01-01

    Palliative care approaches the patient and his or her suffering with a biopsychosocial-spiritual model. Thus, it is the strength of palliative care to complement the diagnosis driven approach of medical cancer care by a problem and resources-based assessment, participatory care plan, and patient-directed interventions. Interventions need to reflect timely prognosis, target population (the patient, the family carer, the professional), and level of trust and remaining energy. In palliative care the relevance of psycho-oncological aspects in the care of the terminally ill is considerable in the understanding of the overall suffering of patients approaching death and their loved ones and in their care and support. There is little evidence to date in terms of clinical benefit of specific psycho-oncological interventions in the last months or weeks of life, but there is evidence on effects of stress reduction and reduced anxiety if locus of control can stay within the patient as long as possible. One major difficulty in psychosocial research at the end-of-life, however, is defining patient relevant outcomes. PMID:24305769

  4. Palliative care in patients with lung cancer

    PubMed Central

    Farbicka, Paulina

    2013-01-01

    Lung cancer accounts for 12% of all cancers and has the highest annual rate of mortality in men and women. The overall aim is cure or prolongation of life without evidence of disease. Almost 60% of patients at the moment of diagnosis are not eligible for radical treatment. Therefore soothing and supportive treatment is the only treatment of choice. Patients with lung cancer who have symptoms of dyspnea, chronic cough, severe pain, exhaustion and cachexia syndrome, fear and depression and significantly reduced physical and intellectual activities are qualified for inpatient or home palliative care. Knowledge about various methods used in palliative treatment allows one to alleviate symptoms that occur in an advanced stage of disease with an expected short survival period. Methods of oncological treatment that are often used in patients with advanced lung cancer include radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Drawing attention to the earlier implementation of palliative care is an objective of research carried out during recent years. Advances in surgical and conservative treatment of these patients have contributed to better outcomes and longer survival time. PMID:24596508

  5. Managing lymphoedema in palliative care patients.

    PubMed

    Todd, Marie

    The development of lymphoedema in advanced disease is distressing for patients and their carers and can prove difficult to manage for health-care professionals involved in their care. This article will provide an overview of co-morbidities that cancer patients face that will have an impact on the development, progression or management of lymphoedema. The principles of assessing and managing lymphoedema in palliative care patients is presented, based on the Scottish governments action plan Living and Dying Well. The need for collaboration with other members of the multi-disciplinary team to provide the seamless, patient-centred service advocated in this action plan is also presented. PMID:19377392

  6. Palliative care for patients with non-malignant respiratory disease.

    PubMed

    McVeigh, Clare

    2015-05-01

    Non-malignant respiratory disease is a chronic life-limiting condition that requires holistic palliative care. Patients with non-malignant respiratory disease have a range of biopsychosocial and spiritual needs, which healthcare professionals should recognise and manage effectively. Healthcare professionals have an important role in enabling the delivery of effective palliative care to this group of patients and their carers, and in recognising the many factors that may impede delivery of palliative care. PMID:25942985

  7. Vitamin D and patients with palliative cancer.

    PubMed

    Björkhem-Bergman, Linda; Bergman, Peter

    2016-09-01

    Vitamin D is a hormone that is synthesised in the skin in the presence of sunlight. Sufficient vitamin D levels are important-not only for a healthy skeleton-but also for a healthy immune system. Many patients with cancer have insufficient vitamin D levels, and low vitamin D levels are associated with increased 'all-cause mortality' and especially mortality due to cancer. Low vitamin D levels have also been associated with increased risk of infections, increased pain, depressive disorders and impaired quality of life. We review the role of vitamin D in the immune system, in relation to cancer disease, pain and depression. We have recently performed an observational study in 100 patients with palliative cancer in Sweden. The main result was that low vitamin D levels were associated with higher opioid dose, that is, more pain. We also describe a case report where vitamin D supplementation resulted in radically decreased opioid dose, less pain and better well-being. Vitamin D supplementation is not connected with any adverse side effects and is easy to administrate. Thus, we hypothesise that vitamin D-supplementation to patients with palliative cancer might be beneficial and could improve their well-being, decrease pain and reduce susceptibility to infections. However, more clinical studies in this field are needed before firm conclusions can be drawn. PMID:27084421

  8. Palliative Care Patients in the Emergency Department

    PubMed Central

    LAWSON, BEVERLEY J.; BURGE, FREDERICK I.; MCINTYRE, PAUL; FIELD, SIMON; MAXWELL, DAVID

    2016-01-01

    Although end-of-life care is not a primary function of the emergency department (ED), in reality, many access this department in the later stages of illness. In this study, ED use by patients registered with the Capital Health Integrated Palliative Care Service (CHIPCS) is examined and CHIPCS patient characteristics associated with ED use identified. Overall, 27% of patients made at least one ED visit while registered with CHIPCS; 54% of these resulted in a hospital admission. ED visiting was not associated with time of day or day of the week. Multivariate logistic regression results suggest older patients were significantly less likely to make an ED visit. Making an ED visit was associated with hospital death, rural residence (particularly for women), and having a parent or relative other than a spouse or child as the primary caregiver. Further research may suggest strategies to reduce unnecessary ED visits during the end of life. PMID:19227016

  9. Palliative and supportive care for glioma patients.

    PubMed

    Walbert, Tobias; Chasteen, Kristen

    2015-01-01

    The diagnosis of a brain tumor is a life-changing event for patients and families. High-grade gliomas are incurable and long-term survival remains limited. While low-grade glioma patients have better outcomes, their quality of life is often affected by a variety of symptoms as well. Helping glioma patients improve quality of life at all stages of illness is an important goal for the interdisciplinary care team. There is evidence from advanced lung cancer patients that early involvement of a palliative care team can improve patient's quality of life, symptom burden, and even survival and a similar approach benefits glioma patients as well. Patients with high-grade and low-grade glioma often suffer from significant symptom burden. We discuss how validated global symptom assessments and symptom-specific screening tools are useful to identify distressing symptoms. Seizures, fatigue, depression, and anxiety are some of the more common symptoms throughout the disease course and should be managed actively. Patients with glioma also have high symptom burden at the end of life and the majority lose decision-making capacity. Advance care planning conversations early in the disease course are essential to elicit the patient's wishes for end of life care and effective communication with surrogate decision makers during all stages of the disease helps ensure that those wishes are respected. PMID:25468232

  10. Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_160885.html Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life Also increases chances of having end- ... incurable cancer helps patients cope and improves their quality of life, a new study shows. It also ...

  11. [Palliative Care for Non-cancer Patients].

    PubMed

    Ikegaki, Junichi

    2016-03-01

    Although palliative care has been developed and implemented as care for cancer pain, it is holistic care for suffering that includes physical, psychosocial and spiritual pain of life-threatening illness. It turned out that non-cancer patients in the end-stage are also suffering from various pain that should be treated as cancer patients. Trajectories of illness in non-cancer patients are with more gradual decline than those of cancer patients with steady progression and it is often difficult to make decision about end-of-life. The purpose of advance care planning was originally to help describe legal documents. This process is proved to contribute to improving QOL of patients and their families to discuss preference, hope, economic problems, spiritual question as well as medical treatment In Japan guideline of decision making process in end-of-life stage has been established. A program of communication training in end-of-life discussion has been made. Under current situation some comments on the role of anesthesiologists are also mentioned. PMID:27097506

  12. When patients are stressed, in pain, suggest palliative care.

    PubMed

    2016-06-01

    Case managers are in a good position to recognize patients who have serious medical problems that are causing them and their family members stress, and refer them for a palliative care consultation, experts say. The palliative care team coordinates with the team providing medical care and helps control pain and other physical symptoms, relieves depression and anxiety, and provides support and spiritual help for the patient and family. The core palliative care team typically includes a medical specialist, a nurse who also acts as a case manager, a social worker, and a spiritual counselor. Palliative care improves outcomes and patient satisfaction when patients have a consultation early in the stay or even in the emergency department. PMID:27323510

  13. Pain Assessment in Noncommunicative Adult Palliative Care Patients.

    PubMed

    McGuire, Deborah B; Kaiser, Karen Snow; Haisfield-Wolfe, Mary Ellen; Iyamu, Florence

    2016-09-01

    Palliative care patients who have pain are often unable to self-report their pain, placing them at increased risk for underrecognized and undertreated pain. Use of appropriate pain assessment tools significantly enhances the likelihood of effective pain management and improved pain-related outcomes. This paper reviews selected tools and provides palliative care clinicians with a practical approach to selecting a pain assessment tool for noncommunicative adult patients. PMID:27497016

  14. Palliative Care: Increasing the quality of life for patients and families… | NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

    MedlinePlus

    ... this page please turn JavaScript on. Feature: Palliative Care Palliative Care: Increasing the quality of life for patients and ... Past Issues / Spring 2014 Table of Contents Palliative Care: Conversations Matter™ for Sick Children "Palliative Care: Conversations ...

  15. A comprehensive review of palliative care in patients with cancer.

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Reena; Alici, Yesne; Breitbart, William

    2014-02-01

    One of the most challenging roles for the psychiatrist is to help guide terminally ill patients physically, psychologically and spiritually through the dying process. Patients with advanced cancer, and other life-threatening medical illnesses are at increased risk for developing major psychiatric complications and have an enormous burden of both physical as well as psychological symptoms. In fact, surveys suggest that psychological symptoms such as depression, anxiety, and hopelessness are as frequent, if not more so, than pain and other physical symptoms in palliative care settings. Psychiatrists have a unique role and opportunity to offer competent and compassionate palliative care to those with life-threatening illness. In this article we provide a comprehensive review of basic concepts and definitions of palliative care and the experience of dying, and the role of the psychiatrist in palliative care including assessment and management of common psychiatric disorders in the terminally ill, with an emphasis on suicide and desire for hastened death. Psychotherapies developed for use in palliative care settings, and management of grief and bereavement are also reviewed. PMID:24716503

  16. Palliative care provision for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Abebaw Mengistu

    2007-01-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major cause of disability, morbidity and mortality in old age. Patients with advanced stage COPD are most likely to be admitted three to four times per year with acute exacerbations of COPD (AECOPD) which are costly to manage. The adverse events of AECOPD are associated with poor quality of life, severe physical disability, loneliness, and depression and anxiety symptoms. Currently there is a lack of palliative care provision for patients with advanced stage COPD compared with cancer patients despite having poor prognosis, intolerable dyspnoea, lower levels of self efficacy, greater disability, poor quality of life and higher levels of anxiety and depression. These symptoms affect patients' quality of life and can be a source of concern for family and carers as most patients are likely to be housebound and may be in need of continuous support and care. Evidence of palliative care provision for cancer patients indicate that it improves quality of life and reduces health care costs. The reasons why COPD patients do not receive palliative care are complex. This partly may relate to prognostic accuracy of patients' survival which poses a challenge for healthcare professionals, including general practitioners for patients with advanced stage COPD, as they are less likely to engage in end-of-life care planning in contrast with terminal disease like cancer. Furthermore there is a lack of resources which constraints for the wider availability of the palliative care programmes in the health care system. Potential barriers may include unwillingness of patients to discuss advance care planning and end-of-life care with their general practitioners, lack of time, increased workload, and fear of uncertainty of the information to provide about the prognosis of the disease and also lack of appropriate tools to guide general practitioners when to refer patients for palliative care. COPD is a chronic incurable disease; those in an

  17. Palliative care provision for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

    PubMed Central

    Yohannes, Abebaw Mengistu

    2007-01-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major cause of disability, morbidity and mortality in old age. Patients with advanced stage COPD are most likely to be admitted three to four times per year with acute exacerbations of COPD (AECOPD) which are costly to manage. The adverse events of AECOPD are associated with poor quality of life, severe physical disability, loneliness, and depression and anxiety symptoms. Currently there is a lack of palliative care provision for patients with advanced stage COPD compared with cancer patients despite having poor prognosis, intolerable dyspnoea, lower levels of self efficacy, greater disability, poor quality of life and higher levels of anxiety and depression. These symptoms affect patients' quality of life and can be a source of concern for family and carers as most patients are likely to be housebound and may be in need of continuous support and care. Evidence of palliative care provision for cancer patients indicate that it improves quality of life and reduces health care costs. The reasons why COPD patients do not receive palliative care are complex. This partly may relate to prognostic accuracy of patients' survival which poses a challenge for healthcare professionals, including general practitioners for patients with advanced stage COPD, as they are less likely to engage in end-of-life care planning in contrast with terminal disease like cancer. Furthermore there is a lack of resources which constraints for the wider availability of the palliative care programmes in the health care system. Potential barriers may include unwillingness of patients to discuss advance care planning and end-of-life care with their general practitioners, lack of time, increased workload, and fear of uncertainty of the information to provide about the prognosis of the disease and also lack of appropriate tools to guide general practitioners when to refer patients for palliative care. COPD is a chronic incurable disease; those in an

  18. When and why should patients with hematologic malignancies see a palliative care specialist?

    PubMed

    LeBlanc, Thomas W; El-Jawahri, Areej

    2015-01-01

    Palliative care is a multidisciplinary approach to symptom management, psychosocial support, and assistance in treatment decision-making for patients with serious illness and their families. It emphasizes well-being at any point along the disease trajectory, regardless of prognosis. The term "palliative care" is often incorrectly used as a synonym for end-of-life care, or "hospice care". However, palliative care does not require a terminal diagnosis or proximity to death, a misconception that we will address in this article. Multiple randomized clinical trials demonstrate the many benefits of early integration of palliative care for patients with cancer, including reductions in symptom burden, improvements in quality-of-life, mood, and overall survival, as well as improved caregiver outcomes. Thus, early concurrent palliative care integrated with cancer-directed care has emerged as a standard-of-care practice for patients with cancer. However, patients with hematologic malignancies rarely utilize palliative care services, despite their many unmet palliative care needs, and are much less likely to use palliative care compared to patients with solid tumors. In this article, we will define "palliative care" and address some common misconceptions regarding its role as part of high-quality care for patients with cancer. We will then review the evidence supporting the integration of palliative care into comprehensive cancer care, discuss perceived barriers to palliative care in hematologic malignancies, and suggest opportunities and triggers for earlier and more frequent palliative care referral in this population. PMID:26637760

  19. [Treatment of constipation in palliative care patients is a challenge].

    PubMed

    Jarlbæk, Lene; Johnsen, Berit; Hansen, Ole Bo; Hedal, Birte

    2016-08-15

    The evidence for treatment of constipation in palliative care patients is poor. The condition of these patients is often complex, and results from studies performed in other patient groups cannot be extrapolated unconditionally. However, macrogol (polyethylene glycol), lactulose and sodium picosulphate seem to be well tolerated, and methylnaltrexone could be used in opioid-induced constipation, if the patients are not at risk from gastrointestinal perforation. The patients should be offered quiet and private surroundings, and attention should be payed to securing an optimal body position for defecation. PMID:27550785

  20. When is an invasive palliative intervention in an acute internal medical patient worth it? A structured palliative approach.

    PubMed

    Weber, Thomas; Strasser, Florian

    2015-12-01

    A 67-year-old patient with coronary artery disease (CAD), diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) was scheduled for coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery after a recent myocardial infarction despite a high perioperative risk of death. While waiting, acute renal failure developed, and the patient was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). After the patient and his wife were informed that CABG surgery was no longer possible, he declined further intensive care treatment and subsequently died peacefully.We show that a structured palliative approach which has been proposed for cancer patients may also be feasible in palliative situations concerning nononcologic patients. PMID:26620468

  1. The palliative care needs of ethnic minority patients: staff perspectives.

    PubMed

    Diver, Fiona; Molassiotis, Alexander; Weeks, Les

    2003-08-01

    The aim of this study was to assess palliative care staff's perceptions of multicultural care provision and explore the barriers and facilitators to culturally sensitive care. Qualitative semi-structured interviews with five palliative care staff were conducted. Staff showed awareness of inter-cultural diversity and the importance of individualized care. It also became apparent that staff did not possess ethnocentric attitudes. Facilitators of multicultural care that emerged from the data included training, learning from experience, the use of culturally specific literature and resources, and effective communication channels in the team. However, barriers were present, including limited interpreting services, and some staff and other patients' negative behaviours towards ethnic minority patients. The findings lead to recommendations for better resourcing and expansion of interpreting services, and for more training, based on staff's desire for limited culturally specific knowledge in sensitive combination with an individualized care philosophy. PMID:12968120

  2. Twin pregnancy in a Fontan-palliated patient.

    PubMed

    Nair, Anupama; Radhakrishnan, Sitaraman; Iyer, Krishna S

    2016-08-01

    The Fontan connection, originally described in 1971, is used to provide palliation for patients with many forms of CHDs that cannot support a biventricular circulation. An increasing number of females who have undergone these connections in childhood are now surviving into adulthood and some are becoming pregnant. We report a case of a 29-year-old woman who presented with a twin pregnancy at 33 weeks of gestation. She had significant deterioration of her cardiovascular status before the twin babies were delivered by emergency caesarean section owing to associated obstetric complications. This report also highlights the various maternal and fetal complications occurring in pregnancy of Fontan-palliated patients and suggests the need for meticulous pre-conception counselling and strict perinatal care. PMID:27125813

  3. [Palliative patients and their families - an inseparable complex system].

    PubMed

    Passini, Andrea; Fässler-Weibel, Peter

    2012-01-01

    On the basis of a case report it can be demonstrated, how important the acquirement about the social net of the patient for a palliative team is. The involvement of the family into dealing with death and ending of life is as important as the co-caring of the family itself. Only by recognizing the structures inside of a family, an optimal care can take place. PMID:22328051

  4. [Ethics and palliative care in patients with advanced cancer].

    PubMed

    Tenorio-González, Francisco

    2005-01-01

    Recent research in both the biology of cancer and the treatment of patients has increased the life expectancy of cancer patients with recurrence and who have a longer survival rate. Cancer is no longer considered a lethal but a chronic disease. More patients survive, but above all there are more patients with recurrences thus increasing the need for physical or psychological treatment of patients with longer lives. The American Cancer Society reported in 1992 that in the U.S. more than 8 million people survived between 4 and 5 years. This produces both an ethical and medical challenge for treatment of cancer patients. This paper reviews the actual criteria for palliative care: treatment for pain and the ethical and psychological treatment of advanced cancer patients and their families. PMID:16454965

  5. Providing Palliative Care to LGBTQ Patients.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Nina; Wholihan, Dorothy

    2016-09-01

    Nurses should be familiar with and equipped to address the challenges that arise when caring for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer-identified (LGBTQ) patients. LGBTQ individuals have increased rates of certain physical diseases and are at greater risk of suffering from stress-sensitive mental health issues. Negative social attitudes, widespread discrimination and stigma, physical and psychological victimization, and less social support with aging contribute to the complexity of care for these individuals. Open communication, welcoming and accepting attitudes and environments, and sensitivity to unique multidimensional issues improve care to LGBTQ patients with serious advanced illness. Nursing can reach this vulnerable minority and positively impact the quality of care. PMID:27497022

  6. Palliative care for patients with end-stage renal failure: reflections from Central Australia.

    PubMed

    Fried, Ofra

    2003-09-01

    This paper explores palliative care issues for Australian Aboriginal patients with end-stage renal failure. Renal disease is epidemic amongst Aboriginal Australians. The Central Australian Palliative Care Service, based in the remote town of Alice Springs, sees a high proportion of renal patients, with different demographic characteristics to those seen in urban palliative care services. A case history illustrates distinctive concerns for local service provision, including communication issues, cultural requirements for maximizing quality of life, and the need to provide care in remote locations. Palliation for end-stage renal failure (ESRF) patients should be based on standard principles, but modified in accordance with local practical requirements and community needs. PMID:14526885

  7. Palliative Care for Patients with Dementia: A National Survey

    PubMed Central

    Torke, Alexia M.; Holtz, Laura R.; Hui, Siu; Castelluccio, Peter; Connor, Stephen; Eaton, Matthew A.; Sachs, Greg A.

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVES To determine the extent to which hospice and nonhospice palliative care (PC) programs provide services to patients with dementia and to describe barriers and facilitators to providing nonhospice PC. DESIGN Telephone and Web-based surveys. SETTING U.S. hospice and PC programs from the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s program list. PARTICIPANTS Executive directors of 240 hospice programs, 173 programs providing hospice and nonhospice PC, and 13 programs providing nonhospice PC. MEASUREMENTS A telephone survey of hospice and PC providers followed by an online survey of programs providing nonhospice PC. RESULTS Ninety-four percent of hospices and 72% of PC programs had served at least one patient with a primary diagnosis of dementia within the past year. Based on 80 responses to the online survey, the most highly rated barriers to providing PC were lack of awareness of PC by families and referring providers, need for respite services, and reimbursement policies. Highly rated needs were family information, assistance with caregiver burden, and behavioral symptoms. Strategies critical for success were an interdisciplinary team, collaboration with community organizations, and alternatives to aggressive end-of-life care. CONCLUSION Almost all hospices and a majority of nonhospice PC programs serve patients with dementia. Education and policy efforts should focus on education for families and providers, support for caregivers, and reforming reimbursement structures to provide coverage for interdisciplinary PC earlier in the disease, when patients have high needs but are not hospice eligible. PMID:21054292

  8. Outpatient palliative care effectiveness: both patients and caregivers can gain.

    PubMed

    Antoniu, Sabina

    2013-10-01

    Outpatient palliative care services are increasing in their effectiveness worldwide, because they can better focus on both patients' and caregivers' needs at all stages of the disease requiring this type of interventions. This was demonstrated before by various studies that,however, were performed mostly on patients with malignancies and thatyielded encouraging results about the severity of the symptoms and about the burden of care in the caregivers. In this analysis performed on a mixture of patients with malignant and nonmalignant diseases, Groh et al. demonstrate that the outpatient team intervention was able to reduce the severity of symptoms such as pain or digestive symptoms and were able to minimize the burden of care of the primary caregivers. PMID:24138644

  9. Elderly Patients With Painful Bone Metastases Should be Offered Palliative Radiotherapy

    SciTech Connect

    Campos, Sarah; Presutti, Roseanna; Zhang Liying; Salvo, Nadia; Hird, Amanda; Tsao, May; Barnes, Elizabeth A.; Danjoux, Cyril; Sahgal, Arjun; Mitera, Gunita; Sinclair, Emily; DeAngelis, Carlo; Nguyen, Janet; Napolskikh, Julie; Chow, Edward

    2010-04-15

    Purpose: To investigate the efficacy of palliative radiotherapy (RT) in relieving metastatic bone pain in elderly patients. Methods and Materials: The response to RT for palliation of metastatic bone pain was evaluated from a prospective database of 558 patients between 1999 and 2008. The pain scores and analgesic intake were used to calculate the response according to the International Bone Metastases Consensus Working Party palliative RT endpoints. Subgroup analyses for age and other demographic information were performed. Results: No significant difference was found in the response rate in patients aged >=65, >=70, and >=75 years compared with younger patients at 1, 2, or 3 months after RT. The response was found to be significantly related to the performance status. Conclusion: Age alone did not affect the response to palliative RT for bone metastases. Elderly patients should be referred for palliative RT for their painful bone metastases, regardless of age, because they receive equal benefit from the treatment.

  10. Age Disparity in Palliative Radiation Therapy Among Patients With Advanced Cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, Jonathan; Xu, Beibei; Yeung, Heidi N.; Roeland, Eric J.; Martinez, Maria Elena; Le, Quynh-Thu; Mell, Loren K.; Murphy, James D.

    2014-09-01

    Purpose/Objective: Palliative radiation therapy represents an important treatment option among patients with advanced cancer, although research shows decreased use among older patients. This study evaluated age-related patterns of palliative radiation use among an elderly Medicare population. Methods and Materials: We identified 63,221 patients with metastatic lung, breast, prostate, or colorectal cancer diagnosed between 2000 and 2007 from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER)-Medicare linked database. Receipt of palliative radiation therapy was extracted from Medicare claims. Multivariate Poisson regression analysis determined residual age-related disparity in the receipt of palliative radiation therapy after controlling for confounding covariates including age-related differences in patient and demographic covariates, length of life, and patient preferences for aggressive cancer therapy. Results: The use of radiation decreased steadily with increasing patient age. Forty-two percent of patients aged 66 to 69 received palliative radiation therapy. Rates of palliative radiation decreased to 38%, 32%, 24%, and 14% among patients aged 70 to 74, 75 to 79, 80 to 84, and over 85, respectively. Multivariate analysis found that confounding covariates attenuated these findings, although the decreased relative rate of palliative radiation therapy among the elderly remained clinically and statistically significant. On multivariate analysis, compared to patients 66 to 69 years old, those aged 70 to 74, 75 to 79, 80 to 84, and over 85 had a 7%, 15%, 25%, and 44% decreased rate of receiving palliative radiation, respectively (all P<.0001). Conclusions: Age disparity with palliative radiation therapy exists among older cancer patients. Further research should strive to identify barriers to palliative radiation among the elderly, and extra effort should be made to give older patients the opportunity to receive this quality of life-enhancing treatment at the end

  11. How Outpatient Palliative Care Teleconsultation Facilitates Empathic Patient-Professional Relationships: A Qualitative Study

    PubMed Central

    van Gurp, Jelle; van Selm, Martine; Vissers, Kris; van Leeuwen, Evert; Hasselaar, Jeroen

    2015-01-01

    Objective The problems and needs of advanced cancer patients and proxies normally increase as the disease progresses. Home-based advanced cancer patients and their proxies benefit from collaborations between primary care physicians and hospital-based palliative care specialists when confronted with complex problems in the last phase of life. Telemedicine might facilitate direct, patient-centered communication between patients and proxies, primary care physicians, and specialist palliative care teams (SPCTs). This study focuses on the impact of teleconsultation technologies on the relationships between home-based palliative care patients and hospital-based palliative care specialists. Methods This work consists of a qualitative study among patients, family members, and caregivers that utilizes long-term direct observations, semi-structured interviews, and open interviews following the observations. Results The analysis of the empirical data resulted in three key concepts that describe the impact of teleconsultation on the patient-professional relationship in palliative homecare: transcending the institutional walls of home and hospital; transparency of teleconsultation technology; and technologized, intimate patient-professional relationships. Teleconsultation offers (1) condensed encounters between home-based palliative care patients and distant professionals, (2) a unique insight into the patients’ daily lives for palliative care specialists, and (3) long-term interaction that results in trustful relationships and experiences of intimacy and relief. Conclusions Teleconsultation fits the practice of home-based palliative care. Teleconsultation can, if well applied, facilitate computer-mediated but empathic patient-palliative care specialist relationships, which enable professional care attuned to the patient’s context as well as patient involvement. This article proposes a teleconsultation implementation guide for optimal use of teleconsultation in daily

  12. Clinician Roles in Early Integrated Palliative Care for Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Qualitative Study

    PubMed Central

    Park, Elyse R.; Greer, Joseph A.; Jackson, Vicki A.; Jacobsen, Juliet C.; Gallagher, Emily R.; Temel, Jennifer S.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background: Early palliative care provides better quality of life, increased prognostic awareness, and even improved survival for patients with advanced cancer but how the integrated care model achieves these outcomes has not been completely explained. Methods: To better understand the clinical approach to early outpatient care from the clinicians' perspective, we conducted focus groups with the palliative care clinicians who had participated in a randomized trial of early palliative care for metastatic lung cancer. Results: Clinicians described their role in providing early palliative care as having three distinct roles in the outpatient setting: (1) managing symptoms to improve functional status and as a bridge to other issues; (2) engaging patients in emotional work to facilitate coping, accepting, and planning; and (3) interpreting the oncologist for the patient and the patient for the oncologist. Conclusions: These data lay the foundation for developing training programs for clinicians in early integrated palliative care. PMID:25390467

  13. Perceptions of palliative care among patients with advanced cancer and their caregivers

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Camilla; Swami, Nadia; Krzyzanowska, Monika; Leighl, Natasha; Rydall, Anne; Rodin, Gary; Tannock, Ian; Hannon, Breffni

    2016-01-01

    Background: Early palliative care is increasingly recommended but seldom practised. We sought to examine perceptions of palliative care among patients with advanced cancer and their caregivers. Methods: After conducting a cluster randomized controlled trial of early palliative care versus standard care for patients with advanced cancer, we approached patients and their caregivers to participate in semistructured interviews seeking to assess, qualitatively, their attitudes and perceptions about palliative care. We used the grounded theory method for data collection and analysis. Results: A total of 48 patients (26 intervention, 22 control) and 23 caregivers (14 intervention, 9 control) completed interviews. Participants’ initial perceptions of palliative care in both trial arms were of death, hopelessness, dependency and end-of-life comfort care for inpatients. These perceptions provoked fear and avoidance, and often originated from interactions with health care professionals. During the trial, those in the intervention arm developed a broader concept of palliative care as “ongoing care” that improved their “quality of living” but still felt that the term itself carried a stigma. Participants in the intervention group emphasized the need for palliative care to be reframed and better explained by health care professionals. Participants in the control group generally considered it pointless to rename palliative care, but many in the intervention group stated emphatically that a different name was necessary in the early outpatient setting. Interpretation: There is a strong stigma attached to palliative care, which may persist even after positive experiences with an early palliative care intervention. Education of the public, patients and health care providers is paramount if early integration of palliative care is to be successful. PMID:27091801

  14. A Palliative Approach to Dialysis Care: A Patient-Centered Transition to the End of Life

    PubMed Central

    Moss, Alvin H.; Cohen, Lewis M.; Fischer, Michael J.; Germain, Michael J.; Jassal, S. Vanita; Perl, Jeffrey; Weiner, Daniel E.; Mehrotra, Rajnish

    2014-01-01

    As the importance of providing patient-centered palliative care for patients with advanced illnesses gains attention, standard dialysis delivery may be inconsistent with the goals of care for many patients with ESRD. Many dialysis patients with life expectancy of <1 year may desire a palliative approach to dialysis care, which focuses on aligning patient treatment with patients’ informed preferences. This commentary elucidates what comprises a palliative approach to dialysis care and describes its potential and appropriate use. It also reviews the barriers to integrating such an approach into the current clinical paradigm of care and existing infrastructure and outlines system-level changes needed to accommodate such an approach. PMID:25104274

  15. Palliative care for patients with advance chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Douglas, C A

    2014-01-01

    Over the past three decades there has been a dramatic rise in the number of patients with advanced chronic kidney disease. The fastest expanding group receiving dialysis has been the elderly. However, for those patients who are very elderly with co-morbidity, dialysis may not offer a survival advantage. Therefore, active conservative management is a growing service offered by many renal units in the UK and focuses on non-dialytic correction of fluid and electrolyes, management of renal anaemia, and assessment and management of symptoms. The five-year survival of a patient over 75 years of age starting dialysis is 20% and if a patient is over 75 years, has co-morbidity, or a poor performance status, dialysis may not offer any survival advantage. Whether a patient is managed by dialysis or by conservative management the symptom burden suffered is high. These symptoms are under-recognised and often managed poorly because of increased drug toxicity in renal failure. This complex group of patients require close working between renal, palliative care, medicine for the elderly, and community teams, to allow best quality of life and end of life care. This review describes some of the challenges in providing Advanced Care Planning for dialysis and conservatively managed patients, highlights the symptom burden of patients with advanced chronic kidney disease, and offers guidance in how to manage the symptoms effectively. PMID:25318401

  16. What is palliative care?

    MedlinePlus

    Comfort care; End of life - palliative care; Hospice - palliative care ... The goal of palliative care is to help patients with serious illnesses feel better. It prevents or treats symptoms and side effects of disease ...

  17. Palliative Care: Increasing the quality of life for patients and families… | NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

    MedlinePlus

    ... Palliative Care Palliative Care: Increasing the quality of life for patients and families… Past Issues / Spring 2014 ... comfortable as possible and improve your quality of life. You don't have to be in hospice ...

  18. Palliative treatment of patients with malignant structures of esophagus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zavodnov, Victor Y.; Kuzin, M. I.; Kharnas, Sergey S.; Linkov, Kirill G.; Loschenov, Victor B.; Stratonnikov, Alexander A.; Posypanova, Anna M.

    1996-01-01

    Photodynamic therapy with the use of laser endoscopic spectrum analyzer (LESA-5), spectral- analyzing video-imaging system, Kr laser and various types of catheters for different localizations and different geometry of tumor, and phthalocyanine aluminum photosensitizers in patients with malignant strictures of esophagus is discussed. Photodynamic therapy was carried out to four patients: with esophageal cancer (3 patients) and gastric cancer with infiltration of lower esophagus (1 patient). All patients suffered from severe dysphagia. Photosensitizer was used in a dose 1-1.5 mg/kg of weight. Usually we used 3-4 seances of laser treatment 10-30 minutes long. The accumulation of photosensitizer was controlled by LESA-5. Laser induced fluorescent image was monitored by the video-imaging system in order to control laser treatment. There were no side-effects. The results show high efficiency of photodynamic therapy. There was marked reduction of dysphagia symptoms in all cases. It seems that photodynamic therapy is a good alternative to palliative surgical treatment of patients with malignant strictures of esophagus.

  19. Identifying Patients in the Acute Psychiatric Hospital Who May Benefit From a Palliative Care Approach.

    PubMed

    Burton, M Caroline; Warren, Mark; Cha, Stephen S; Stevens, Maria; Blommer, Megan; Kung, Simon; Lapid, Maria I

    2016-04-01

    Identifying patients who will benefit from a palliative care approach is the first critical step in integrating palliative with curative therapy. Criteria are established that identify hospitalized medical patients who are near end of life, yet there are no criteria with respect to hospitalized patients with psychiatric disorders. The records of 276 consecutive patients admitted to a dedicated inpatient psychiatric unit were reviewed to identify prognostic criteria predictive of mortality. Mortality predictors were 2 or more admissions in the past year (P = .0114) and older age (P = .0006). Twenty-two percent of patients met National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization noncancer criteria for dementia. Palliative care intervention should be considered when treating inpatients with psychiatric disorders, especially older patients who have a previous hospitalization or history of dementia. PMID:25318929

  20. The role of palliative chemotherapy in hospitalized patients

    PubMed Central

    Wheatley–Price, P.; Ali, M.; Balchin, K.; Spencer, J.; Fitzgibbon, E.; Cripps, C.

    2014-01-01

    Background Hospitalized patients with advanced cancer often have a poor performance status, which is considered a relative contraindication to cytotoxic chemotherapy. We investigated outcomes in hospitalized solid tumour oncology patients who received palliative chemotherapy (pct). Methods With ethics approval, we performed a single-institution chart review of all patients hospitalized on our oncology unit who received pct between April 2008 and January 2010. Patient demographics, reasons for admission, cancer type, prior therapy, and administered chemotherapy were recorded. The primary endpoint was median survival from date of inpatient chemotherapy until death or last known follow up. We also investigated place of discharge and whether patients received additional therapy. Results During the study period, 199 inpatients received pct. Median age was 61 years; 59% of the patients were women. Most had been admitted with dyspnea (31%) or pain (29%) as the dominant symptom. Common cancers represented were breast (23%), small-cell lung cancer (sclc, 22%), non-small-cell lung cancer (nsclc, 16%), and colorectal cancer (9%). Most patients (67%) were receiving first-line chemotherapy. Median overall survival duration was 4.5 months, and the 6-month survival rate was 41%. The longest and shortest survivals were seen in the sclc and nsclc groups (7.3 and 2.5 months respectively). Factors significantly associated with shorter survival were baseline hypoalbuminemia and therapy beyond the first line. In this cohort, 77% of patients were discharged home, and 72% received further chemotherapy. Conclusions Despite a short median survival, many patients are well enough to be discharged home and to receive further chemotherapy. The development of risk models to predict a higher chance of efficacy will have practical clinical utility. PMID:25089101

  1. Role of radiation therapy in palliative care of the patient with cancer.

    PubMed

    Lutz, Stephen T; Jones, Joshua; Chow, Edward

    2014-09-10

    Radiotherapy is a successful, time-efficient, well-tolerated, and cost-effective intervention that is crucial for the appropriate delivery of palliative oncology care. The distinction between curative and palliative goals is blurred in many patients with cancer, requiring that treatments be chosen on the basis of factors related to the patient (ie, poor performance status, advanced age, significant weight loss, severe comorbid disease), the cancer (ie, metastatic disease, aggressive histology), or the treatment (ie, poor response to systemic therapy, previous radiotherapy). Goals may include symptom relief at the site of primary tumor or from metastatic lesions. Attention to a patient's discomfort and transportation limitations requires hypofractionated courses, when feasible. Innovative approaches include rapid response palliative care clinics as well as the formation of palliative radiotherapy specialty services in academic centers. Guidelines are providing better definitions of appropriate palliative radiotherapy interventions, and bone metastases fractionation has become the first radiotherapy quality measure accepted by the National Quality Forum. Further advances in the palliative radiation oncology subspecialty will require integration of education and training between the radiotherapy and palliative care specialties. PMID:25113773

  2. Retroperitoneal Endodermal Sinus Tumor Patient with Palliative Care Needs

    PubMed Central

    Kashyap, Surbhi

    2016-01-01

    This article is a case reflection of a personal encounter on the palliative care treatment required after the removal of a complicated case of a primary extra-gonadal retro-peritoneal endodermal sinus tumor (yolk sac tumor). This reflection is from the perspective of a recently graduated MD student who spent one month with an Indian pain management and palliative care team at the Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital (IRCH), All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi PMID:26962288

  3. Infomarkers for Transition to Goals Consistent with Palliative Care in Dying Patients

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Yingwei; Stifter, Janet; Ezenwa, Miriam O.; Lodhi, Muhammad; Khokhar, Ashfaq; Ansari, Rashid; Keenan, Gail M.; Wilkie, Diana J.

    2015-01-01

    Objective Electronic health records (EHRs) may contain infomarkers that identify patients near the end of life for whom it would be appropriate to shift care goals to palliative care. Discovery and use of such infomarkers could be used to conduct effectiveness research that ultimately could help to reduce the monumental costs for dying care. Our aim was to identify changes in the plans of care that represented infomarkers, which signaled the transition of care goals from non-palliative care goals to those consistent with palliative care. Methods Using an existing electronic health record database generated during a two-year, longitudinal study of 9 diverse medical-surgical units from 4 Midwest hospitals and a known group approach, we evaluated the patient care episodes for 901 patients who died (mean age=74.5±14.6 years). We used ANOVA and Tukey’s post-hoc tests to compare patient groups. Results We identified 11 diagnoses, including Death Anxiety and Anticipatory Grieving, whose addition to the care plan, some of which also occurred with removal of non-palliative care diagnoses, represent infomarkers of transition to palliative care goals. There were four categories of patients, those who had: no infomarkers on plans (n=507); infomarkers added on the admission plan (n=194); infomarkers added on a post admission plan (minor transitions, n=109), and infomarkers added and non-palliative care diagnoses removed on a post admission plan (major transition, n=91). Age, length of stay, and pain outcomes differed significantly for these four categories of patients. Significance of Results EHRs contain pertinent infomarkers that if confirmed in future studies could be used for timely referral to palliative care for improved focus on comfort outcomes and to identify palliative care subjects from data repositories for to conduct big data research, comparative effectiveness studies, and health services research. PMID:25711431

  4. Cost-effectiveness of palliative surgery versus nonsurgical procedures in gastrointestinal cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Kim, Bradford J; Aloia, Thomas A

    2016-09-01

    Palliative care is an essential component to multidisciplinary cancer care. Improved symptom control, quality of life (QOL), and survival have resulted from its utilization. Cost-effectiveness and utility analyses are significant variables that should be considered in comparing benefits and costs of medical interventions to determine if certain treatments are economically justified. This is a review on the cost-effectiveness of palliative surgery compared to other nonsurgical palliative procedures in patients with unresectable gastrointestinal cancers. J. Surg. Oncol. 2016;114:316-322. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27132654

  5. Early identification of and proactive palliative care for patients in general practice, incentive and methods of a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background According to the Word Health Organization, patients who can benefit from palliative care should be identified earlier to enable proactive palliative care. Up to now, this is not common practice and has hardly been addressed in scientific literature. Still, palliative care is limited to the terminal phase and restricted to patients with cancer. Therefore, we trained general practitioners (GPs) in identifying palliative patients in an earlier phase of their disease trajectory and in delivering structured proactive palliative care. The aim of our study is to determine if this training, in combination with consulting an expert in palliative care regarding each palliative patient's tailored care plan, can improve different aspects of the quality of the remaining life of patients with severe chronic diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure and cancer. Methods/Design A two-armed randomized controlled trial was performed. As outcome variables we studied: place of death, number of hospital admissions and number of GP out of hours contacts. Discussion We expect that this study will increase the number of identified palliative care patients and improve different aspects of quality of palliative care. This is of importance to improve palliative care for patients with COPD, CHF and cancer and their informal caregivers, and to empower the GP. The study protocol is described and possible strengths and weaknesses and possible consequences have been outlined. Trial Registration The Netherlands National Trial Register: NTR2815 PMID:22050863

  6. [Palliative surgery for malignant bowel obstruction in patients with advanced and recurrent gastroenterological cancer].

    PubMed

    Kitani, Kotaro; Yukawa, Masao; Fujiwara, Yoshinori; Tsujie, Masanori; Hara, Joji; Ikeda, Mitsunori; Sato, Katsuaki; Isono, Sayuri; Kawai, Kenji; Miura, Ken; Watatani, Masahiro; Inoue, Masatoshi

    2013-11-01

    We report the outcomes of palliative surgery for the treatment of malignant bowel obstruction in patients with advanced gastroenterological cancer. We studied 20 patients who had undergone palliative surgery over 3 years. We analyzed the clinical findings, surgical procedure, postoperative clinical course, and prognosis. The origin of the patients was colorectal cancer( 9 cases), gastric cancer( 4 cases), uterine cancer( 3 cases), pancreatic cancer( 2 cases), bladder( 1 case), and anal cancer (1 case). Small bowel obstruction was noted in 8 cases and colorectal obstruction was noted in 14 cases. Colostomy was performed in 13 cases, resection and reconstruction were performed in 6 cases, and bypass was performed in 4 cases. Ninety percent of the patients were able to eat solid food following the surgery, but 20% of the patients were forced to have bowel obstruction. The median survival time after palliative surgery was 3 (range, 0-15) months, and 6 patients (30%) died within 2 months. We concluded that palliative surgery for the treatment of malignant bowel obstruction could improve the patients' quality of life. The decision for performing palliative surgery should be made while considering the patient's prognosis, wishes, and potential for symptom improvement. PMID:24393893

  7. Future care planning: a first step to palliative care for all patients with advanced heart disease.

    PubMed

    Denvir, M A; Murray, S A; Boyd, K J

    2015-07-01

    Palliative care is recommended for patients with end-stage heart failure with several recent, randomised trials showing improvements in symptoms and quality of life and more studies underway. Future care planning provides a framework for discussing a range of palliative care problems with patients and their families. This approach can be introduced at any time during the patient's journey of care and ideally well in advance of end-of-life care. Future care planning is applicable to a wide range of patients with advanced heart disease and could be delivered systematically by cardiology teams at the time of an unplanned hospital admission, akin to cardiac rehabilitation for myocardial infarction. Integrating cardiology care and palliative care can benefit many patients with advanced heart disease at increased risk of death or hospitalisation. Larger, randomised trials are needed to assess the impact on patient outcomes and experiences. PMID:25900977

  8. Palliative care outcome measures in COPD patients: a conceptual review.

    PubMed

    Antoniu, Sabina Antonela; Boiculese, Lucian Vasile

    2016-04-01

    In chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), palliative care is appropriate in very advanced stages based on recognition of its need when conventional therapy is no longer able to control symptoms, disease morbidity, or to improve/maintain an acceptable quality of life. Palliative care aims to improve quality of life, or, if applied specifically at the end-of-life, to ensure comfortable care. In COPD palliative care effectiveness of interventions should be quantified with outcome measures able to better capture the holistic nature of approaches and not only the specific features of disease. These should include: physical outcomes, psychological outcomes, social outcomes, spiritual outcomes. Such measures are discussed in this review along with arguments supporting their use. PMID:26967768

  9. [Assessment of the spiritual needs of patients in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Hajnová Fukasová, E; Bužgová, R; Feltl, D

    2015-01-01

    The appraisal and the right diagnostics of all needs and problems of patients, including the spiritual needs, are unavoidable for increase of the quality of the all-embracing nursing care. In the case of satisfying of the needs of the patients, it is important to have view the person as a unity of thebody and the soul. Identification and satisfying of the spiritual needs are not uncomplicated; moreover, spirituality does not have a target--ed and clear definition. In the palliative care, the solution and saturation of spiritual needs have a great priority, and it can be the key aspect of psychological activity. Also, medical experts are becoming aware of the meaning of spirituality as the part of psychological contentment more and more. Smaller importance is attached to measurement of spiritual needs, and in many medical institutions ends at the case history with the questions: "Are you a believer?", "Do you have any spiritual needs?". Spirituality and religion are very personal matters of every human. Many patients turn to religion to find answers to difficult questions while others find support through the spiritual beliefs outside the scope of organized religion. Mistaking of meanings of the spirituality and religionism can lead to many misunderstandings. The basic condition for the right diagnostics and satisfaction of spiritual needs are the definition of the used terms and using of standardized measurement devices in the clinical praxis. The target of summarizing study was to define the term of spirituality, to describe a lot of measurement devices these are suitable for the evaluation of human spiritual needs. For methodology for acquiring of the results of research works that are concerned with the questions of spiritual needs in case of the incurable patients, the following databases were used (2005-2013): EBSCO, Bibliographia Medica Čechoslovaca, Google Scholar, Solen - www.solen.cz, Profese on-line as the source of the data. The choice of studies were

  10. [Ethical questions with patients in the palliative phase].

    PubMed

    Roger, Violaine

    2016-04-01

    Ethics question our values and the principles which govern our decisions. In the specific context of the home, where the family is alone most of the time with the sick family member, and where the team of health professionals is more fragmented, day-to-day care, notably in the palliative phase, requires almost constant ethical questioning. PMID:27063882

  11. Longterm effects of palliative local treatment of incurable metastatic lesions in colorectal cancer patients

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yuanyuan; Jiang, Chang; Liu, Shousheng; He, Wenzhuo; Kong, Pengfei; Zhang, Bei; Xia, Liangping

    2016-01-01

    We assessed the value of palliative local treatment of incurable metastatic lesions in colorectal cancer patients. Consecutive patients with metastatic colorectal cancer treated between 2003 and 2014 were retrospectively reviewed. Propensity score matching was used to create comparable palliative local treatment and chemotherapy alone groups (n = 272 in each group). The primary endpoint was overall survival, which was calculated using Kaplan-Meier survival analyses. Factors possibly influencing survival were evaluated by univariate and subsequently by multivariate analyses. Palliative local treatment prolonged survival as compared with chemotherapy alone (38.73 vs. 19.8 months, p < 0.01). Univariate and subsequent multivariate analyses showed that primary stage IV at initial diagnosis; high CA199 level and LDH at the time of diagnosis were independent factors for a poor prognosis. Palliative local treatment improved survival better than chemotherapy alone in patients with 0, 1, 2, or 3 of the prognostic factors (p < 0.01). Patients administered treatment for pulmonary metastases survived longer than those treated for metastases elsewhere (56.77 vs. 35.43 months, p = 0.01). Surgical treatment provided marginally longer survival than non-surgical treatment (44.87 vs. 35.43 months, p = 0.05). These findings suggest palliative local treatment has survival benefit for selected patients with incurable metastatic colorectal cancer. PMID:26992234

  12. [Bioethics and nutrition in adult patients with cancer in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Benarroz, Monica de Oliveira; Faillace, Giovanna Borges Damião; Barbosa, Leandro Augusto

    2009-09-01

    Cancer constitutes a major group of chronic diseases and is the second leading cause of death in the developed countries. Palliative care proposes to offer comprehensive support to control symptoms and improve quality of life for patients and their families. Nutrition is an important tool in palliative care, helping patients with their physical, psychological, and social issues and promoting comfort and quality of life. However, in the context of palliative care, nutritional support rarely achieves its role of fully recovering and assuring nutritional status. At this point, the nutritionist must consider the individual patient's needs, preferences, and eating habits, which are essential both for controlling symptoms and assuring satisfaction and comfort. The impossibility of conventionally applying established management and the development of a new perception of the patient often raise dilemmas for professional nutritionists. PMID:19750375

  13. Palliative Care in Cancer

    MedlinePlus

    ... palliative care is beneficial? Yes. Research shows that palliative care and its many components are beneficial to patient and family health and well-being. A number of studies in recent years have shown that patients who ...

  14. Frequently Asked Questions (Palliative Care: Conversations Matter)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Questions Frequently Asked Questions: What is pediatric palliative care? Pediatric palliative (pal-lee-uh-tiv) care is ... for patients and families. Who provides pediatric palliative care? Every palliative care team is different. The team ...

  15. Informal Caregivers of Palliative Oncohematologic Patients: The Invisible Guests: An Exhaustive Review of the Literature Available.

    PubMed

    Uceda-Torres, María Elena; Rodríguez-Rodríguez, Juan Nicolás; Alvarado-Gómez, Francisco; Sánchez-Ramos, José Luis; McGrath, Pam

    2016-08-01

    Informal caregivers are crucial members of the teams that care for palliative patients with cancer, including those with oncohematological malignancies. Publications concerning specific aspects of this latter group of carers are limited. This literature review indicates that palliative oncohematologic patients' caregivers do not differ from those of patients with solid tumors in ethical and related problems. However, there are specific problems for the former group with regard to negotiating the curative system, which are experienced as distressing, often without support from the health system and without offers of the possibility of being referred to palliative teams that they would have valued as very positive. Although this tendency seems to be changing, there is still considerable work to be done to improve the role of these carers. PMID:25907184

  16. Acting as Standardized Patients Enhances Family Medicine Residents' Self-Reported Skills in Palliative Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sittikariyakul, Pat; Jaturapatporn, Darin; Kirshen, A. J.

    2015-01-01

    Recent publications have confirmed the use of standardized patients (SPs) in improving clinical skills and enhancing competency. Little research has studied the benefits residents may themselves gain in palliative care playing the role of SPs. Nineteen Family Medicine residents were recruited as standardized patients (FMR-SPs) for a mandatory…

  17. [Palliative care in pediatrics, ethics and relations with the patient].

    PubMed

    Friedel, Marie

    2014-01-01

    The extension of the Belgian law on euthanasia to minors during the course of 2014 raises questions with regard to the needs of children in the context of paediatric palliative care. These needs concern essentially the focus given to the interrelations between the child, their family and the caregiving team as well as to the relief of the physical, psychological and spiritual pain. Ethical guidelines help to fuel the discussions surrounding professional practices. PMID:25608370

  18. Dying in Palliative Care Units and in Hospital: A Comparison of the Quality of Life of Terminal Cancer Patients.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viney, Linda L.; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Compared quality of life of terminal cancer patients (n=182) in two palliative care units with that of those in general hospital. Patients in specialized palliative care units were found to differ from those dying in hospital, showing less indirectly expressed anger but more positive feelings. They also reported more anxiety about death but less…

  19. Palliative ventriculoperitoneal shunt in a pediatric patient with recurrent metastatic medulloblastoma.

    PubMed

    Schiff, Deborah; Kline, Cassie; Meltzer, Hal; Auger, JoAnne

    2009-04-01

    The authors present a case report of a pediatric patient with recurrent metastatic medulloblastoma who demonstrated significant clinical improvement after placement of a palliative ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt. They also review the medical literature that supports palliative surgical management of hydrocephalus and intracranial hypertension (ICH) caused by leptomeningeal (LM) spread of malignancy. The burdens and benefits of an invasive surgical procedure must always be weighed carefully, especially at end-of-life. Yet for some patients with LM spread and ICH, VP shunting may improve their quality of life, although their prognosis remains poor. PMID:19327082

  20. Integration of Early Specialist Palliative Care in Cancer Care and Patient Related Outcomes: A Critical Review of Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Salins, Naveen; Ramanjulu, Raghavendra; Patra, Lipika; Deodhar, Jayita; Muckaden, Mary Ann

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: World Health Organization and American Society of Clinical Oncology recommend early integration of specialist palliative care in patients with cancer. This paper focuses on critical review of evidence on integration of early specialist palliative care in cancer care and patient-related outcomes. Methods: The question for the literature search was – Does integration of early specialist palliative care in cancer care influences patient-related outcomes? 31 articles related to literature search review question were included in this paper. Results: Ten patient-related outcomes of early specialist palliative care in adult cancer care was studied. Studies by Temel et al. (2012), Bakitas et al. (2009), Zimmermann et al. (2014), Rugno et al. (2014), Lowery et al. (2013) and Walker et al. (2014) showed early specialist palliative care improves health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Studies by Pirl et al. (2012), Lowery et al. (2013), and Walker et al. (2014) showed early specialist palliative care improved mood depression and anxiety. Studies by Zimmermann et al. and Rugno et al. (2014) showed symptom control benefit of early specialist palliative care. Studies by Temel (2010), Bakitas (2015) and Rugno et al. (2014) showed survival improvement with early specialist palliative care. All these studies were carried in ambulatory palliative care setting. No survival benefit of palliative care intervention was seen in inpatient palliative care setting. The studies by Geer et al. (2012), Rugno et al. (2014), and Lowery et al. (2013) showed that early palliative care intervention positively influences treatment decision making. All the studies showed that palliative care intervention group received less intravenous chemotherapy in last few weeks of life. Studies by Yoong et al. and Temel et al. (2011) shows early specialist palliative care improves advanced care planning. Studies by Temel et al. (2010), Greer et al. (2012), McNamara et al. (2013), Hui et al. (2014

  1. Palliative Chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Matzo, Marianne

    2016-06-01

    This article is the first in a series on palliative care developed in collaboration with the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA; http://hpna.advancingexpertcare.org). The HPNA aims to guide nurses in preventing and relieving suffering and in giving the best possible care to patients and families, regardless of the stage of disease or the need for other therapies. The HPNA offers education, certification, advocacy, leadership, and research. PMID:27227867

  2. Prescription Pattern of Analgesic Drugs for Patients Receiving Palliative Care in a Teaching Hospital in India

    PubMed Central

    Menezes, Vishma Hydie; Nair, Shoba N; Soumya, MS; Tarey, SD

    2016-01-01

    Background: Drugs used in the palliative care unit for managing symptoms are major contributors toward the expenditure occurring in palliative care. This study was conducted to understand the prescription pattern of analgesic drugs in the patients who are receiving palliative care in a teaching hospital in India by a retrospective study of case records. Methods: Case record based, retrospective, descriptive study was conducted at the Pain and Palliative Care Department of St. John's Medical College Hospital, Bengaluru. Case record files of all patients referred to Pain and Palliative Care Department for the treatment of pain in the year of 2012 were studied. Patients’ age, gender, diagnoses, numerical pain rating scale (0–10), drugs prescribed, dosage, frequency, route of administration were recorded. The difference in drug utilization between the genders was done using Chi-square test. Data were collected from 502 patients of which 280 (56%) were males and 222 (44%) were females. Twelve percent of patients had mild pain (1–3), 34% had moderate pain (4–6), and 54% had severe pain (7–10). The most commonly used analgesic drugs were opioids (47%), followed by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (36%). The opioids used were tramadol (56%), and morphine (38%). Ninety percent of patients with numerical pain scale more than 6 received morphine. There was no difference in analgesic drug utilization with regards to gender. Prescription pattern differed depending on the severity of pain. Opioids were the most commonly used drugs for pain management. Conclusion: The study shows that prescription pattern in palliative care unit of this hospital was in accordance with WHO pain management guidelines. The study showed the current trend in prescription of analgesic drugs in the teaching hospital where the study was conducted. PMID:26962282

  3. Pattern of Referral of Noncancer Patients to Palliative Care in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Ghanem, Hafez M; Shaikh, Rawabi M; Alia, Ahmad M Abou; Al-Zayir, Amani S; Alsirafy, Samy A

    2011-01-01

    Aim: The palliative care (PC) needs of patients with noncancer life-threatening illnesses are comparable to that of cancer patients. This report describes the contribution of noncancer patients to the population of PC patients in a tertiary care hospital in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods: This is a retrospective review of the “palliative care inpatient database” of 21 months. Results: From 474 patients, 20 (4.2%) had a noncancer diagnosis. The main reason for the referral of noncancer patients was pain control. The most prevalent diagnoses were sickle cell disease (SCD) in 6 (30%) patients and peripheral arterial disease (PAD) in 5 (25%). Conclusions: These findings suggest that the PC needs of noncancer patients are largely unmet in our region. Further efforts are necessary to advance noncancer PC in Saudi Arabia. The PC needs of patients with SCD and PAD need to be addressed in future research. PMID:22346049

  4. Usefulness of Palliative Care to Complement the Management of Patients on Left Ventricular Assist Devices.

    PubMed

    Luo, Nancy; Rogers, Joseph G; Dodson, Gwen C; Patel, Chetan B; Galanos, Anthony N; Milano, Carmelo A; O'Connor, Christopher M; Mentz, Robert J

    2016-09-01

    Within the last decade, advancements in left ventricular assist device therapy have allowed patients with end-stage heart failure (HF) to live longer and with better quality of life. Like other life-saving interventions, however, there remains the risk of complications including infections, bleeding episodes, and stroke. The candidate for left ventricular assist device therapy faces complex challenges going forward, both physical and psychological, many of which may benefit from the application of palliative care principles by trained specialists. Despite these advantages, palliative care remains underused in many advanced HF programs. Here, we describe the benefits of palliative care, barriers to use within HF, and specific applications to the integrated care of patients on mechanical circulatory support. PMID:27474339

  5. Communication About Sexuality in Advanced Illness Aligns With a Palliative Care Approach to Patient-Centered Care.

    PubMed

    Leung, Margaret W; Goldfarb, Shari; Dizon, Don S

    2016-02-01

    Treatment-related sexual complications are common in cancer patients although rarely discussed in the palliative care setting. Sexuality is an important survivorship issue and remains relevant even in the terminal setting. There are multiple barriers in dialoguing about intimacy and sexual functioning from the patient and provider perspectives. Palliative care providers, while not expected to be sexual health experts, can provide comprehensive patient-centered care by including sexual health as part of their evaluation. They can explore how sexual dysfunction can impair functioning and utilize an interdisciplinary approach to manage symptoms. Palliative care providers can help patients identify their goals of care and explore what anticipated sexual changes and treat-related side effects are tolerable and intolerable to the patient's quality of life. Principles on addressing sexuality in the palliative setting and practical ways of incorporating sexual history into the palliative care assessment are provided. PMID:26769116

  6. An integrated approach to patient-specific predictive modeling for single ventricle heart palliation

    PubMed Central

    Corsini, Chiara; Baker, Catriona; Kung, Ethan; Schievano, Silvia; Arbia, Gregory; Baretta, Alessia; Biglino, Giovanni; Migliavacca, Francesco; Dubini, Gabriele; Pennati, Giancarlo; Marsden, Alison; Vignon-Clementel, Irene; Taylor, Andrew; Hsia, Tain-Yen; Dorfman, Adam

    2014-01-01

    In patients with congenital heart disease and a single ventricle (SV), ventricular support of the circulation is inadequate, and staged palliative surgery (usually 3 stages) is needed for treatment. In the various palliative surgical stages individual differences in the circulation are important and patient-specific surgical planning is ideal. In this study, an integrated approach between clinicians and engineers has been developed, based on patient-specific multi-scale models, and is here applied to predict stage 2 surgical outcomes. This approach involves four distinct steps: (1) collection of pre-operative clinical data from a patient presenting for SV palliation, (2) construction of the pre-operative model, (3) creation of feasible virtual surgical options which couple a three-dimensional model of the surgical anatomy with a lumped parameter model (LPM) of the remainder of the circulation and (4) performance of post-operative simulations to aid clinical decision making. The pre-operative model is described, agreeing well with clinical flow tracings and mean pressures. Two surgical options (bi-directional Glenn and hemi-Fontan operations) are virtually performed and coupled to the pre-operative LPM, with the hemodynamics of both options reported. Results are validated against postoperative clinical data. Ultimately, this work represents the first patient-specific predictive modeling of stage 2 palliation using virtual surgery and closed-loop multi-scale modeling. PMID:23343002

  7. An integrated approach to patient-specific predictive modeling for single ventricle heart palliation.

    PubMed

    Corsini, Chiara; Baker, Catriona; Kung, Ethan; Schievano, Silvia; Arbia, Gregory; Baretta, Alessia; Biglino, Giovanni; Migliavacca, Francesco; Dubini, Gabriele; Pennati, Giancarlo; Marsden, Alison; Vignon-Clementel, Irene; Taylor, Andrew; Hsia, Tain-Yen; Dorfman, Adam

    2014-01-01

    In patients with congenital heart disease and a single ventricle (SV), ventricular support of the circulation is inadequate, and staged palliative surgery (usually 3 stages) is needed for treatment. In the various palliative surgical stages individual differences in the circulation are important and patient-specific surgical planning is ideal. In this study, an integrated approach between clinicians and engineers has been developed, based on patient-specific multi-scale models, and is here applied to predict stage 2 surgical outcomes. This approach involves four distinct steps: (1) collection of pre-operative clinical data from a patient presenting for SV palliation, (2) construction of the pre-operative model, (3) creation of feasible virtual surgical options which couple a three-dimensional model of the surgical anatomy with a lumped parameter model (LPM) of the remainder of the circulation and (4) performance of post-operative simulations to aid clinical decision making. The pre-operative model is described, agreeing well with clinical flow tracings and mean pressures. Two surgical options (bi-directional Glenn and hemi-Fontan operations) are virtually performed and coupled to the pre-operative LPM, with the hemodynamics of both options reported. Results are validated against postoperative clinical data. Ultimately, this work represents the first patient-specific predictive modeling of stage 2 palliation using virtual surgery and closed-loop multi-scale modeling. PMID:23343002

  8. Palliative Care Services for Indian Migrants in Australia: Experiences of the Family of Terminally Ill Patients

    PubMed Central

    Shanmugasundaram, Sujatha; O'Connor, Margaret

    2009-01-01

    Background: The way that health care systems in developing countries like India care for dying patients, has an impact on the expectations of such care for those who migrate to other countries faces. At the end of life, cultural issues may impact on the quality of life remaining and for that reason, it is important that particular cultural practices are understood. This paper describes a study that investigated the cultural issues of access to palliative care services for Indian migrants in Australia. Purpose of the Study: To investigate the experiences of the family members of terminally ill Indian migrants in Victoria, Australia. Objective of the Study: To explore the issues related to accessing palliative care services for Indian migrants; to identify the effectiveness of palliative care in supporting the patient and family and to recommend strategies for improving this care. Materials and Methods: A qualitative descriptive design was utilized. Up to 6 family members were selected for in-depth interviews in understanding cultural issues related to the palliative care services for a family member. Results: Analysis of the interviews revealed that families of Indian patients experience difficulties whilst receiving palliative care services, which fell into three main categories: Indian support systems, cultural issues, and caring experiences. Although each of these issues had a direct influence on the experience of terminal care that their family member received, cultural issues and support systems also influenced the caring experiences. Conclusion: Despite the successful implementation of palliative care services across Australia, there are still problems in accessing and receiving the services among minority and disadvantaged groups like various cultural groups. PMID:20606861

  9. The Experiences of Well-Being of Palliative Care Patients in Malaysia: A Thematic Analysis.

    PubMed

    Beng, Tan Seng; Chin, Loh Ee; Guan, Ng Chong; Ann, Yee Hway; Wu, Cathie; Kuan, Wong Sook; Jane, Lim Ee; Khee, Saw Shier; Meng, Christopher Boey Chiong

    2015-08-01

    A qualitative study was conducted with semistructured interviews to explore the experiences of well-being in 15 adult palliative care inpatients of University Malaya Medical Center, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The results were thematically analyzed. Six basic themes were generated (1) positive attitude, (2) positive cognitions, (3) positive emotions, (4) positive engagement, (5) positive relationships, and (6) positive circumstances. The Seeds Model was conceptualized from the analysis. This model may inform the development of interventions in the enhancement of well-being of palliative care patients. PMID:24574364

  10. The development of a palliative care program for managed care patients: a case example.

    PubMed

    Gazelle, G; Buxbaum, R; Daniels, E

    2001-09-01

    Palliative care is emerging as an important new field. Although programs are developing in hospital environments, little is known about development of programs in outpatient practices or those serving large managed care populations. This article provides a framework for the development of a comprehensive palliative care program in a large multispecialty group practice that serves managed care patients. The article addresses guiding principles, the need for obtaining baseline data, how the clinical consultation service was established, development of outcomes measures, and information on current program status. Five themes emerged as key to successful program development, most importantly the close collaboration between administrative and clinical staff in all aspects of program development. PMID:11559386

  11. Palliative Care for a Mentally Incompetent End Stage Renal Failure Patient: Why Is It Important?

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Kwok-Ying; Yip, Terence; Sham, Mau-Kwong; Cheng, Benjamin Hon-Wai; Li, Cho-Wing; Wong, Yim-Chi; Lau, Vikki Wai-Kee

    2015-01-01

    People with intellectual disabilities are among the most disadvantaged groups in society. Here we report a mentally incompetent end stage renal failure (ESRF) patient with frequent emergency visits who made a significant improvement in symptoms control and reduction in casualty visits after introduction of renal palliative care service. Multidisciplinary approach would be useful in this case. PMID:25838954

  12. Acting as standardized patients enhances family medicine residents' self-reported skills in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Sittikariyakul, Pat; Jaturapatporn, Darin; Kirshen, A J

    2015-08-01

    Recent publications have confirmed the use of standardized patients (SPs) in improving clinical skills and enhancing competency. Little research has studied the benefits residents may themselves gain in palliative care playing the role of SPs. Nineteen Family Medicine residents were recruited as standardized patients (FMR-SPs) for a mandatory palliative care workshop in communication for incoming, first-year trainees. Four months later, FMR-SPs reflected upon their own experiences. Two independent researchers performed thematic analysis of these interviews. Most of the residents were satisfied with their roles. Twelve reported improved understanding of self, their patients, the doctor-patient relationship, and the underlying philosophy of palliative care. They also described improved verbal and non-verbal communication skills. Eleven of 14 residents reflected upon behavioral changes in problem coping styles. All residents indicated an intention to apply the learning in their future work. Encouraging Thai Family Medicine residents, in years one through three, to portray SPs in palliative care appears to be a valuable learning experience for the resident. Future studies to validate whether this learning has been applied in subsequent practice are planned. PMID:25256636

  13. Spiritual Concerns in Hindu Cancer Patients Undergoing Palliative Care: A Qualitative Study

    PubMed Central

    Simha, Srinagesh; Noble, Simon; Chaturvedi, Santosh K

    2013-01-01

    Aims: Spiritual concerns are being identified as important components of palliative care. The aim of this study was to explore the nature of spiritual concerns in cancer patients undergoing palliative care in a hospice in India. Materials and Methods: The methodology used was a qualitative method: Interpretive phenomenological analysis. A semi-structured interview guide was used to collect data, based on Indian and western literature reports. Certain aspects like karma and pooja, relevant to Hindus, were included. Theme saturation was achieved on interviewing 10 participants. Results: The seven most common spiritual concerns reported were benefit of pooja, faith in God, concern about the future, concept of rebirth, acceptance of one's situation, belief in karma, and the question Why me? No participant expressed four of the concerns studied: Loneliness, need of seeking forgiveness from others, not being remembered later, and religious struggle. Conclusions: This study confirms that there are spiritual concerns reported by patients receiving palliative care. The qualitative descriptions give a good idea about these experiences, and how patients deal with them. The study indicates the need for adequate attention to spiritual aspects during palliative care. PMID:24049350

  14. Integrating early palliative care for patients with HIV: provider and patient perceptions of symptoms and need for services.

    PubMed

    Lofgren, Sarah; Friedman, Rachel; Ghermay, Rahwa; George, Maura; Pittman, John Richard; Shahane, Amit; Zeimer, Dorothy; Del Rio, Carlos; Marconi, Vincent C

    2015-12-01

    Increasingly clinicians are using palliative care to address the symptomatic and psychosocial effects of disease often missed by routine clinical care, termed "early" palliative care. Within an inner-city medical center, we began a program to integrate early palliative care into HIV inpatient care. Patient symptom burden and desired services were assessed and compared to provider perceptions of patient's needs. From 2010-2012, 10 patients, with a median CD4+ T-cell count of 32.5 cells/μL, and 34 providers completed the survey. Providers ranked their patients' fatigue, sadness, anxiety, sexual dysfunction, and body image significantly higher than patients it for themselves. Patients ranked medical care, pharmacy, social work, physical therapy, and housing as significantly more important to them than providers estimated them to be. These differences may reflect the fact that physicians often overlook patients' unmet basic needs. Early palliative care may narrow this gap between providers' and patients' perceptions of needs through good communication and targeting barriers, such as housing instability, which are vital to overcome for consistent long-term follow up. PMID:25216735

  15. Evaluating palliative care: bereaved family members' evaluations of patients' pain, anxiety and depression.

    PubMed

    McPherson, Christine J; Addington-Hall, Julia M

    2004-08-01

    Palliative care surveys often rely on bereaved family members to act as proxies to provide information on patient care at the end of life, after the patient's death. However, when comparing bereaved family members' assessments with those of the patients, agreement is found to be better for symptoms that are more concrete and observable than subjective aspects such as psychological symptoms and pain. To date, little is known about how proxies actually evaluate these types of symptoms. The present study used retrospective verbal protocol analysis to elucidate the thought processes of 30 bereaved relatives during their evaluations of patients' pain, anxiety and depression. The qualitative analysis raised awareness of the difficulties experienced by proxies when discerning the presence of symptoms. It also provided insights into the cues and strategies used when making decisions, contributing to a fuller understanding of how proxies distinguish symptoms. Recommendations are made to improve the design of retrospective palliative care surveys. PMID:15276191

  16. Palliative Surgical Approach to Rehabilitate Spinal Injury Patient in Indian Rural Setup

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Pradeep K; Sakale, Harshal; Shrivastva, Sandeep; Dulani, Rajesh

    2010-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the usefulness of conventional spinal surgery as palliative procedure to rehabilitate dorsolumbar injuries in a rural setup. Materials and Methods: Twenty-three patients with dorsolumbar spine injury with complete paraplegia were assessed on the clinical and social rehabilitation parameters after surgical stabilization at Acharya Vinoba Bhave Rural Hospital Sawangi, Wardha, India. The study group comprised 21 male and 2 female patients. The dorsolumbar spine injury was fixed by conventional posterior instrumentation using short-segment pedicle screw system and Harrington rod system with or without fusion. Functional and neurologic outcome was recorded in the follow-up period by using Functional Independence Measure and Frankel grade, respectively. Correlation and analysis of results was established statistically. Results: Functional outcome showed statistically significant improvement. Social cognition was found intact in a significant number of patients. Conclusion: This study demonstrates the usefulness of conventional instrumentation as palliative surgical approach to stabilize and rehabilitate patients from deprived sector of rural India. PMID:21218006

  17. Integrating social work into palliative care for lung cancer patients and families: a multidimensional approach.

    PubMed

    Otis-Green, Shirley; Sidhu, Rupinder K; Del Ferraro, Catherine; Ferrell, Betty

    2014-01-01

    Lung cancer patients and their family caregivers face a wide range of potentially distressing symptoms across the four domains of quality of life. A multidimensional approach to addressing these complex concerns with early integration of palliative care has proven beneficial. This article highlights opportunities to integrate social work using a comprehensive quality of life model and a composite patient scenario from a large lung cancer educational intervention National Cancer Institute-funded program project grant. PMID:24797998

  18. Palliative care and circumstances of dying in German ALS patients using non-invasive ventilation.

    PubMed

    Kühnlein, Peter; Kübler, Andrea; Raubold, Sabine; Worrell, Marcia; Kurt, Anja; Gdynia, Hans-Jürgen; Sperfeld, Anne-Dorte; Ludolph, Albert Christian

    2008-04-01

    Non-invasive ventilation (NIV) is known to improve quality of life and to prolong survival in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients. However, little is known about the circumstances of dying in ventilated ALS patients. In the light of the debate on legalizing euthanasia it is important to provide empirical data about the process of dying in these patients. In a structured interview, 29 family caregivers of deceased ALS patients were asked about their own and the patient's attitude toward physician-assisted suicide (PAS) and euthanasia, circumstances of dying, and the use of palliative medication. Quantitative and qualitative content analysis was performed on the data. Non-recurring suicidal thoughts were reported by five patients. Three patients and seven relatives had thought about PAS. Seventeen caregivers described the patients' death as "peaceful", while choking was reported in six bulbar patients. In final stages of dying, the general practitioner (GP) was involved in the treatment of 10 patients, with palliative medication including sedatives and opiates being administered in eight cases. In conclusion, in contrast to the Netherlands, where 20% of terminal ALS patients die from PAS or euthanasia, only a small minority of our patients seems to have thought about PAS. The legal situation in Germany (where euthanasia is illegal), a bias due to the selection of NIV patients as well as a high percentage of religious patients and those with good levels of social support from family and friends, might account for this. Most of our patients died peacefully at home from carbon dioxide narcosis, but choking was described in some bulbar patients. Thus, palliative care, especially the use of opiates, anxiolytics and sedatives should be optimized, and the involvement of GP should be strongly encouraged, especially in bulbar patients. PMID:18428001

  19. Childhood sexual abuse in advanced cancer patients in the palliative care setting.

    PubMed

    Wygant, Carmella; Hui, David; Bruera, Eduardo

    2011-08-01

    Childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is a common, distressing, yet rarely discussed topic in palliative care. The long-term effects of CSA can have a significant impact on patients' quality of life, particularly at the end of life. In this article, we aim to initiate a discussion regarding the need to address CSA in the palliative care setting, using the example of an advanced cancer patient and her caregiver sister who revealed their common past. Specifically, we will be discussing 1) the comorbidities, psychological distress, and family distress associated with CSA, 2) its impact on health care delivery, 3) an approach to initiating conversations regarding CSA, and 4) various management strategies. Successful management of CSA necessitates an interprofessional team approach and may help to improve the quality of life of patients and their families. PMID:21444190

  20. Quality Measures for Palliative Care in Patients With Cancer: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Kamal, Arif H.; Gradison, Margaret; Maguire, Jennifer M.; Taylor, Donald; Abernethy, Amy P.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Quality assessment is a critical component of determining the value of medical services, including palliative care. Characterization of the current portfolio of measures that assess the quality of palliative care delivered in oncology is necessary to identify gaps and inform future measure development. Methods: We performed a systematic review of MEDLINE/PubMed and the gray literature for quality measures relevant to palliative care. Measures were categorized into National Quality Forum domains and reviewed for methodology of development and content. Measures were additionally analyzed to draw summative conclusions on scope and span. Results: Two hundred eighty-four quality measures within 13 measure sets were identified. The most common domains for measure content were Physical Aspects of Care (35%) and Structure and Processes of Care (22%). Of symptom-related measures, pain (36%) and dyspnea (26%) were the most commonly addressed. Spiritual (4%) and Cultural (1%) Aspects of Care were least represented domains. Generally, measures addressed processes of care, did not delineate benchmarks for success, and often did not specify intended interventions to address unmet needs. This was most evident regarding issues of psychosocial and spiritual assessment and management. Conclusion: Within a large cohort of quality measures for palliative, care is often a focus on physical manifestations of disease and adverse effects of therapy; relatively little attention is given to the other aspects of suffering commonly observed among patients with advanced cancer, including psychological, social, and spiritual distress. PMID:24917264

  1. Evaluation of Spiritual Needs of Patients with Advanced Cancer in a Palliative Care Unit

    PubMed Central

    Valls, Joan; Porta, Josep; Viñas, Juan

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Introduction: Spiritual needs play an important role in palliative care as both a clinical dimension and a therapeutic strategy. However, recent studies have shown that the management of this dimension still remains a challenge at the clinical level of palliative care. Goals: Our goal was to evaluate the spiritual needs of patients diagnosed with advanced and terminal cancer by the palliative care unit of a hospital in Barcelona, Spain. Methods: An observational study was conducted that involved 50 patients who were recruited between May 2007 and January 2008. A questionnaire was used which included 28 items selected from a review of the literature; the responses were analyzed using a five-point Lickert scale. The results were grouped in 11 categories corresponding to different spiritual needs. Results: Two spiritual needs emerged as the most relevant for the patients: their need to be recognized as a person until the end of their life and their need to know the truth about their illness. The least important spiritual needs were identified as those: for continuity and an afterlife; to get rid of obsessions; to achieve freedom from blame and to be able to forgive others; and the need for reconciliation and to feel forgiven by others. Conclusions: When patients knew the truth about their illnesses and they were treated with dignity, their most important needs were likely to be covered. These results suggest that patients receiving palliative care wish to live for the present with as much normality as possible and show only minor concern for their past and future. PMID:24745870

  2. The lung cancer patient, the pneumologist and palliative care: a developing alliance.

    PubMed

    Blum, Torsten; Schönfeld, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Considerable evidence is now available on the value of palliative care for lung cancer patients in all stages and at all times during the course of the disease. However, pneumologists and their institutions seem to be widely in arrears with the implementation of palliative care concepts and the development of integrated structures. This review focuses on the available evidence and experience of various frequently unmet needs of lung cancer patients, especially psychological, social, spiritual and cultural ones. A PubMed search for evidence on these aspects of palliative care as well as on barriers to the implementation, on outcome parameters and effectiveness, and on structure and process quality was performed with a special focus on lung cancer patients. As a consequence, this review particularly draws pneumologists' attention to improving their skills in communication with the patients, their relatives and among themselves, and to establish team structures with more far-reaching competences and continuity than existing multilateral cooperations and conferences can provide. Ideally, any process of structural and procedural improvement should be accompanied by scientific evaluation and measures for quality optimisation. PMID:25359341

  3. Results of a transparent expert consultation on patient and public involvement in palliative care research

    PubMed Central

    Daveson, Barbara A; de Wolf-Linder, Susanne; Witt, Jana; Newson, Kirstie; Morris, Carolyn; Higginson, Irene J; Evans, Catherine J

    2015-01-01

    Background: Support and evidence for patient, unpaid caregiver and public involvement in research (user involvement) are growing. Consensus on how best to involve users in palliative care research is lacking. Aim: To determine an optimal user-involvement model for palliative care research. Design: We hosted a consultation workshop using expert presentations, discussion and nominal group technique to generate recommendations and consensus on agreement of importance. A total of 35 users and 32 researchers were approached to attend the workshop, which included break-out groups and a ranking exercise. Descriptive statistical analysis to establish consensus and highlight divergence was applied. Qualitative analysis of discussions was completed to aid interpretation of findings. Setting/participants: Participants involved in palliative care research were invited to a global research institute, UK. Results: A total of 12 users and 5 researchers participated. Users wanted their involvement to be more visible, including during dissemination, with a greater emphasis on the difference their involvement makes. Researchers wanted to improve productivity, relevance and quality through involvement. Users and researchers agreed that an optimal model should consist of (a) early involvement to ensure meaningful involvement and impact and (b) diverse virtual and face-to-face involvement methods to ensure flexibility. Conclusion: For involvement in palliative care research to succeed, early and flexible involvement is required. Researchers should advertise opportunities for involvement and promote impact of involvement via dissemination plans. Users should prioritise adding value to research through enhancing productivity, quality and relevance. More research is needed not only to inform implementation and ensure effectiveness but also to investigate the cost-effectiveness of involvement in palliative care research. PMID:25931336

  4. [Influence of music on the quality of life of palliative cancer patients].

    PubMed

    Polt, Günter; Fink, Margit; Schieder, Helga; Tanzmeister, Silke

    2014-05-01

    A small prospective, multicentre study examined the effect of a perceptual acoustic stimulus (music) on quality of life of palliative cancer patients with special reference to pain.14 test subjects (m = 4, w = 10; age 67.6 (SD = 9.7)) in stationary or mobile care situation were included. The current therapy has not been modified.Each subject received a CD with 12 songs, an information folder, a guide to using the CD as well as a questionnaire.The offered music therapy was experienced by all study participants (100 %) as helpful. The effect was seen differently in psychological, physical, spiritual, and social quality of life. The pain was reduced nociable in 11 out of 14 participants.From the experience of the autors we demand to offer and enable music therapy in palliative care to each patient, but also adapt to their individual needs. PMID:24723126

  5. Palliative Care and the Humanities: Centralizing the Patient at the End of Life

    PubMed Central

    Franke, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care is a quickly growing facet of modern medicine. While scientific advancements have broken new ground for the possibilities of end-of-life care, sensitive treatment of the patient as an individual has lagged behind and has frequently led to an unsatisfactory experience for patients, families, and the medical community at large. This essay argues that centralizing patients during the terminal phases of treatment by using humanistic perspectives has the potential to bring new meaning and improved effectiveness to patients and physicians alike. PMID:27505023

  6. Palliative Care and the Humanities: Centralizing the Patient at the End of Life.

    PubMed

    Franke, Richard J

    2016-03-01

    Palliative care is a quickly growing facet of modern medicine. While scientific advancements have broken new ground for the possibilities of end-of-life care, sensitive treatment of the patient as an individual has lagged behind and has frequently led to an unsatisfactory experience for patients, families, and the medical community at large. This essay argues that centralizing patients during the terminal phases of treatment by using humanistic perspectives has the potential to bring new meaning and improved effectiveness to patients and physicians alike. PMID:27505023

  7. Estimating Need for Palliative External Beam Radiotherapy in Adult Cancer Patients

    SciTech Connect

    Nieder, Carsten; Pawinski, Adam; Haukland, Ellinor; Dokmo, Raymond; Phillipi, Isabelle; Dalhaug, Astrid

    2010-01-15

    Purpose: Older surveys and benchmark data from different sources have suggested that 46-53% of all radiotherapy courses were administered with palliative intent. In Sweden, 87 annual palliative treatment courses per 100,000 inhabitants were registered in 2001, mainly for the treatment of bone and brain metastases (95% confidence interval [CI] 85-89). The corresponding number for Norway was 95 (95% CI 93-98) in 2004. New data are lacking, although new systemic treatment options might alter this number. Methods and Materials: We collected prospective data on the use of palliative external beam radiotherapy for adult cancer patients during a 12-month period between 2007 and 2008. All patients (median age 69 years) were treated in one Norwegian county and had unlimited, rapid access to treatment. Efforts were made to account for potential overuse. Results: Most irradiated patients had skeletal target volumes, followed by nonbony thoracic targets and brain metastases. In the present population, 133 annual treatments per 100,000 inhabitants were registered (after correction for overuse, but not accounting for radiosurgery of brain metastases and emerging treatment options; e.g., stereotactic radiotherapy for lung and liver metastases; 95% CI 119-149). Because some patients received simultaneous treatment to different target volumes, the annual number of target volumes amounted to 175 per 100,000 inhabitants (95% CI 161-191). Conclusion: The need for palliative radiotherapy has not decreased and might be greater than previously estimated. In regions with a significantly different cancer incidence, age structure, and other socioeconomic factors than northern Europe, separate analyses should be conducted.

  8. Satisfaction with and Perception of Pain Management among Palliative Patients with Breakthrough Pain: A Qualitative Study.

    PubMed

    Pathmawathi, Subramanian; Beng, Tan Seng; Li, Lee Mei; Rosli, Roshaslina; Sharwend, Supermanian; Kavitha, Rasaiah R; Christopher, Boey Chiong Meng

    2015-08-01

    Breakthrough pain is a significant contributor to much suffering by patients. The experience of intense pain may interfere with, and affect, daily life functioning and has major consequences on patients' well-being if it is not well managed. The area of breakthrough pain has not been fully understood. This study thus aimed to explore the experiences of breakthrough pain among palliative patients. A qualitative study based on a series of open-ended interviews among 21 palliative patients suffering from pain at an urban tertiary hospital in Malaysia was conducted. Five themes were generated: (i) pain viewed as an unbearable experience causing misery in the lives of patients, (ii) deterioration of body function and no hope of recovery, (iii) receiving of inadequate pain management for pain, (iv) insensitivity of healthcare providers toward patients' pain experience, and (v) pain coping experiences of patients. The findings revealed that nonpharmacologic approaches such as psychosocial support should be introduced to the patients. Proper guidance and information should be given to healthcare providers to improve the quality of patient care. Healthcare providers should adopt a sensitive approach in caring for patients' needs. The aim is to meet the needs of the patients who want to be pain free or to attain adequate relief of their pain for breakthrough pain. PMID:26256219

  9. Tissue microRNAs as predictive markers for gastric cancer patients undergoing palliative chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Smid, David; Kulda, Vlastimil; Srbecka, Kristyna; Kubackova, Dasa; Dolezal, Jan; Daum, Ondrej; Kucera, Radek; Topolcan, Ondrej; Treska, Vladislav; Skalicky, Tomas; Pesta, Martin

    2016-06-01

    MicroRNAs have the potential to become valuable predictive markers for gastric cancer. Samples of biopsy tissue, routinely taken from gastric cancer patients undergoing palliative chemotherapy, constitute suitable material for microRNA profiling with the aim of predicting the effect of chemotherapy. Our study group consisted of 54 patients, all of whom underwent palliative chemotherapy based on 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) or 5-FU in combination with platinum derivatives between 2000 and 2013. The expression of 29 selected microRNAs and genes BRCA1, ERCC1, RRM1 and TS, in gastric cancer tissue macrodissected from FFPE tissue samples, was measured by quantitative RT-PCR. The relationship between gene expression levels and time to progression (TTP) and overall survival (OS) was analysed. From the set of the 29 microRNAs of interest, we found high expression of miR-150, miR-342-3p, miR-181b, miR-221, miR-224 and low levels of miR-520h relate to shorter TTP. High levels of miR-150, miR-192, miR-224, miR-375 and miR-342-3p related to shorter OS. In routinely available FFPE tissue samples, we found 6 miRNAs with a relation to TTP, which may serve as predictors of the effectiveness of palliative treatment in gastric cancer patients. These miRNAs could also help in deciding whether to indicate palliative chemotherapy. PMID:27081844

  10. [Constipation in Patients with Incurable Cancer - Recommendations of the German S3 Guideline 'Palliative Medicine'].

    PubMed

    Wirz, Stefan; Simon, Steffen; Frieling, Thomas; Bausewein, Claudia; Voltz, Raymond; Pralong, Anne; Mönig, Stefan; Follmann, Markus; Holtmann, Martin; Becker, Gerhild

    2016-08-01

    According to the German S3-guideline 'Palliative Medicine' which has been supported by the German Guideline Program in Oncology, constipation in palliative patients requires a consistent prophylaxis and therapy. Constipation is caused by immobilisation, poor health, exsiccosis, a low-fiber diet or a preexisting functional constipation. Further important causes are substances with constipating side effects, such as opioids or anticholinergic drugs. Pragmatically, constipation should be assessed by subjective parameters such as the feeling of incomplete evacuation, straining, or other complaints. Objective parameters are hard stool or reduced number of bowel movements. For the early detection of constipation the amount of the stool mass and the stool frequency are applicable. If constipation occurs, a standardized escalating protocol applying adequate fluid intake, a high fibre diet, and laxatives is recommended. New prokinetic agents, secretagogues, or opioid antagonists may be used as reserve drugs. PMID:27509350

  11. Distress Reduction for Palliative Care Patients and Families With 5-Minute Mindful Breathing: A Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Beng, Tan Seng; Ahmad, Fazlina; Loong, Lam Chee; Chin, Loh Ee; Zainal, Nor Zuraida; Guan, Ng Chong; Ann, Yee Hway; Li, Lee Mei; Meng, Christopher Boey Chiong

    2016-07-01

    A pilot study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of 5-minute mindful breathing in distress reduction. Twenty palliative care patients and family caregivers with a distress score ≥4 measured by the Distress Thermometer were recruited and randomly assigned to mindful breathing or "listening" (being listened to). Median distress reductions after 5 minutes were 2.5 for the mindful breathing group and 1.0 for the listening group. A significantly larger reduction in the distress score was observed in the mindful breathing group (Mann-Whitney U test: U = 8.0, n1 = n2 = 10, mean rank1 = 6.30, mean rank2 = 14.70, z = -3.208, P = .001). The 5-minute mindful breathing could be useful in distress reduction in palliative care. PMID:25632044

  12. Racial/Ethnic Differences in Inpatient Palliative Care Consultation for Patients With Advanced Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Rashmi K.; Cameron, Kenzie A.; Chmiel, Joan S.; Von Roenn, Jamie H.; Szmuilowicz, Eytan; Prigerson, Holly G.; Penedo, Frank J.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Inpatient palliative care consultation (IPCC) may help address barriers that limit the use of hospice and the receipt of symptom-focused care for racial/ethnic minorities, yet little is known about disparities in the rates of IPCC. We evaluated the association between race/ethnicity and rates of IPCC for patients with advanced cancer. Patients and Methods Patients with metastatic cancer who were hospitalized between January 1, 2009, and December 31, 2010, at an urban academic medical center participated in the study. Patient-level multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate the association between race/ethnicity and IPCC. Results A total of 6,288 patients (69% non-Hispanic white, 19% African American, and 6% Hispanic) were eligible. Of these patients, 16% of whites, 22% of African Americans, and 20% of Hispanics had an IPCC (overall P < .001). Compared with whites, African Americans had a greater likelihood of receiving an IPCC (odds ratio, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.01 to 1.44), even after adjusting for insurance, hospitalizations, marital status, and illness severity. Among patients who received an IPCC, African Americans had a higher median number of days from IPCC to death compared with whites (25 v 17 days; P = .006), and were more likely than Hispanics (59% v 41%; P = .006), but not whites, to be referred to hospice. Conclusion Inpatient settings may neutralize some racial/ethnic differences in access to hospice and palliative care services; however, irrespective of race/ethnicity, rates of IPCC remain low and occur close to death. Additional research is needed to identify interventions to improve access to palliative care in the hospital for all patients with advanced cancer. PMID:26324373

  13. Home Palliative Care for Patients with Advanced Chronic Kidney Disease: Preliminary Results

    PubMed Central

    Teruel, José L.; Rexach, Lourdes; Burguera, Victor; Gomis, Antonio; Fernandez-Lucas, Milagros; Rivera, Maite; Diaz, Alicia; Collazo, Sergio; Liaño, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Healthcare for patients with advanced chronic kidney disease (ACKD) on conservative treatment very often poses healthcare problems that are difficult to solve. At the end of 2011, we began a program based on the care and monitoring of these patients by Primary Care Teams. ACKD patients who opted for conservative treatment were offered the chance to be cared for mainly at home by the Primary Care doctor and nurse, under the coordination of the Palliative Care Unit and the Nephrology Department. During 2012, 2013, and 2014, 76 patients received treatment in this program (mean age: 81 years; mean Charlson age-comorbidity index: 10, and mean glomerular filtration rate: 12.4 mL/min/1.73 m2). The median patient follow-up time (until death or until 31 December 2014) was 165 days. During this period, 51% of patients did not have to visit the hospital’s emergency department and 58% did not require hospitalization. Forty-eight of the 76 patients died after a median time of 135 days in the program; 24 (50%) died at home. Our experience indicates that with the support of the Palliative Care Unit and the Nephrology Department, ACKD patients who are not dialysis candidates may be monitored at home by Primary Care Teams. PMID:27417813

  14. Is There a Need for Early Palliative Care in Patients With Life-Limiting Illnesses? Interview Study With Patients About Experienced Care Needs From Diagnosis Onward.

    PubMed

    Beernaert, Kim; Deliens, Luc; De Vleminck, Aline; Devroey, Dirk; Pardon, Koen; Block, Lieve Van den; Cohen, Joachim

    2016-06-01

    The early integration of specialist palliative care has been shown to benefit the quality of life of patients with advanced cancer. In order to explore whether other seriously ill people and people at even earlier phases would also benefit from early palliative care, we conducted 18 qualitative interviews with people having cancer, chronic obstructive lung disease, heart failure, or dementia at different phases of the illness trajectory about how they experienced care needs related to their disease from diagnosis onward. Respondents experienced needs within the different domains of palliative care at different stages of the illness and different illness types or duration of the illness. This study contributes to the understanding of primary care needs of patients for whom palliative care (not necessarily specialized palliative care) could be beneficial. PMID:25852203

  15. Integrating Palliative Care Into the Care of Patients With Advanced Lung Cancer.

    PubMed

    Kapo, Jennifer M; Akgün, Kathleen M

    2015-01-01

    Lung cancer is the leading cause of death due to malignancy. Although lung cancer mortality has been decreasing in recent years, it remains substantially higher than other causes of cancer death. Median survival for patients with locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer, defined as lung cancer involving regional lymph nodes, is estimated to be approximately 10 to 17 months, and median survival for patients with metastatic disease is only 6 to 9 months. In addition, patients with advanced lung cancer often experience debilitating symptoms and poor quality of life. Pain, dyspnea, and fatigue are most frequently reported and affect at least 65% of patients with advanced lung cancer. Given this burden of symptoms and high mortality, patients and their families facing a diagnosis of advanced lung cancer are in need of support. Palliative care, with its focus on addressing the emotional, physical, and spiritual sources of suffering utilizing the expertise of an interdisciplinary team, can provide this comprehensive support. This review describes the role of supportive and palliative care integrated into the treatment of patients with a diagnosis of advanced lung cancer with sections focused on the evaluation and treatment of pain and dyspnea, approaches to challenging communication tasks, and the support of caregivers who care for patients with advanced lung cancer. PMID:26389769

  16. [Possibilities of stereotactic radiotherapy in the palliative treatment of patients with pancreatic cancer].

    PubMed

    Tkachev, S I; Medvedev, S V; Znatkova, Ya R; Romanov, D S; Nogovitsyn, E A; Bulychkin, P V; Yurieva, T V; Gutnik, R A; Yazhgunovich, I P; Berdnik, A V; Bykova, Yu B; Bazin, I S; Fedoseenko, D I

    2015-01-01

    Morbidity and mortality from pancreatic cancer is steadily increasing. Resectable cases are not more than 20%. Conventional schemes of chemoradiation and radiation therapy are durable over the time, have toxicity and low treatment outcomes. Many foreign authors consider as promising the technique of stereotactic radiotherapy, which is often used in pancreatic cancer and permit achieving high local control. At our institution there has been developed and introduced into clinical practice a method of stereotactic radiotherapy for the palliative treatment of patients with pancreatic cancer, which improved not only the duration but also the quality of life of patients. PMID:26016157

  17. Help is just a phone call away: after-hours support for palliative care patients wishing to die at home.

    PubMed

    Baird-Bower, Debbie; Roach, Julie; Andrews, Morven; Onslow, Fiona; Curnin, Emma

    2016-06-01

    The 24-hour support for palliative patients is the gold standard of health care in Australia. However, in the state of Tasmania after-hours telephone support was spatially fragmented and inequitable. In 2014, hospice@HOME, a pilot programme introduced in Tasmania in that year, implemented a state-wide after-hours palliative care support service--1800HOSPICE--offering 24-hour support, 7 days a week for palliative patients, caregivers and the public. Six months of after-hours call logs in combination with additional patient data, were analysed to evaluate the use and wider implications of a state-wide after-hours palliative care support number. Family and caregivers mainly used the after-hours support to request changes to support services (25.1%), report changes in patients' overall condition (23.6%) and request acute medical assistance (16.2%). Through the use of the after-hours services by all individuals involved in the care, end-of-life patients were able to reduce ambulance contact and emergency department admission, and thereby increase their likelihood of dying at home (for patients whose preference was to die at home). Overall, 24-hour palliative care telephone support was found to be a valuable tool for all individuals involved in the care of end-of-life patients. PMID:27349847

  18. Using a screening tool to improve timely referral of patients from acute oncology-haematology to palliative care services.

    PubMed

    Begum, Akhtari

    2013-01-01

    This project was done at specialist cancer hospital in Qatar. At a haematology-oncology inpatient department most patients were not getting access to palliative care unless they were at the very end stages of life. Data collected from 2008-2011 showed significant numbers of patients were dying within one month of their transfer to palliative care. There was no standard measure to identify the prospective palliative care patients. A multidisciplinary team developed a Palliative care referral screening tool based on the National Cancer Care Network guideline. Retrospective medical record review done from January to April 2012 showed a mean of 68% of patients who scored more than five were not consulted, 32% of patients who scored more than seven were not transferred to palliative care and seven percent died without any referral. The team used various kinds of quality planning, analysis and improvement tools in the form of process mapping, value analysis, Fish Bone diagrams, stakeholders' analysis and communication, physician survey, "Pareto's principal" (80 / 20 rule, the law of vital few) and other data collection tools. The palliative care referral process was standardised by preparing and implementing an objective scoring tool based on international best practice. It changed the referral culture and helped manage the psychological barriers of patients, families and caregivers. Extensive orientation and education of all key stakeholders was implemented. Monthly auditing of patient records was carried out. The aim has been achieved, exceeded and sustained, and we reduced the percentage of patients who scored more than five without palliative consultation from a mean of 68% to 16% and those who scored more than seven without palliative care transfer from a mean of thirty two percent to three percent, after four months of the project's implementation. Standardising the referral process and creating an objective referral tool is needed to facilitate safe, collaborative

  19. Palliative parenteral nutrition use in patients with intestinal failure as a consequence of advanced pseudomyxoma peritonei: a case series.

    PubMed

    Disney, B R; Karthikeyakurup, A; Ratcliffe, J; Jones, J; Deel-Smith, P; Fairhurst, A; Maleki, K; Cooper, S C

    2015-08-01

    Pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP) is a rare condition complicated by intra-abdominal spread that can cause multilevel gastrointestinal (GI) obstruction. Parenteral nutrition (PN) use in the context of palliative care and malignancy remains controversial. We describe the use of palliative PN in three patients with progressive PMP causing multilevel GI obstruction and intestinal failure. All patients received > 90 days of PN. PN was safe in this cohort of patients. However, patient selection and the timing of intervention are important factors when considering the initiation of PN. PMID:26105107

  20. Palliative Care

    MedlinePlus

    Palliative care is treatment of the discomfort, symptoms, and stress of serious illness. It provides relief from distressing ... care at the end of life, always includes palliative care. But you may receive palliative care at any ...

  1. Palliative Care

    MedlinePlus

    ... 5 Things to Know About Zika & Pregnancy Palliative Care KidsHealth > For Parents > Palliative Care Print A A ... decisions about their child's care. Who Needs Palliative Care? Any child who has a serious, complex, or ...

  2. [Specifics of Analgesia in Palliative Care Patients at Home].

    PubMed

    Pautex, Sophie

    2015-02-25

    Pain management at home for a patient, suffering from one or more advanced progressive diseases, goes beyond the prescription of an opioid. Apart from the importance of finding the most suitable analgesic drug (controlled pain with least possible adverse effects), three important dimensions will be addressed: interprofessionnal care (shared care goals, evaluation, monitoring of pain and other symptoms; physiotherapy, etc.) information, education and support for patients and relatives in particular on the use of opioids, and finally the importance of anticipation. This includes for example the requirement of breakthrough pain treatment in case of pain exacerbation or the definition of the place of hospitalization in case of worsening general condition or of death. PMID:25711785

  3. Use of Palliative Radiotherapy Among Patients With Metastatic Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Hayman, James A. Abrahamse, Paul H.; Lakhani, Indu; Earle, Craig C.; Katz, Steven J.

    2007-11-15

    Purpose: Radiotherapy (RT) is known to effectively palliate many symptoms of patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Anecdotally, RT is believed to be commonly used in this setting, but limited population-based data are available. The objective of this study was to examine the utilization patterns of palliative RT among elderly patients with Stage IV NSCLC and, in particular, to identify factors associated with its use. Methods and Materials: A retrospective population-based cohort study was performed using linked Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER)-Medicare data to identify 11,084 Medicare beneficiaries aged {>=}65 years who presented with Stage IV NSCLC in the 11 SEER regions between 1991 and 1996. The primary outcome was receipt of RT. Logistic regression analysis was used to identify factors associated with receipt of RT. Results: A total of 58% of these patients received RT, with its use decreasing over time (p = 0.01). Increasing age was negatively associated with receipt of treatment (p <0.001), as was increasing comorbidities (p <0.001). Factors positively associated with the receipt of RT included income (p = 0.001), hospitalization (p <0.001), and treatment with chemotherapy (p <0.001). Although the use varied across the SEER regions (p = 0.001), gender, race/ethnicity, and distance to the nearest RT facility were not associated with treatment. Conclusions: Elderly patients with metastatic NSCLC frequently receive palliative RT, but its use varies, especially with age and receipt of chemotherapy. Additional research is needed to determine whether this variability reflects good quality care.

  4. Predictors of psychological distress in advanced cancer patients under palliative treatments.

    PubMed

    Diaz-Frutos, D; Baca-Garcia, E; García-Foncillas, J; López-Castroman, J

    2016-07-01

    This work aims to investigate the factors associated with psychological distress in advanced cancer patients under palliative treatment. We comprehensively assessed the demographic, psychosocial and health factors of 158 advanced cancer patients. Patients with high and low distress, according to the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, were compared. A regression analysis was built to identify the best predictors of distress. Patients with high psychological distress (81%) were more likely to have lung cancer, suicidal ideation, hopelessness, low quality of life and poor body image than those without. In the multivariate model, only poor emotional functioning (OR = .89; 95% CI = .83-.95; p ≤ .001), hopelessness (OR = .86; 95% CI = .78-.94; p ≤ .001) and body image distortions (OR = .77; 95% CI = .68-.85; p = .005) were retained. High levels of hopelessness, impaired emotional functioning and body image distortions are the main factors associated with psychological distress in patients with advanced cancer. Potential interventions to modify these factors in palliative units are discussed. PMID:27271213

  5. Equity of use of specialist palliative care by age: cross-sectional study of lung cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Burt, Jenni; Plant, Hilary; Omar, Rumana; Raine, Rosalind

    2010-09-01

    The equitable provision of care is a core principle of the National Health Service. Previous research has suggested that older cancer patients may be less likely to use specialist palliative care, but such research has been limited by retrospective design and the failure to measure clinical need. The objective of this study was to examine the extent to which the use of specialist palliative care in lung cancer patients varies by age, after accounting for need. A cross-sectional survey of patients and their carers attending four hospital lung cancer clinics in London was conducted between June 2006 and April 2007. Two hundred and fifty-two patients and 137 carers participated in the study. Thirty-nine percent of participants received specialist palliative care. Metastatic disease, global quality of life and the clinic where treatment was provided were associated with use of specialist palliative care. Age, gender, deprivation, living alone, current or most recent line of treatment, number of co-morbidities and carer stress were not associated with receipt of such services. This suggests that, for patients within the specialist cancer care system, access to specialist palliative care is offered on the basis of need. PMID:20395355

  6. Development and Psychometric Assessment of a Spirituality Questionnaire for Indian Palliative Care Patients

    PubMed Central

    Bhatnagar, Sushma; Noble, Simon; Chaturvedi, Santosh K; Gielen, Joris

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: There are only a few studies on spirituality among palliative care patients in India. This gap in research may be caused by the absence of relevant questionnaires and scales specifically designed for Indian palliative care populations. In this study, we describe the development of such a questionnaire and explain its psychometric characteristics. Methods: We designed a questionnaire on the basis of a systematic review of the literature. After a review of the questionnaire by specialists and a subsequent pilot study, the questionnaire was amended. The final questionnaire consisted of a list of 36 spirituality items. It was administered to a sample of 300 cancer patients attending the pain clinic of a tertiary hospital in New Delhi. Results: A factor analysis led to four factors explaining 54.6% of variance: Shifting moral and religious values (Factor 1), support from religious relationship (Factor 2), existential blame (Factor 3), and spiritual trust (Factor 4). The skewness and kurtosis for Factors 1, 3, and 4 were within a tolerable range for assuming a normal distribution, but Factor 2 was skewed. The alphas showed that the four factors have an acceptable internal consistency. Statistically significant associations were observed for age and Factor 3 (P = 0.004), gender and Factor 4 (P = 0.014), marital status and Factors 3 (P = 0.002) and 4 (P = 0.001), educational level and Factors 3 (P < 0.001) and 4 (P < 0.001), and pain scores and Factors 1 (P < 0.001), 2 (P < 0.001), and 3 (P = 0.001). Conclusion: The questionnaire offers promising prospects for the study of spirituality among palliative care patients in India. PMID:26962275

  7. [Intensive care - palliative care. Contradiction or supplement? Considerations on ethical issues and principles in the treatment of dying patients].

    PubMed

    Müller-Busch, H C

    2001-12-01

    Over the last five decades the progress in intensive care has extended the limitations of controlling the process of dying and given doctors more influence in determining the time of death. More recently, palliative care has emerged as a new approach in response to the ethical dilemmas of modern medicine, which accepts that dying is a natural process that should not be hastened or delayed through medical interventions. While in Germany in 1999 more than 50 000 people have died in intensive care units, only a small number of 8000 patients have died in palliative care. In comparison to the highly-developed intensive care sector, palliative care is a much neglected area. The public debate following the legalisation of euthanasia in the Netherlands has highlighted concerns in Germany that intensive care has the potential of inappropriately prolonging life and raised expectations about the alternative therapies offered by palliative care. Doctors in intensive care and in palliative care face similar ethical dilemmas, though with a different weighting: the dilemma between professional judgement and patient autonomy, between traditional medical roles and patient self-determination and the dilemma of extending the span of life at the expense of quality of life. The approach of palliative care with its strong focus on alleviating the suffering of the terminally ill, has influenced the ethical debate of dying in intensive care. Although intensive care and palliative care have different aims and priorities, there are common problems of decision-making which could benefit from a shared orientation and interdisciplinary debate. Both the interpretation of a dying parent's will as well as withdrawing or withholding treatment in patients who are unable to decide for themselves should not merely be guided by the debate on active and passive euthanasia, but rather take into account the appropriateness or inappropriateness of medical actions in the specific situation. PMID:11743668

  8. Palliative care and neurology

    PubMed Central

    Boersma, Isabel; Miyasaki, Janis; Kutner, Jean

    2014-01-01

    Palliative care is an approach to the care of patients and families facing progressive and chronic illnesses that focuses on the relief of suffering due to physical symptoms, psychosocial issues, and spiritual distress. As neurologists care for patients with chronic, progressive, life-limiting, and disabling conditions, it is important that they understand and learn to apply the principles of palliative medicine. In this article, we aim to provide a practical starting point in palliative medicine for neurologists by answering the following questions: (1) What is palliative care and what is hospice care? (2) What are the palliative care needs of neurology patients? (3) Do neurology patients have unique palliative care needs? and (4) How can palliative care be integrated into neurology practice? We cover several fundamental palliative care skills relevant to neurologists, including communication of bad news, symptom assessment and management, advance care planning, caregiver assessment, and appropriate referral to hospice and other palliative care services. We conclude by suggesting areas for future educational efforts and research. PMID:24991027

  9. Pretransplantation Supportive and Palliative Care Consultation for High-Risk Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation Patients.

    PubMed

    Loggers, Elizabeth T; LeBlanc, Thomas W; El-Jawahri, Areej; Fihn, Judy; Bumpus, Molly; David, Jodie; Horak, Petr; Lee, Stephanie J

    2016-07-01

    Early palliative care (EPC) for patients with metastatic solid tumors is now standard of care, but the effect of EPC in hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) is less well understood. We studied the acceptability of pre-HCT EPC as measured by trial participation, changes in patient-reported outcomes, and follow-up with palliative care providers. English-speaking adults (age >17 years) with an HCT comorbidity index of ≥ 3, relapse risk > 25%, or planned HLA-mismatched allogeneic or myeloablative HCT received EPC before HCT admission with monthly or more frequent visits. Twenty-two (69%) of 32 subjects provided consent; 2 were later excluded (HCT cancelled, consent retracted) for a 63% participation rate. Comfort with EPC was high (82% very comfortable). Subjects reported stable or improved mood and sense of hope, without apparent negative effects with a median of 3 visits. Follow-up surveys were returned by 75% of participants at 60 days and by 65% at 90 days. Four (20%) were admitted to the intensive care unit before day 100 and 3 (15%) received life-support measures. Five (25%) died with median follow-up of 14 months. EPC is feasible, acceptable, and has the potential to improve the HCT experience, whether or not the patient survives. EPC for HCT patients should be tested in a randomized trial. PMID:26976242

  10. Caring for patients with rabies in developing countries - the neglected importance of palliative care.

    PubMed

    Tarantola, Arnaud; Crabol, Yoann; Mahendra, Bangalore Jayakrishnappa; In, Sotheary; Barennes, Hubert; Bourhy, Hervé; Peng, Yiksing; Ly, Sowath; Buchy, Philippe

    2016-04-01

    Although limited publications address clinical management of symptomatic patients with rabies in intensive care units, the overwhelming majority of human rabies cases occur in the rural setting of developing countries where healthcare workers are few, lack training and drugs. Based on our experience, we suggest how clinicians in resource-limited settings can make best use of essential drugs to provide assistance to patients with rabies and their families, at no risk to themselves. Comprehensive and compassionate patient management of furious rabies should aim to alleviate thirst, anxiety and epileptic fits using infusions, diazepam or midazolam and antipyretic drugs via intravenous or intrarectal routes. Although the patient is dying, respiratory failure must be avoided especially if the family, after being informed, wish to take the patient home alive for funereal rites to be observed. Healthcare staff should be trained and clinical guidelines should be updated to include palliative care for rabies in endemic countries. PMID:26806229

  11. Management of specific symptom complexes in patients receiving palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Bruera, E; Neumann, C M

    1998-01-01

    During the past 10 years there have been major changes in the management of the most common symptoms of terminal cancer. Opioid agonists remain the mainstay in the management of cancer pain. Slow-release preparations are currently available for several of these agents. The increased use of opioids has led to the recognition of opioid-induced neurotoxic effects and to the development of effective adjuvant drugs and other strategies to counteract these side effects. A number of drugs are available for the management of symptoms of cachexia, including corticosteroids and progestational drugs. Prokinetic drugs, either alone or in combination with other agents such as corticosteroids, are highly effective in the treatment of chronic nausea. For patients with asthenia, it should first be determined whether there are any reversible causes; if not, corticosteroids and psychostimulants may diminish the symptoms. Haloperidol, other neuroleptics and benzodiazepines may be required to manage hyperactive delirium. Oxygen and opioids are effective in treating dyspnea, whereas there is limited evidence that benzodiazepines provide any relief of this symptom. More research on the assessment and management of these devastating clinical symptoms of cancer is badly needed. PMID:9676549

  12. [EMOTIONAL MANAGEMENT AND CRITICAL THINKING IN THE AID RELATIONSHIP OF THE HOLISTIC CARE OF PALLIATIVE PATIENTS].

    PubMed

    De Blas Gómez, Irene; Rodríguez García, Marta

    2015-05-01

    To care for palliative patients is essential that healthcare professionals develop emotional competencies. This means acquiring the habit of self reflection and be emphatic with other people, in order to be able to identify the personal emotions of patients, family and team. Reflection involves a continuing effort to reason about aspects of professional practice, especially on issues as complex as suffering and death. Both reflective reasoning and emotional management are vital in an Aid Relationship. For nursing healthcare professionals, to care the emotional aspects means becoming aware of their own and others feelings, and get to understand and accept to handle them properly. Nursing actions involves many qualities of social competence, such as empathy, understanding, communication skills, honesty, flexibility and adaptability to the individual needs of people cared. In the context of palliative care patients and their families all these aspects are fundamental and are part of the same philosophy. Emotional education still remains a challenge in our profession both in the initial and continuing training. PMID:26540895

  13. Palliation With Endoscopic Metal Stents May Be Preferable to Surgical Intervention for Patients With Obstructive Pancreatic Head Adenocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Kofokotsios, Alexandros; Papazisis, Konstantinos; Andronikidis, Ioannis; Ntinas, Achilleas; Kardassis, Dimitrios; Vrochides, Dionisios

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of endoscopically placed metal stents in comparison with operative procedures, in patients with obstructive pancreatic head cancer. Endoscopic stenting techniques and materials for gastrointestinal malignancies are constantly improving. Despite this evolution, many still consider operative procedures to be the gold standard for palliation in patients with unresectable obstructive pancreatic head cancer. This is a retrospective study of 52 patients who were diagnosed with obstructive (biliary, duodenal, or both) adenocarcinoma of the pancreatic head. Twenty-nine patients (endoscopy group) underwent endoscopic stenting. Eleven patients (bypass group) underwent biliodigestive bypass. Twelve patients (Whipple group) underwent Whipple operation with curative intent; however, histopathology revealed R1 resection (palliative Whipple). T4 disease was identified in 13 (44.8%), 7 (63.6%), and 3 (25%) patients in the endoscopy, bypass, and Whipple groups, respectively. Metastatic disease was present only in the endoscopy group (n = 12; 41.3%). There was no intervention-related mortality. Median survival was 280 days [95% confidence interval (95% CI), 103, 456 days], 157 days (95% CI, 0, 411 days), and 647 days (95% CI, 300, 993 days) for the endoscopy, bypass, and Whipple groups, respectively (P = 0.111). In patients with obstructive pancreatic head cancer, endoscopic stenting may offer equally good palliation compared with surgical double bypass. The numerically (not statistically) better survival after palliative Whipple might be explained by the smaller tumor burden in this subgroup of patients and not by the superior efficacy of this operation. PMID:26414833

  14. Readmissions in Cancer Patients After Receiving Inpatient Palliative Care in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Hsiao-Ting; Chen, Chun-Ku; Lin, Ming-Hwai; Chou, Pesus; Chen, Tzeng-Ji; Hwang, Shinn-Jang

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Few studies have reported on readmissions among cancer patients receiving inpatient palliative care (IPC). This study investigated readmissions in cancer patients after their first discharge from IPC in Taiwan from 2002 to 2010. This study was a secondary data analysis using information from the National Health Insurance Database in Taiwan from 2002 to 2010. We included subjects ≥20 years old diagnosed with malignant neoplasms who were listed in the registry of catastrophic illness. Patients diagnosed with cancer before January 1, 2002 or who had ever been admitted to an inpatient hospice palliative care unit before the study period were excluded. Readmission was defined as hospital readmission at least once after discharge from first admission to IPC until mortality or the end of the study period. A total of 42,022 patients who met the inclusion criteria were identified. The majority of these patients were male (60.4%). The mean age of cancer diagnosis was 64.0 ± 14.4 years for men and 64.5 ± 14.7 years for women. The mean age at first hospice ward admission was 65.2 ± 14.2 years for men and 65.9 ± 14.9 years for women. During their first admission to IPC, 59.2% patients died, and the median stay of first IPC admission was 8.0 days. Among those discharged alive from their first admission to IPC, 64.9% were readmitted, and 19.4% of these patients were readmitted on the same day of discharge. From first IPC discharge until mortality, 54.8% of patients were readmitted once, 23.9% were readmitted twice, 9.9% were readmitted 3 times, and 11.5% were readmitted 4 or more times. Being male, having a higher insurance premium level, having a longer length of stay during first IPC admission, being admitted to a teaching hospital, or being admitted to a tertiary hospital increased the adjusted hazard ratio for readmission. We found that terminal cancer patients in Taiwan received relatively late referrals for first admission to IPC and

  15. Palliative care needs at different phases in the illness trajectory: a survey study in patients with cancer.

    PubMed

    Beernaert, K; Pardon, K; Van den Block, L; Devroey, D; De Laat, M; Geboes, K; Surmont, V; Deliens, L; Cohen, J

    2016-07-01

    Despite the growing consensus on the benefits of initiating palliative care early in the disease trajectory, it remains unclear at what point palliative care needs emerge. This study investigates quality of life and unmet palliative care needs at three phases in the cancer trajectory, curative, life-prolonging and most advanced (prognosis <6 months/no further disease-modifying treatment). We collected self-reported data from 620 patients with cancer in the University Hospital of Ghent, Belgium. They completed a questionnaire on quality of life (using the EORTC QLQ-C30) and unmet care needs within the domains of palliative care. We used European reference values of the EORTC QLQ-C30 to compare the mean scores with a norm group. The groups further on in the cancer trajectory reported statistically and clinically poorer functioning compared with earlier phases, also when controlled for the effects of sex, age or type of cancer. Higher symptom burdens for fatigue, pain, dyspnoea and appetite loss were found in groups further into the trajectory, p < .001. Patients in the curative phase experienced physical symptoms and had clinically worse functioning than a European reference group. This paper demonstrates the ongoing need for oncologists to address the broader palliative care needs of patients from diagnosis onwards. PMID:27271354

  16. Talc pleurodesis as surgical palliation of patients with malignant pleural effusion. Analysis of factors affecting survival.

    PubMed

    Lumachi, Franco; Mazza, Francesco; Ermani, Mario; Chiara, Giordano B; Basso, Stefano M M

    2012-11-01

    Malignant pleural effusion (MPE) is common in most patients with advanced cancer, especially in those with lung cancer, metastatic breast carcinoma and lymphoma. This complication usually leads patients to suffer from significant dyspnea, which may impair their mobility and reduce their quality of life. In patients with MPE, several interventions have been shown to be useful for palliation of the symptoms, including talc pleurodesis. The aim of this study was to evaluate prognostic factors for survival of patients with symptomatic MPE who underwent palliative video-assisted thoracoscopic (VATS) talc pleurodesis. Thirty-five patients with MPE underwent VATS, evacuation of the pleural fluid and talc pleurodesis with large-particle talc. There were 22 (62.9%) males and 13 (37.1%) females, with an overall median age of 69 years (range 42-81 years). The main causes of MPE were non-small cell lung carcinoma, breast or ovarian cancer and malignant pleural mesothelioma. The age did not differ (p=0.88) between men (68.6±11.6 years) and women (68.0±8.7 years). The mean quantity of pleural effusion was 2005.7±1078.9 ml, while the overall survival was 11.2±8.9 months. We did not find any relationship between survival and gender (log-rank test, p=0.53) or underlying malignancy associated with MPE (p=0.89, 0.48 and 0.36 for secondary cancer, lung cancer and mesothelioma, respectively). Similarly, no correlation was found between survival and age of the patients (Cox's regression, p=0.44) or quantity of pleural effusion (p=0.88). Our results show that the prognosis of patients after talc pleurodesis is independent of age, gender, type of malignancy and amount of pleural effusion, thus, suggesting the utility of treating all patients with symptomatic MPE early. PMID:23155281

  17. Individualized Comprehensive Lifestyle Intervention in Patients Undergoing Chemotherapy with Curative or Palliative Intent: Who Participates?

    PubMed Central

    Vassbakk-Brovold, Karianne; Lian, Henrik; Mjåland, Odd; Seiler, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Objective Knowledge about determinants of participation in lifestyle interventions in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, particularly with palliative intent, remains poor. The objective of the present study was to identify determinants of participating in a 12 month individualized, comprehensive lifestyle intervention, focusing on diet, physical activity, mental stress and smoking cessation, in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy with curative or palliative intent. The secondary objective was to identify participation determinants 4 months into the study. Methods Newly diagnosed cancer patients starting chemotherapy at the cancer center in Kristiansand/Norway (during a 16 month inclusion period) were screened. Demographic and medical data (age, sex, body mass index, education level, marital status, smoking status, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status (ECOG), diagnosis, tumor stage and treatment intention) was analyzed for screened patients. Results 100 of 161 invited patients participated. There were more females (69 vs. 48%; P = 0.004), breast cancer patients (46 vs. 25%; P = 0.007), non-smokers (87 vs. 74%; P = 0.041), younger (mean age 60 vs. 67 yrs; P < 0.001) and fitter (82 vs. 64% with EGOC 0; P = 0.036) participants vs. non-participants included. In multivariate logistic regression analyses, age (Odds Ratio 0.94, 95% Confidence Interval 0.91, 0.97) and smoking (0.42, 0.18, 0.99) were negatively associated with participation. After 4 months, 63 participants were still participating. Cancer type, smoking and age increased the probability of dropping out. Multivariate logistic regression revealed that age was the only significant determinant of 4 month participation (0.95, 0.91, 0.99). Patients aged >70 years were less likely to participate at baseline and 4 months. Conclusion Individualized lifestyle interventions in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy appear to facilitate a high participation rate that declines with increasing

  18. Palliative Care in Heart Failure.

    PubMed

    Hupcey, Judith E; Kitko, Lisa; Alonso, Windy

    2015-12-01

    The number of patients with heart failure is growing; the associated morbidity and mortality remains dismal. Advance care planning, end-of-life conversations, and palliative care referrals are appropriate, but do not occur regularly. Palliative care focuses on patients and families from diagnosis, to hospice, death, and bereavement. It is delivered as basic palliative care by all providers and by specialty-certified palliative care specialists. Nurses are well-positioned to provide basic. Nurses are also instrumental in initiating referrals to the specialized palliative care team as the patient's needs become too complex or the disease progresses and the patient approaches the end of life. PMID:26567500

  19. Assessment of a Hospital Palliative Care Unit (HPCU) for Cancer Patients; A Conceptual Framework

    PubMed Central

    Rouhollahi, Mohammad Reza; Saghafinia, Masoud; Zandehdel, Kazem; Motlagh, Ali Ghanbari; Kazemian, Ali; Mohagheghi, Mohammad Ali; Tahmasebi, Mamak

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: The first hospital palliative care unit (HPCU) in Iran (FARS-HPCU) has been established in 2008 in the Cancer Institute, which is the largest referral cancer center in the country. We attempted to assess the performance of the HPCU based on a comprehensive conceptual framework. The main aim of this study was to develop a conceptual framework for assessment of the HPCU performances through designing a value chain in line with the goals and the main processes (core and support). Materials and Methods: We collected data from a variety of sources, including international guidelines, international best practices, and expert opinions in the country and compared them with national policies and priorities. We also took into consideration the trend of the HPCU development in the Cancer Institute of Iran. Through benchmarking the gap area with the performance standards, some recommendations for better outcome are proposed. Results: The framework for performance assessment consisted of 154 process indicators (PIs), based on which the main stakeholders of the HPCU (including staff, patients, and families) offered their scoring. The outcome revealed the state of the processes as well as the gaps Conclusion: Despite a significant improvement in many processes and indicators, more development in the comprehensive and integrative aspects of FARS-HPCU performance is required. Consideration of all supportive and palliative requirements of the patients through interdisciplinary and collaborative approaches is recommended. PMID:26600701

  20. Palliative Medicine and Decision Science: The Critical Need for a Shared Agenda To Foster Informed Patient Choice in Serious Illness

    PubMed Central

    Kryworuchko, Jennifer; Matlock, Dan D.; Volandes, Angelo E.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Assisting patients and their families in complex decision making is a foundational skill in palliative care; however, palliative care clinicians and scientists have just begun to establish an evidence base for best practice in assisting patients and families in complex decision making. Decision scientists aim to understand and clarify the concepts and techniques of shared decision making (SDM), decision support, and informed patient choice in order to ensure that patient and family perspectives shape their health care experience. Patients with serious illness and their families are faced with myriad complex decisions over the course of illness and as death approaches. If patients lose capacity, then surrogate decision makers are cast into the decision-making role. The fields of palliative care and decision science have grown in parallel. There is much to be gained in advancing the practices of complex decision making in serious illness through increased collaboration. The purpose of this article is to use a case study to highlight the broad range of difficult decisions, issues, and opportunities imposed by a life-limiting illness in order to illustrate how collaboration and a joint research agenda between palliative care and decision science researchers, theorists, and clinicians might guide best practices for patients and their families. PMID:21895453

  1. Palliative medicine and decision science: the critical need for a shared agenda to foster informed patient choice in serious illness.

    PubMed

    Bakitas, Marie; Kryworuchko, Jennifer; Matlock, Dan D; Volandes, Angelo E

    2011-10-01

    Assisting patients and their families in complex decision making is a foundational skill in palliative care; however, palliative care clinicians and scientists have just begun to establish an evidence base for best practice in assisting patients and families in complex decision making. Decision scientists aim to understand and clarify the concepts and techniques of shared decision making (SDM), decision support, and informed patient choice in order to ensure that patient and family perspectives shape their health care experience. Patients with serious illness and their families are faced with myriad complex decisions over the course of illness and as death approaches. If patients lose capacity, then surrogate decision makers are cast into the decision-making role. The fields of palliative care and decision science have grown in parallel. There is much to be gained in advancing the practices of complex decision making in serious illness through increased collaboration. The purpose of this article is to use a case study to highlight the broad range of difficult decisions, issues, and opportunities imposed by a life-limiting illness in order to illustrate how collaboration and a joint research agenda between palliative care and decision science researchers, theorists, and clinicians might guide best practices for patients and their families. PMID:21895453

  2. Interprofessional collaboration in palliative nursing: what is the patient-family role?

    PubMed

    McDonald, Christine; McCallin, Antoinette

    2010-06-01

    Interprofessional collaboration occurs when health professionals from different disciplines work together to identify needs, solve problems, make joint decisions on how best to proceed, and evaluate outcomes collectively. Interprofessional collaboration supports patient-centred care and takes place through teamwork. Team interactions, wider organizational issues, and environmental structures, such as safety, quality, efficiency and effectiveness issues influence this model of care. These broader contextual influences affect practice where there are tensions between the ideals of interprofessional collaboration and the realities of practice. This is evident when the patient and family position in interprofessional collaboration is considered. This article will discuss factors that affect interprofessional collaboration in relation to patients and families in palliative care. First, a definition of interprofessional collaboration is given, followed by an outline of the need for interprofessional collaboration. A brief discussion of key issues that influence collaboration follows, and a review of the implications for practice is presented. PMID:20925291

  3. [Choice of Expiration for Cancer Patients under Home Medical Care - Palliative Care Unit or Home].

    PubMed

    Okino, Takashi; Okagaki, Tetsuya; Nakamura, Hiromi; Okino, Akie

    2015-12-01

    Kohka Public Hospital(KPH)was rebuilt at a new place in April 2013. The Palliative Care Unit(PCU)was newly constructed during renovation. We examined the will and outcome of cancer patients, especially on expiration. A 123 patients died in 2014: 27 died at the PCU, and the remaining 7 at home. Of 27 patients, 20 were willing to die at the PCU, and one patient visited the hospital after judgment by the Visiting Nurse Center. Other 6 patients were admitted finally after their families experienced fatigue. Six of seven patients who died at home, showed a strong will to stay at home. We think that patients' will drives the clinical course, especially in their end-stage. In this context, the majority of the patients decided their terminal place based on their will. On the contrary, there were several cases whose requests were not fulfilled. To overcome the problem, we should discuss cancer patients' will to make a choice regarding death at the end-stage of their lives and the place of expiration in advance. We including the staff of social care and regional medical resources, should co-operate and share information on these patients to solve the problems. PMID:26809413

  4. Integrating Palliative Care into Primary Care.

    PubMed

    Gorman, Rosemary D

    2016-09-01

    Improved quality of life, care consistent with patient goals of care, and decreased health care spending are benefits of palliative care. Palliative care is appropriate for anyone with a serious illness. Advances in technology and pharmaceuticals have resulted in increasing numbers of seriously ill individuals, many with a high symptom burden. The numbers of individuals who could benefit from palliative care far outweighs the number of palliative care specialists. To integrate palliative care into primary care it is essential that resources are available to improve generalist palliative care skills, identify appropriate patients and refer complex patients to specialist palliative care providers. PMID:27497014

  5. Palliative medicine in Britain.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Derek

    In Britain, Palliative Medicine was recognized as a subspecialty of Internal Medicine exactly 20 years after Cicely Saunders founded St Christopher's, at exactly the same time that government was at last recognizing the worth and the needs of general practice. Both had far-reaching effects and implications for patients, doctors, and the future of medicine. For Palliative Medicine it meant units wishing to train specialists going through a rigorous selection process; the development of an equally rigorous training program for the doctors who had already gained a higher qualification before starting Palliative Medicine, demonstrating the need for and benefits of palliative medicine to the sceptics in the profession and, now, continuing to recruit the staff for the steadily increasing number of new services. Today there are more Palliative Medicine consultants/specialists than there are oncologists and neurologists combined, with Hospital Palliative Care Teams in every major hospital and cancer center. With nine Chairs in Palliative Medicine, there is now a drive for research and professional education. The specialty faces major challenges, however, ranging from training to care for patients with non-malignant disease to enabling patients to die in the place of their choice-something that rarely happens today; from defining what is distinctive or unique about palliative medicine to clarifying the respective place of general practice and the specialty. Most would agree that the biggest challenge for the young, thriving specialty is how to share its principles with other doctors wherever they work. PMID:18051021

  6. Societal costs of home and hospital end-of-life care for palliative care patients in Ontario, Canada.

    PubMed

    Yu, Mo; Guerriere, Denise N; Coyte, Peter C

    2015-11-01

    In Canada, health system restructuring has led to a greater focus on home-based palliative care as an alternative to institutionalised palliative care. However, little is known about the effect of this change on end-of-life care costs and the extent to which the financial burden of care has shifted from the acute care public sector to families. The purpose of this study was to assess the societal costs of end-of-life care associated with two places of death (hospital and home) using a prospective cohort design in a home-based palliative care programme. Societal cost includes all costs incurred during the course of palliative care irrespective of payer (e.g. health system, out-of-pocket, informal care-giving costs, etc.). Primary caregivers of terminal cancer patients were recruited from the Temmy Latner Centre for Palliative Care in Toronto, Canada. Demographic, service utilisation, care-giving time, health and functional status, and death data were collected by telephone interviews with primary caregivers over the course of patients' palliative trajectory. Logistic regression was conducted to model an individual's propensity for home death. Total societal costs of end-of-life care and component costs were compared between home and hospital death using propensity score stratification. Costs were presented in 2012 Canadian dollars ($1.00 CDN = $1.00 USD). The estimated total societal cost of end-of-life care was $34,197.73 per patient over the entire palliative trajectory (4 months on average). Results showed no significant difference (P > 0.05) in total societal costs between home and hospital death patients. Higher hospitalisation costs for hospital death patients were replaced by higher unpaid caregiver time and outpatient service costs for home death patients. Thus, from a societal cost perspective, alternative sites of death, while not associated with a significant change in total societal cost of end-of-life care, resulted in changes in the distribution of

  7. Opinion Piece: honouring the wishes of a dying patient: from intensive care to home with palliative care.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Lynette

    2013-10-01

    Due to the severity of illness, death is not uncommon in intensive care units (ICU). Unfortunately, a major percentage of deaths in ICU are patients diagnosed with a terminal disease. Initiating discussions on the transition from curative care to palliative care can be stressful for doctors, patients and families. The challenge for doctors, is to maintain open communication and shared-decision making with patients and family members at this very sensitive time. This can be challenging due to the culture of ICU which focuses on saving lives rather than palliation. Facilitating discussions for terminally ill patients in ICU may enhance their end-of-life care and assist patients to die in an environment of their choice such as their home. PMID:24299256

  8. A Comparative Study on Resilience, Perceived Social Support and Hopelessness Among Cancer Patients Treated with Curative and Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Somasundaram, Ravindran Ottilingam; Devamani, Kiran A

    2016-01-01

    Aim: Psychological distress is common among patients affected by cancer. In this study, we examined the relationship between resilience, social support, and hopelessness among cancer patients treated with curative and palliative care. Patients and Methods: Sixty cancer patients in the age range of 18–65 years were randomly selected and divided into two groups based on their treatment intent namely, curative care (n = 30) and palliative care (n = 30). Both groups were assessed by the following instruments: Bharathiar University Resilience Scale, Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support and Beck Hopelessness Scale. Results: Resilience was significantly associated with less hopelessness and higher levels of perceived social support. Conclusion: Cancer patients are found to be resilient, and the role of social support and hopelessness on promoting resilience cannot be ignored. PMID:27162423

  9. A population-based observational study on the factors associated with the completion of palliative chemotherapy among patients with oesophagogastric cancer

    PubMed Central

    Groene, Oliver; Crosby, Tom; Hardwick, Richard Henry; Riley, Stuart; Greenaway, Kimberley; Cromwell, David

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Palliative chemotherapy is routinely given to patients diagnosed with locally advanced or metastatic oesophagogastric (O-G) cancer. We examine which patients with O-G cancer in England receive palliative chemotherapy, and identify factors associated with treatment completion. Design A prospective population-based observational study. Setting All English National Health Service (NHS) trusts diagnosing patients with O-G cancer. Participants Data were prospectively collected on patients diagnosed with invasive epithelial cancer of the oesophagus or stomach between 1 October 2007 and 30 June 2009 in English NHS hospitals, and those who had palliative treatment intent. Outcome measure We calculated the proportion of patients with different characteristics (eg, age, sex, stage at diagnosis, performance status) starting palliative chemotherapy. Multiple logistic regression was used to identify characteristics associated with non-completion of chemotherapy. Results There were 9768 patients in the study whose treatment intent was palliative. Among these, 2313 (24%) received palliative chemotherapy. It was received by 51% of patients aged under 55 years but only 9% of patients aged 75 years or over. Overall, 917 patients (53%) completed their treatment among the 1741 patients for whom information on treatment completion was recorded. Treatment completion ranged from 50–60% for patients with good performance status but was under 35% for patients aged 55 years or older with poor performance status. Treatment completion was not associated with site of cancer, pretreatment stage, sex, comorbidities or histology. Conclusions Completion rates of palliative chemotherapy in patients with O-G cancer are low and elderly patients with poor performance status are very unlikely to complete a palliative chemotherapy treatment. Clinicians and patients should consider this information when balancing potential (survival) benefits, toxicity of treatment and its effect on

  10. [Early diagnosis of metastatic spinal tumor is a key for effective palliative radiotherapy in patients with lung cancer].

    PubMed

    Isono, Hisayo; Kemmoku, Tomoko; Nakamura, Yusuke; Onose, Akira; Matsumoto, Yuka; Watanabe, Rinako; Haraguchi, Mizuha; Kasajima, Masashi; Takaya, Saho; Ishihara, Mikiko; Karigane, Daiki; Nagata, Hiroshi

    2011-12-01

    Patients with metastatic spinal tumor are the largest in number among the patients with bone tumor. It causes a severe bone pain, pathological fracture and spinal cord compression. Thus it harshly hampers patient's quality of life. We report 3 patients with lung cancer whose initial manifestation was metastatic spinal tumor. We treated the 3 patients with palliative radiotherapy and medication. Although the severe pain has improved on a numerical rating scale(NRS), but performance status(PS)and activity of daily living(ADL)of the 3 patients got worse because the disease was progressed and complicated. Generally, PS of cancer patients found by bone matastasis is low. However, it is difficult to take an effective treatment, which leads to ADL improvement. There are many choices for treating metastatic bone tumors including pain control, bisphosphonate administration, radiation therapy, strontium radiotherapy, bone cement, palliative surgery and orthotics. In addition, a development of molecular target drugs, such as Denosmab, is expected as future modality of palliative care. In conclusion, we should detect a bone metastasis in the patient with lung cancer as early as possible, and select an appropriate treatment in collaboration with each specialist for achieving the ADL and PS improvement. PMID:22189323

  11. Palliative care and pulmonary rehabilitation.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Daisy J A; McCormick, James R

    2014-06-01

    Numerous barriers exist to the timely introduction of palliative care in patients with advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The complex needs of patients with advanced COPD require the integration of curative-restorative care and palliative care. Palliative care and pulmonary rehabilitation are both important components of integrated care for patients with chronic respiratory diseases. Pulmonary rehabilitation provides the opportunity to introduce palliative care by implementing education about advance care planning. Education about advance care planning addresses the information needs of patients and can be an effective strategy to promote patient-physician discussion about these issues. PMID:24874135

  12. Spirituality and Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Broeckaert, Bert

    2011-01-01

    This paper shows how palliative care developed as a reaction to the compartimentalized technical approach of modern medicine. But what does it mean if we say palliative care wants to treat patients as whole persons? A few pitfalls need to avoided. All disciplines involved in palliative care should act within the limits of their own specific professional role. Physicians and nurses should certainly not force patients into spiritual or religious discussions or practices. They should understand that religion and spirituality also influence the ethical (and thus medical) choices people make, respect their own conscience and worldview too and cultivate conscious compassion. PMID:21811369

  13. Prognostic value of parameters derived from white blood cell and differential counts in patients receiving palliative radiotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Tetsuo; Toya, Ryo; Matsuyama, Tomohiko; Semba, Akiko; Matsuyama, Keiya; Oya, Natsuo

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to identify white blood cell (WBC) parameters with high prognostic value for the survival of patients receiving palliative radiotherapy. The prognostic value of seven parameters derived from WBC and differential counts was retrospectively evaluated in patients who underwent palliative radiotherapy between October, 2010 and June, 2013. The analyzed parameters were the total WBC count, the absolute and relative lymphocyte count, the absolute and relative neutrophil count, and the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte and lymphocyte-to-monocyte ratios. Following univariate analysis, multivariate Cox regression analysis was performed to adjust for gender, age, disease type, previous chemotherapy, previous radiotherapy and the levels of albumin and lactate dehydrogenase. A total of 220 patients with a median survival of 4.7 months were identified. All seven parameters were found to be statistically significant predictors of survival on univariate Cox regression analysis (P<0.05). Of these parameters, the low relative lymphocyte and high relative neutrophil counts were consistent predictors of poor survival in patients who received chemotherapy within 1 month prior to blood sampling (n=68) and in patients who received steroid treatment at the time of sampling (n=49). Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that the relative lymphocyte and neutrophil counts were independent predictors of survival in all 220 patients (P<0.05). In conclusion, relative lymphocyte and neutrophil counts were of high prognostic value for the survival of patients receiving palliative radiotherapy, even in those receiving medications that affect WBC and differential counts. PMID:27602221

  14. Single institution experience with the Ladd’s procedure in patients with heterotaxy and stage I palliated single-ventricle

    PubMed Central

    Piggott, Kurt D; George, Grace; Fakioglu, Harun; Blanco, Carlos; Narasimhulu, Sukumar Saguna; Pourmoghadam, Kamal; Munroe, Hamish; Decampli, William

    2016-01-01

    AIM To investigate and describe our current institutional management protocol for single-ventricle patients who must undergo a Ladd’s procedure. METHODS We retrospectively reviewed the charts of all patients from January 2005 to March 2014 who were diagnosed with heterotaxy syndrome and an associated intestinal rotation anomaly who carried a cardiac diagnosis of functional single ventricle and were status post stage I palliation. A total of 8 patients with a history of stage I single-ventricle palliation underwent Ladd’s procedure during this time period. We reviewed each patients chart to determine if significant intraoperative or post-operative morbidity or mortality occurred. We also described our protocolized management of these patients in the cardiac intensive care unit, which included pre-operative labs, echocardiography, milrinone infusion, as well as protocolized fluid administration and anticoagulation regimines. We also reviewed the literature to determine the reported morbidity and mortality associated with the Ladd’s procedure in this particular cardiac physiology and if other institutions have reported protocolized care of these patients. RESULTS A total of 8 patients were identified to have heterotaxy with an intestinal rotation anomaly and single-ventricle heart disease that was status post single ventricle palliation. Six of these patients were palliated with a Blaylock-Taussig shunt, one of whom underwent a Norwood procedure. The two other patients were palliated with a stent, which was placed in the ductus arteriosus. These eight patients all underwent elective Ladd’s procedure at the time of gastrostomy tube placement. Per our protocol, all patients remained on aspirin prior to surgery and had no period where they were without anticoagulation. All patients remained on milrinone during and after the procedure and received fluid administration upon arrival to the cardiac intensive care unit to account for losses. All 8 patients experienced

  15. Quality of life of palliative care patients in the last two weeks of life.

    PubMed

    Lo, Raymond S K; Woo, Jean; Zhoc, Karen C H; Li, Charlotte Y P; Yeo, Winnie; Johnson, Philip; Mak, Yvonne; Lee, Joseph

    2002-10-01

    Quality of life (QOL) is the main consideration in caring for advanced cancer patients, yet little is known about the QOL in the terminal phase. We profiled the QOL of 58 advanced cancer patients during their last 2 weeks of life using the McGill QOL questionnaire-Hong Kong version. The patients provided ratings of QOL an average of 5.6 (median 6) days pre-death. Palliative care services were successful in maintaining the total QOL score during the dying phase. The mean score was 7.0 of 10. Among the various domains, the physical and existential domains scored relatively poorly at 5.9 and 6 of 10, respectively. The worst physical symptom and meaning of life were the individual items with the poorest scores (4.8 and 5.4 of 10, respectively). Compared with admission, there was statistically significant improvement in the worst physical symptom (P = 0.02) and eating item (P = 0.002), but deterioration in physical well-being (P = 0.03), meaning of existence (P = 0.007), and satisfaction with oneself (P = 0.04). In conclusion, QOL evaluation during the terminal phase identifies important aspects requiring improvement during the last two weeks of life. Physical and existential domains of dying cancer patients needed more attention. PMID:12505207

  16. Palliative care at the end-of-life in glioma patients.

    PubMed

    Koekkoek, Johan A F; Chang, Susan; Taphoorn, Martin J B

    2016-01-01

    The end-of-life (EOL) phase of patients with a glioma starts when symptom prevalence increases and antitumor treatment is no longer effective. During the EOL phase, care is primarily aimed at reducing symptom burden while maintaining quality of life as long as possible without inappropriate prolongation of life. Palliative care during the EOL phase also involves complex medical decisions for the prevention and relief of suffering. We discuss the prevalence and treatment of the most common EOL symptoms, decision making in the EOL phase, the organization of EOL care, and the role of the patient's caregiver. Treating disease-specific symptoms, such as impaired consciousness, seizures, focal neurologic deficits and cognitive disturbances, is a major concern during the EOL phase, as these symptoms may interfere with EOL decision making. Advance care planning is aimed at reaching consensus about possible EOL decisions between all participants, respecting the values of patients and their informal caregivers. In order to prevent the possibility that the patient becomes incompetent to make informed decisions, we recommend initiating EOL conversations at a relatively early stage in the disease course. PMID:26948363

  17. Psychiatric Morbidity, Pain Perception, and Functional Status of Chronic Pain Patients in Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Rajmohan, V; Kumar, Suresh K

    2013-01-01

    Context: Psychological factors, such as that exist when we experience pain, can profoundly alter the strength of pain perception. Aim: The study aims to estimate the prevalence of psychiatric disorders, and its association with perception of pain and functional status in chronic patients in palliative care. Materials and Methods: The sample was selected via simple randomisation and post consent were assessed using (1) a semi- structured questionnaire to elicit socio-demographic information and medical data (2) Brief Pain Inventory (3) ICD-10 Symptom Checklist (4) ICD-10-Diagnostic Criteria for Research (DCR) (5) Montgomery Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) (6) Covi Anxiety Rating Scale (7) Karnofsky Performance Status Scale. Data was analysed using independent sample t test and chi square test. Results: The psychiatric morbidity was 67% with depression and adjustment disorders being the major diagnosis. There was a significant association between psychiatric morbidity pain variables (P = 0.000). Psychiatric morbidity significantly impaired activity, mood, working, walk, sleep, relationship, and enjoyment. There was no association between aetiology of pain, type of cancer, treatment for primary condition and treatment for pain and psychiatric morbidity. The functional status of cancer patients was also poorer in patients with psychiatric morbidity (P = 0.008). Conclusion: There is a high prevalence of psychiatric illness in chronic pain patients of any aetiology. Psychiatric morbidity is associated with increased pain perception, impairment in activity and poor functional status. PMID:24347904

  18. Families’ Perspectives of Quality of Life in Pediatric Palliative Care Patients

    PubMed Central

    Gaab, Erin Mary

    2015-01-01

    Medical and academic institutions began prioritizing Pediatric Palliative Care (PPC) less than two decades ago. Although policies and institutions claim to improve the Quality of Life (QoL) of PPC patients and their families, family-defined QoL remains ambiguous. This research investigates the definitions of QoL for PPC patients according to their primary caregivers. We conducted qualitative, semi-structured focus groups of the primary caregivers of PPC patients. The transcripts were analysed for themes using inductive thematic analysis. Participants included primary caregivers of children currently receiving PPC from a healthcare institution in California. We identified several factors that primary caregivers considered components of QoL for their children. The ability to communicate and adapt or be accepted underpinned the concept of QoL for families. QoL for PPC patients was defined by primary caregivers as being able to communicate in a respectful, controlled, physically- and socially-comfortable environment. Attempts to improve QoL should focus not only on pain and symptom control, but also on enhancing opportunities for children to communicate and maintain a sense of dignity. PMID:27417355

  19. Integration of Early Specialist Palliative Care in Cancer Care: Survey of Oncologists, Oncology Nurses, and Patients

    PubMed Central

    Salins, Naveen; Patra, Lipika; Usha Rani, MR; Lohitashva, SO; Rao, Raghavendra; Ramanjulu, Raghavendra; Vallath, Nandini

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Palliative care is usually delivered late in the course of illness trajectory. This precludes patients on active disease modifying treatment from receiving the benefit of palliative care intervention. A survey was conducted to know the opinion of oncologists, oncology nurses, and patients about the role of early specialist palliative care in cancer. Methods: A nonrandomized descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted at a tertiary cancer care center in India. Thirty oncologists, sixty oncology nurses, and sixty patients were surveyed. Results: Improvement in symptom control was appreciated by oncologists, oncology nurses, and patients with respect to pain (Z = −4.10, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.84, P = 0.001), (Z = −6.20, P = 0.001); nausea and vomiting (Z = −3.75, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.3, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.1, P = 0.001); constipation (Z = −3.29, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.96, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.49, P = 0.001); breathlessness (Z = −3.57, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.03, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.99, P = 0.001); and restlessness (Z = −3.68, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.23, P = 0.001), (Z = −3.22, P = 0.001). Improvement in end-of-life care management was appreciated by oncologists and oncology nurses with respect to communication of prognosis (Z = −4.04, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.20, P = 0.001); discussion on limitation of life-sustaining treatment (Z = −3.68, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.53, P = 0.001); end-of-life symptom management (Z = −4.17, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.59, P = 0.001); perimortem care (Z = −3.86, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.80, P = 0.001); and bereavement support (Z = −3-80, P = 0.001), (Z = −4.95, P = 0.001). Improvement in health-related communication was appreciated by oncologists, oncology nurses, and patients with respect to communicating health related information in a sensitive manner (Z = −3.74, P = 0.001), (Z = −5.47, P = 0.001), (Z = −6.12, P = 0.001); conducting family meeting (Z = −3.12, P = 0.002), (Z = −4.60, P = 0

  20. Pretreatment neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio and its dynamic changes are associated with the overall survival in advanced cancer patients undergoing palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Weiwei; Wu, Zhenyu; Li, Yintao; Jia, Huixun; Chen, Menglei; Gu, Xiaoli; Liu, Minghui; Zhang, Zhe; Wang, Peng; Cheng, Wenwu

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of pretreatment NLR and its dynamic changes responsive to palliative care in advanced cancer patients. The study was retrospectively assessed in 378 consecutive advanced cancer patients receiving palliative care, and in an extended follow-up study of 106 of those patients. The cutoff value of pretreatment NLR was determined to be 3.0. In the 378 advanced cancer patients, 89 had pretreatment NLR ≤ 3, and 289 had an NLR > 3. Univariate and multivariate analyses showed that tumor stage, palliative care, albumin level, and pretreatment NLR (HR: 1.514, 95% CI: 1.125~2.038, P = 0.006) were independent prognostic indicators of OS. Moreover, in the follow-up cohort of 106 readmitted patients, 43 patients achieved a decreased NLR after palliative care, while the remaining 63 patients showed an increased NLR. Univariate and multivariate analyses showed that an increase in NLR was significantly associated with a poor survival (HR: 2.506, 95% CI: 1.474~4.261, P = 0.001). In conclusion, pretreatment NLR and changes in NLR independently predicted OS in advanced cancer patients undergoing palliative care. Incorporating NLR into clinical practice may better inform the prognosis and therapy decisions of advanced cancer patients in palliative settings. PMID:27510632

  1. Pretreatment neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio and its dynamic changes are associated with the overall survival in advanced cancer patients undergoing palliative care.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Weiwei; Wu, Zhenyu; Li, Yintao; Jia, Huixun; Chen, Menglei; Gu, Xiaoli; Liu, Minghui; Zhang, Zhe; Wang, Peng; Cheng, Wenwu

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of pretreatment NLR and its dynamic changes responsive to palliative care in advanced cancer patients. The study was retrospectively assessed in 378 consecutive advanced cancer patients receiving palliative care, and in an extended follow-up study of 106 of those patients. The cutoff value of pretreatment NLR was determined to be 3.0. In the 378 advanced cancer patients, 89 had pretreatment NLR ≤ 3, and 289 had an NLR > 3. Univariate and multivariate analyses showed that tumor stage, palliative care, albumin level, and pretreatment NLR (HR: 1.514, 95% CI: 1.125~2.038, P = 0.006) were independent prognostic indicators of OS. Moreover, in the follow-up cohort of 106 readmitted patients, 43 patients achieved a decreased NLR after palliative care, while the remaining 63 patients showed an increased NLR. Univariate and multivariate analyses showed that an increase in NLR was significantly associated with a poor survival (HR: 2.506, 95% CI: 1.474~4.261, P = 0.001). In conclusion, pretreatment NLR and changes in NLR independently predicted OS in advanced cancer patients undergoing palliative care. Incorporating NLR into clinical practice may better inform the prognosis and therapy decisions of advanced cancer patients in palliative settings. PMID:27510632

  2. Self-Expanding Metal Stenting for Palliation of Patients with Malignant Colonic Obstruction: Effectiveness and Efficacy on 255 Patients with 12-Month's Follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Meisner, Søren; González-Huix, Ferran; Vandervoort, Jo G.; Repici, Alessandro; Xinopoulos, Dimitrios; Grund, Karl E.; Goldberg, Paul; Registry Group, The WallFlex Colonic

    2012-01-01

    Background. Self-expanding metal stents can alleviate malignant colonic obstruction in incurable patients and avoid palliative stoma surgery. Objective. Evaluate stent effectiveness and safety on palliation of patients with malignant colorectal strictures. Design. Two prospective, one Spanish and one global, multicenter studies. Settings. 39 centers (22 academic, 17 community hospitals) from 13 countries. Patients. A total of 257 patients were enrolled, and 255 patients were treated with a WallFlex uncovered enteral colonic stent. Follow-up was up to 12 months or until death or retreatment. Interventions(s). Self-expanding metal stent placement. Main Outcome Measures. Procedural success, clinical success, and safety. Results. Procedural success was 98.4% (251). Clinical success rates were 87.8% at 30 days, 89.7% at 3 months, 92.8% at 6 months, and 96% at 12 months. Overall perforation rate was 5.1%. Overall migration rate was 5.5%. Overall death rate during follow-up was 48.6% (124), with 67.7% of deaths related to the patient's colorectal cancer, unrelated in 32.3%. Only 2 deaths were related to the stent or procedure. Limitations. No control group. Conclusions. The primary palliative option for patients with malignant colonic obstruction should be self-expanding metal stent placement due to high rates of technical success and efficacy in symptom palliation and few complications. PMID:22761609

  3. Effectiveness of the palliative care ‘Availability, Current issues and Anticipation’ (ACA) communication training programme for general practitioners on patient outcomes: A controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Blankenstein, Annette H; Schweitzer, Bart PM; Knol, Dirk L; van der Horst, Henriëtte E; Aaronson, Neil K; Deliens, Luc

    2014-01-01

    Background: Although communicating effectively with patients receiving palliative care can be difficult, it may contribute to maintaining or enhancing patients’ quality of life. Little is known about the effect of training general practitioners in palliative care–specific communication. We hypothesized that palliative care patients of general practitioners exposed to the ‘Availability, Current issues and Anticipation’ communication training programme would report better outcomes than patients of control general practitioners. Aim: To evaluate the effectiveness of the Availability, Current issues and Anticipation training programme for general practitioners on patient-reported outcomes. Design: In a controlled trial, general practitioners followed the Availability, Current issues and Anticipation programme or were part of the control group. Patients receiving palliative care of participating general practitioners completed the Palliative Care Outcome Scale, the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire Core 15 Palliative, the Rest & Peace Scale, the Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire–III and the Availability, Current issues and Anticipation Scale, at baseline and 12 months follow-up. We analysed differences between groups using linear mixed models. Trial registration: ISRCTN56722368. Setting/participants: General practitioners who attended a 2-year Palliative Care Training Course in the Netherlands. Results: Questionnaire data were available for 145 patients (89 in intervention and 56 in control group). We found no significant differences over time between the intervention and control groups in any of the five outcome measures. Ceiling effects were observed for the Rest & Peace Scale, Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire–III and Availability, Current issues and Anticipation Scale. Conclusion: General practitioner participation in the Availability, Current issues and Anticipation training programme did not have

  4. War and peace? The oncologic and the palliative care perspective on personalized cancer treatment in a patient with advanced cancer.

    PubMed

    Masel, Eva K; Schur, Sophie; Posch, Doris; Weixler, Dietmar; Meran, Johannes G; Schmidinger, Manuela; Watzke, Herbert H

    2015-08-01

    Personalized cancer treatment utilizing targeted therapies in a tailored approach is based on tumor and/or patient-specific molecular profiles. Recent clinical trials continue to look for new potential targets in heavily pretreated patients or rare disease entities. Careful selection of patients who may derive benefit from such therapies constitutes a challenge. This case report presents an experimental personalized cancer treatment in an advanced cancer patient and provides a list of issues for discussion: How can we combine treatment goals and simultaneously meet the individual needs in advanced cancer reconciling both perspectives: oncology and palliative care? PMID:25986998

  5. A method of calculating the value of palliative care of cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Little, J M

    1987-06-01

    There are no entirely satisfactory methods for measuring the value of palliative treatment of advanced cancer. A useful instrument of measurement should take into account both length and quality of survival. A method is proposed for determining the area under the time-quality of life curve, using Simpson's discrete approximation, an algorithm which can be programmed simply into a small computer or programmable calculator. The Karnofsky index has been used as an indicator of the quality of life, but the method is adaptable to other quality of life scales. Efficiency of palliation can be estimated by comparison with the area produced by theoretically perfect palliation. The ability to quantitate palliation in these ways might help to resolve uncertainties that surround the alternative methods of management of incurable cancer. PMID:2445330

  6. Palliative Care Teams' Cost-Saving Effect Is Larger For Cancer Patients With Higher Numbers Of Comorbidities.

    PubMed

    May, Peter; Garrido, Melissa M; Cassel, J Brian; Kelley, Amy S; Meier, Diane E; Normand, Charles; Stefanis, Lee; Smith, Thomas J; Morrison, R Sean

    2016-01-01

    Patients with multiple serious conditions account for a high proportion of health care spending. Such spending is projected to continue to grow substantially as a result of increased insurance eligibility, the ever-rising cost of care, the continued use of nonbeneficial high-intensity treatments at the end of life, and demographic changes. We evaluated the impact of palliative care consultation on hospital costs for adults with advanced cancer, excluding those with dementia. We found that compared to usual care, the receipt of a palliative care consultation within two days of admission was associated with 22 percent lower costs for patients with a comorbidity score of 2-3 and with 32 percent lower costs for those with a score of 4 or higher. Earlier consultation was also found to be systematically associated with a larger cost-saving effect for all subsamples defined by multimorbidity. Given ongoing workforce shortages, targeting early specialist palliative care to hospitalized patients with advanced cancer and higher numbers of serious concurrent conditions could improve care while complementing strategies to curb the growth of health spending. PMID:26733700

  7. (Using) complementary and alternative medicine: the perceptions of palliative patients with cancer.

    PubMed

    Eliott, Jaklin A; Kealey, Colin P; Olver, Ian N

    2008-01-01

    Use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is increasingly common within Western societies, including Australia. This parallels calls for or claims of integration of CAM into mainstream medical practice, with oncology and palliative care specifically nominated as appropriate arenas for integration. However, there is an absence of studies examining patient perceptions of both CAM and CAM users. In this study, 28 adult patients with cancer close to death were interviewed regarding treatment decisions at the end of life, including decisions about CAM. Thematic analysis of transcribed interviews found consistent differences in talk around CAM between 12 users and 16 nonusers of CAM, primarily related to the perceived value of these treatments. Drawing upon a mind-body discourse that holds individuals responsible for their health, users valued CAM for the perceived benefit to physical or psychological well-being and compatibility with a holistic approach to health care, deemed to complement or augment conventional medicine. However, some were self-critical of their failure to continue with CAM, despite practical and financial difficulties experienced. Nonusers devalued CAM as unable to cure their disease (but did not similarly devalue conventional medicine), and negatively construed CAM users as desperate, or as challenging medical wisdom. Despite increased legitimation and medicalization of CAM, patients assess CAM differently to allopathic medicine, with different (positive and negative) assessments attributable to users. The misperception by many (nonusers) that CAM are intended to cure and available negative moral and social judgments centred around CAM use may deter patient uptake of CAM in areas where they have proven efficacy in symptom control. PMID:18370894

  8. Understanding the purpose of treatment and expectations in patients with inoperable lung cancer treated with palliative chemotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Woźniak, Karolina; Krajnik, Małgorzata

    2015-01-01

    Aim of the study Informing cancer patients about various types of treatment and their adverse effects and communicating negative information is an important element of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. Understanding the purpose of treatment and expectations, and socio-demographic factors in patients undergoing palliative chemotherapy because of lung cancer. Material and methods The study included 100 patients with lung cancer at the age of 40–80 years (mean 63.1) in the Oncology Center in Bydgoszcz in 2013–2014. The diagnostic survey method with the author's questionnaire was used. Results Forty-one percent of patients were convinced that the purpose of chemotherapy is to cure the disease. Both inhabitants of small towns (population below 50 thousand) and large villages (p = 0.09) were similarly convinced about the effectiveness of chemotherapy. Seventy-three percent of inhabitants of small towns and 79% of country dwellers (p = 0.005) thought that chemotherapy is aimed at improving the quality of life. Patients with very good economic conditions responded that chemotherapy is designed to improve the quality of life more often than those with good and bad economic conditions, 90%, 88% and 60%, respectively (p = 0.001). With the increase in population the number of people who claimed that palliative chemotherapy prolongs their life increased, 71%, 77% and 90%, respectively (p = 0.03). Conclusions The knowledge of patients with lung cancer about palliative chemotherapy is insufficient. Almost half of them do not understand the purpose of treatment and hope that chemotherapy will cure them of the disease. Most patients know that the aim of chemotherapy is to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life and prolong their life. Half of the patients want to obtain information on treatment and half of them about life expectancy. Almost half of the patients feel stress and anxiety towards chemotherapy. Most patients do not use the help of a psychologist and do

  9. Pediatric Palliative Care: A Personal Story

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... count__/__total__ Find out why Close Pediatric Palliative Care: A Personal Story NINRnews Subscribe Subscribed Unsubscribe 250 ... and her family. The story demonstrates how palliative care can positively influence a patient's and family's experience ...

  10. Clinical benefits of combined chemotherapy with S-1, oxaliplatin, and docetaxel in advanced gastric cancer patients with palliative surgery

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yan; Feng, Ye; Gao, Yongjian; Hou, Ruizhi

    2016-01-01

    Background and aim Advanced gastric cancer accounts for a substantial portion of cancer-related mortality worldwide. Surgical intervention is the curative therapeutic approach, but patients with advanced gastric cancer are not eligible for the radical resection. The present work aimed to investigate the efficacy and safety of palliative surgery combined with S-1, oxaliplatin, and docetaxel chemotherapy in the treatment of patients with advanced gastric cancer. Method A total of 20 patients who underwent palliative resection of gastric cancer in China–Japan Union Hospital of Jilin University from 2010 to 2011 were evaluated. Days 20–30 postoperative, these patients started to receive chemotherapy of S-1 (40 mg/m2, oral intake twice a day) and intravenous infusion of oxaliplatin (135 mg/m2) and docetaxel (75 mg/m2). After three cycles of chemotherapy (21 days/cycle), patients were evaluated, and only those who responded toward the treatment continued to receive six to eight cycles of the treatment and were included in end point evaluation. Patients’ survival time and adverse reactions observed along the treatment were compared with those treated with FOLFOX. Results Out of 20 patients evaluated, there was one case of complete response, nine cases of partial response, six cases of stable disease, and four cases of progressive disease. The total efficacy (complete response + partial response) and clinical benefit rates were 50% and 80%, respectively. Of importance, the treatment achieved a significantly longer survival time compared to FOLFOX, despite the fact that both regimens shared common adverse reactions. The adverse reactions were gastrointestinal reaction, reduction in white blood cells, and peripheral neurotoxicity. All of them were mild, having no impact on the treatment. Conclusion Combination therapy of S-1, oxaliplatin, and docetaxel improves the survival of gastric cancer patients treated with palliative resection, with adverse reactions being

  11. Palliative care needs in patients hospitalized with heart failure (PCHF) study: rationale and design

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Colette E.; Wright, Ann; Gardner, Roy S.; Ford, Ian; Davidson, Patricia M.; Denvir, Martin A.; Hogg, Karen J.; Johnson, Miriam J.; Petrie, Mark C.; McMurray, John J.V.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Aims The primary aim of this study is to provide data to inform the design of a randomized controlled clinical trial (RCT) of a palliative care (PC) intervention in heart failure (HF). We will identify an appropriate study population with a high prevalence of PC needs defined using quantifiable measures. We will also identify which components a specific and targeted PC intervention in HF should include and attempt to define the most relevant trial outcomes. Methods An unselected, prospective, near‐consecutive, cohort of patients admitted to hospital with acute decompensated HF will be enrolled over a 2‐year period. All potential participants will be screened using B‐type natriuretic peptide and echocardiography, and all those enrolled will be extensively characterized in terms of their HF status, comorbidity, and PC needs. Quantitative assessment of PC needs will include evaluation of general and disease‐specific quality of life, mood, symptom burden, caregiver burden, and end of life care. Inpatient assessments will be performed and after discharge outpatient assessments will be carried out every 4 months for up to 2.5 years. Participants will be followed up for a minimum of 1 year for hospital admissions, and place and cause of death. Methods for identifying patients with HF with PC needs will be evaluated, and estimates of healthcare utilisation performed. Conclusion By assessing the prevalence of these needs, describing how these needs change over time, and evaluating how best PC needs can be identified, we will provide the foundation for designing an RCT of a PC intervention in HF.

  12. A Population-based Study of Age Inequalities in Access to Palliative Care Among Cancer Patients

    PubMed Central

    Burge, Frederick I.; Lawson, Beverley J.; Johnston, Grace M.; Grunfeld, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Background Inequalities in access to palliative care programs (PCP) by age have been shown to exist in Canada and elsewhere. Few studies have been able to provide greater insight by simultaneously adjusting for multiple demographic, health service, and socio-cultural indicators. Objective To re-examine the relationship between age and registration to specialized community-based PCP programs among cancer patients and identify the multiple indicators contributing to these inequalities. Methods This retrospective, population-based study was a secondary data analysis of linked individual level information extracted from 6 administrative health databases and contextual (neighborhood level) data from provincial and census information. Subjects included all adults who died due to cancer between 1998 and 2003 living within 2 District Health Authorities in the province of Nova Scotia, Canada. The relationship between registration in a PCP and age was examined using hierarchical nonlinear regression modeling techniques. Identification of potential patient and ecologic contributing indicators was guided by Andersen’s conceptual model of health service utilization. Results Overall, 66% of 7511 subjects were registered with a PCP. Older subjects were significantly less likely than those <65 years of age to be registered with a PCP, in particular those aged 85 years and older (adjusted odds ratio: 0.4; 95% confidence interval: 0.3–0.5). Distance to the closest cancer center had a major impact on registration. Conclusions Age continues to be a significant predictor of PCP registration in Nova Scotia even after controlling for the confounding effects of many new demographic, health service, and ecologic indicators. PMID:19300309

  13. Raising the Bar for the Care of Seriously Ill Patients: Results of a National Survey to Define Essential Palliative Care Competencies for Medical Students and Residents

    PubMed Central

    Schaefer, Kristen G.; Chittenden, Eva H.; Sullivan, Amy M.; Periyakoil, Vyjeyanth S.; Morrison, Laura J.; Carey, Elise C.; Sanchez-Reilly, Sandra; Block, Susan D.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose Given the shortage of palliative care specialists in the U.S., to ensure quality of care for patients with serious, life-threatening illness, generalist-level palliative care competencies need to be defined and taught. The purpose of this study was to define essential competencies for medical students and internal medicine and family medicine (IM/FM) residents through a national survey of palliative care experts. Method Proposed competencies were derived from existing Hospice and Palliative Medicine fellowship competencies, and revised to be developmentally appropriate for students and residents. In spring 2012, the authors administered a web-based, national cross-sectional survey of palliative care educational experts to assess ratings and rankings of proposed competencies and competency domains. Results The authors identified 18 comprehensive palliative care competencies for medical students and IM/FM residents, respectively. Over 95% of survey respondents judged the competencies as comprehensive and developmentally appropriate (survey response rate=72%, 71/98). Using predefined cut-off criteria, experts identified 7 medical student and 13 IM/FM resident competencies as essential. Communication and pain/symptom management were rated as the most critical domains. Conclusions This national survey of palliative care experts defines comprehensive and essential palliative care competencies for medical students and IM/FM residents that are specific, measurable, and can be used to report educational outcomes; provide a sequence for palliative care curricula in undergraduate and graduate medical education; and highlight the importance of educating medical trainees in communication and pain management. Next steps include seeking input and endorsement from stakeholders in the broader medical education community. PMID:24979171

  14. Innovative palliative care in Edmonton.

    PubMed Central

    Fainsinger, R. L.; Bruera, E.; MacMillan, K.

    1997-01-01

    PROBLEM BEING ADDRESSED: Access to palliative care in Edmonton has been hampered by uneven development, poor distribution of services, and more recently, economic restraints. Family physicians' involvement in palliative care has been hindered by the variety of access points, poor coordination, and inadequate reimbursement for time-consuming and difficult patient care situations. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM: To provide high-quality palliative care throughout Edmonton in all settings, with patients able to move easily throughout the components of the program; to lower costs by having fewer palliative care patients die in acute care facilities; and to ensure that family physicians receive support to care for most patients at home or in palliative care units. MAIN COMPONENTS OF PROGRAM: The program includes a regional office, home care, and consultant teams. A specialized 14-bed palliative care unit provides acute care. Family physicians are the primary caregivers in the 56 palliative continuing care unit beds. CONCLUSIONS: This program appears to meet most of the need for palliative care in Edmonton. Family physicians, with support from consulting teams, have a central role. Evaluation is ongoing; an important issue is how best to support patients dying at home. Images p1984-a p1986-a PMID:9386885

  15. A Prospective Study Assessing Tumour Response, Survival, and Palliative Care Outcomes in Patients with HIV-Related Kaposi's Sarcoma at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, Blantyre, Malawi

    PubMed Central

    Francis, H.; Bates, M. J.; Kalilani, L.

    2012-01-01

    Background. Human-Immunodeficiency-Virus- (HIV-) related Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) has a high prevalence in Africa; however, there is minimal published data on treatment and outcomes in this population. Objective and Design. This was a prospective study of 50 patients, aiming to assess the impact of vincristine therapy on tumour response and survival and to assess palliative care outcomes in patients with HIV-related KS. Methods. 50 consecutive patients were recruited during 2008. Vincristine therapy and highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) were given. Tumour response, survival, and chemotherapy-related toxicities were documented. Palliative care outcomes were assessed using the African Palliative Care Association (APCA) Palliative Outcome Scale (POS). Results. The majority of patients were male, and the median age was 33 years. At baseline assessment, the median CD4 T-cell count was 263, and 50% patients had evidence of peripheral neuropathy. The overall response rate was 64% at 6 weeks, and median progression-free survival was 30 weeks. Treatment was generally well tolerated, with peripheral neuropathy the main dose-limiting toxicity. Conclusion. The combination of vincristine and HAART is feasible and effective in a low resource setting, although peripheral neuropathy is a dose-limiting factor. This patient group carries a high mortality and as such adequate access to palliative care is crucial. PMID:22496970

  16. Interaction of palliative care and primary care.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Amrita; Dzeng, Elizabeth; Cheng, M Jennifer

    2015-05-01

    Primary care physicians are often the first medical providers patients seek out, and are in an excellent position to provide primary palliative care. Primary palliative care encompasses basic skills including basic evaluation and management of symptoms and discussions about goals of care and advance care planning. Specialty palliative care consultation complements primary care by assisting with complex psychosocial-spiritual patient and family situations. This article reviews primary palliative care skill sets and criteria for when to consider referring patients to specialty palliative care and hospice services. PMID:25920056

  17. Cancer-related pain in older adults receiving palliative care: Patient and family caregiver perspectives on the experience of pain

    PubMed Central

    McPherson, Christine J; Hadjistavropoulos, Thomas; Lobchuk, Michelle M; Kilgour, Kelly N

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Despite an emphasis on pain management in palliative care, pain continues to be a common problem for individuals with advanced cancer. Many of those affected are older due to the disproportionate incidence of cancer in this age group. There remains little understanding of how older patients and their family caregivers perceive patients’ cancer-related pain, despite its significance for pain management in the home setting. OBJECTIVES: To explore and describe the cancer pain perceptions and experiences of older adults with advanced cancer and their family caregivers. METHODS: A qualitative descriptive approach was used to describe and interpret data collected from semistructured interviews with 18 patients (≥65 years of age) with advanced cancer receiving palliative care at home and their family caregivers. RESULTS: The main category ‘Experiencing cancer pain’ incorporated three themes. The theme ‘Feeling cancer pain’ included the sensory aspects of the pain, its origin and meanings attributed to the pain. A second theme, ‘Reacting to cancer pain’, included patients’ and family caregivers’ behavioural, cognitive (ie, attitudes, beliefs and control) and emotional responses to the pain. A third theme, ‘Living with cancer pain’ incorporated individual and social-relational changes that resulted from living with cancer pain. CONCLUSIONS: The findings provide an awareness of cancer pain experienced by older patients and their family caregivers within the wider context of ongoing relationships, increased patient morbidity and other losses common in the aged. PMID:23957019

  18. Dimethyl sulfoxide-sodium bicarbonate infusion for palliative care and pain relief in patients with metastatic prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Hoang, Ba X; Le, Bao T; Tran, Hau D; Hoang, Cuong; Tran, Hung Q; Tran, Dao M; Pham, Cu Q; Pham, Tuan D; Ha, Trung V; Bui, Nga T; Shaw, D Graeme

    2011-01-01

    Prostate cancer (adenocarcinoma of the prostate) is the most widespread cancer in men. It causes significant suffering and mortality due to metastatic disease. The main therapy for metastatic prostate cancer (MPC) includes androgen manipulation, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy and/or radioisotopes. However, these therapeutic approaches are considered palliative at this stage, and their significant side effects can cause further decline in patients' quality of life and increase non-cancer-related morbidity/mortality. In this study, the authors have used the infusion of dimethyl sulfoxide-sodium bicarbonate (DMSO-SB) to treat 18 patients with MPC. The 90-day follow-up of the patients having undergone the proposed therapeutic regimen showed significant improvement in clinical symptoms, blood and biochemistry tests, and quality of life. There were no major side effects from the treatment. In searching for new and better methods for palliative treatment and pain relief, this study strongly suggested therapy with DMSO-SB infusions could provide a rational alternative to conventional treatment for patients with MPC. PMID:21936635

  19. Palliative care: an evolving field in medicine.

    PubMed

    Eti, Serife

    2011-06-01

    Palliative care is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problems associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems: physical, psychosocial, and spiritual. This article discusses illness trajectories and prognostic estimates, prognostic tools, educating physicians and nurses in palliative care, research in palliative medicine, and palliative care in hospitals and the community. PMID:21628032

  20. Palliative Care

    MedlinePlus

    ... you with all of these questions and discussions. Making Decisions About End-of-Life Care DNR/DNI/AND ... Experience Positive Growth? Grieving and Palliative Care Overview Making Decisions About End-of-Life Care DNR/DNI/AND ...

  1. Palliative Care

    MedlinePlus

    Palliative care is treatment of the discomfort, symptoms, and stress of serious illness. It provides relief from distressing symptoms ... of the medical treatments you're receiving. Hospice care, care at the end of life, always includes ...

  2. Impact of Palliative Care Consultation Service on Terminally Ill Cancer Patients: A 9-Year Observational Cohort Study in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Lu, Ching-Yi; Shen, Wen-Chi; Kao, Chen-Yi; Wang, Hung-Ming; Tang, Shu-Chuan; Chin, Tsu-Ling; Chi, Chuan-Chuan; Yang, Jin-Mei; Chang, Chih-Wen; Lai, Ying-Fen; Yeh, Ya-Chi; Hung, Yu-Shin; Chou, Wen-Chi

    2016-03-01

    The palliative care consultation service (PCCS) that has been enthusiastically promoted in Taiwan since 2005 was designed to provide comprehensive end-of-life care for terminally ill patients with qualified interdisciplinary specialists in acute care ward setting. This study aims to evaluate the impact of PCCS on terminally ill cancer patients.A total of 10,594 terminal cancer patients who were referred to PCCS from a single medical center in Taiwan between 2006 and 2014 were enrolled. The percentages of patients' and their families' disease awareness, do-not-resuscitate (DNR) designation, refusal and acceptance of palliative care among terminally ill cancer patients were analyzed retrospectively.At the beginning of PCCS, the percentages of disease awareness among patients and their family were increased from 25.4% to 37.9% (P = 0.007) and from 61.2% to 84.7% between 2006 and 2014 (P = 0.001), respectively. Patients' disease awareness after PCCS referral between 2006 and 2014 was increased from 47.1% to 64.5% (P = 0.016). Family's awareness of diagnosis and prognosis after PCCS referral researched to a steady plateau, 94.1% to 97.8% in different year cohort (P = 0.34). The percentage of DNR designation rate at the beginning of PCCS (in 2006) was 15.5%, and the designation rate was increased annually and finally reached to 42.0% in 2014 (P = 0.004). The percentage of DNR consents after PCCS was also improved from 44.0% in 2006 up to 80.0% in 2014 (P = 0.005). PCCS refusal rate decreased gradually and dropped to 1.6% in 2014 (P = 0.005). The percentage of PCCS utilization was increased 5-fold during the 9-year period after the promotion of PCCSIn the program of PCCS promotion, an increasing trend of PCCS utilization, better patients' and their families' awareness of diagnosis and prognosis, more consent to DNR, more patients were discharged with stable condition at the end of PCCS and a decrease refusal rate of end-of-life palliative care

  3. Is there a place for sexuality in the holistic care of patients in the palliative care phase of life?

    PubMed

    Redelman, Margaret J

    2008-01-01

    Being diagnosed with a life-limiting condition is a traumatic event. The journey to the moment of death is usually only done once--so it is a time of fears and uncertainty. Sexuality is particularly vulnerable at this time. It may be difficult for both patient and partner to deal with the changes in sexuality without professional assistance. It is "sexuality" rather than "sex" that defines the meaningful relationships people have with themselves and significant others. When sexuality is lost or changed, important benefits may be lost. Studies show that many patients do value sexuality and want assistance in making the best of their sexual potential during the palliative care phase. Health professionals regularly acknowledge the importance of sexuality for their patients but have difficulties acting on their beliefs. Sexuality, within the patient's functional ability and desire for it, must be acknowledged and included in holistic management. It is the health professional's responsibility to raise this issue. PMID:18567674

  4. Readmissions in Cancer Patients After Receiving Inpatient Palliative Care in Taiwan: A 9-Year Nationwide Population-Based Cohort Study.

    PubMed

    Chang, Hsiao-Ting; Chen, Chun-Ku; Lin, Ming-Hwai; Chou, Pesus; Chen, Tzeng-Ji; Hwang, Shinn-Jang

    2016-02-01

    Few studies have reported on readmissions among cancer patients receiving inpatient palliative care (IPC). This study investigated readmissions in cancer patients after their first discharge from IPC in Taiwan from 2002 to 2010.This study was a secondary data analysis using information from the National Health Insurance Database in Taiwan from 2002 to 2010. We included subjects ≥20 years old diagnosed with malignant neoplasms who were listed in the registry of catastrophic illness. Patients diagnosed with cancer before January 1, 2002 or who had ever been admitted to an inpatient hospice palliative care unit before the study period were excluded. Readmission was defined as hospital readmission at least once after discharge from first admission to IPC until mortality or the end of the study period.A total of 42,022 patients who met the inclusion criteria were identified. The majority of these patients were male (60.4%). The mean age of cancer diagnosis was 64.0 ± 14.4 years for men and 64.5 ± 14.7 years for women. The mean age at first hospice ward admission was 65.2 ± 14.2 years for men and 65.9 ± 14.9 years for women. During their first admission to IPC, 59.2% patients died, and the median stay of first IPC admission was 8.0 days. Among those discharged alive from their first admission to IPC, 64.9% were readmitted, and 19.4% of these patients were readmitted on the same day of discharge. From first IPC discharge until mortality, 54.8% of patients were readmitted once, 23.9% were readmitted twice, 9.9% were readmitted 3 times, and 11.5% were readmitted 4 or more times. Being male, having a higher insurance premium level, having a longer length of stay during first IPC admission, being admitted to a teaching hospital, or being admitted to a tertiary hospital increased the adjusted hazard ratio for readmission.We found that terminal cancer patients in Taiwan received relatively late referrals for first admission to IPC and experienced a high

  5. Palliative Care Symptom Assessment for Patients with Cancer in the Emergency Department: Validation of the Screen for Palliative and End-of-Life Care Needs in the Emergency Department Instrument

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Christopher T.; Chang, Chih-Hung; Courtney, D. Mark; Engel, Kirsten G.; Emanuel, Linda; Quest, Tammie

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Objective We sought to develop and validate a novel palliative medicine needs assessment tool for patients with cancer in the emergency department. Methods An expert panel trained in palliative medicine and emergency medicine reviewed and adapted a general palliative medicine symptom assessment tool, the Needs at the End-of-Life Screening Tool. From this adaptation a new 13-question instrument was derived, collectively referred to as the Screen for Palliative and End-of-life care needs in the Emergency Department (SPEED). A database of 86 validated symptom assessment tools available from the palliative medicine literature, totaling 3011 questions, were then reviewed to identify validated test items most similar to the 13 items of SPEED; a total of107 related questions from the database were identified. Minor adaptations of questions were made for standardization to a uniform 10-point Likert scale. The 107 items, along with the 13 SPEED items were randomly ordered to create a single survey of 120 items. The 120-item survey was administered by trained staff to all patients with cancer who met inclusion criteria (age over 21 years, English-speaking, capacity to provide informed consent) who presented to a large urban academic emergency department between 8:00 am and 11:00 pm over a 10-week period. Data were analyzed to determine the degree of correlation between SPEED items and the related 107 selected items from previously validated tools. Results A total of 53 subjects were enrolled, of which 49 (92%) completed the survey in its entirety. Fifty-three percent of subjects were male, age range was 24–88 years, and the most common cancer diagnoses were breast, colon, and lung. Cronbach coefficient α for the SPEED items ranged from 0.716 to 0.991, indicating their high scale reliability. Correlations between the SPEED scales and related assessment tools previously validated in other settings were high and statistically significant. Conclusion The SPEED

  6. Outcome of Patients Treated With a Single-Fraction Dose of Palliative Radiation for Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, Tarita O.; Agrawal, Priya; Guitart, Joan; Rosen, Steven T.; Querfeld, Christiane; Kuzel, Timothy M.

    2013-03-01

    Purpose: Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL) is a radiosensitive tumor. Presently, treatment with radiation is given in multiple fractions. The current literature lacks data that support single-fraction treatment for CTCL. This retrospective review assesses the clinical response in patients treated with a single fraction of radiation. Methods and Materials: This study reviewed the records of 58 patients with CTCL, primarily mycosis fungoides, treated with a single fraction of palliative radiation therapy (RT) between October 1991 and January 2011. Patient and tumor characteristics were reviewed. Response rates were compared using Fisher's exact test and multiple logistic regressions. Survival rates were determined using the Kaplan-Meier method. Cost-effectiveness analysis was performed to assess the cost of a single vs a multifractionated treatment regimen. Results: Two hundred seventy individual lesions were treated, with the majority (97%) treated with ≥700 cGy; mean follow-up was 41.3 months (range, 3-180 months). Response rate by lesion was assessed, with a complete response (CR) in 255 (94.4%) lesions, a partial response in 10 (3.7%) lesions, a partial response converted to a CR after a second treatment in 4 (1.5%) lesions, and no response in 1 (0.4%) lesion. The CR in lower extremity lesions was lower than in other sites (P=.0016). Lesions treated with photons had lower CR than those treated with electrons (P=.017). Patients with lesions exhibiting large cell transformation and tumor morphology had lower CR (P=.04 and P=.035, respectively). Immunophenotype did not impact response rate (P=.23). Overall survival was significantly lower for patients with Sézary syndrome (P=.0003) and erythroderma (P<.0001). The cost of multifractionated radiation was >200% higher than that for single-fraction radiation. Conclusions: A single fraction of 700 cGy-800 cGy provides excellent palliation for CTCL lesions and is cost effective and convenient for the patient.

  7. Palliative Care Doula: an innovative model.

    PubMed

    Lentz, Judy C

    2014-01-01

    Walking the journey of serious illness is very difficult and stressful for patients and families. A universal principle of palliative care is caring for the patient/ family unit. This article introduces a model for the Palliative Care Doula for experienced and advanced practice palliative care nurses to support patients and families during the traumatic and vulnerable period of end-of-life care. PMID:25296488

  8. Role of palliative radiotherapy in the management of mural cardiac metastases: who, when and how to treat? A case series of 10 patients.

    PubMed

    Fotouhi Ghiam, Alireza; Dawson, Laura A; Abuzeid, Wael; Rauth, Sarah; Jang, Raymond W; Horlick, Eric; Bezjak, Andrea

    2016-06-01

    Cardiac metastases (CM), although a rare manifestation of metastatic cancer, are increasing in incidence with the improved prognosis and increased longevity of many patients with cancer. This condition may be life-threatening, especially for bulky rapidly growing tumors. Such cancer presentations may be amenable to palliative radiotherapy to improve symptoms and to prevent further cardiac function decline. Here, we report on our experience with 10 patients with mural CM who received radiotherapy (RT) to the heart with palliative intent. The radiation treatment was given in different clinical situations using different dose and fractionation, and with a variety of outcomes. Palliative RT was a reasonably effective treatment, leading to good radiographic response in five patients who were evaluable for radiologic response. The mean duration of response in responding patients was 6.3 months (range: 3-11 months). This report describing clinical dilemmas around CM radiation therapy summarizes the previous experiences with radiation in treatment of CM and may assist in the considerations of palliative treatment for these patients. PMID:26880683

  9. Dejection and self-assessment of quality of life in patients with lung cancer subjected to palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Farbicka, Paulina; Krajnik, Małgorzata

    2016-01-01

    Aim of the study To evaluate the intensity of dejection and self-assessment of quality of life in patients with lung cancer from the start of palliative care until death. Material and methods The study included 63 patients with lung cancer from the start of care until death in palliative medicine centers in Bydgoszcz in 2012–2013. The visual-analogue scale constituting part of the ESAS scale was used to assess dejection, while question number 30 of the EORTC QLQ-C30 was used for self-assessment of quality of life. Results “Moderate” and “very” intense dejection initially occurred in 19 (30%) and 24 (38%), and in the 2nd assessment in as many as 23 (36%) and 30 (48%) patients. Average quality of life deteriorated in this respect by 0.09 in the two-step scale (p = 0.005). Increase in the intensity of “moderate” dejection occurred between the 1st and 3rd assessment. Initially it occurred in 2 (9%) patients and in 14 (66%) during the 3rd assessment. In contrast, the levels of “very” severe dejection did not change significantly between the 1st and the 3rd assessment. The average quality of life deteriorated by 0.23 points (p = 0.004). A significant relationship was found only between analgesic treatment and quality of life (p < 0.0005). Other factors such as age, time from diagnosis to start of treatment, place of residence, sex, or financial condition did not affect the quality of life. Conclusions Self-assessment of the quality of life worsens with time. The intensity of dejection does not change in the last 3 weeks of life. In multivariate analysis, among the selected variables such as age, sex, place of residence, time from diagnosis to start of palliative care, financial condition, and type of painkillers used, only the latter has an impact on self-assessed quality of life. PMID:26843849

  10. Quality of life among patients receiving palliative care in South Africa and Uganda: a multi-centred study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Quality of life (QOL) is a core outcome of palliative care, yet in African settings there is a lack of evidence on patients' levels of QOL. We aimed to describe QOL among patients with incurable, progressive disease receiving palliative care in South Africa and Uganda, to compare QOL in cancer and HIV, to determine how domains of QOL correlate with overall QOL, and compare levels of QOL in this population with those in other studies using the same tool. Methods A cross-sectional survey was conducted using the Missoula Vitas Quality of Life Index (MVQOLI), a 26-item QOL questionnaire with five subscales (Function, Symptom, Interpersonal, Well being, Transcendent) covering physical, social, psychological and spiritual domains and one global QOL item. One item in each subscale assesses the subjective importance of the domain on a score from 1 (least important) to 5 (most important), used to weight the contribution of the subscale towards the Total QOL score. The tool was translated into 6 languages and administered to consecutively recruited patients at four facilities in South Africa and one in Uganda. Results 285 patients were recruited, with a mean age of 40.1; 197 (69.1%) were female. Patients' primary diagnoses were HIV (80.7%), cancer (17.9%) and other conditions (1.4%). The mean global QOL score was 2.81 (possible range 0 (worst) to 5 (best)); mean Total score 17.32 (possible range 0 to 30). Patients scored most poorly on Function (mean 0.21), followed by Well being (2.59), Symptoms (5.38), Transcendent (5.50), Interpersonal (9.53) (possible range for subscale scores -30 to 30). Most important to patients were: close relationships (mean 4.13), feeling at peace (4.12), sense of meaning in life (4.10), being active (3.84), physical comfort (2.58). Cancer patients were predominantly recruited at three of the sites; hence comparison with HIV-infected patients was restricted to these sites. HIV+ patients (n = 115) scored significantly worse than cancer

  11. Survival Prediction Score: A Simple but Age-Dependent Method Predicting Prognosis in Patients Undergoing Palliative Radiotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Dalhaug, Astrid; Pawinski, Adam; Haukland, Ellinor

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. Validation of a Canadian three-tiered prognostic model (survival prediction score, SPS) in Norwegian cancer patients referred for palliative radiotherapy (PRT), and evaluation of age-dependent performance of the model. Patients and Methods. We analyzed all 579 PRT courses administered at a dedicated PRT facility between 20.06.07 and 31.12.2009. SPS was assigned as originally described, That is, by taking into consideration three variables: primary cancer type, site of metastases, and performance status. Results. Patients with poor prognosis (non-breast cancer, metastases other than bone, and Karnofsky performance status (KPS) ≤ 60) had median survival of 13 weeks. Those with intermediate prognosis (two of these parameters) survived for a median of 29 weeks, and patients with good prognosis for a median of 114 weeks, P < 0.001. While this model performed well in patients who were 60 years or older, it was less satisfactory in younger patients (no significant difference between the good and intermediate prognosis groups). Conclusion. SPS should mainly be used to predict survival of elderly cancer patients. However, even in this group accuracy is limited because the good prognosis group contained patients with short survival, while the poor prognosis group contained long-term survivors. Thus, improved models should be developed. PMID:25006508

  12. Effects of a transitional palliative care model on patients with end-stage heart failure: a randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Frances Kam Yuet; Ng, Alina Yee Man; Lam, Po-tin; Ng, Jeffrey Sheung Ching; Ng, Nancy Hiu Yim; Sham, Michael Mau Kwong

    2016-01-01

    Objective To examine the effects of home-based transitional palliative care for patients with end-stage heart failure (ESHF) after hospital discharge. Methods This was a randomised controlled trial conducted in three hospitals in Hong Kong. The recruited subjects were patients with ESHF who had been discharged home from hospitals and referred for palliative service, and who met the specified inclusion criteria. The interventions consisted of weekly home visits/telephone calls in the first 4 weeks then monthly follow-up, provided by a nurse case manager supported by a multidisciplinary team. The primary outcome measures were any readmission and count of readmissions within 4 and 12 weeks after index discharge, compared using χ2 tests and Poisson regression, respectively. Secondarily, change in symptoms over time between control and intervention groups were evaluated using generalised estimating equation analyses of data collected using the Edmonton Symptom Assessment Scale (ESAS). Results The intervention group (n=43) had a significantly lower readmission rate than the control group (n=41) at 12 weeks (intervention 33.6% vs control 61.0% χ2=6.8, p=0.009). The mean number (SE) of readmissions for the intervention and control groups was, respectively, 0.42 (0.10) and 1.10 (0.16) and the difference was significant (p=0.001). The relative risk (CI) for 12-week readmissions for the intervention group was 0.55 (0.35 to 0.88). There was no significant difference in readmissions between groups at 4 weeks. However, when compared with the control group, the intervention group experienced significantly higher clinical improvement in depression (45.9% vs 16.1%, p<0.05), dyspnoea (62.2% vs 29.0%, p<0.05) and total ESAS score (73.0% vs 41.4%, p<0.05) at 4 weeks. There were significant differences between groups in changes over time in quality of life (QOL) measured by McGill QOL (p<0.05) and chronic HF (p<0.01) questionnaires. Conclusions This study provides evidence

  13. Patient reports of symptoms and their treatment at three palliative care projects servicing individuals with HIV/AIDS.

    PubMed

    Karus, Daniel; Raveis, Victoria H; Alexander, Carla; Hanna, Barbara; Selwyn, Peter; Marconi, Katherine; Higginson, Irene

    2005-11-01

    Self-reports of 32 symptoms and their treatments were obtained from patients of three palliative care programs that provide services to seriously ill HIV patients (>or=95% AIDS) in Alabama (n=47), Baltimore (n=91), and New York City (n=117). On average, patients reported 10.9 (SD=7.6) to 12.7 (SD=6.2) symptoms. Pain, lack of energy, and worrying were reported by a majority of patients at all sites, often with a high level of associated distress. For only four symptoms (pain, nausea, difficulty swallowing, and mouth sores) did half or more of patients at all sites experiencing the symptom also report treatment. Less than a third of patients experiencing 12 symptoms (five of six comprising a psychological subscale) reported treatment. Results show that despite the availability of more efficacious treatments, many HIV/AIDS patients continue to experience significant physical and psychological symptomatology. Many of those experiencing symptoms, however, do not perceive their symptoms as being treated. PMID:16310615

  14. Quality of Life After Palliative Radiation Therapy for Patients With Painful Bone Metastases: Results of an International Study Validating the EORTC QLQ-BM22

    SciTech Connect

    Zeng Liang; Chow, Edward; Bedard, Gillian; Zhang, Liying; Fairchild, Alysa; Vassiliou, Vassilios; Alm El-Din, Mohamed A.; Jesus-Garcia, Reynaldo; Kumar, Aswin; Forges, Fabien; Tseng, Ling-Ming; Hou, Ming-Feng; Chie, Wei-Chu; Bottomley, Andrew

    2012-11-01

    Purpose: Radiation therapy (RT) is an effective method of palliating painful bone metastases and can improve function and reduce analgesic requirements. In advanced cancer patients, quality of life (QOL) is the primary outcome of interest over traditional endpoints such as survival. The purpose of our study was to compare bone metastasis-specific QOL scores among patients who responded differently to palliative RT. Methods and Materials: Patients receiving RT for bone metastases across 6 countries were prospectively enrolled from March 2010-January 2011 in a trial validating the QLQ-BM22 and completed the QLQ-BM22 and the core measure (QLQ-C30) at baseline and after 1 month. Pain scores and analgesic intake were recorded, and response to RT was determined according to the latest published guidelines. The Kruskal-Wallis nonparametric and Wilcoxon rank sum tests compared changes in QOL among response groups. A Bonferroni-adjusted P<.003 indicated statistical significance. Results: Of 79 patients who received palliative RT, 59 were assessable. Partial response, pain progression, and indeterminate response were observed in 22, 8, and 29 patients, respectively; there were no patients with a complete response. Patients across all groups had similar baseline QOL scores apart from physical functioning (patients who progressed had better initial functioning). One month after RT, patients who responded had significant improvements in 3 of 4 QLQ-BM22 domains (painful site, P<.0001; painful characteristic, P<.0001; and functional interference, P<.0001) and 3 QLQ-C30 domains (physical functioning, P=.0006; role functioning, P=.0026; and pain, P<.0001). Patients with progression in pain had significantly worse functional interference (P=.0007) and pain (P=.0019). Conclusions: Patients who report pain relief after palliative RT also have better QOL with respect to bone metastasis-specific issues. The QLQ-BM22 and QLQ-C30 are able to discriminate among patients with varying

  15. Outcome of patients admitted with acute coronary syndrome on palliative treatment: insights from the nationwide AMIS Plus Registry 1997–2014

    PubMed Central

    Erne, Paul; Radovanovic, Dragana; Seifert, Burkhardt; Bertel, Osmund; Urban, Philip

    2015-01-01

    Objective Compliance with guidelines is increasingly used to benchmark the quality of hospital care, however, very little is known on patients admitted with acute coronary syndromes (ACS) and treated palliatively. This study aimed to evaluate the baseline characteristics and outcomes of these patients. Design Prospective cohort study. Setting Eighty-two Swiss hospitals enrolled patients from 1997 to 2014. Participants All patients with ACS enrolled in the AMIS Plus registry (n=45 091) were analysed according to three treatment groups: palliative treatment, defined as use of aspirin and analgesics only and no reperfusion; conservative treatment, defined as any treatment including antithrombotics or anticoagulants, heparins, P2Y12 inhibitors, GPIIb/IIIa but no pharmacological or mechanical reperfusion; and reperfusion treatment (thrombolysis and/or percutaneous coronary intervention during initial hospitalisation). The primary outcome measure was in-hospital mortality and the secondary measure was 1-year mortality. Results Of the patients, 1485 (3.3%) were palliatively treated, 11 119 (24.7%) were conservatively treated and 32 487 (72.0%) underwent reperfusion therapy. In 1997, 6% of all patients were treated palliatively and this continuously decreased to 2% in 2013. Baseline characteristics of palliative patients differed in comparison with conservatively treated and reperfusion patients in age, gender and comorbidities (all p<0.001). These patients had more in-hospital complications such as postadmission onset of cardiogenic shock (15.6% vs 5.2%; p<0.001), stroke (1.8% vs 0.8%; p=0.001) and a higher in-hospital mortality (25.8% vs 5.6%; p<0.001).The subgroup of patients followed 1 year after discharge (n=8316) had a higher rate of reinfarction (9.2% vs 3.4%; p=0.003) and mortality (14.0% vs 3.5%; p<0.001). Conclusions Patients with ACS treated palliatively were older, sicker, with more heart failure at admission and very high in-hospital mortality. While

  16. Team networking in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Spruyt, Odette

    2011-01-01

    "If you want to travel quickly, go alone. But if you want to travel far, you must go together". African proverb. The delivery of palliative care is often complex and always involves a group of people, the team, gathered around the patient and those who are close to them. Effective communication and functional responsive systems of care are essential if palliative care is to be delivered in a timely and competent way. Creating and fostering an effective team is one of the greatest challenges for providers of palliative care. Teams are organic and can be life giving or life sapping for their members. PMID:21811361

  17. Caring for Patients With Severe and Enduring Eating Disorders (SEED): Certification, Harm Reduction, Palliative Care, and the Question of Futility.

    PubMed

    Westmoreland, Patricia; Mehler, Phillip S

    2016-07-01

    Anorexia nervosa is a serious mental illness with a high mortality rate. The body image distortion inherent to this disorder and the impaired judgment and cognition due to malnutrition frequently result in patients refusing treatment. Treatment is most effective if patients are treated early in the course of their illness and undergo a full course of treatment. Involuntary treatment may therefore be both life-saving and critical to recovery. Between April 2012 and March 2016, 109 patients (5.2% of patients admitted to the Eating Recovery Center in Denver, CO) were certified, 39% of whom were transferred from the ACUTE Center for Eating Disorders at Denver Health Medical Center. Of these 109 certified patients, 31% successfully completed treatment, and 42% returned for a further episode of care; 24% of the certifications were terminated as involuntary treatment was not found to be helpful. Conclusions supported by these data are that patients with anorexia nervosa who are the most medically ill often require involuntary treatment. In addition, although many patients who are certified successfully complete treatment, involuntary treatment is not helpful approximately 25% of the time. Many of the patients for whom certification is ineffective are those who suffer from a lifetime of illness that is severe and enduring. Patients with severe and enduring eating disorders (SEED) typically undergo cyclical weight restoration and weight loss. Many of these patients question the value of serial treatments, especially when they have few (if any) illness-free intervals. Patients, families, and treating physicians often wish to explore other models of care, including harm reduction and palliative care. In addition, patients with SEED may also contemplate whether a compassionate death would be better than an ongoing lifetime of suffering. In this review, we outline arguments for and against the concept of futility in SEED, and explore whether (or when) patients are competent to

  18. Palliative whole-brain radiotherapy and health- related quality of life for patients with brain metastasis in cancer

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Ying; Gao, Fei; Ma, Jin-lu; Zhao, Dong-li

    2015-01-01

    Objective To assess the use of palliative whole-brain radiotherapy (WBRT) in the treatment of brain metastases (BMs) and to evaluate the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of these patients. Materials and methods We conducted a retrospective study of 46 patients with BMs who were treated with WBRT at the First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University between January 2013 and January 2015. External beam radiotherapy techniques were used to deliver 40 Gy in 20 fractions or 30 Gy in ten fractions with a 10 MV photon beam from a linear accelerator to the whole brain. Data were stored and analyzed using SPSS version 17.0. Results Of the 46 patients, the survival time of patients in our study was 10.8±0.55 months: 11.8±0.46 months in patients with WBRT, 11.75±1.00 in patients with WBRT + chemotherapy, and 3±0.79 months in patients with supportive care, respectively (P<0.01). The HRQOL scores of all the patients were 70±1.16 (before therapy) and 76.83±1.04 (after therapy) (P<0.01). The HRQOL scores of the patients with WBRT were 72.23±0.88 (before therapy) and 78.49±0.87 (after therapy) (P<0.01). There was no central nervous system toxicity; only two (4.3%) patients were found to have BM hemorrhage. Radiation necrosis happened in one patient (2.2%). Conclusion Effective treatment options for patients with BMs are important. WBRT was evaluated to ensure survival outcomes and QOL were enhanced after therapy for patients with BMs. PMID:26346192

  19. 'Palliative care': a contradiction in terms? A qualitative study of cancer patients with a Turkish or Moroccan background, their relatives and care providers

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Palliative cancer care aims to improve quality of life and ultimately quality of dying, while prolonging life is not an objective anymore when death nears. The question is, however, whether these perspectives on palliative care are congruent with the perspectives of immigrant families with a Turkish or Moroccan background. Methods A qualitative design was used as we were looking for the personal views of 'very ill' cancer patients with a Turkish or Moroccan background, their family members and their Dutch care providers. We interviewed 83 people, involved in 33 cases to obtain information about their views, values and norms on 'good care'. Results The main concerns about 'good care' expressed by Turkish and Moroccan families were: maximum treatment and curative care until the end of their lives, never having hope taken away, devoted care by their families, avoiding shameful situations, dying with a clear mind and being buried in their own country. Their views conflict, to some extent, with the dominant principles in palliative care, for example, the emphasis on quality of life and advanced care planning, which includes discussing diagnosis and prognosis with the patient. Conclusions Patients and their families with a Turkish or Moroccan background often have different ideas about 'good care' than their Dutch care providers. As many of them are aiming at cure until the end of life, they find 'good palliative care' a contradiction in terms. PMID:20831777

  20. The Practice of Continuous Palliative Sedation in Long-Term Care for Frail Patients with Existential Suffering.

    PubMed

    van Deijck, Rogier H P D; Hasselaar, Jeroen G J; Krijnsen, Petrus J Cc; Gloudemans, Amadea J M; Verhagen, Stans C A H H V M; Vissers, Kris C P; Koopmans, Raymond T C M

    2015-01-01

    Some guidelines and recommendations identify existential suffering as a potential refractory symptom for which continuous palliative sedation (CPS) can be administered under certain conditions. However, there has been little research on the characteristics of patients with existential suffering treated with CPS and the degree to which the preconditions are fulfilled. The aim of this study was to provide insight into this specific indication for CPS. Questionnaires were sent to nursing home physicians in The Netherlands, who described 314 patients. Existential suffering was a refractory symptom in 83 of the patients. For most of the patients with refractory existential suffering, other refractory symptoms were also reported, and life expectancy was seven days or less; informed consent for initiating CPS had been obtained in all cases. Consultation and intermittent sedation before the start of CPS were far less frequently reported than one would expect based on the guidelines. Multivariate analysis showed that being male, having previously requested euthanasia, having a nervous system disease, or having an other diagnosis were positively correlated with the administration of CPS for existential suffering. We conclude that more attention should be paid to the suggested preconditions and to the presence of existential suffering in male patients or patients with a nervous system disease. PMID:26514019

  1. Palliative care for patients with head and neck cancer: "I would like a quick return to a normal lifestyle".

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Nathan E; Genden, Eric; Morrison, R Sean

    2008-04-16

    Head and neck cancers constitute a diverse group of diseases including malignancies of the oral cavity, oropharynx, larynx, sinuses, and skull base. Treatment of these cancers includes a combination of surgical resection, chemotherapy, and radiation. Due to both the patterns of disease recurrence and the adverse effects of treatments, patients with head and neck cancer often have a complex and prolonged course of illness that is marked by periods of freedom from disease and symptoms interspersed with bouts of serious illness, debility, and numerous physical and psychological symptoms including pain, dysphagia, weight loss, disfigurement, depression, and xerostomia. Thus, management of this disease is best provided by an interdisciplinary team that includes individuals from the disciplines of otolaryngology, palliative care, radiation oncology, oncology, nutrition, speech, and physical and occupational therapy. Using the case of Mr K, we describe the symptoms encountered by patients with head and neck cancer and suggest options for management. We discuss the psychological aspects that affect these patients, including issues such as changes in body image, quality of life, anxiety, and guilt. Finally, we discuss the importance of the interdisciplinary team in the care of these patients and outline the roles of each team member. By providing comprehensive care to patients with malignancies of the head and neck, clinicians can increase the likelihood that patients and their families will be able to obtain the best possible outcomes and quality of life. PMID:18413876

  2. The medical necessity for medicinal cannabis: prospective, observational study evaluating the treatment in cancer patients on supportive or palliative care.

    PubMed

    Bar-Sela, Gil; Vorobeichik, Marina; Drawsheh, Saher; Omer, Anat; Goldberg, Victoria; Muller, Ella

    2013-01-01

    Background. Cancer patients using cannabis report better influence from the plant extract than from synthetic products. However, almost all the research conducted to date has been performed with synthetic products. We followed patients with a medicinal cannabis license to evaluate the advantages and side effects of using cannabis by cancer patients. Methods. The study included two interviews based on questionnaires regarding symptoms and side effects, the first held on the day the license was issued and the second 6-8 weeks later. Cancer symptoms and cannabis side effects were documented on scales from 0 to 4 following the CTCAE. The distress thermometer was used also. Results. Of the 211 patients who had a first interview, only 131 had the second interview, 25 of whom stopped treatment after less than a week. All cancer or anticancer treatment-related symptoms showed significant improvement (P < 0.001). No significant side effects except for memory lessening in patients with prolonged cannabis use (P = 0.002) were noted. Conclusion. The positive effects of cannabis on various cancer-related symptoms are tempered by reliance on self-reporting for many of the variables. Although studies with a control group are missing, the improvement in symptoms should push the use of cannabis in palliative treatment of oncology patients. PMID:23956774

  3. [Medroxyprogesterone Acetate as Part of Palliative Care for Terminal-Stage Breast Cancer Patients--A Report of Two Cases].

    PubMed

    Okamoto, Akiko; Ueno, Hiroshi; Yamashiro, Akiko; Okada, Megumi; Nakasone, Arisa; Hatano, Takahiko; Harada, Akiho; Taniguchi, Ayano; Onishi, Keiko; Kwon, Chul; Fukazawa, Keita; Taguchi, Tetsuya; Amaya, Fumimasa; Hosokawa, Toyoshi

    2016-03-01

    Various effective strategies have recently been described in the treatment of breast cancer, including endocrine therapy, chemotherapy, and molecular-targeted therapy, providing long-term survival benefits even after cancer recurrence. However, terminal-stage patients experience side effects and worse quality of life (QOL), in addition to deterioration of their general condition caused by the progression of the disease itself. When providing the best supportive care, use of anti-cancer drugs is not taboo and can represent a good option as long as physical, social, psychological, and spiritual supports are provided to both the patients and their families. Medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) is an endocrine therapeutic drug. In Japan, MPA is used only as a late-line endocrine therapy for breast cancer recurrence because many other endocrine therapy drugs are much more effective and MPA increases the risk of thrombosis and obesity. Here, we report 2 patients with breast cancer who reached terminal stage more than 10 years after the first diagnosis. MPA was administered as the final-line treatment. During that time, their appetite and QOL improved and the patients became more active than when they had been undergoing aggressive anticancer treatment. Both patients spent quality time with their families until their death. MPA may be a good option as part of palliative care of breast cancer patients in terminal stage. PMID:27067852

  4. The Medical Necessity for Medicinal Cannabis: Prospective, Observational Study Evaluating the Treatment in Cancer Patients on Supportive or Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Bar-Sela, Gil; Vorobeichik, Marina; Drawsheh, Saher; Omer, Anat; Goldberg, Victoria; Muller, Ella

    2013-01-01

    Background. Cancer patients using cannabis report better influence from the plant extract than from synthetic products. However, almost all the research conducted to date has been performed with synthetic products. We followed patients with a medicinal cannabis license to evaluate the advantages and side effects of using cannabis by cancer patients. Methods. The study included two interviews based on questionnaires regarding symptoms and side effects, the first held on the day the license was issued and the second 6–8 weeks later. Cancer symptoms and cannabis side effects were documented on scales from 0 to 4 following the CTCAE. The distress thermometer was used also. Results. Of the 211 patients who had a first interview, only 131 had the second interview, 25 of whom stopped treatment after less than a week. All cancer or anticancer treatment-related symptoms showed significant improvement (P < 0.001). No significant side effects except for memory lessening in patients with prolonged cannabis use (P = 0.002) were noted. Conclusion. The positive effects of cannabis on various cancer-related symptoms are tempered by reliance on self-reporting for many of the variables. Although studies with a control group are missing, the improvement in symptoms should push the use of cannabis in palliative treatment of oncology patients. PMID:23956774

  5. Palliative Dental Care- A Boon for Debilitating

    PubMed Central

    Chintamaneni, Raja Lakshmi; Mpv, Prabhat; Gummadapu, Sarat; Salvadhi, Shyam Sundar

    2014-01-01

    World Health Organization defines “palliative care” as the active total care of patients whose disease is not responding to curative treatment. Palliative care actually deals with patients at the terminal end stage of the disease. We always face a question why a dentist should be in a palliative team? What is the exact role of dentist? Dental treatment may not always be strenuous and curative, but also can focus on improving quality of life of the patient. Hence forth the present paper enlightens the importance of dentist role in palliative team. PMID:25121074

  6. Palliative dental care- a boon for debilitating.

    PubMed

    Mulk, Bhavana Sujana; Chintamaneni, Raja Lakshmi; Mpv, Prabhat; Gummadapu, Sarat; Salvadhi, Shyam Sundar

    2014-06-01

    World Health Organization defines "palliative care" as the active total care of patients whose disease is not responding to curative treatment. Palliative care actually deals with patients at the terminal end stage of the disease. We always face a question why a dentist should be in a palliative team? What is the exact role of dentist? Dental treatment may not always be strenuous and curative, but also can focus on improving quality of life of the patient. Hence forth the present paper enlightens the importance of dentist role in palliative team. PMID:25121074

  7. [Pharmacological treatment of delirium in palliative care patients. A systematic literature review].

    PubMed

    Perrar, K M; Golla, H; Voltz, R

    2013-04-01

    This systematic literature review aims to collect and analyse relevant clinical trials for the drug treatment of delirium in palliative care. The search was conducted including July 2012 in Medline (from 1966) and Embase (from 1974). The search retrieved 448 studies, of which 3 studies could be included in the analysis. Treatment with the antipsychotic drug haloperidol can be recommended, which is also true to a somewhat lower extent for the antipsychotics olanzapine and aripiprazole. Treatment with lorazepam only should be avoided. This literature analysis reflects the positive clinical experience, especially when using haloperidol. To confirm these recommendations, further substantial clinical studies are needed.The English full-text version of this article can be found at SpringerLink (under "Supplemental"). PMID:23503785

  8. The experiences of suffering of palliative care patients in Malaysia: a thematic analysis.

    PubMed

    Beng, Tan Seng; Guan, Ng Chong; Seang, Lim Kheng; Pathmawathi, Subramaniam; Ming, Moy Foong; Jane, Lim Ee; Chin, Loh Ee; Loong, Lam Chee

    2014-02-01

    A qualitative study was conducted with semi-structured interviews to explore the experiences of suffering in 20 adult palliative care inpatients of University Malaya Medical Centre. The results were thematically analyzed. Ten basic themes were generated (1) loss and change → differential suffering, (2) care dependence → dependent suffering, (3) family stress → empathic suffering, (4) disease and dying → terminal suffering, (5) health care staff encounters → interactional suffering, (6) hospital environment → environmental suffering, (7) physical symptoms → sensory suffering, (8) emotional reactions → emotional suffering, (9) cognitive reactions → cognitive suffering, and (10) spiritual reactions → spiritual suffering. An existential-experiential model of suffering was conceptualized from the analysis. This model may inform the development of interventions in the prevention and management of suffering. PMID:22956340

  9. The growth of palliative care.

    PubMed

    Strand, Jacob J; Mansel, J Keith; Swetz, Keith M

    2014-06-01

    Palliative care specialists focus on meeting the needs of patients with serious and/or life-threatening illnesses. These physicians have expertise in managing complex pain and nonpain symptoms, providing psychosocial and spiritual support to patients and their families, and communicating about complex topics and advance care planning. The American Board of Medical Specialties has allowed 10 of its member boards to co-sponsor certification in Hospice and Palliative Medicine. Thus, physicians from specialties ranging from pediatrics to surgery now practice hospice and palliative medicine. At the core of this field, however, are physicians who trained as internists and are boarded by the American Board of Internal Medicine. This article discusses the central principles of palliative care and explores its growth in two areas: oncology and critical care medicine. PMID:25029799

  10. Posthumous Reproduction and Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Quinn, Gwendolyn; Bower, Bethanne; Zoloth, Laurie

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Posthumous reproduction is an issue fraught with legal, ethical, religious, and moral debate. The involvement of the hospice and palliative care community in this debate may be peripheral due to the fact that other health care professionals would be actually delivering the services. However, the hospice and palliative care community are more likely to treat patients considering posthumous reproduction as they near the end of their lives. This article provides the hospice and palliative care community with a review of the medical, ethical, and legal considerations associated with posthumous reproduction. Having knowledge of these issues, and a list of available resources, will be useful if hospice and palliative care staff find themselves facing a patient or family that is considering posthumous reproduction. PMID:21711126

  11. Caregivers experiences of managing medications for palliative care patients at the end of life: a qualitative study.

    PubMed

    Sheehy-Skeffington, Barbara; McLean, Sarah; Bramwell, Michael; O'Leary, Norma; O'Gorman, Aisling

    2014-03-01

    Informal caregivers are important in enabling palliative care patients to die at home, including their role in managing medications. Often these patients are taking multiple medications, imposing an unnecessary burden on those who are already struggling with oral intake. A literature review revealed that, while there are a number of qualitative studies published examining the experience of caregivers looking after patients at the end of life, there is a dearth of published studies specifically examining the impact of managing medications on caregivers. This study explores the experience of caregivers managing medications for patients dying at home, focusing on the impact of polypharmacy, the use of syringe drivers and the use of "as needed" medications for symptom control. Three focus groups were performed, involving bereaved caregivers of patients that had died at home, and were analysed using content thematic analysis. Themes that emerged include: the significant burden of polypharmacy; the positive impact of subcutaneous infusions; the value of being able to give medications as needed for symptom control; the importance of clear guidance to assist with medication management. Strategies are suggested that might ease the burden of medications at the end of life. PMID:24526788

  12. How Radiation Oncologists Evaluate and Incorporate Life Expectancy Estimates Into the Treatment of Palliative Cancer Patients: A Survey-Based Study

    SciTech Connect

    Tseng, Yolanda D.; Krishnan, Monica S.; Sullivan, Adam J.; Jones, Joshua A.; Chow, Edward; Balboni, Tracy A.

    2013-11-01

    Purpose: We surveyed how radiation oncologists think about and incorporate a palliative cancer patient’s life expectancy (LE) into their treatment recommendations. Methods and Materials: A 41-item survey was e-mailed to 113 radiation oncology attending physicians and residents at radiation oncology centers within the Boston area. Physicians estimated how frequently they assessed the LE of their palliative cancer patients and rated the importance of 18 factors in formulating LE estimates. For 3 common palliative case scenarios, physicians estimated LE and reported whether they had an LE threshold below which they would modify their treatment recommendation. LE estimates were considered accurate when within the 95% confidence interval of median survival estimates from an established prognostic model. Results: Among 92 respondents (81%), the majority were male (62%), from an academic practice (75%), and an attending physician (70%). Physicians reported assessing LE in 91% of their evaluations and most frequently rated performance status (92%), overall metastatic burden (90%), presence of central nervous system metastases (75%), and primary cancer site (73%) as “very important” in assessing LE. Across the 3 cases, most (88%-97%) had LE thresholds that would alter treatment recommendations. Overall, physicians’ LE estimates were 22% accurate with 67% over the range predicted by the prognostic model. Conclusions: Physicians often incorporate LE estimates into palliative cancer care and identify important prognostic factors. Most have LE thresholds that guide their treatment recommendations. However, physicians overestimated patient survival times in most cases. Future studies focused on improving LE assessment are needed.

  13. [Palliative care - also in geriatrics?].

    PubMed

    Sandgathe Husebø, B; Husebø, S

    2001-10-01

    Red Cross Clinic is the largest geriatric center in Norway (240 beds). Major parts of the center are: long time geriatric ward (215 beds), rehabilitation and acute ward (25 beds), day clinic (45 patients) and a teaching and research unit. A palliative care unit (10 beds) will be opened in spring 2000. In mai 1998 a national project: Palliative care for the elderly was opened at our center. The projects main goal is to develop and support proper palliative care to all severe ill and dying patients in Norway. In a prospective study we examined 179 consecutive deaths between 1998 and 1999. Average age was 84.5. Major symptom problems were pain, dyspnoea, death-rattle and anxiety. In the last 24 hours 83% of the patients received opioids, 67% of the cases morphine (mean daily dosage 31.8 mg). 37% of the patients received scopolamine (mean daily dosage 0.8 mg), 12% benzodiazepines and 3% of the patients haloperidol. 152 (85%) of the deaths were expected, 27 (15%) unexpected. In 137 patients (77%) open, honest, frank communication with patient or their nearest kin regarding the imminent death was possible. In our experience it is a myth that the relatives want doctors to practise "maximal therapy". All old patients in geriatric clinics and nursing homes need palliative care. We have found no international textbooks of geriatrics with chapters on palliative care or textbooks on palliative care with chapters on the elderly. They need doctors and nurses who are properly trained and educated in palliative care. In most countries in Europe this training and education is not provided. PMID:11810376

  14. What is palliative care?

    MedlinePlus

    Comfort care; End of life - palliative care; Hospice - palliative care ... The goal of palliative care is to help people with serious illnesses feel better. It prevents or treats symptoms and side effects of disease and ...

  15. Esophagogastrectomy. A safe, widely applicable, and expeditious form of palliation for patients with carcinoma of the esophagus and cardia.

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, F H; Gibb, S P; Watkins, E

    1983-01-01

    Of 262 patients with carcinoma of the esophagus or cardia seen at the Lahey Clinic between January 1970 and January 1983, 209 (79.8%) underwent surgical exploration. This report is confined to the 167 operations performed in the division of the senior author. Half of the tumors involved the esophagogastric junction with nearly equal numbers being located in the lower and upper halves of the thoracic esophagus and a relatively small number involving the cervical esophagus. The majority were adenocarcinomas of which 20 developed in a Barrett esophagus. Three of the squamous cell cancers developed in an achalasic esophagus. Of the resected tumors, 94 were classified as Stage III, 18 as Stage II, and 37 as Stage I. Esophagogastrectomy with esophagogastrostomy is the procedure of choice regardless of the level of the lesion. Of the 167 patients, 149 (89.2%) underwent resection with two deaths within 30 days of operation for a hospital mortality rate of 1.3%. There were 22 major complications (14.9%), which prolonged the hospital stay, and 14 minor complications (9.5%). Satisfactory palliation of dysphagia was achieved in 82.7% of the patients. The overall adjusted survival rate at 5 years was 21.7% +/- 7.5% (SEM) with a median survival time of 17.3 months. The 5-year adjusted survival rate according to stage was 43.4% for patients with Stage I lesions, 23.6% for Stage II lesions, and 12.8% for Stage III lesions (p = 0.0004). A multivariate analysis of risk factors involved in survival disclosed that neither age, sex, site of tumor, duration of symptoms, or cell type influenced survival, but stage of the disease had a profound effect. It is concluded that long-term survival of patients with carcinoma of the esophagus or cardia will probably not improve until early diagnosis is possible and that esophagogastrectomy by conventional techniques should be the treatment of choice until other forms of therapy prove superior to it both in terms of palliation and long

  16. Palliative care in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

    PubMed

    Lilly, Evan J; Senderovich, Helen

    2016-10-01

    Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the only major worldwide cause of mortality that is currently increasing in prevalence. Furthermore, COPD is incurable, and the only therapy that has been shown to increase survival is oxygen therapy in selected patients. Compared to patients with cancer, patients with COPD experience similar levels of pain, breathlessness, fatigue, depression, and anxiety and have a worse quality of life but have comparatively little access to palliative care. When these patients do receive palliative care, they tend to be referred later than patients with cancer. Many disease, patient-, and provider-related factors contribute to this phenomenon, including COPD's unpredictable course, misperceptions of palliative care among patients and physicians, and lack of advance care planning discussions outside of crisis situations. A new paradigm for palliative care would introduce palliative treatments alongside, rather than at the exclusion of disease-modifying interventions. This integrated approach would circumvent the issue of difficult prognostication in COPD, as any patient would receive individualized palliative interventions from the time of diagnosis. These points will be covered in this review, which discusses the challenges in providing palliative care to COPD patients, the strategies to mitigate the challenges, management of common symptoms, and the evidence for integrated palliative care models as well as some suggestions for future development. PMID:27481751

  17. Palliation: Hilar cholangiocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Goenka, Mahesh Kr; Goenka, Usha

    2014-01-01

    Hilar cholangiocarcinomas are common tumors of the bile duct that are often unresectable at presentation. Palliation, therefore, remains the goal in the majority of these patients. Palliative treatment is particularly indicated in the presence of cholangitis and pruritus but is often also offered for high-grade jaundice and abdominal pain. Endoscopic drainage by placing stents at endoscopic retrograde cholangio-pancreatography (ERCP) is usually the preferred modality of palliation. However, for advanced disease, percutaneous stenting has been shown to be superior to endoscopic stenting. Endosonography-guided biliary drainage is emerging as an alternative technique, particularly when ERCP is not possible or fails. Metal stents are usually preferred over plastic stents, both for ERCP and for percutaneous biliary drainage. There is no consensus as to whether it is necessary to place multiple stents within advanced hilar blocks or whether unilateral stenting would suffice. However, recent data have suggested that, contrary to previous belief, it is useful to drain more than 50% of the liver volume for favorable long-term results. In the presence of cholangitis, it is beneficial to drain all of the obstructed biliary segments. Surgical bypass plays a limited role in palliation and is offered primarily as a segment III bypass if, during a laparotomy for resection, the tumor is found to be unresectable. Photodynamic therapy and, more recently, radiofrequency ablation have been used as adjuvant therapies to improve the results of biliary stenting. The exact technique to be used for palliation is guided by the extent of the biliary involvement (Bismuth class) and the availability of local expertise. PMID:25232449

  18. Palliative or Comfort Care

    MedlinePlus

    ... or efforts to cure your illness. Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans Health Administration benefits, and private health insurance cover many palliative care services. Many hospitals provide palliative care, and it ...

  19. Apoyo con Cariño: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial of a Patient Navigator Intervention to Improve Palliative Care Outcomes for Latinos With Serious Illness

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Stacy; Cervantes, Lilia; Fink, Regina M.; Kutner, Jean S.

    2015-01-01

    Context Latinos experience significant health disparities at the end of life compared with non-Latinos. Objectives To determine the feasibility of a patient navigator intervention to improve palliative care outcomes for Latino adults with serious illness. Methods This was a pilot randomized controlled trial that included 64 Latino adults with life-limiting illness randomized to an intervention or control group. All participants received a packet of linguistically matched materials on palliative care. In addition, intervention participants received up to five home visits from the bilingual, bicultural patient navigator. Visits focused on addressing barriers to palliative care through education, activation, and culturally tailored messaging. Outcomes included feasibility and advance care planning rates, documentation of pain management discussions in the medical record, and hospice utilization. Results Of the 32 patients randomized to the intervention arm, 81% had at least one home visit (range 1–5) with the patient navigator. Overall, advance care planning was higher in the intervention group – 47% (n = 15) vs. 25% (n = 8) (P=0.06), and 79% of intervention participants had a discussion about pain management documented in their medical record vs. 54% of control patients (P = 0.05). Hospice enrollment between the two groups (n=18 decedents) was similar (n=7 intervention vs. n=6 control; length of stay in the intervention group was 36.4± 51.6 days vs. 19.7±33.6 days for control patients (P = 0.39). Conclusion A culturally tailored patient navigator intervention was feasible and suggests improved palliative care outcomes for Latinos facing advanced medical illness, justifying a fully powered randomized controlled trial. PMID:25240788

  20. Working together. An interdisciplinary approach to dying patients in a palliative care unit.

    PubMed

    Minetti, Aurora

    2011-12-01

    Multiprofessional teams have become in recent years one of the distinguishing features of services, where professionals with different competences work together. The core of our interest is addressed to the équipe of a palliative care ward; in particular, to that series of working activities that consists of communicative acts, as équipe meetings, for instance. Our research focuses on the analysis of the process by which the development of knowledge in multiprofessional practice is built to establish more information on recurrent patterns in the interaction and connect them to the specific context that these are shaped by. In this sense we will underline how components of knowing are shared among team members in constructing medical prognosis and we will analyse the connection among language processes, cognitive activities and social structures. More specifically, we will study the role of language and the context in the definition of linguistic acts in cognitive activities and in hierarchies involved in decision-making processes by exploring and pointing out how it is organised and structured. In particular through the study of talk-in-interaction where interchange of information is realised, we will emphasise how, in the multiprofessional équipe meeting, the realisation of practices and the knowledge useful to collaborative management of ward working life are established. To reach this aim, we adopted an ethnographic approach connected to the analysis of the situated interaction. PMID:21947801

  1. Current trends in palliative heart care.

    PubMed

    Shi, Rongyun

    2016-02-01

    Palliative care is an alternate therapeutic approach that involves specialised medical care of a patient diagnosed with serious life threatening illness like heart failure (HF). The prime aim of the palliative care is to provide patient with relief from the symptoms, pain, physical stress, and mental stress of the diagnosed disease. The palliative care helps in improving the quality of life for both the patient and the family. Advanced HF is a disease process that carries a high burden of symptoms, suffering, and death. Palliative care can complement traditional care to improve symptom amelioration, patient-caregiver communication, emotional support, and medical decision making. The present review summarized all the available on alternative palliative approaches provided to heart patient by a team of physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals. PMID:25926080

  2. Patients' Preferences for Information About the Benefits and Risks of Second-Line Palliative Chemotherapy and Their Oncologist's Awareness of These Preferences.

    PubMed

    Oostendorp, Linda J M; Ottevanger, Petronella B; van de Wouw, Agnes J; Honkoop, Aafke H; Los, Maartje; van der Graaf, Winette T A; Stalmeier, Peep F M

    2016-09-01

    Communication about palliative treatment options requires a balance between providing patients with sufficient information and not providing unwanted information. Surveys have indicated that many patients with advanced cancer express a wish to receive detailed information. In this prospective multicenter study, the information desire of patients with advanced breast or colorectal cancer was further investigated by offering treatment-related information to patients using a decision aid (DA). In addition, this study explored oncologists' awareness of their patients' information desire. Seventy-seven patients with advanced breast or colorectal cancer facing the decision whether to start second-line palliative chemotherapy were offered a DA by a nurse. This DA contained information on adverse events, tumor response, and survival. The nurse asked the patient whether each information item was desired. Ninety-five percent of patients chose to receive information on adverse events, 91 % chose to receive information on tumor response, and 74 % chose to receive information on survival. Oncologists' judgment of patients' information desire was 100, 97, and 81 %, respectively. For all three information items together, oncologists correctly judged the information desire of 62 % of patients. This study confirms that many patients with advanced cancer wish to receive detailed information on the benefits and risks of palliative treatment options when the information is actually available. Oncologists were adequately aware of this high information desire, but had some difficulty judging the information desire of individual patients. A stepped approach to giving information ("preview, ask, tell, ask") may help to better meet patients' information needs. PMID:25985960

  3. The current situation in education and training of health-care professionals across Africa to optimise the delivery of palliative care for cancer patients

    PubMed Central

    Rawlinson, FM; Gwyther, L; Kiyange, F; Luyirika, E; Meiring, M; Downing, J

    2014-01-01

    The need for palliative care education remains vital to contribute to the quality of life of patients, both adults and children, with cancer in Africa. The number of patients with cancer continues to rise, and with them the burden of palliative care needs. Palliative care has been present in Africa for nearly four decades, and a number of services are developing in response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. However, the needs of cancer patients remain a challenge. Education and training initiatives have developed throughout this time, using a combination of educational methods, including, more recently, e-learning initiatives. The role of international and national organisations in supporting education has been pivotal in developing models of education and training that are robust, sustainable, and affordable. Developing a material for education and professional development needs to continue in close collaboration with that already in production in order to optimise available resources. Seeking ways to evaluate programmes in terms of their impact on patient care remains an important part of programme delivery. This article reviews the current situation. PMID:25624873

  4. Progestin-releasing intrauterine device insertion plus palliative radiotherapy in frail, elderly uterine cancer patients unfit for radical treatment

    PubMed Central

    MACCHIA, GABRIELLA; DEODATO, FRANCESCO; CILLA, SAVINO; LEGGE, FRANCESCO; CARONE, VITO; CHIANTERA, VITO; VALENTINI, VINCENZO; MORGANTI, ALESSIO GIUSEPPE; FERRANDINA, GABRIELLA

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigated the combination of levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (LNG-IUD) insertion and palliative radiotherapy (RT) as a potential approach for treating frail, elderly endometrial cancer (EC) patients considered unfit for curative oncological treatments. The inclusion criteria were an age of ≥65 years, pathological confirmation of a uterine neoplasm, a Charlson comorbidity index (CCI) value of ≥4 and the presence of vaginal bleeding. Patients underwent intrauterine insertion of an LNG-IUD, and thereafter, received a total dose of 30 Gy at 3 Gy per fraction, over 10 days. The clinical target volume (CTV) was defined as the uterus and disease-involved tissues in the pelvis plus a 1-cm margin. The planning target volume was obtained by adding a 1-cm isotropic margin to the CTV. A total of 9 patients with EC (median age, 85 years; Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status ≥2, ≥88.8%; obesity, 55.5%; median CCI, 5) received an LNG-IUD plus RT. An early complete resolution of bleeding was documented in 8 patients (88.8%), while the remaining patient experienced a marked improvement. The median duration of bleeding control was 18 months, while the 2-year actuarial rate of bleeding-free survival was 53.3% (median follow-up time, 20 months; range, 9–60 months). No LNG-IUD- or severe RT-related complications were documented. Overall, a high rate of bleeding remission, durable bleeding-free survival in face of the easy intrauterine insertion of an LNG-IUD and a negligible toxicity profile of the complete treatment were documented in this study, indicating a requirement for further investigation in a larger series. PMID:27123133

  5. Palliative care in advanced dementia.

    PubMed

    Merel, Susan E; Merel, Susan; DeMers, Shaune; Vig, Elizabeth

    2014-08-01

    Because neurodegenerative dementias are progressive and ultimately fatal, a palliative approach focusing on comfort, quality of life, and family support can have benefits for patients, families, and the health system. Elements of a palliative approach include discussion of prognosis and goals of care, completion of advance directives, and a thoughtful approach to common complications of advanced dementia. Physicians caring for patients with dementia should formulate a plan for end-of-life care in partnership with patients, families, and caregivers, and be prepared to manage common symptoms at the end of life in dementia, including pain and delirium. PMID:25037291

  6. [Nutritional problems in palliative medicine].

    PubMed

    Ollenschläger, G

    2000-09-01

    Malnutrition is a frequent problem in the palliative care of the seriously ill and dying. Want of appetite and los of weight are direct symptoms of patients with consumptive infectional diseases (AIDS, TBC) as well as cancer or geriatric patients. Severe malnutrition significantly contributes to a loss of quality of life and increases morbidity of palliative patients. The subjective well-being of seriously ill patients is heavily influenced by want of appetite and loss of weight. Patients often find want of appetite and the incapability to eat as pressing as the physical impairment caused by the disease. Therefore the sole aim of palliative dietotherapy has to be to strengthen the general physical and mental condition of the patient. A specific training of home care staff and relatives of seriously ill patients in dealing sensitively with this problem of care is desirable. Above all, in-patient treatment of affected patients for the sole purpose of feeding has to be avoided. Aggressive dietotherapeutic interventions, especially artificial feeding, should be refrained from as far as possible in the terminal phase. Only if the prognosis of a patient in palliative treatment is improving contrary to expectations are strategies of curative dietotherapy valid. PMID:11048342

  7. Should Patients and Family be Involved in “Do Not Resuscitate” Decisions? Views of Oncology and Palliative Care Doctors and Nurses

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Grace M; Kwee, Ann K; Krishna, Lalit

    2012-01-01

    Background: “Do not resuscitate” (DNR) orders are put in place where cardiopulmonary resuscitation is inappropriate. However, it is unclear who should be involved in discussions and decisions around DNR orders. Aim: The aim was to determine the views of oncology and palliative care doctors and nurses on DNR orders. Materials and Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted on 146 doctors and nurses in oncology and palliative care working within a tertiary specialist cancer center in Singapore. Results: Perceived care differences as a result of DNR determinations led to 50.7% of respondents reporting concerns that a DNR order would mean that the patient received a substandard level of care. On the matter of DNR discussions, majority thought that patients (78.8%) and the next of kin (78.1%) should be involved though with whom the ultimate decision lay differed. There was also a wide range of views on the most appropriate time to have a DNR discussion. Conclusions: From the viewpoint of oncology and palliative care healthcare professionals, patients should be involved at least in discussing if not in the determination of DNR orders, challenging the norm of familial determination in the Asian context. The varied responses highlight the complexity of decision making on issues relating to the end of life. Thus, it is important to take into account the innumerable bio-psychosocial, practical, and ethical factors that are involved within such deliberations. PMID:22837612

  8. Involvement of a Case Manager in Palliative Care Reduces Hospitalisations at the End of Life in Cancer Patients; A Mortality Follow-Back Study in Primary Care

    PubMed Central

    van der Plas, Annicka G. M.; Vissers, Kris C.; Francke, Anneke L.; Donker, Gé A.; Jansen, Wim J. J.; Deliens, Luc; Onwuteaka-Philipsen, Bregje D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Case managers have been introduced in primary palliative care in the Netherlands; these are nurses with expertise in palliative care who offer support to patients and informal carers in addition to the care provided by the general practitioner (GP) and home-care nurse. Objectives To compare cancer patients with and without additional support from a case manager on: 1) the patients’ general characteristics, 2) characteristics of care and support given by the GP, 3) palliative care outcomes. Methods This article is based on questionnaire data provided by GPs participating in two different studies: the Sentimelc study (280 cancer patients) and the Capalca study (167 cancer patients). The Sentimelc study is a mortality follow-back study amongst a representative sample of GPs that monitors the care provided via GPs to a general population of end-of-life patients. Data from 2011 and 2012 were analysed. The Capalca study is a prospective study investigating the implementation and outcome of the support provided by case managers in primary palliative care. Data were gathered between March 2011 and December 2013. Results The GP is more likely to know the preferred place of death (OR 7.06; CI 3.47-14.36), the place of death is more likely to be at the home (OR 2.16; CI 1.33-3.51) and less likely to be the hospital (OR 0.26; CI 0.13-0.52), and there are fewer hospitalisations in the last 30 days of life (none: OR 1.99; CI 1.12-3.56 and one: OR 0.54; CI 0.30-0.96), when cancer patients receive additional support from a case manager compared with patients receiving the standard GP care. Conclusions Involvement of a case manager has added value in addition to palliative care provided by the GP, even though the role of the case manager is ‘only’ advisory and he or she does not provide hands-on care or prescribe medication. PMID:26208099

  9. Intravenous paracetamol infusion: Superior pain management and earlier discharge from hospital in patients undergoing palliative head-neck cancer surgery

    PubMed Central

    Majumdar, Saikat; Das, Anjan; Kundu, Ratul; Mukherjee, Dipankar; Hazra, Bimal; Mitra, Tapobrata

    2014-01-01

    Background: Paracetamol; a cyclooxygenase inhibitor; acts through the central nervous system as well as serotoninergic system as a nonopioid analgesic. A prospective, double-blinded, and randomized-controlled study was carried out to compare the efficacy of preoperative 1g intravenous (iv) paracetamol with placebo in providing postoperative analgesia in head-neck cancer surgery. Materials and Methods: From 2008 February to 2009 December, 80 patients for palliative head-neck cancer surgery were randomly divided into (F) and (P) Group receiving ivplacebo and iv paracetamol, respectively, 5 min before induction. Everybody received fentanyl before induction and IM diclofenac for pain relief at8 hourly for 24 h after surgery. Visual analogue scale (VAS) and amount of fentanyl were measured for postoperative pain assessment (24 h). Results and Statistical analysis: The mean VAS score in 1st, 2nd postoperative hour, and fentanyl requirement was less and the need for rescue analgesic was delayed in ivparacetamol group which were all statistically significant. Paracetamol group had a shorter surgical intensive care unit (SICU) and hospital stay which was also statistically significant. Conclusion: The study demonstrates the effectiveness of ivparacetamol as preemptive analgesic in the postoperative pain control after head-neck cancer surgery and earlier discharge from hospital. PMID:25276627

  10. Survival Prediction for Terminally Ill Cancer Patients: Revision of the Palliative Prognostic Score with Incorporation of Delirium

    PubMed Central

    Maltoni, Marco; Miceli, Rosalba; Mariani, Luigi; Caraceni, Augusto; Amadori, Dino; Nanni, Oriana

    2011-01-01

    Purpose. An existing and validated palliative prognostic (PaP) score predicts survival in terminally ill cancer patients based on dyspnea, anorexia, Karnofsky performance status score, clinical prediction of survival, total WBC, and lymphocyte percentage. The PaP score assigns patients to three different risk groups according to a 30-day survival probability—group A, >70%; group B, 30%–70%; group C, <30%. The impact of delirium is known but was not incorporated into the PaP score. Materials and Methods. Our aim was to incorporate information on delirium into the PaP score based on a retrospective series of 361 terminally ill cancer patients. We followed the approach of “validation by calibration,” proposed by van Houwelingen and later adapted by Miceli for achieving score revision with inclusion of a new variable. The discriminating performance of the scores was estimated using the K statistic. Results. The prognostic contribution of delirium was confirmed as statistically significant (p < .001) and the variable was accordingly incorporated into the PaP score (D-PaP score). Following this revision, 30-day survival estimates in groups A, B, and C were 83%, 50%, and 9% for the D-PaP score and 87%, 51%, and 16% for the PaP score, respectively. The overall performance of the D-PaP score was better than that of the PaP score. Conclusion. The revision of the PaP score was carried out by modifying the cutoff values used for prognostic grouping without, however, affecting the partial scores of the original tool. The performance of the D-PaP score was better than that of the PaP score and its key feature of simplicity was maintained. PMID:22042788

  11. Peptic ulcer disease and other complications in patients receiving dexamethasone palliation for brain metastasis

    SciTech Connect

    Penzner, R.D.; Lipsett, J.A.

    1982-11-01

    A retrospective analysis was done of 106 patients who received radiation therapy for brain metastasis. Dexamethasone therapy was instituted in 97 patients. Peptic ulcer disease developed in 5 of 89 patients (5.6 percent) who received a dosage of at least 12 mg a day, but did not occur in patients who received a lower dose or in those who did not receive steroids. The interval between institution of dexamethasone therapy and the development of peptic ulcer disease ranged from three to nine weeks. Two patients had perforated ulcers, one of whom required surgical resection. Peptic ulcer disease contributed to the general deterioration and death of three of the five patients. Overall, in 14 of the 89 patients (15.7 percent) a complication of steroid therapy developed in the form of peptic ulcer disease, steroid myopathy or diabetes mellitus (or a combination of these).

  12. Growing Pains: Palliative Care Making Gains

    Cancer.gov

    An article about the growth of palliative care, a medical subspecialty that has been shown to improve patient outcomes such as symptom management, quality of life, and patient and family satisfaction with care.

  13. Karnofsky Performance Status and Lactate Dehydrogenase Predict the Benefit of Palliative Whole-Brain Irradiation in Patients With Advanced Intra- and Extracranial Metastases From Malignant Melanoma

    SciTech Connect

    Partl, Richard; Richtig, Erika; Avian, Alexander; Berghold, Andrea; Kapp, Karin S.

    2013-03-01

    Purpose: To determine prognostic factors that allow the selection of melanoma patients with advanced intra- and extracerebral metastatic disease for palliative whole-brain radiation therapy (WBRT) or best supportive care. Methods and Materials: This was a retrospective study of 87 patients who underwent palliative WBRT between 1988 and 2009 for progressive or multiple cerebral metastases at presentation. Uni- and multivariate analysis took into account the following patient- and tumor-associated factors: gender and age, Karnofsky performance status (KPS), neurologic symptoms, serum lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) level, number of intracranial metastases, previous resection or stereotactic radiosurgery of brain metastases, number of extracranial metastasis sites, and local recurrences as well as regional lymph node metastases at the time of WBRT. Results: In univariate analysis, KPS, LDH, number of intracranial metastases, and neurologic symptoms had a significant influence on overall survival. In multivariate survival analysis, KPS and LDH remained as significant prognostic factors, with hazard ratios of 3.3 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.6-6.5) and 2.8 (95% CI 1.6-4.9), respectively. Patients with KPS ≥70 and LDH ≤240 U/L had a median survival of 191 days; patients with KPS ≥70 and LDH >240 U/L, 96 days; patients with KPS <70 and LDH ≤240 U/L, 47 days; and patients with KPS <70 and LDH >240 U/L, only 34 days. Conclusions: Karnofsky performance status and serum LDH values indicate whether patients with advanced intra- and extracranial tumor manifestations are candidates for palliative WBRT or best supportive care.

  14. Turkish healthcare professionals' views on palliative care.

    PubMed

    Turgay, Gulay; Kav, Sultan

    2012-01-01

    The concept of modern palliative care has been disseminating slowly in Turkey and has recently been included in the National Cancer Control Program. The aim of this study was to explore healthcare professionals' knowledge and views of palliative care. It was conducted at three hospitals with a sample of 369 healthcare professionals working in adult clinics. Data were collected via open-ended questions and 16 statements from healthcare professionals on their views of palliative care. Most respondents stated that there was a lack of in-service/continuing education in palliative care, and more than half said they had not received any education in palliative care. A majority stated that the meaning and goal of palliative care is "improving the quality of life of a patient who is in the terminal stage." Lack of awareness of palliative care and a lack of educational resources in that field are the most frequently reported barriers to the development of palliative care in Turkey. Palliative care should be included in curricula for healthcare professionals and in-service education programs should be established. PMID:23413762

  15. Palliative care provision for people with intellectual disabilities: interviews with specialist palliative care professionals in London.

    PubMed

    Tuffrey-Wijne, I; McEnhill, L; Curfs, L; Hollins, S

    2007-09-01

    Growing numbers of people with intellectual disabilities (ID) are in need of palliative care, but there is inequity of access to palliative care services for this group. This study investigates the issues and difficulties arising for palliative care staff in providing care for people with ID. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 32 palliative care professionals in London. Factors affecting palliative care provision for people with ID included social issues (home situation and family issues), emotional and cognitive issues (fear, patient understanding, communication, cooperation and capacity to consent), problems with assessment, and the impact on staff and other patients. An underlying theme was the need to take more time and to build trust. Despite the challenges, many palliative care staff managed the care of people with ID well. The importance of collaboration with carers and ID services is highlighted. Further studies are needed to investigate how widespread the problems are. PMID:17846089

  16. Symptoms and Quality of Life in Cancer Patients With Brain Metastases Following Palliative Radiotherapy

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, Jennifer; Hird, Amanda; Zhang Liying; Tsao, May; Sinclair, Emily; Barnes, Elizabeth; Danjoux, Cyril; Chow, Edward

    2009-11-15

    Purpose: To examine prospectively patient self-rated symptoms and quality of life (QOL) indicators in patients with brain metastases following whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT). Methods and Materials: Consecutive patients with brain metastases referred for WBRT were approached for this study. Patients were asked to rate their symptoms and QOL using the Spitzer Quality of Life Index questionnaire. Follow-up was at 1, 2, and 3 months following WBRT. Linear regression analysis was used to determine the change in symptom severity over time. Results: Between August 2005 to October 2007, 129 patients with brain metastases were enrolled. The majority of patients (88%) received 20 Gy in five fractions. Median age was 64 years, and median Karnofsky Performance Status at baseline was 70. The most commonly experienced symptoms at baseline were headaches, weakness, balance problems, and fatigue. Thirty-five percent of patients rated neurological functional (NF) status as 1, indicating moderate neurological symptoms and need for assistance. Forty-three percent of patients had stable or decreased fatigue, and 47% had a stable or improved NF status over time (p = 0.0040). Although certain QOL domains improved over time, all other QOL domains and symptom items did not change significantly following WBRT. Conclusion: WBRT may have contributed to symptom stabilization in our study. An alternative goal of WBRT may be the prevention of symptom progression and QOL deterioration. Further research is required to select the most appropriate group of patients with brain metastases who would benefit most from WBRT.

  17. Palliation of Dysphagia in Carcinoma Esophagus

    PubMed Central

    Ramakrishnaiah, Vishnu Prasad Nelamangala; Malage, Somanath; Sreenath, G.S.; Kotlapati, Sudhakar; Cyriac, Sunu

    2016-01-01

    Esophageal carcinoma has a special place in gastrointestinal carcinomas because it contains two main types, namely, squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. Carcinoma esophagus patients require some form of palliation because of locally advanced stage or distant metastasis, where it cannot be subjected to curable treatment with surgery and chemoradiation. Many modalities of palliation of dysphagia are available, but the procedure with least morbidity, mortality, and long-term palliation of dysphagia needs to be chosen for the patient. This study aims to discuss the recent trends in palliation of dysphagia with promising results and the most suitable therapy for palliation of dysphagia in a given patient. A total of 64 articles that were published between years 2005 and 2015 on various modes of palliation of dysphagia in carcinoma esophagus were studied, which were mainly randomized and prospective studies. Through this study, we conclude that stents are the first choice of therapy for palliation, which is safe and cost-effective, and they can be combined with either radiotherapy or chemotherapy for long-term palliation of dysphagia with good quality of life. Radiotherapy can be used as a second-line treatment modality. PMID:27279758

  18. Integrating palliative care into comprehensive cancer care.

    PubMed

    Abrahm, Janet L

    2012-10-01

    While there are operational, financial, and workforce barriers to integrating oncology with palliative care, part of the problem lies in ourselves, not in our systems. First, there is oncologists' "learned helplessness" from years of practice without effective medications to manage symptoms or training in how to handle the tough communication challenges every oncologist faces. Unless they and the fellows they train have had the opportunity to work with a palliative care team, they are unlikely to be fully aware of what palliative care has to offer to their patients at the time of diagnosis, during active therapy, or after developing advanced disease, or may believe that, "I already do that." The second barrier to better integration is the compassion fatigue many oncologists develop from caring for so many years for patients who, despite the oncologists' best efforts, suffer and die. The cumulative grief oncologists experience may go unnamed and unacknowledged, contributing to this compassion fatigue and burnout, both of which inhibit the integration of oncology and palliative care. Solutions include training fellows and practicing oncologists in palliative care skills (eg, in symptom management, psychological disorders, communication), preventing and treating compassion fatigue, and enhancing collaboration with palliative care specialists in caring for patients with refractory distress at any stage of disease. As more oncologists develop these skills, process their grief, and recognize the breadth of additional expertise offered by their palliative care colleagues, palliative care will become integrated into comprehensive cancer care. PMID:23054873

  19. Palliative care in COPD: an unmet area for quality improvement.

    PubMed

    Vermylen, Julia H; Szmuilowicz, Eytan; Kalhan, Ravi

    2015-01-01

    COPD is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Patients suffer from refractory breathlessness, unrecognized anxiety and depression, and decreased quality of life. Palliative care improves symptom management, patient reported health-related quality of life, cost savings, and mortality though the majority of patients with COPD die without access to palliative care. There are many barriers to providing palliative care to patients with COPD including the difficulty in prognosticating a patient's course causing referrals to occur late in a patient's disease. Additionally, physicians avoid conversations about advance care planning due to unique communication barriers present with patients with COPD. Lastly, many health systems are not set up to provide trained palliative care physicians to patients with chronic disease including COPD. This review analyzes the above challenges, the available data regarding palliative care applied to the COPD population, and proposes an alternative approach to address the unmet needs of patients with COPD with proactive primary palliative care. PMID:26345486

  20. Intensify, resuscitate or palliate: decision making in the critically ill patient with haematological malignancy.

    PubMed

    Hill, Quentin A

    2010-01-01

    The survival prospects of critically ill patients with haematological malignancy (HM) are reviewed, as are the variables which might influence decisions about the limitation of life sustaining therapies (LLST). Approximately 40% of patients with HM admitted to ICU survive to hospital discharge and a broad admission policy is warranted. Short term survival is predicted by the severity of the underlying physiological disturbance rather than cancer specific characteristics, although the prognostic importance of neutropenia and prior stem cell transplantation remains to be clarified. Survival to hospital discharge in cancer patients following cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is only 6-8%. Poor performance status and progressive deterioration despite ICU support appear to predict worse outcome. Patients should be provided with realistic information in order to make an informed decision about CPR. Decisions about LLST must be individualised. Consideration should be given to the patient's wishes and prognosis, the immediate clinical circumstances and their potential reversibility. PMID:19913962

  1. Impact of biliary stent-related events in patients diagnosed with advanced pancreatobiliary tumours receiving palliative chemotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Lamarca, Angela; Rigby, Christina; McNamara, Mairéad G; Hubner, Richard A; Valle, Juan W

    2016-01-01

    AIM: To determine the impact (morbidity/mortality) of biliary stent-related events (SRE) (cholangitis or stent obstruction) in chemotherapy-treated pancreatico-biliary patients. METHODS: All consecutive patients with advanced pancreatobiliary cancer and a biliary stent in-situ prior to starting palliative chemotherapy were identified retrospectively from local electronic case-note records (Jan 13 to Jan 15). The primary end-point was SRE rate and the time-to-SRE (defined as time from first stenting before chemotherapy to date of SRE). Progression-free survival and overall survival were measured from the time of starting chemotherapy. Kaplan-Meier, Cox and Fine-Gray regression (univariate and multivariable) analyses were employed, as appropriate. For the analysis of time-to-SRE, death was considered as a competing event. RESULTS: Ninety-six out of 693 screened patients were eligible; 89% had a metal stent (the remainder were plastic). The median time of follow-up was 9.6 mo (range 2.2 to 26.4). Forty-one patients (43%) developed a SRE during follow-up [cholangitis (39%), stent obstruction (29%), both (32%)]. There were no significant differences in baseline characteristics between the SRE group and no-SRE groups. Recorded SRE-consequences were: none (37%), chemotherapy delay (24%), discontinuation (17%) and death (22%). The median time-to-SRE was 4.4 mo (95%CI: 3.6-5.5). Patients with severe comorbidities (P < 0.001) and patients with ≥ 2 baseline stents/biliary procedures [HR = 2.3 (95%CI: 1.2-4.44), P = 0.010] had a shorter time-to-SRE on multivariable analysis. Stage was an independent prognostic factor for overall survival (P = 0.029) in the multivariable analysis adjusted for primary tumour site, performance status and development of SRE (SRE group vs no-SRE group). CONCLUSION: SREs are common and impact on patient’s morbidity. Our results highlight the need for prospective studies exploring the role of prophylactic strategies to prevent/delay SREs. PMID

  2. Palliative chemotherapy in advanced colorectal cancer patients 80 years of age and older

    PubMed Central

    Lai, P.; Sud, S.; Zhang, T.; Asmis, T.; Wheatley-Price, P.

    2016-01-01

    Background Colorectal cancer (crc) has a median diagnostic age of 68 years. Despite significant progress in chemotherapy (ctx) options, few data on outcomes or toxicity from ctx in patients 80 years of age and older are available. We investigated ctx in such patients with metastatic crc (mcrc), hypothesizing high rates of hospitalization and toxicity. Methods A retrospective chart review identified patients 80 years of age and older with mcrc who initiated ctx between 2005–2010 at our institution. Patient demographics and ctx data were collected. Endpoints included rates of hospitalization, ctx discontinuation because of toxicity, and overall survival. Results In 60 patients, ctx was initiated on 88 occasions. Median age in the cohort was 83 years; 52% were men; 72% lived with family; 53% had a modified Charlson comorbidity index of 2 or greater; and 31% were taking 6 or more prescription medications at baseline. At baseline, 33% of the patients were anemic (hemoglobin < 100 g/L), 36% had leukocytosis (white blood cells > 11×109/L), and 48% had renal impairment (estimated glomerular filtration rate < 60 mL/min/1.73 m2). In 53%, ctx was given as first-line treatment. The initial ctx dose was adjusted in 67%, and capecitabine was the most common chemotherapeutic agent (45%). In 19 instances (22%), the patient was hospitalized during or within 30 days of ctx; in 26 instances (30%), the ctx was discontinued because of toxicity, and in 48 instances (55%), the patient required at least 1 dose reduction, omission, or delay. Median overall survival was 17.8 months (95% confidence interval: 14.3 to 20.8 months). Conclusions In the population 80 years of age and older, ctx for mcrc is feasible; however, most recipients will require dose adjustments, and a significant proportion will be hospitalized or stop ctx because of toxicity. Prospective research incorporating geriatric assessment tools is required to better select these older patients for ctx. PMID:27330342

  3. Nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine as first-line palliative chemotherapy in a patient with metastatic pancreatic cancer with Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 2

    PubMed Central

    MARTÍN, ANDRÉS J. MUÑOZ; ALFONSO, PILAR GARCÍA; RUPÉREZ, ANA B.; JIMÉNEZ, MIGUEL MARTÍN

    2016-01-01

    Metastatic pancreatic cancer (PC) has been associated with a considerably poor prognosis. Due to its toxicity, first-line combination chemotherapy is limited to patients with a good performance status (PS). Previously nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine has been demonstrated to improve the overall survival rate in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer with a good PS. The present study reports a case of a patient with metastatic PC with a poor PS (Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group 2) and a complex set of comorbidities treated with nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine as a first-line palliative therapy. Adjusted doses of nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine reached a favourable clinical, radiological and biochemical response in the present patient, which increased the quality of life for the patient. Eventually, the patient succumbed to acute cholangitis. Based on the results of the present study, nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine appears to be a favourable treatment as first-line palliative chemotherapy for patients with metastatic PC, comorbidities and poor PS. PMID:27347207

  4. The experience of palliative patients and their families of a family meeting utilised as an instrument for spiritual and psychosocial care: A qualitative study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background This study explores the experience of palliative patients and their family members of a family meeting model, utilised as an instrument for the provision of spiritual and psychosocial care. In doing so the study embraces a broad understanding of spirituality which may or may not include formal religious practice and a concept of psychosocial care that includes: social and emotional well-being, communication, self esteem, mental health and adaptation to illness. The meeting of spiritual and psychosocial needs is considered to be an important aspect of palliative care. Methods This qualitative study, philosophically underpinned by hermeneutic phenomenology, investigates the participatory experience of palliative care patients and their significant family members of such a family meeting. People registered with two large metropolitan palliative care services, who met selection criteria, were referred by medical staff. Twelve of the 66 referred took part in family meetings which also included significant others invited by the patient. A total of 36 family members participated. The number of participants of individual family meetings ranged from two to eleven. After the family meeting every participant was invited to take part in an individual in-depth interview about their experience of the meeting. Forty seven interviews were conducted. These were audio recorded and transcribed. Results Data analysis, utilising Ricoeur's theory of interpretation, revealed seven main themes: personal experience of the meeting, personal outcomes, observation of others' experience, observation of experience and outcomes for the family unit, meeting facilitation, how it could have been different and general applicability of the family meeting. Throughout these themes were numerous references to aspects of the web of relationships which describe the concept of spirituality as it is defined for the purpose of this study. Conclusions The findings indicate the potential of the type

  5. Hearing Loss in Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Nelia; Wallhagen, Margaret L.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Background: Age-related hearing loss is remarkably common, affecting more than 60% of adults over the age of 75. Moreover, hearing loss has detrimental effects on quality of life and communication, outcomes that are central to palliative care. Despite its high prevalence, there is remarkably little written on the impact of hearing loss in the palliative care literature. Objective: The objective was to emphasize its importance and the need for further study. We use a case as a springboard for discussing what is known and unknown about the epidemiology, presentation, screening methodologies, and treatment strategies for age-related hearing loss in palliative care. Discussion: The case describes a 65-year-old man with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) that has progressed despite treatment. No concerns are raised about communication challenges during conversations between the palliative care team and the patient in his quiet room. However, in the midst of a family meeting, shortly after discussing prognosis, the patient reports that he cannot hear what anyone is saying. Conclusion: We describe simple methods of screening patients for hearing loss, and suggest that practical approaches should be used universally in patient encounters. These include facing the patient, pitching one's voice low, using a pocket talker, and creating a hearing-friendly environment when planning a family or group meeting. PMID:25867966

  6. What's the Plan? Needing Assistance with Plan of Care Is Associated with In-Hospital Death for ICU Patients Referred for Palliative Care Consultation.

    PubMed

    Kiyota, Ayano; Bell, Christina L; Masaki, Kamal; Fischberg, Daniel J

    2016-08-01

    To inform earlier identification of intensive care unit (ICU) patients needing palliative care, we examined factors associated with in-hospital death among ICU patients (N=260) receiving palliative care consultations at a 542-bed tertiary care hospital (2005-2009). High pre-consultation length of stay (LOS, ≥7 days) (adjusted odds ratio (aOR)=5.0, 95% confidence interval (95% CI)=2.5-9.9, P<.01) and consultations for assistance with plan of care (aOR=11.6, 95% CI=5.6-23.9, P<.01) were independently associated with in-hospital death. Patients with both consultation for plan of care and high pre-consult LOS had the highest odds of in-hospital death (aOR=36.3, 95% CI=14.9-88.5, P<.001), followed by patients with consultation for plan of care and shorter pre-consult LOS (aOR=9.8, 95% CI=4.3-22.1, P<.001), and patients with long pre-consult LOS but no consultation for plan of care (aOR=4.7, 95% CI=1.8-12.4, P=.002). Our findings suggest that ICU patients who require assistance with plan of care need to be identified early to optimize end-of-life care and avoid in-hospital death. PMID:27563500

  7. What does the answer mean? A qualitative study of how palliative cancer patients interpret and respond to the Edmonton Symptom Assessment System.

    PubMed

    Bergh, Irmelin; Kvalem, Ingela Lundin; Aass, Nina; Hjermstad, Marianne Jensen

    2011-10-01

    The Edmonton Symptom Assessment System (ESAS) is a well-known self-reporting tool for symptom assessment in palliative care. Research has shown that patients experience difficulties in the scoring and interpretation, which may lead to suboptimal treatment. The aims were to examine how palliative care cancer patients interpreted and responded to the ESAS. Eleven patients (3 F/8 M), median age 65 (34-95) with mixed diagnoses were interviewed by means of cognitive interviewing, immediately after having completed the ESAS. The highest mean scores were found with tiredness (6.3) and oral dryness (5.7). The results showed that sources of error were related to interpretation of symptoms and differences in the understanding and use of the response format. The depression and anxiety symptoms were perceived as difficult to interpret, while the appetite item was particularly prone to misunderstandings. Contextual factors, such as mood and time of the day, influenced the answers. Lack of information and feedback from staff influenced the scores. Some patients stated that they scored at random because they did not understand why and how the ESAS was used. The patients' interpretation must be considered in order to minimize errors. The ESAS should always be reviewed with the patients after completion to improve symptom management, thereby strengthening the usability of the ESAS. PMID:21248179

  8. What's the Plan? Needing Assistance with Plan of Care Is Associated with In-Hospital Death for ICU Patients Referred for Palliative Care Consultation

    PubMed Central

    Kiyota, Ayano; Bell, Christina L; Masaki, Kamal

    2016-01-01

    To inform earlier identification of intensive care unit (ICU) patients needing palliative care, we examined factors associated with in-hospital death among ICU patients (N=260) receiving palliative care consultations at a 542-bed tertiary care hospital (2005–2009). High pre-consultation length of stay (LOS, ≥7 days) (adjusted odds ratio (aOR)=5.0, 95% confidence interval (95% CI)=2.5–9.9, P<.01) and consultations for assistance with plan of care (aOR=11.6, 95% CI=5.6–23.9, P<.01) were independently associated with in-hospital death. Patients with both consultation for plan of care and high pre-consult LOS had the highest odds of in-hospital death (aOR=36.3, 95% CI=14.9–88.5, P<.001), followed by patients with consultation for plan of care and shorter pre-consult LOS (aOR=9.8, 95% CI=4.3–22.1, P<.001), and patients with long pre-consult LOS but no consultation for plan of care (aOR=4.7, 95% CI=1.8–12.4, P=.002). Our findings suggest that ICU patients who require assistance with plan of care need to be identified early to optimize end-of-life care and avoid in-hospital death. PMID:27563500

  9. Palliative Care in Rural Minnesota: Findings from Stratis Health's Minnesota Rural Palliative Care Initiative.

    PubMed

    McKinley, Deb; Shearer, Janelle; Weng, Karla

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care, which involves managing symptoms, controlling pain and addressing stress caused by a chronic or terminal illness, has been shown to keep patients out of the hospital and allow them to stay home and live more comfortably with their illness. Typically, it is provided by an interdisciplinary team led by a physician trained in palliative medicine. Rural areas have not always had access to such specialists. Yet, today, rural health care organizations are finding ways to create palliative care programs that meet the needs of their chronically ill and aging populations. This article describes a six-year initiative led by Stratis Health to advance palliative care in rural Minnesota. It highlights the work of FirstLight Health System in Mora and describes Stratis Health's Rural Palliative Care Measurement Pilot Project, an effort to develop and test measures for evaluating rural palliative care programs. PMID:26897897

  10. Undergraduate medical education in palliative medicine: the first step in promoting palliative care in Lebanon.

    PubMed

    Naccache, Nicole; Abou Zeid, Hicham; Nasser Ayoub, Eliane; Antakly, Marie-Claire

    2008-01-01

    Effective delivery of high-quality palliative care requires effective interprofessional team working by skilled healthcare professionals. Palliative care is therefore highly suitable for sowing the seeds of interprofessional team working in early professional undergraduate medical education. Integrating palliative medicine in undergraduate medical education curricula seems to be a must. In this review, we present as an example the Palliative and End-of-Life Care Curriculum (PEOLC) used in Canada for undergraduate medical education and underline the need for such a national curriculum in Lebanon. One must keep in mind that medical education does not stop at the end of the medical school, ongoing learning needs exist. Continuous medical education in palliative care should also be emphasized; the overall goal is promoting palliative medicine. Respecting and protecting human dignity is the right of every patient. PMID:19534074

  11. Variations in the quality and costs of end-of-life care, preferences and palliative outcomes for cancer patients by place of death: the QUALYCARE study

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Emerging trends and new policies suggest that more cancer patients might die at home in the future. However, not all have equal chances of achieving this. Furthermore, there is lack of evidence to support that those who die at home experience better care and a better death than those who die as inpatients. The QUALYCARE study aims to examine variations in the quality and costs of end-of-life care, preferences and palliative outcomes associated with dying at home or in an institution for cancer patients. Methods/Design Mortality followback survey (with a nested case-control study of home vs. hospital deaths) conducted with bereaved relatives of cancer patients in four Primary Care Trusts in London. Potential participants are identified from death registrations and approached by the Office for National Statistics in complete confidence. Data are collected via a postal questionnaire to identify the informal and formal care received in the three months before death and the associated costs, relatives' satisfaction with care, and palliative outcomes for the patients and their relatives. A well-established questionnaire to measure relatives' views on the care integrates four brief and robust tools - the Client Service Receipt Inventory, the Palliative Outcome Scale, the EQ-5 D and the Texas Revised Inventory of Grief. Further questions assess patients and relatives' preferences for place of death. The survey aims to include 500 bereaved relatives (140 who experienced a home death, 205 a hospital death, 115 a hospice death and 40 a nursing home death). Bivariate and multivariate analyses will explore differences in place of death and place of end-of-life care, in preferences for place of death, patients' palliative outcomes and relatives' bereavement outcomes, in relation to place of death. Factors influencing death at home and the costs of end-of-life care by place of death will be identified. Discussion Collecting data on end-of-life care retrospectively from

  12. Early Versus Delayed Initiation of Concurrent Palliative Oncology Care: Patient Outcomes in the ENABLE III Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Bakitas, Marie A.; Tosteson, Tor D.; Li, Zhigang; Lyons, Kathleen D.; Hull, Jay G.; Li, Zhongze; Dionne-Odom, J. Nicholas; Frost, Jennifer; Dragnev, Konstantin H.; Hegel, Mark T.; Azuero, Andres; Ahles, Tim A.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Randomized controlled trials have supported integrated oncology and palliative care (PC); however, optimal timing has not been evaluated. We investigated the effect of early versus delayed PC on quality of life (QOL), symptom impact, mood, 1-year survival, and resource use. Patients and Methods Between October 2010 and March 2013, 207 patients with advanced cancer at a National Cancer Institute cancer center, a Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and community outreach clinics were randomly assigned to receive an in-person PC consultation, structured PC telehealth nurse coaching sessions (once per week for six sessions), and monthly follow-up either early after enrollment or 3 months later. Outcomes were QOL, symptom impact, mood, 1-year survival, and resource use (hospital/intensive care unit days, emergency room visits, chemotherapy in last 14 days, and death location). Results Overall patient-reported outcomes were not statistically significant after enrollment (QOL, P = .34; symptom impact, P = .09; mood, P = .33) or before death (QOL, P = .73; symptom impact, P = .30; mood, P = .82). Kaplan-Meier 1-year survival rates were 63% in the early group and 48% in the delayed group (difference, 15%; P = .038). Relative rates of early to delayed decedents' resource use were similar for hospital days (0.73; 95% CI, 0.41 to 1.27; P = .26), intensive care unit days (0.68; 95% CI, 0.23 to 2.02; P = .49), emergency room visits (0.73; 95% CI, 0.45 to 1.19; P = .21), chemotherapy in last 14 days (1.57; 95% CI, 0.37 to 6.7; P = .27), and home death (27 [54%] v 28 [47%]; P = .60). Conclusion Early-entry participants' patient-reported outcomes and resource use were not statistically different; however, their survival 1-year after enrollment was improved compared with those who began 3 months later. Understanding the complex mechanisms whereby PC may improve survival remains an important research priority. PMID:25800768

  13. Clinical pragmatism and the care of brain damaged patients: toward a palliative neuroethics for disorders of consciousness.

    PubMed

    Fins, Joseph J

    2005-01-01

    Unraveling the mysteries of consciousness, lost and regained, and perhaps even intervening so as to prompt recovery are advances for which neither the clinical nor the lay community are prepared. These advances will shake existing expectations about severe brain damage and will find an unprepared clinical context, perhaps even one inhospitable to what should clearly be viewed as important advances. This could be the outcome of this line of inquiry, if this exceptionally imaginative research can continue at all. This work faces a restrictive research environment that has the potential to imperil it. Added to the complexity of the scientific challenges that must be overcome is the societal context in which these investigations must occur. Research on human consciousness goes to the heart of our humanity and asks us to grapple with fundamental questions about the self. Added to this is the regulatory complexity of research on subjects who may be unable to provide their own consent because of impaired decision-making capacity, itself a function of altered or impaired consciousness. These factors can lead to a restrictive view of research that can favor risk aversion over discovery. In this paper, I attempt to explain systematically some of these challenges. I suggest that some of the resistance might be tempered if we view the needs of patients with severe brain injury through the prism of palliative care and adopt that field's ethos and methods when caring for and conducting research on individuals with severe brain damage and disorders of consciousness. To make this argument I draw upon the American pragmatic tradition and utilize clinical pragmatism, a method of moral problem-solving that my colleagues and I have developed to address ethical challenges in clinical care and research. PMID:16186050

  14. Home Inotropes and Other Palliative Care.

    PubMed

    Ginwalla, Mahazarin

    2016-07-01

    Heart failure is a leading case of morbidity and mortality worldwide, and patients with advanced heart failure have limited options without any available cure. These options mainly include cardiac transplantation or mechanical circulatory support device implantation. Chronic home inotropes are an option in these patients for a variety of indications. This report discusses the use of chronic home inotropes in palliated heart failure patients and reviews the role of palliative care management in end-stage heart failure. PMID:27371519

  15. Local radiotherapy for palliation in multiple myeloma patients with symptomatic bone lesions

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jeong Won

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To evaluate the clinical outcomes of symptomatic bone lesions in patients with multiple myeloma (MM) who received local radiotherapy (LRT). Materials and Methods Fifty-one patients with 87 symptomatic bone lesions treated via LRT were analyzed. LRT was delivered at a median total dose of 21 Gy (range, 12 to 40 Gy) in a median of 7 fractions (range, 4 to 20 fractions). The clinical outcomes of LRT and the factors affecting treatment response were assessed. Results After a median follow-up time of 66.7 weeks, symptom relief was achieved for 85 of 87 lesions (97.7%). The median time to symptom relief was 7 days from the start of LRT (range, 1 to 67 days). The duration of in-field failure-free survival ranged from 1.1 to 450.9 weeks (median, 66.7 weeks). The radiation dose or use of previous and concurrent chemotherapy was not significantly associated with in-field failure for LRT (p = 0.354, 0.758, and 0.758, respectively). Conclusion Symptomatic bone lesions in patients with MM can be successfully treated with LRT. A higher radiation dose or the use of concurrent chemotherapy may not influence the in-field disease control. A relatively low radiation dose could achieve remission of symptoms in patients with MM. PMID:27104168

  16. In Vitro Validation of a Multiscale Patient-Specific Norwood Palliation Model.

    PubMed

    Hang, Tianqi; Giardini, Alessandro; Biglino, Giovanni; Conover, Timothy; Figliola, Richard S

    2016-01-01

    In Norwood physiology, shunt size and the occurrence of coarctation can affect hemodynamics significantly. The aim of the study was to validate an in vitro model of the Norwood circulation against clinical measurements for patients presenting differing aortic morphologies. The mock circulatory system used coupled a lumped parameter network of the neonatal Norwood circulation with modified Blalock-Taussig (mBT) shunt with a three-dimensional aorta model. Five postoperative aortic arch anatomies of differing morphologies were reconstructed from imaging data, and the system was tuned to patient-specific clinical values. Experimentally measured flow rates and pressures were compared with clinical measurements. Time-based experimental and clinical pressure and flow signals within the aorta and pulmonary circulation branches agreed closely (0.72 < R < 0.95) for the five patients, whereas mean values within the systemic and pulmonary branches showed no significant differences (95% confidence interval). We validated an experimental multiscale model of the Norwood circulation with mBT shunt by showing it capable of reproducing clinical pressure and flow rates at various positions of the circulation with very good fidelity across a range of patient physiologies and morphologies. The multiscale aspect of the model provides a means to study variables in isolation with their effects both locally and at the system level. The model serves as a tool to further the understanding of the complex physiology of single-ventricle circulation. PMID:26771396

  17. Palliative Care for Latino Patients and Their Families: “Whenever We Prayed, She Wept”

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Alexander K.; Sudore, Rebecca L.; Pérez-Stable, Eliseo J.

    2009-01-01

    Latinos account for 15% of the US population, a proportion projected to grow to 30% by the year 2050. Although there is tremendous diversity within this community, commonalities of language, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors unite Latinos, making them more similar than different. For non-Latino and non-Spanish-speaking clinicians, communication barriers and cultural misunderstandings can impede the care of dying Latino patients and their families. We present the case of a young, pregnant, Spanish-speaking woman from Guatemala diagnosed with a fatal leukemia. As illustrated by this case, Latino immigrants face a number of external challenges to optimal end-of-life care: (1) geographic distance as well as political and economic realities often separate patients from their valued families; (2) undocumented immigrants are frequently uninsured, and fear of deportation may create a barrier to accessing health services; (3) language and literacy barriers; and (4) concerns about discrimination. Other Latino issues that may be more pronounced in end-of-life settings include cultural themes and religious and spiritual influences. We recommend that professional interpreters must be used for discussions about goals of care with Spanish-speaking patients and families, or when negotiating conflict between the patient, family, and the health care team. Concrete suggestions are provided for clinicians in working with interpreters, eliciting culturally-based attitudes and beliefs, and implementing universal strategies for clear health communication. PMID:19278947

  18. Consensus statement on palliative lung radiotherapy: third international consensus workshop on palliative radiotherapy and symptom control.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, George; Macbeth, Fergus; Burmeister, Bryan; Kelly, Karie-Lynn; Bezjak, Andrea; Langer, Corey; Hahn, Carol; Movsas, Benjamin

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to disseminate a consensus statement on palliative radiotherapy (RT) of lung cancer created in conjunction with the Third International Lung Cancer Consensus Workshop. The palliative lung RT workshop committee agreed on 5 questions relating to (1) patient selection, (2) thoracic external-beam radiation therapy (XRT) fractionation, (3) endobronchial brachytherapy (EBB), (4) concurrent chemotherapy (CC), and (5) palliative endpoint definitions. A PubMed search for primary/cross-referenced practice guidelines, consensus statements, meta-analyses, and/or systematic reviews was conducted. Final consensus statements were created after review and discussion of the available evidence. The following summary statements reflect the consensus of the international working group. 1. Key factors involved in the decision to deliver palliative RT include performance status, tumor stage, pulmonary function, XRT volume, symptomatology, weight loss, and patient preference. 2. Palliative thoracic XRT is generally indicated for patients with stage IV disease with current/impending symptoms and for patients with stage III disease treated for palliative intent. 3. There is no evidence to routinely recommend EBB alone or in conjunction with other palliative maneuvers in the initial palliative management of endobronchial obstruction resulting from lung cancer. 4. There is currently no evidence to routinely recommend CC with palliative-intent RT. 5. Standard assessment of symptoms and health-related quality of life (QOL) using validated questionnaires should be carried out in palliative RT lung cancer trials. Despite an expanding literature, continued prospective randomized investigations to better define the role of XRT, EBB, and CC in the context of thoracic palliation of patients with lung cancer is needed. PMID:21729656

  19. Palliative care - managing pain

    MedlinePlus

    Palliative care helps people with serious illnesses feel better. One of the problems a serious illness can cause ... Bookbinder M, McHugh ME. Symptom management in palliative care and ... Challenging pain problems. In: Walsh D, Caraceni AT, Fainsinger ...

  20. Esophagus Cancer: Palliative Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... your doctor about cancer of the esophagus? Palliative therapy for cancer of the esophagus Palliative therapy is ... therapy Electrocoagulation Laser ablation Argon plasma coagulation Radiation therapy External-beam radiation can often help relieve some ...

  1. Improving Palliative Cancer Care.

    PubMed

    Del Ferraro, Catherine; Ferrell, Betty; Van Zyl, Carin; Freeman, Bonnie; Klein, Linda

    2014-01-01

    Over a decade ago, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) presented Ensuring Quality Cancer Care in the United States, with recommendations for change (IOM, 1999). However, barriers to integrating palliative care (PC) to achieve high-quality care in cancer still remain. As novel therapeutic agents evolve, patients are living longer, and advanced cancer is now considered a chronic illness. In addition to complex symptom concerns, patients and family caregivers are burdened with psychological, social, and spiritual distress. Furthermore, data show that PC continues to be underutilized and inaccessible, and current innovative models of integrating PC into standard cancer care lack uniformity. The aim of this article is to address the existing barriers in implementing PC into our cancer care delivery system and discuss how the oncology advanced practice nurse plays an essential role in providing high-quality cancer care. We also review the IOM recommendations; highlight the work done by the National Consensus Project in promoting quality PC; and discuss a National Cancer Institute-funded program project currently conducted at a National Comprehensive Cancer Center, "Palliative Care for Quality of Life and Symptoms Concerns in Lung Cancer," which serves as a model to promote high-quality care for patients and their families. PMID:26114013

  2. Palliative care for Latino patients and their families: whenever we prayed, she wept.

    PubMed

    Smith, Alexander K; Sudore, Rebecca L; Pérez-Stable, Eliseo J

    2009-03-11

    Latinos account for 15% of the US population, a proportion projected to grow to 30% by the year 2050. Although there is tremendous diversity within this community, commonalities of language, beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors unite Latinos, making them more similar than different. Differences by national origin, although important, are attenuated when immigrants come to the United States, dominated by an English-language, Anglo-centric culture. For non-Latino and non-Spanish-speaking clinicians, communication barriers and cultural misunderstandings can impede the care of dying Latino patients and their families. We present the case of a young, pregnant, Spanish-speaking woman from Central America diagnosed with a fatal leukemia. As illustrated by this case, Latino immigrants face a number of external challenges to optimal end-of-life care: (1) geographic distance as well as political and economic realities often separate patients from their valued families; (2) undocumented immigrants are frequently uninsured and fear of deportation may create a barrier to accessing health services; (3) language and literacy barriers; and (4) concerns about discrimination. Other Latino issues that may be more pronounced in end-of-life settings include cultural themes and religious and spiritual influences. We recommend that professional interpreters must be used for discussions about goals of care with Spanish-speaking patients and families or when negotiating conflict between the patient, family, and the health care team. Concrete suggestions are provided for clinicians in working with interpreters, eliciting culturally based attitudes and beliefs, and implementing universal strategies for clear health communication. PMID:19278947

  3. On the palliative care unit.

    PubMed

    Selwyn, Peter A

    2016-06-01

    As a physician working in palliative care, the author is often privileged to share special moments with patients and their families at the end of life. This haiku poem recalls one such moment in that precious space between life and death, as an elderly woman, surrounded by her adult daughters, takes her last breath. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27270255

  4. [Legal basics in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Putz, Wolfgang

    2016-03-01

    The German legal framework concerning end of life decisions is based on two pillars: the medical standards and the patient's autonomy. Every medical treatment, including life-saving and palliative measures, requires medical indication and, crucially, the patient's consent. Without the patient's consent even medically indicated treatment is prohibited.In other cases, complying with the patient's wishes, doctors have to treat symptoms the best they can. This includes palliative sedation accepting that the indicated medication may shorten life.It is prohibited to actively kill a patient to shorten his suffering. Assisting a suicide is only permitted if the suicide decision is made freely and on the patient's own responsibility. Businesslike suicide assistance is prohibited. PMID:26983108

  5. The challenges of uncertainty and interprofessional collaboration in palliative care for non-cancer patients in the community: A systematic review of views from patients, carers and health-care professionals

    PubMed Central

    Murtagh, Fliss EM

    2014-01-01

    Background: Primary care has the potential to play significant roles in providing effective palliative care for non-cancer patients. Aim: To identify, critically appraise and synthesise the existing evidence on views on the provision of palliative care for non-cancer patients by primary care providers and reveal any gaps in the evidence. Design: Standard systematic review and narrative synthesis. Data sources: MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, PsycINFO, Applied Social Science Abstract and the Cochrane library were searched in 2012. Reference searching, hand searching, expert consultations and grey literature searches complemented these. Papers with the views of patients/carers or professionals on primary palliative care provision to non-cancer patients in the community were included. The amended Hawker’s criteria were used for quality assessment of included studies. Results: A total of 30 studies were included and represent the views of 719 patients, 605 carers and over 400 professionals. In all, 27 studies are from the United Kingdom. Patients and carers expect primary care physicians to provide compassionate care, have appropriate knowledge and play central roles in providing care. The roles of professionals are unclear to patients, carers and professionals themselves. Uncertainty of illness trajectory and lack of collaboration between health-care professionals were identified as barriers to effective care. Conclusions: Effective interprofessional work to deal with uncertainty and maintain coordinated care is needed for better palliative care provision to non-cancer patients in the community. Research into and development of a best model for effective interdisciplinary work are needed. PMID:24821710

  6. [Palliative care for glioblastoma].

    PubMed

    Dieudonné, Nathalie; De Micheli, Rita; Hottinger, Andreas

    2016-04-27

    Patients with glioblastoma have a limited life expectancy and an impaired quality of life and they should be offered palliative care soon after the diagnosis is established. Still, only a quarter of patients aged over 65 return home or medical institution after completing treatments. Home care must be promoted by coordinating assistance and care, combining disciplines such as physiotherapy and ergotherapy, medical and nursing care and psychosocial support. Patients are at risk of mood, personality and behavioural disorders. Limited awareness of these troubles and their physical limitations alter their capacity of rehabilitation and social relationships. Isolation of relatives, exhaustion and misunderstandings should be prevented. The therapeutic goals should be discussed and determined upstream to anticipate difficulties and questions concerning end of life. PMID:27281945

  7. Medical use of marijuana in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Johannigman, Suzanne; Eschiti, Valerie

    2013-08-01

    Marijuana has been documented to provide relief to patients in palliative care. However, healthcare providers should use caution when discussing medical marijuana use with patients. This article features a case study that reveals the complexity of medical marijuana use. For oncology nurses to offer high-quality care, examining the pros and cons of medical marijuana use in the palliative care setting is important. PMID:23899972

  8. Palliative Care in Advanced Lung Disease: The Challenge of Integrating Palliation Into Everyday Care.

    PubMed

    Rocker, Graeme M; Simpson, A Catherine; Horton, Robert

    2015-09-01

    The tendency toward "either/or" thinking (either cure or comfort) in traditional biomedical care paradigms does little to optimize care in advancing chronic illness. Calls for improved palliation in chronic lung disease mandate a review of related care gaps and current clinical practices. Although specialist palliative services have their advocates, adding yet another element to an already fragmented, often complex, care paradigm can be a challenge. Instead, we propose a more holistic, patient-centered approach based on elements fundamental to palliative and best care practices generally and integrated as needed across the entire illness trajectory. To support this approach, we review the concept of primary palliative care competencies, identify vulnerability specific to those living with advanced COPD (an exemplar of chronic lung disease), and describe the need for care plans shaped by patient-centered communication, timely palliative responsiveness, and effective advance care planning. A costly systemic issue in the management of chronic lung disease is patients' increasing dependency on episodic ED care to deal with preventable episodic crises and refractory dyspnea. We address this issue as part of a proposed model of care that provides proactive, collaborative case management and the appropriate and carefully monitored use of opioids. We encourage and support a renewed primary care resolve to integrate palliative approaches to care in advanced lung disease that, in concert with judicious referral to appropriate specialist palliative care services, is fundamental to what should be a more sustainable systematic improvement in palliative care delivery. PMID:25742140

  9. [Complementary therapy in palliative medicine].

    PubMed

    Hübner, J; Stoll, C

    2011-01-01

    Even in the palliative context complementary therapy has a high value for patients and their relatives. In contrast to the methods of conventional medicine naturopathy as a holistic system has positive meanings for patients and their family. Complementary medicine in the palliative setting can be used as a supportive therapy in carefully selected cases. Doctors and patients should be careful regarding effect and side effects and should make sure that supportive therapy is given adequately and in effective doses. Complementary therapy should not be used in order to avoid the question of life and death. An adequate approach to the topic is mandatory, which acknowledges the needs of patients but also looks for their safety. Patients following alternative therapies sometimes neglect helpful therapeutic options. Carefully providing information on these therapies is mandatory. Physicians should avoid losing patients' confidence in their competence and attention in their final course of disease. Also in palliative medicine a sensitive approach to the topic of complementary medicine is mandatory, which accounts for the eligible wishes of patients and their relatives but puts the patients safety first. PMID:21181106

  10. The Use of the Chuang's Prognostic Scale to Predict the Survival of Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Patients Receiving Palliative Systemic Anticancer Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Alsirafy, Samy A; Zaki, Omar; Sakr, Amr Y; Farag, Dina E; El-Sherief, Wessam A; Mohammed, Abha A

    2016-01-01

    Background: With the increasing number of agents active against cancer, advanced cancer patients including metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) patients may continue receiving palliative systemic anticancer therapy (PSAT) near the end-of-life. Validated palliative prognostic models, such as the Chuang's prognostic scale (CPS), may be helpful in identifying mCRC patients with limited survival who are unlikely to benefit from PSAT. Aim: To test the ability of the CPS to predict the survival of mCRC under treatment with PSAT. Methods: CPS was prospectively assessed in 36 mCRC patients who were receiving PSAT. The scale is based on eight items: ascites, edema, cognitive impairment, liver and lung metastases, performance status, tiredness, and weight loss. The total CPS score ranges from 0 to 8.5 with the higher score indicating worse prognosis. Results: Patients were divided into two groups using a CPS cutoff score of 5, Group 1 with a CPS score ≤5 and Group 2 with a CPS score >5. Using this cutoff value, 3-month mortality was predicted with a positive predictive value of 71%, a negative predictive value of 77%, a sensitivity of 67%, a specificity of 81% and an overall accuracy of 75%. Group 1 patients had a longer median survival of 149 days (95% confidence interval [CI]: 82-216) in comparison to Group 2 patients who had a median survival of 61 days (95% CI: 35-87). The difference in survival was statistically significant (P = 0.01). Conclusion: CPS may be useful in identifying mCRC patients with limited survival who are unlikely to benefit from PSAT. PMID:27559261

  11. The palliative care clinical nurse consultant: an essential link.

    PubMed

    O'Connor, Margaret; Chapman, Ysanne

    2008-01-01

    This study describes the role of acute hospital palliative care nurse consultants and makes recommendations about future directions for the role development of this role. While the palliative care nurse consultant role is accepted in the acute setting there is little evidence or literature about what contributes to the success of this role. A three-phase study was undertaken to describe the role of palliative care nurse consultants in acute hospitals in Melbourne, Australia. The first phase of the three-phase study, involving in-depth qualitative interviews with the palliative care nurse consultants, is reported in this article. Using open-ended semi-structured questions, 10 palliative care nurse consultants were interviewed using open-ended questions about aspects of their role and the interviews were thematically analysed. Four main themes were identified that clarified the role; being the internal link; being the lynch pin; being responsive and being challenged. The palliative care nurse consultants were the first point of introduction to palliative care and thus they saw a significant role in introducing the concept of palliative care to those requiring palliative care, their families and others. They are an important link between the settings of care required by people accessing palliative care-acute, in-patient palliative care and community care. The palliative care nurse consultants saw themselves in leadership positions that in some ways defy boundaries, because of the inherent complexity and diversity of the role. The palliative care nurse consultants' role appears to be pivotal in providing expert advice to staff and people requiring palliative care, and connecting palliative care services both within the hospital and to external services. PMID:19112925

  12. Health care interactional suffering in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Beng, Tan Seng; Guan, Ng Chong; Jane, Lim Ee; Chin, Loh Ee

    2014-05-01

    A secondary analysis of 2 qualitative studies was conducted to explore the experiences of suffering caused by interactions with health care providers in the hospital setting. Interview transcripts from 20 palliative care patients and 15 palliative care informal caregivers in University Malaya Medical Centre were thematically analyzed. The results of health care interactional suffering were associated with themes of attention, understanding, communication, competence, and limitation. These 5 themes may serve as a framework for the improvement in interaction skills of health care providers in palliative care. PMID:23689367

  13. Music therapy in palliative care.

    PubMed Central

    Munro, S.; Mount, B.

    1978-01-01

    Initial observations regarding the use of music therapy at one hospital in the palliative care of patients with advanced malignant disease are presented. In the hands of a trained music therapist, music has proven to be a potent tool for improving the quality of life. The diversity of its potential is particularly suited to the deversity of the challenges - physical, psychosocial and spiritual - that these patients present. Images FIG. 1 PMID:84704

  14. Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation of the Quadriceps in Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Receiving Palliative Chemotherapy: A Randomized Phase II Study

    PubMed Central

    Maddocks, Matthew; Halliday, Vanessa; Chauhan, Alpna; Taylor, Victoria; Nelson, Annmarie; Sampson, Cathy; Byrne, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Background A reduced exercise capacity is associated with increased morbidity and mortality in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Therapeutic exercise can be beneficial and neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) of the quadriceps muscles may represent a practical approach. The primary aim of this study was to determine the acceptability of NMES of the quadriceps to patients with NSCLC used alongside palliative chemotherapy. Secondary aims explored aspects of safety and efficacy of NMES in this setting. Methods Patients with advanced NSCLC due to receive first-line palliative chemotherapy were randomized to usual care with or without NMES. They were asked to undertake 30 minute sessions of NMES, ideally daily, but as a minimum, three times weekly. For NMES to be considered acceptable, it was predetermined that ≥80% of patients should achieve this minimum level of adherence. Qualitative interviews were held with a subset of patients to explore factors influencing adherence. Safety was assessed according to the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events. Quadriceps muscle strength, thigh lean mass, and physical activity level were assessed at baseline and after three cycles of chemotherapy. Results 49 patients (28 male, median (IQR) age 69 (64−75) years) participated. Of 30 randomized to NMES, 18 were eligible for the primary endpoint, of whom 9 (50% [90% CI, 29 to 71]) met the minimum level of adherence. Adherence was enhanced by incorporating sessions into a daily routine and hindered by undesirable effects of chemotherapy. There were no serious adverse events related to NMES, nor significant differences in quadriceps muscle strength, thigh lean mass or physical activity level between groups. Conclusions NMES is not acceptable in this setting, nor was there a suggestion of benefit. The need remains to explore NMES in patients with cancer in other settings. Trial Registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN 42944026 www

  15. Harnessing complex emergent metaphors for effective communication in palliative care: a multimodal perceptual analysis of hospice patients' reports of transcendence experiences.

    PubMed

    Arnold, Bruce L; Lloyd, Linda S

    2014-05-01

    Terminally ill patients can have unexpected, enigmatic, and profound cognitive shifts that significantly alter their perception of themselves, thereby eliminating their fear of death and dying. However, there are no systematic studies into these remarkable yet ineffable transcendence experiences. They therefore remain easily overlooked or viewed as isolated anomalies and therefore excluded from quality-of-life patient considerations. We use a multimodal methodology for identifying the prevalence and thematic properties of complex emergent metaphors patients use to report these experiences. Although previous research has pioneered the importance of understanding conventional or primary metaphors at the end of life, our findings indicate the considerable potential of more complex metaphors for reducing barriers to effective communication in palliative care. PMID:23713131

  16. Identifying patients with chronic conditions in need of palliative care in the general population: development of the NECPAL tool and preliminary prevalence rates in Catalonia.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Batiste, Xavier; Martínez-Muñoz, Marisa; Blay, Carles; Amblàs, Jordi; Vila, Laura; Costa, Xavier; Villanueva, Alicia; Espaulella, Joan; Espinosa, Jose; Figuerola, Montserrat; Constante, Carles

    2013-09-01

    Palliative care (PC) has focused on patients with cancer within specialist services. However, around 75% of the population in middle-income and high-income countries die of one or more chronic advanced diseases. Early identification of such patients in need of PC becomes crucial. In this feature article we describe the initial steps of the NECPAL (Necesidades Paliativas [Palliative Needs]) Programme. The focus is on development of the NECPAL tool to identify patients in need of PC; preliminary results of the NECPAL prevalence study, which assessed prevalence of advanced chronically ill patients within the population and all socio-health settings of Osona; and initial implementation of the NECPAL Programme in the region. As first measures of the Programme, we present the NECPAL tool. The main differences from the British reference tools on which NECPAL is based are highlighted. The preliminary results of the prevalence study show that 1.45% of the total population and 7.71% of the population aged over 65 are 'surprise question' positive, while 1.33% and 7.00%, respectively, are NECPAL positive, and surprise question positive with at least one additional positive parameter. More than 50% suffer from geriatric pluri-pathology conditions or dementia. The pilot phase of the Programme consists of developing sectorised policies to improve PC in three districts of Catalonia. The first steps to design and implement a Programme to improve PC for patients with chronic conditions with a public health and population-based approach are to identify these patients and to assess their prevalence in the healthcare system. PMID:24644748

  17. Nurturing humanism through teaching palliative care.

    PubMed

    Block, S; Billings, J A

    1998-07-01

    After many years of neglect by the medical establishment, the discipline of palliative medicine is finally moving into academic health centers (AHCs). While hospice programs have cared for dying patients in the community for years with little input from mainstream medicine, palliative care is gaining a foothold in AHCs, challenging these centers to integrate the hospice approach with biomedicine. The discipline of palliative care promises to be a rich source of learning and growth for physicians-in-training. Teaching about palliative care affirms two essential but vulnerable dimensions of the practice of medicine--the importance of relationship-centered care and the value of doctoring as a source of meaning and growth for physicians. In addition to fostering fundamental humanistic learning, palliative medicine is an excellent vehicle for teaching basic but often neglected clinical competencies, including pain and symptom control, communication, and working as part of a health care team. Because palliative care settings offer extraordinary learning opportunities, the authors recommend that clinical experiences in palliative care be integrated into the core curricula of all medical schools as well as appropriate residency programs. PMID:9679465

  18. Predicting 1-Year Mortality Rate for Patients Admitted With an Acute Exacerbation of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease to an Intensive Care Unit: An Opportunity for Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Batzlaff, Cassandra M.; Karpman, Craig; Afessa, Bekele; Benzo, Roberto P.

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to develop a model to aid clinicians in better predicting 1-year mortality rate for patients with an acute exacerbation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease admitted to the medical intensive care unit (ICU) with the goal of earlier initiation of palliative care and end-of-life communications in this patient population. This retrospective cohort study included patients from a medical ICU from April 1, 1995, to November 30, 2009. Data collected from the Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation III database included demographic characteristics; severity of illness scores; noninvasive and invasive mechanical ventilation time; ICU and hospital length of stay; and ICU, hospital, and 1-year mortality. Statistically significant univariate variables for 1-year mortality were entered into a multivariate model, and the independent variables were used to generate a scoring system to predict 1-year mortality rate. At 1-year follow-up, 295 of 591 patients died (50%). Age and hospital length of stay were identified as independent determinants of mortality at 1 year by using multivariate analysis, and the predictive model developed had an area under the operating curve of 0.68. Bootstrap analysis with 1000 iterations validated the model, age, and hospital length of stay, entered the model 100% of the time (area under the operating curve=0.687; 95% CI, 0.686–0.688). A simple model using age and hospital length of stay may be informative for providers willing to identify patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with high 1-year mortality rate who may benefit from end-of-life communications and from palliative care. PMID:24656805

  19. [The perspectives on palliative nursing education].

    PubMed

    Hu, Wen-Yu; Yeh, Mei Chang

    2015-04-01

    The numbers of people who suffer from age-related and chronic diseases have been increased worldwide. This has lead to an increased emphasis in the medical community on end of life care. This paper references the processes followed overseas in developing palliative care education programs as well as the domestic experiences promoting the hospitalization, home care, and "share care" models of palliative care. Particular emphasis is given to considerations of cultural diversity in palliative care. The aim of this paper is to elaborate on the prevalent clinical end-of-life care issues that are faced in Taiwan, to cultivate core capabilities in end-of-life care, to elicit the current status and development of formal nursing education, and to promote continuing education in palliative care. Kern formulated a six-step approach to curriculum development in education and the details has been discussed . Finally, this paper reflects on the current bottlenecks, challenges, and expectations related to palliative care curriculum development in order to help medical professionals further put humanistic and social care into practice, increase ethical reflection in end of life care and nursing competency, and encourage the creation of localized textbooks / multimedia e-teaching materials. The fostering of "patient-centered, family unit and the social-cultural contexture" for palliative care professionals and the ability to respond to the needs of terminal patients and patients with chronic diseases are critical to increasing the quality of Taiwan healthcare. PMID:25854945

  20. Factors influencing palliative care. Qualitative study of family physicians' practices.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, J. B.; Sangster, M.; Swift, J.

    1998-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To examine factors that influence family physicians' decisions to practise palliative care. DESIGN: Qualitative method of in-depth interviews. SETTING: Southwestern Ontario. PARTICIPANTS: Family physicians who practise palliative care on a full-time basis, who practise on a part-time basis, or who have retired from active involvement in palliative care. METHOD: Eleven in-depth interviews were conducted to explore factors that influence family physicians' decisions to practise palliative care and factors that sustain their interest in palliative care. All interviews were audiotaped and transcribed verbatim. The analysis strategy used a phenomenological approach and occurred concurrently rather than sequentially. All interview transcriptions were read independently by the researchers, who then compared and combined their analyses. Final analysis involved examining all interviews collectively, thus permitting relationships between and among central themes to emerge. MAIN OUTCOME FINDINGS: The overriding theme was a common philosophy of palliative care focusing on acceptance of death, whole person care, compassion, communication, and teamwork. Participants' philosophies were shaped by their education and by professional and personal experiences. In addition, participants articulated personal and systemic factors currently affecting their practice of palliative care. CONCLUSIONS: Participants observed that primary care physicians should be responsible for their patients' palliative care within the context of interdisciplinary teams. For medical students to be knowledgeable and sensitive to the needs of dying patients, palliative care should be given higher priority in the curriculum. Finally, participants argued compellingly for transferring the philosophy of palliative care to the overall practice of medicine. PMID:9612588

  1. Palliative chemotherapy for gastroesophageal cancer in old and very old patients: A retrospective cohort study at the National Center for Tumor Diseases, Heidelberg

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Anne Katrin; Zschaebitz, Stefanie; Komander, Christine; Jäger, Dirk; Haag, Georg Martin

    2015-01-01

    AIM: To investigate the outcome of palliative chemotherapy in old patients with gastroesophageal cancer at the National Center for Tumor Diseases, Heidelberg. METHODS: Using a prospectively generated database, we retrospectively analyzed 55 patients ≥ 70 years under palliative chemotherapy for advanced gastroesophageal cancer at the outpatient clinic of the National Center for Tumor Diseases Heidelberg, Germany between January 2006 and December 2013. Further requirements for inclusion were (1) histologically proven diagnosis of gastroesophageal cancer; (2) advanced (metastatic or inoperable) disease; and (3) no history of radiation or radiochemotherapy. The clinical information included Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status (ECOG PS), presence and site of metastases at diagnosis, date of previous surgery and perioperative chemotherapy, start and stop date of first-line treatment, toxicities and consecutive dosage reductions of first-line treatment, response to first-line therapy, date of progression, usage of second-line therapies and date and cause of death. Survival times [progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS) and residual survival (RS)] were calculated. Toxicity and safety were examined. Prognostic factors including ECOG PS, age and previous perioperative treatment were analyzed. RESULTS: Median age of our cohort was 76 years. 86% of patients received a combination of two cytotoxic drugs. 76 percent of patients had an oxaliplatin-based first-line therapy with the oxaliplatin and 5-fluorouracil regimen being the predominantely chosen regimen (69%). Drug modifications due to toxicity were necessary in 56% of patients, and 11% of patients stopped treatment due to toxicities. Survival times of our cohort are in good accordance with the major phase III trials that included mostly younger patients: PFS and OS were 5.8 and 9.5 mo, respectively. Survival differed significantly between patient groups with low (≤ 1) and high (≥ 2

  2. Palliative care and neurology: time for a paradigm shift.

    PubMed

    Boersma, Isabel; Miyasaki, Janis; Kutner, Jean; Kluger, Benzi

    2014-08-01

    Palliative care is an approach to the care of patients and families facing progressive and chronic illnesses that focuses on the relief of suffering due to physical symptoms, psychosocial issues, and spiritual distress. As neurologists care for patients with chronic, progressive, life-limiting, and disabling conditions, it is important that they understand and learn to apply the principles of palliative medicine. In this article, we aim to provide a practical starting point in palliative medicine for neurologists by answering the following questions: (1) What is palliative care and what is hospice care? (2) What are the palliative care needs of neurology patients? (3) Do neurology patients have unique palliative care needs? and (4) How can palliative care be integrated into neurology practice? We cover several fundamental palliative care skills relevant to neurologists, including communication of bad news, symptom assessment and management, advance care planning, caregiver assessment, and appropriate referral to hospice and other palliative care services. We conclude by suggesting areas for future educational efforts and research. PMID:24991027

  3. [Malignant wounds in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Fromantin, Isabelle; Rollot, Florence; Nicodeme, Marguerite; Kriegel, Iréne

    2015-01-01

    In the alsence of effective cancer treatment, malignant wounds evolve. The decisions taken by the multi-disciplinary team with regard to their care vary depending on whether the patient is in the initial, advanced or terminal phase of palliative care. Modern dressings can be used to control bleeding, odours and drainage. The aim is to control the symptoms and improve the quality of life, until its end. PMID:26027186

  4. Palliative Care in Lung Cancer.

    PubMed

    Shinde, Arvind M; Dashti, Azadeh

    2016-01-01

    Lung cancer is the most common cancer worldwide and is the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women in the USA. Symptom burden in patients with advanced lung cancer is very high and has a negative impact on their quality of life (QOL). Palliative care with its focus on the management of symptoms and addressing physical, psychosocial, spiritual, and existential suffering, as well as medically appropriate goal setting and open communication with patients and families, significantly adds to the quality of care received by advanced lung cancer patients. The Provisional Clinical Opinion (PCO) of American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) as well as the National Cancer Care Network's (NCCN) clinical practice guidelines recommends early integration of palliative care into routine cancer care. In this chapter, we will provide an overview of palliative care in lung cancer and will examine the evidence and recommendations with regard to a comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach to symptom management, as well as discussions of goals of care, advance care planning, and care preferences. PMID:27535397

  5. Education in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Weissman, David E; Blust, Linda

    2005-02-01

    Palliative care education includes the domains of pain and nonpain symptom management, communications skills, ethics and law, psychosocial care, and health systems. Defining key attitudes, knowledge, and skill objectives, and matching these to appropriate learning formats, is essential in educational planning. Abundant educational resource material is available to support classroom and experiential palliative care training. PMID:15639043

  6. Integrated pain and palliative medicine model.

    PubMed

    Bhatnagar, Sushma; Gupta, Mayank

    2016-07-01

    Pain is one of the most common, distressing and feared symptom among cancer and other patients in need of palliative care. An estimated 25% of cancer patients and 25 million people die in pain each year. Effective pain and symptom management are the core elements of palliative care which aims at reducing suffering and improving quality of life (QOL) throughout the course of illness starting from diagnosis, in sync with curative treatments and at end of life. There is a prevailing shortage of manpower apt to deal with pain and providing cost-effective palliative care and with the rise of cancer, other chronic diseases and explosion of new life-prolonging therapeutic modalities, this 'Patient-pain and palliative physician' discrepancy is only going to increase, more so in developing countries. The need of the hour is to train all healthcare physicians and nurses especially those working in the field of chronic pain in principles of effective pain and symptom palliation, to integrate cancer pain and symptom management into existing pain management fellowships and to introduce a holistic pain and palliative care model at all levels of healthcare system. Simultaneously, of equal importance is to conduct research, evidence building and formulate policies and guidelines for meticulous symptom management among the diverse category of patients and diseases so as to have a personalized and individualistic approach to patient management. In this comprehensive review, we have pondered upon the need, advantages, barriers and recommendations to achieve ideal 'Integrated pain and palliative medicine' services, their equitable implementation and delivery to 'whomsoever in need of them'. PMID:27334349

  7. Engaging Terminally Ill Patients in End of Life Talk: How Experienced Palliative Medicine Doctors Navigate the Dilemma of Promoting Discussions about Dying

    PubMed Central

    Parry, Ruth; Land, Victoria; Faull, Christina; Feathers, Luke; Seymour, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Objective To examine how palliative medicine doctors engage patients in end-of-life (hereon, EoL) talk. To examine whether the practice of “eliciting and responding to cues”, which has been widely advocated in the EoL care literature, promotes EoL talk. Design Conversation analysis of video- and audio-recorded consultations. Participants Unselected terminally ill patients and their companions in consultation with experienced palliative medicine doctors. Setting Outpatient clinic, day therapy clinic, and inpatient unit of a single English hospice. Results Doctors most commonly promoted EoL talk through open elaboration solicitations; these created opportunities for patients to introduce–then later further articulate–EoL considerations in such a way that doctors did not overtly ask about EoL matters. Importantly, the wording of elaboration solicitations avoided assuming that patients had EoL concerns. If a patient responded to open elaboration solicitations without introducing EoL considerations, doctors sometimes pursued EoL talk by switching to a less participatory and more presumptive type of solicitation, which suggested the patient might have EoL concerns. These more overt solicitations were used only later in consultations, which indicates that doctors give precedence to patients volunteering EoL considerations, and offer them opportunities to take the lead in initiating EoL talk. There is evidence that doctors treat elaboration of patients’ talk as a resource for engaging them in EoL conversations. However, there are limitations associated with labelling that talk as “cues” as is common in EoL communication contexts. We examine these limitations and propose “possible EoL considerations” as a descriptively more accurate term. Conclusions Through communicating–via open elaboration solicitations–in ways that create opportunities for patients to volunteer EoL considerations, doctors navigate a core dilemma in promoting EoL talk: giving

  8. Validation of EORTC and CALGB prognostic models in surgical patients submitted to diagnostic, palliative or curative surgery for malignant pleural mesothelioma

    PubMed Central

    Guerrera, Francesco; Roffinella, Matteo; Olivetti, Stefania; Costardi, Lorena; Oliaro, Alberto; Filosso, Pier Luigi; Lausi, Paolo Olivo; Ruffini, Enrico

    2016-01-01

    Background To assess the trend of our surgical patients affected by malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) and submitted to diagnostic/palliative or curative surgical procedures and to validate the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) prognostic score in our patient population. Methods This is a cohort study of patients submitted to surgery for MPM from January 2007 to December 2013. Primary outcome was overall survival (OS). Univariate and multivariate-adjusted comparisons by EORTC prognostic score for OS were accomplished using Cox method. Adjusted models included the following clinical variables: kind of procedure, smoking habit, asbestos exposure, Charlson’s Comorbidity Index (CCI), clinical tumor stage, adjuvant chemotherapy, dyspnoea, chest pain and haematological variables according to the score features. Nomenclature of the surgical procedures matches the International Association for the Study Lung Cancer (IASLC)/International Mesothelioma Interest Group (iMIG). Results One-hundred sixty-six consecutive cases were collected: the median age at surgery was 73 years and 123 patients (75%) had a history of asbestos exposure. Ninty patients (54%) were submitted to a palliative/diagnostic thoracoscopy, 30 to pleurectomy/decortication (P/D), and 6 to extra-pleural pneumonectomy (EPP). Clinical TNM stages were as follows: 99 (60%) stage I–II, 34 (20%) stage III and 33 (20%) stage IV. The median follow-up (FU) was 19 months [interquartile range (IQR), 9–31 months] and the FU-completeness was 98%. By the end of the study 130 patients died (78%). One- and 3-year OS was 60% and 36%, respectively. Patients submitted to EPP and P/D showed a better survival (P=0.013). Multivariable model showed an independent prognostic value of EORTC score (HR =2.86, P<0.001). Conclusions In selected patients, aggressive surgical approaches, although not radical, may still be beneficial. The EORTC prognostic index proved to be an independent prognostic

  9. [Providing regular relief; considerations for palliative care in the Netherlands].

    PubMed

    Crul, B J; van Weel, C

    2001-10-20

    Over the last few decades the attention devoted to the palliative aspects of medicine, particularly those in hospital care, has declined due to the emphasis on medical technology. In Anglo-Saxon countries a review of this development resulted in structured palliative care that benefited terminally ill patients with a progressive fatal disease, especially cancer patients. Due to increasing national and international criticism of both the practice of euthanasia (assumed to be too liberal) and the lack of attention devoted to structured palliative care in the Netherlands, the Dutch government decided to improve the structure of palliative care. The government's viewpoint is based on the assumption that good palliative care that includes adequate pain control benefits patient care and might eventually lead to fewer requests for euthanasia. The improvements to palliative care should be realised by means of improvements in the structure, training and knowledge. Six academic medical clusters have been designated as Centres for the Development of Palliative Care (Dutch acronym: COPZ) for a 5-year period. Each COPZ must develop the various aspects needed to improve palliative care within the region it serves and ensure that its activities are carefully coordinated with those in the other centres. Research will focus on measuring the efficacy of palliative care as well as ethical and epidemiological aspects. A government committee will assess the appropriateness of the activities undertaken by each of the centres. PMID:11695096

  10. The meaning of the music: the role of music in palliative care music therapy as perceived by bereaved caregivers of advanced cancer patients.

    PubMed

    Magill, Lucanne

    2009-01-01

    In an earlier qualitative research study exploring the meaning of preloss music therapy to bereaved caregivers who participated in sessions through a home-based hospice program, various narrative accounts revealed the significance of music in music therapy sessions. In this study, the role of music in palliative care music therapy is examined and representatively summarized, followed by a review of strategies provided by this author to home hospice patients and their caregivers. The reported perceptions of the meaning of music to 7 bereaved caregivers are presented, including a review of themes and associated narrations that illustrated its significance. The caregivers described these aspects of music in sessions to have memorable and lasting effects as follows: "music is a conduit,'' "music gets inside us,'' "live music makes a difference,'' and "music is love.'' Findings support the benefits of preloss music therapy for bereaved caregivers. PMID:19047488

  11. The Use of Descriptive Words and Metaphor in Patient and Carer Experience of Palliative Day Care: Secondary Analysis of a Qualitative Study

    PubMed Central

    Richardson, J; Grose, J

    2009-01-01

    Background: An independent evaluation of changes to the delivery of Palliative Day Services was carried out during 2006-2007 using interviews with service users. The analysis found that the words and metaphors employed by users of services emphasized their emotional response to the changes, and helped to explain their depth of feeling about their experiences, warranting further investigation. Aim: To conduct a secondary analysis on interview data collected for the Day Services Evaluation Study in order to understand how patients and their carers use descriptive words and metaphor when talking about their experiences of palliative day services. Methods: Interview transcripts from 40 patients and 8 carers were subjected to secondary thematic analysis. These were read individually and coded where metaphor or descriptive words had been used to emphasize the effect of the illness and the experiences of the Day Services. Findings: Examples of the metaphorical expressions and words used described the service as a ‘secure rock in a changing world’; transition was felt as ‘sadness’, a ‘betrayal’, with feelings that the changes were ‘bitter and twisted;’ and left ‘a black hole’. Post transition the mood had changed to acceptance ‘When life throws lemons at you, you make lemonade’. Conclusions: The metaphors and descriptive words used act as what we describe as ‘emotional intensifiers’ which provide a measure of the impact of the effect of illness, the effect of the day services on users and carers and the intensity of feeling during the time of transition. PMID:19587796

  12. Smartphone applications in palliative homecare.

    PubMed

    Dhiliwal, Sunil R; Salins, Naveen

    2015-01-01

    Smartphone applications in healthcare delivery are a novel concept and is rapidly gaining ground in all fields of medicine. The modes of e-communications such as e-mail, short message service (SMS), multimedia messaging service (MMS) and WhatsApp in palliative care provides a means for quick tele-consultation, information sharing, cuts the waiting time and facilitates initiation of the treatment at the earliest. It also forms a means of communication with local general practitioner and local health care provider such that continuity of the care is maintained. It also minimizes needless transport of the patient to hospital, prevents needless hospitalization and investigations and minimizes cost and logistics involved in the care process. The two case studies provided highlights the use of smartphone application like WhatsApp in palliative care practice and demonstrates its utility. PMID:25709195

  13. Smartphone Applications in Palliative Homecare

    PubMed Central

    Dhiliwal, Sunil R; Salins, Naveen

    2015-01-01

    Smartphone applications in healthcare delivery are a novel concept and is rapidly gaining ground in all fields of medicine. The modes of e-communications such as e-mail, short message service (SMS), multimedia messaging service (MMS) and WhatsApp in palliative care provides a means for quick tele-consultation, information sharing, cuts the waiting time and facilitates initiation of the treatment at the earliest. It also forms a means of communication with local general practitioner and local health care provider such that continuity of the care is maintained. It also minimizes needless transport of the patient to hospital, prevents needless hospitalization and investigations and minimizes cost and logistics involved in the care process. The two case studies provided highlights the use of smartphone application like WhatsApp in palliative care practice and demonstrates its utility. PMID:25709195

  14. Palliative Care in Musculoskeletal Oncology.

    PubMed

    Gulia, Ashish; Byregowda, Suman; Panda, Pankaj Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Patients in advanced stages of illness trajectories with local and widespread musculoskeletal incurable malignancies, either treatment naive or having recurrence are referred to the palliative care clinic to relieve various disease-related symptoms and to improve the quality of life. Palliative care is a specialized medicine that offers treatment to the disease-specific symptoms, places emphasis on the psychosocial and spiritual aspects of life and help the patients and their family to cope with advance stage cancer in a stronger and reasonable way. The overall outcome of musculoskeletal malignancies has improved with the advent of multidisciplinary management. Even then these tumors do relapse and leads to organ failures and disease-specific deaths in children and young adults in productive age group thus requiring an integrated approach to improve the supportive/palliative care needs in end-stage disease. In this article, we would like to discuss the spectrum of presentation of advanced musculoskeletal malignancies, skeletal metastasis, and their management. PMID:27559251

  15. Palliative Care in Musculoskeletal Oncology

    PubMed Central

    Gulia, Ashish; Byregowda, Suman; Panda, Pankaj Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Patients in advanced stages of illness trajectories with local and widespread musculoskeletal incurable malignancies, either treatment naive or having recurrence are referred to the palliative care clinic to relieve various disease-related symptoms and to improve the quality of life. Palliative care is a specialized medicine that offers treatment to the disease-specific symptoms, places emphasis on the psychosocial and spiritual aspects of life and help the patients and their family to cope with advance stage cancer in a stronger and reasonable way. The overall outcome of musculoskeletal malignancies has improved with the advent of multidisciplinary management. Even then these tumors do relapse and leads to organ failures and disease-specific deaths in children and young adults in productive age group thus requiring an integrated approach to improve the supportive/palliative care needs in end-stage disease. In this article, we would like to discuss the spectrum of presentation of advanced musculoskeletal malignancies, skeletal metastasis, and their management. PMID:27559251

  16. The Changing Role of Palliative Care in the ICU

    PubMed Central

    Aslakson, Rebecca A.; Curtis, J. Randall; Nelson, Judith E.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Palliative care is an interprofessional specialty as well as an approach to care by all clinicians caring for patients with serious and complex illness. Unlike hospice, palliative care is based not on prognosis but on need and is an essential component of comprehensive care for critically ill patients from the time of ICU admission. In this clinically focused article, we review evidence of opportunities to improve palliative care for critically ill adults, summarize strategies for ICU palliative care improvement, and identify resources to support implementation. Data Sources We searched the MEDLINE database from inception through January 2014. We also searched the Reference Library of The Improving Palliative Care in the ICU Project website sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Center to Advance Palliative Care, which is updated monthly. We hand-searched reference lists and author files. Study Selection Selected studies included all English-language articles concerning adult patients using the search terms "intensive care" or "critical care" with "palliative care," "supportive care," "end-of-life care," or "ethics." Data Extraction After examination of peer-reviewed original scientific articles, consensus statements, guidelines, and reviews resulting from our literature search, we made final selections based on author consensus. Data Synthesis Existing evidence is organized to address: 1) opportunities to alleviate physical and emotional symptoms, improve communication, and provide support for patients and families; 2) models and specific interventions for improving ICU palliative care; 3) available resources for ICU palliative care improvement; and 4) ongoing challenges and targets for future research. Key domains of ICU palliative care have been defined and operationalized as measures of quality. There is increasing recognition that effective integration of palliative care during acute and chronic critical illness may help patients and

  17. Palliative care reimagined: a needed shift.

    PubMed

    Abel, Julian; Kellehear, Allan

    2016-03-01

    Palliative care, since its inception over 60 years ago, has set the standard of how to care for people who are dying. Key features among these standards have been the professional development of clinical specialisms such as palliative medicine and palliative nursing; the essential addition of the multidisciplinary team to these two new specialisms that included social, spiritual and allied health workers-an outgrowth of the recognition that routine work with the dying, their carers, and the bereaved required more than solely clinical skills; and the unique partnership with communities that yielded the volunteer movement within palliative care. Professional, evidence-based symptom management and the importance of supportive care in its widest possible sense were and remain the cornerstones of the modern palliative care approach. However, the majority of people with terminal illnesses do not have access to palliative care teams, whose main focus of care remains patients with cancer. In the context outlined above this paper therefore poses two key questions: how can we provide an equitable level of care for all people irrespective of diagnosis and how can we increase the range and quality of non-medical/nursing supportive care in a context of diminishing resources? We argue that an important opportunity and solution can be found by adopting the principles of a public health approach to end-of-life care. PMID:26832803

  18. Endoscopic palliation of malignant biliary strictures

    PubMed Central

    Salgado, Sanjay M; Gaidhane, Monica; Kahaleh, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Malignant biliary strictures often present late after the window for curative resection has elapsed. In such patients, the goal of therapy is typically focused on palliation. While historically, palliative measures were performed surgically, the advent of endoscopic intervention offers minimally invasive options to provide relief of symptoms, improve quality of life, and in some cases, increase survival of these patients. Some of these therapies, such as endoscopic biliary decompression, have become mainstays of treatment for decades, whereas newer modalities, including radiofrequency ablation, and photodynamic therapy offer additional options for patients with incurable biliary malignancies. PMID:26989459

  19. Palliative radiotherapy: current status and future directions.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Sonam; Hertan, Lauren; Jones, Joshua

    2014-12-01

    For nearly 100 years, palliative radiotherapy has been a time-efficient, effective treatment for patients with metastatic or advanced cancer in any area where local tumors are causing symptoms. Short courses including a single fraction of radiotherapy may be effective for symptom relief with minimal side effects and maximization of convenience for patient and family. With recent advances in imaging, surgery, and other local therapies as well as systemic cancer therapies, palliative radiotherapy has been used frequently in patients who may not yet have symptoms of advanced or metastatic cancer. In this setting, more prolonged radiotherapy courses and advanced radiotherapy techniques including intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) or stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT) may be useful in obtaining local control and durable palliative responses. This review will explore the use of radiotherapy across the spectrum of patients with advanced and metastatic cancer and delineate an updated, rational approach for the use of palliative radiotherapy that incorporates symptoms, prognosis, and other factors into the delivery of palliative radiotherapy. PMID:25499634

  20. [Palliative care in neurology].

    PubMed

    Provinciali, Leandro; Tarquini, Daniela; De Falco, Fabrizio A; Carlini, Giulia; Zappia, Mario; Toni, Danilo

    2015-07-01

    Palliative care in neurology is characterized by the need of taking into account some distinguishing features which supplement and often differ from the general palliative approach to cancer or to severe organ failures. Such position is emphasized by a new concept of palliative assistance which is not limited to the "end of life" stage, as it was the traditional one, but is applied along the entire course of progressive, life-limiting, and disabling conditions. There are various reasons accounting for a differentiation of palliative care in neurology and for the development of specific expertise; the long duration of the advanced stages of many neurological diseases and the distinguishing features of some clinical problems (cognitive disorders, psychic disorders, etc.), in addition to the deterioration of some general aspects (nutrition, etc.), make the general criteria adopted for cancer, severe respiratory, hepatic or renal failures and heart failure inadequate. The neurological diseases which could benefit from the development of a specific palliative approach are dementia, cerebrovascular diseases, movement disorders, neuromuscular diseases, severe traumatic brain injury, brain cancers and multiple sclerosis, as well as less frequent conditions. The growing literature on palliative care in neurology provides evidence of the neurological community's increasing interest in taking care of the advanced and terminal stages of nervous system diseases, thus encouraging research, training and updating in such direction. This document aims to underline the specific neurological requirements concerning the palliative assistance. PMID:26228722

  1. How Can We Improve Outcomes for Patients and Families Under Palliative Care? Implementing Clinical Audit for Quality Improvement in Resource Limited Settings

    PubMed Central

    Selman, Lucy; Harding, Richard

    2010-01-01

    Palliative care in India has made enormous advances in providing better care for patients and families living with progressive disease, and many clinical services are well placed to begin quality improvement initiatives, including clinical audit. Clinical audit is recognized globally to be essential in all healthcare, as a way of monitoring and improving quality of care. However, it is not common in developing country settings, including India. Clinical audit is a cyclical activity involving: identification of areas of care in need of improvement, through data collection and analysis utilizing an appropriate questionnaire; setting measurable quality of care targets in specific areas; designing and implementing service improvement strategies; and then re-evaluating quality of care to assess progress towards meeting the targets. Outcome measurement is an important component of clinical audit that has additional advantages; for example, establishing an evidence base for the effectiveness of services. In resource limited contexts, outcome measurement in clinical audit is particularly important as it enables service development to be evidence-based and ensures resources are allocated effectively. Key success factors in conducting clinical audit are identified (shared ownership, training, managerial support, inclusion of all members of staff and a positive approach). The choice of outcome measurement tool is discussed, including the need for a culturally appropriate and validated measure which is brief and simple enough to incorporate into clinical practice and reflects the holistic nature of palliative care. Support for clinical audit is needed at a national level, and development and validation of an outcome measurement tool in the Indian context is a crucial next step. PMID:20859465

  2. Pediatric palliative care.

    PubMed

    Moody, Karen; Siegel, Linda; Scharbach, Kathryn; Cunningham, Leslie; Cantor, Rabbi Mollie

    2011-06-01

    Progress in pediatric palliative care has gained momentum, but there remain significant barriers to the appropriate provision of palliative care to ill and dying children, including the lack of properly trained health care professionals, resources to finance such care, and scientific research, as well as a continued cultural denial of death in children. This article reviews the epidemiology of pediatric palliative care, special communication concerns, decision making, ethical and legal considerations, symptom assessment and management, psychosocial issues, provision of care across settings, end-of-life care, and bereavement. Educational and supportive resources for health care practitioners and families, respectively, are included. PMID:21628042

  3. Treating Palliative Care Patients with Pain with the Body Tambura: A Prospective Case Study at St. Joseph's Hospice for Dying destitute in Dindigul South India

    PubMed Central

    Dietrich, Cordula; Teut, M; Samwel, Kakuko Lopoyetum; Narayanasamy, S; Rathapillil, T; Thathews, G

    2015-01-01

    Background: The Body Tambura is a recently invented stringed instrument that is used for receptive music therapy designed to be placed and attached on the human body. The aim of this study was to record perceived effects of a treatment with the Body Tambura on palliative care patients with special reference to pain. Materials and Methods: A prospective case study was carried out with patients of St. Joseph's Hospice for Dying Destitute in Dindigul/South India. Patients were treated with a treatment after baseline assessment and also on the next day. Outcomes were measured quantitatively by using a numeric rating scale (0–10, 10 maximum intensity of pain felt) at baseline, directly after treatment, and the day after the treatment to determine the intensity of the pain. Results: Ten patients (five women and five men) participated in the study. The majority described the therapy as a pleasant experience. The pain intensity at baseline was reduced from 8.3 ± standard deviation (SD) 1.16 to 4.6 ± 1.52 at day 1 and from 4.6 ± 2.07 to 2.4 ± 1.58 at day 2. Conclusion: A clinically relevant pain reduction was described as short time outcome; the therapy was received and perceived well. Forthcoming research should include a control group, randomization, a larger number of participants, and a longer period of treatment. PMID:26009680

  4. Benefits of Early Versus Delayed Palliative Care to Informal Family Caregivers of Patients With Advanced Cancer: Outcomes From the ENABLE III Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Dionne-Odom, J. Nicholas; Azuero, Andres; Lyons, Kathleen D.; Hull, Jay G.; Tosteson, Tor; Li, Zhigang; Li, Zhongze; Frost, Jennifer; Dragnev, Konstantin H.; Akyar, Imatullah; Hegel, Mark T.; Bakitas, Marie A.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To determine the effect of early versus delayed initiation of a palliative care intervention for family caregivers (CGs) of patients with advanced cancer. Patients and Methods Between October 2010 and March 2013, CGs of patients with advanced cancer were randomly assigned to receive three structured weekly telephone coaching sessions, monthly follow-up, and a bereavement call either early after enrollment or 3 months later. CGs of patients with advanced cancer were recruited from a National Cancer Institute cancer center, a Veterans Administration Medical Center, and two community outreach clinics. Outcomes were quality of life (QOL), depression, and burden (objective, stress, and demand). Results A total of 122 CGs (early, n = 61; delayed, n = 61) of 207 patients participated; average age was 60 years, and most were female (78.7%) and white (92.6%). Between-group differences in depression scores from enrollment to 3 months (before delayed group started intervention) favored the early group (mean difference, −3.4; SE, 1.5; d = −.32; P = .02). There were no differences in QOL (mean difference, −2; SE, 2.3; d = −.13; P = .39) or burden (objective: mean difference, 0.3; SE, .7; d = .09; P = .64; stress: mean difference, −.5; SE, .5; d = −.2; P = .29; demand: mean difference, 0; SE, .7; d = −.01; P = .97). In decedents' CGs, a terminal decline analysis indicated between-group differences favoring the early group for depression (mean difference, −3.8; SE, 1.5; d = −.39; P = .02) and stress burden (mean difference, −1.1; SE, .4; d = −.44; P = .01) but not for QOL (mean difference, −4.9; SE, 2.6; d = −.3; P = .07), objective burden (mean difference, −.6; SE, .6; d = −.18; P = .27), or demand burden (mean difference, −.7; SE, .6; d = −.23; P = .22). Conclusion Early-group CGs had lower depression scores at 3 months and lower depression and stress burden in the terminal decline analysis. Palliative care for CGs should be initiated

  5. Methodologic issues in palliative care psychosocial research.

    PubMed

    Cassileth, B R; Lusk, E J

    1989-12-01

    The conduct of psychosocial research with palliative care patients or staff presents a major investigative challenge. The fragility of patients and their physical or cognitive limitations severely curtail the types of studies that are possible and the research methods that can be applied. A major limitation is that randomization, a critical experimental design feature, is rarely possible or ethical as a means of evaluating palliative care. However, even given the practical limitations of constructing a randomized experimental design, methodologically acceptable studies are possible, and methodologically inappropriate approaches can be avoided. Case reports (anecdotal studies) produce data that cannot be generalized to other patients. Single-test, no control group studies should be avoided for similar reasons. Acceptable research techniques that are feasible in the palliative care setting are renewed: careful research questions and associated hypotheses; determining appropriate sample sizes; developing comparison groups; selecting and evaluating an appropriate interview guide or questionnaire; avoiding interviewing bias, and so on. Moreover, it is necessary for the professional standing of palliative care that the exchange of information between palliative care staff and other health professionals be based upon scientifically sound studies. PMID:2614590

  6. Pediatric End-of-Life Issues and Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Michelson, Kelly Nicole; Steinhorn, David M.

    2007-01-01

    Optimizing the quality of medical care at the end of life has achieved national status as an important health care goal. Palliative care, a comprehensive approach to treating the physical, psychosocial and spiritual needs of patients and their families facing life-limiting illnesses, requires the coordinated efforts of a multidisciplinary group of caregivers. Understanding the basic principles of palliative care can aid emergency department staff in identifying patients who could benefit from palliative care services and in managing the challenging situations that arise when such patients present to the hospital for care. In this article we present the overall philosophy of pediatric palliative care, describe key elements of quality palliative care, and identify additional referral sources readers can access for more information. PMID:18438449

  7. Incorporating the Arts and Humanities in Palliative Medicine Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marchand, Lucille R.

    2006-01-01

    The arts and humanities allow the teaching of palliative medicine to come alive by exploring what is often regarded as the most frightening outcome of the illness experience--death and dying. Palliative medicine focuses on the relief of suffering, but how can suffering be understood if the story of the patient is not told through prose, poetry,…

  8. Endoscopic palliation of tracheobronchial malignancies.

    PubMed Central

    Hetzel, M R; Smith, S G

    1991-01-01

    The prognosis for tracheobronchial tumours remains poor. Most patients can be offered only palliation. When the main symptom is breathlessness or refractory haemoptysis from a large airway tumour endoscopic treatment may be very effective. Over the last decade most attention has focused on the neodymium YAG laser. This often produces dramatic effects but has some important limitations. In the last few years better techniques for stenting and intrabronchial radiotherapy (brachytherapy) have also been developed. This article discusses the range of techniques now available and aims to help clinicians decide which patients may benefit from referral to centres providing these techniques. Images PMID:1712516

  9. [The role of laughter in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Bégnon, Julie; Vigneron, Sylvie

    2015-03-01

    A team has studied the impact of laughter in palliative care. For the majority of caregivers, laughter is perceived as a complementary tool for supporting patients, but many are reluctant to use it. Patients, for their part, are receptive to it. Used in the correct doses, laughter can enrich care. PMID:26145138

  10. Pediatric palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Benini, Franca; Spizzichino, Marco; Trapanotto, Manuela; Ferrante, Anna

    2008-01-01

    The WHO defines pediatric palliative care as the active total care of the child's body, mind and spirit, which also involves giving support to the family. Its purpose is to improve the quality of life of young patients and their families, and in the vast majority of cases the home is the best place to provide such care, but for cultural, affective, educational and organizational reasons, pediatric patients rarely benefit from such an approach. In daily practice, it is clear that pediatric patients experience all the clinical, psychological, ethical and spiritual problems that severe, irreversible disease and death entail. The international literature indicates a prevalence of incurable disease annually affecting 10/10,000 young people from 0 to 19 years old, with an annual mortality rate of 1/10,000 young people from birth to 17 years old. The needs of this category of patients, recorded in investigations conducted in various parts of the world, reveal much the same picture despite geographical, cultural, organizational and social differences, particularly as concerns their wish to be treated at home and the demand for better communications between the professionals involved in their care and a greater availability of support services. Different patient care models have been tested in Italy and abroad, two of institutional type (with children staying in hospitals for treating acute disease or in pediatric hospices) and two based at home (the so-called home-based hospitalization and integrated home-based care programs). Professional expertise, training, research and organization provide the essential foundations for coping with a situation that is all too often underestimated and neglected. PMID:19490656

  11. Kenya Hospices and Palliative Care Association: integrating palliative care in public hospitals in Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Ali, Zipporah

    2016-01-01

    Background In Kenya, cancers as a disease group rank third as a cause of death after infectious and cardiovascular diseases. It is estimated that the annual incidence of cancer is about 37,000 new cases with an annual mortality of 28,000 cases (Kenya National Cancer Control Strategy 2010). The incidence of non-communicable diseases accounts for more than 50% of total hospital admissions and over 55% of hospital deaths (Kenya National Strategy for the Prevention and Control of Non Communicable Diseases 2015–2020). The prevalence of HIV is 6.8 (KIAS 2014). Most of these patients will benefit from palliative care services, hence the need to integrate palliative care services in the public healthcare system. Method The process of integrating palliative care in public hospitals involved advocacy both at the national level and at the institutional level, training of healthcare professionals, and setting up services within the hospitals that we worked with. Technical support was provided to each individual institution as needed. Results Eleven provincial hospitals across the country have now integrated palliative care services (Palliative Care Units) and are now centres of excellence. Over 220 healthcare providers have been trained, and approximately, over 30,000 patients have benefited from these services. Oral morphine is now available in the hospital palliative care units. Conclusion As a success of the pilot project, Kenya Hospices and Palliative Care Association (KEHPCA) is now working with the Ministry of Health Kenya to integrate palliative care services in 30 other county hospitals across the country, thus ensuring more availability and access to more patients. Other developing countries can learn from Kenya’s successful experience.

  12. [Palliative Radiotherapy for Bone Metastases].

    PubMed

    Nagakura, Hisayasu

    2015-11-01

    Bone metastasis is associated with many symptoms such as bone pain, pathological fracture, and spinal cord compression. Especially, pain secondary to bone metastases is a serious problem in many patients with metastatic cancer. Radiotherapy can provide remarkable pain relief, reduce the requirement for analgesic drugs, and prevent pathological fracture or spinal cord compression with few complications in most patients. Many randomized controlled trials have shown equivalent extent of pain relief between single-fraction and multiple-fraction regimens. Reirradiation of painful bone metastases is effective for palliation of pain in non-responders or patients with recurrent pain after an initial satisfactory response to a previous radiation therapy. Systemic administration of radioisotopes is an important palliative care option for painful multifocal bone metastases detected on nuclear imaging; however, the application of this option depends on the histologic features of the tumor and distribution of the metastases. Metastatic spinal cord compression is the most frequent oncologic emergency and necessitates timely and appropriate treatment. External beam radiotherapy is commonly used for the treatment of metastatic spinal cord compression. Surgical decompression and stabilization should be considered for metastatic spinal cord compression or pathological fracture in select patients. Postoperative radiotherapy should be administered to patients who have undergone surgical intervention for bone metastases. For patients at a high risk for oncologic emergency, optimal prophylactic management is highly recommended. PMID:26602393

  13. Palliative care in India: Situation assessment and future scope.

    PubMed

    Kar, S S; Subitha, L; Iswarya, S

    2015-01-01

    Palliative care is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problems associated with life-threatening illness, through prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification, assessment and treatment of pain, and other problems - physical, psychosocial, and spiritual. It is estimated that in India the total number of people who need palliative care is likely to be 5.4 million people a year. Though palliative care services have been in existence for many years, India ranks at the bottom of the Quality of Death index in overall score. However there has been steady progress in the past few years through community-owned palliative care services. One of the key objectives of the National Programme for prevention and control of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and stroke is to establish and develop capacity for palliative and rehabilitative care. Community models for the provision of home-based palliative care is possible by involving community caregivers and volunteers supervised by nurses trained in palliative care. Training of medical officers and health care professionals, and sensitization of the public through awareness campaigns are vital to improve the scope and coverage of palliative care. Process of translating palliative care plan into action requires strong leadership, competent management, political support and integration across all levels of care. PMID:26837989

  14. Palliative Home Care: A Designer's Perspective.

    PubMed

    Bhatnagar, Tigmanshu

    2015-01-01

    The purpose for this observational research was to understand how Can Support provides palliative care at home and analyze its strengths and weaknesses in various socioeconomic scenarios for future development. In the period of 2 weeks, patients and their caregivers were silently observed in their natural surroundings during home care visits in order to listen their problems, identify the pattern of questions for the home care team, their natural way of storytelling, organizational techniques for medicines and medical reports, care givers lives, patient journey, etc. Such observations have enabled the understanding of the phenomena of home palliative care and have led to the identification of certain influential variables of the practice. PMID:26009683

  15. Future of Palliative Medicine

    PubMed Central

    Bhatnagar, Sushma; Gupta, Mayank

    2015-01-01

    A ‘need-supply’ and ‘requirement-distribution mismatch’ along with a continuingneed explosion are the biggest hurdles faced by palliative medicine today. It is the need of the hour to provide an unbiased, equitable and evidence-based palliative care to those in need irrespective of the diagnosis, prognosis, social and economic status or geographical location. Palliative care as a fundamental human right, ensuring provision throughout the illness spectrum, global as well as region-specific capacity building, uniform availability of essential drugs at an affordable price, a multidisciplinary team approachand caregiver-support are some of the achievable goals for the future. This supplanted with a strong political commitment, professional dedication and ‘public-private partnerships’ are necessaryto tackle the existing hurdles and the exponentially increasing future need. For effectively going ahead it is of utmost importance to integrate palliative medicine into medical education, healthcare system and societal framework. PMID:25709197

  16. Palliative care - managing pain

    MedlinePlus

    End of life - pain management; Hospice - pain management ... Bookbinder M, McHugh ME. Symptom management in palliative care and end of life care. Nurs Clin North Am . 2010;45:271-327. Mercadente S. Challenging pain problems. In: ...

  17. Optimisation of the continuum of supportive and palliative care for patients with breast cancer in low-income and middle-income countries: executive summary of the Breast Health Global Initiative, 2014.

    PubMed

    Distelhorst, Sandra R; Cleary, James F; Ganz, Patricia A; Bese, Nuran; Camacho-Rodriguez, Rolando; Cardoso, Fatima; Ddungu, Henry; Gralow, Julie R; Yip, Cheng-Har; Anderson, Benjamin O

    2015-03-01

    Supportive care and palliative care are now recognised as critical components of global cancer control programmes. Many aspects of supportive and palliative care services are already available in some low-income and middle-income countries. Full integration of supportive and palliative care into breast cancer programmes requires a systematic, resource-stratified approach. The Breast Health Global Initiative convened three expert panels to develop resource allocation recommendations for supportive and palliative care programmes in low-income and middle-income countries. Each panel focused on a specific phase of breast cancer care: during treatment, after treatment with curative intent (survivorship), and after diagnosis with metastatic disease. The panel consensus statements were published in October, 2013. This Executive Summary combines the three panels' recommendations into a single comprehensive document covering breast cancer care from diagnosis through curative treatment into survivorship, and metastatic disease and end-of-life care. The recommendations cover physical symptom management, pain management, monitoring and documentation, psychosocial and spiritual aspects of care, health professional education, and patient, family, and caregiver education. PMID:25752564

  18. 'Good palliative care' orders.

    PubMed

    Maddocks, I

    1993-01-01

    A Select Committee of the Parliament of South Australia, considering revisions to legislation governing care of the dying, did not support allowing doctors to assist suicide. They recommended that no liability attach to the provision of reasonable palliative care which happens to shorten life. The Committee affirmed the suggestion that positive open orders to provide 'good palliative care' should replace 'do not resuscitate' orders. PMID:7506978

  19. Chronic pain in the outpatient palliative care clinic.

    PubMed

    Merlin, Jessica S; Childers, Julie; Arnold, Robert M

    2013-03-01

    Chronic pain is common. Many patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses have chronic pain that is related to their disease, and some have comorbid chronic nonmalignant chronic pain. As palliative care continues to move upstream and outpatient palliative care programs develop, palliative care clinicians will be called upon to treat chronic pain. Chronic pain differs from acute pain in the setting of advanced disease and a short prognosis in terms of its etiology, comorbidities-especially psychiatric illness and substance abuse-and management. To successfully care for these patients, palliative care providers will need to learn new clinical competencies. This article will review chronic pain management core competencies for palliative care providers. PMID:22556285

  20. Palliative social media.

    PubMed

    Taubert, Mark; Watts, Gareth; Boland, Jason; Radbruch, Lukas

    2014-03-01

    The uses of social media have become ubiquitous in contemporary society at an astonishingly fast-paced rate. The internet and in particular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are now part of most people's vocabulary and are starting to replace many face-to-face interactions. The online world, in particular, is alive with discussions, comments and anecdotes about the topics of illness, disease, hospitals, death and dying. The topic of death and dying had in the not too distant past been seen as taboo, but willingness and need to talk openly about it appears to be on the increase. In parallel to this, many public awareness campaigns are highlighting society's need to be more prepared for dying and death. This will have a significant impact on the way terminally ill patients and their families approach the last years, months and weeks of their lives and how they might expect palliative health and social care professionals working with them through these difficult periods to interact with them. We pay particular attention to the areas of digital posterity creation and memorialisation within the wider holistic context of end-of-life care. PMID:24644766

  1. The benefits of expanded physician assistant practice in hospice and palliative medicine.

    PubMed

    Boucher, Nathan A; Nix, Harvey

    2016-09-01

    Patients with advanced or terminal illness, especially racial and ethnic minorities, would benefit from greater access to hospice and palliative care. Expanding the PA role in these areas would help fill gaps in both access and patients' understanding of what hospice and palliative care can offer. This article describes why hospice and palliative care are needed, what PAs can and do offer hospice and palliative care delivery, and what challenges should be overcome to expand PA practice in hospice and palliative care. The article also reviews the legislative outlook for PA practice in hospice care. PMID:27575903

  2. Opportunities to maximize value with integrated palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Bergman, Jonathan; Laviana, Aaron A

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care involves aggressively addressing and treating psychosocial, spiritual, religious, and family concerns, as well as considering the overall psychosocial structures supporting a patient. The concept of integrated palliative care removes the either/or decision a patient needs to make: they need not decide if they want either aggressive chemotherapy from their oncologist or symptom-guided palliative care but rather they can be comanaged by several clinicians, including a palliative care clinician, to maximize the benefit to them. One common misconception about palliative care, and supportive care in general, is that it amounts to “doing nothing” or “giving up” on aggressive treatments for patients. Rather, palliative care involves very aggressive care, targeted at patient symptoms, quality-of-life, psychosocial needs, family needs, and others. Integrating palliative care into the care plan for individuals with advanced diseases does not necessarily imply that a patient must forego other treatment options, including those aimed at a cure, prolonging of life, or palliation. Implementing interventions to understand patient preferences and to ensure those preferences are addressed, including preferences related to palliative and supportive care, is vital in improving the patient-centeredness and value of surgical care. Given our aging population and the disproportionate cost of end-of-life care, this holds great hope in bending the cost curve of health care spending, ensuring patient-centeredness, and improving quality and value of care. Level 1 evidence supports this model, and it has been achieved in several settings; the next necessary step is to disseminate such models more broadly. PMID:27226721

  3. Integrating palliative care into the trajectory of cancer care.

    PubMed

    Hui, David; Bruera, Eduardo

    2016-03-01

    Over the past five decades, palliative care has evolved from serving patients at the end of life into a highly specialized discipline focused on delivering supportive care to patients with life-limiting illnesses throughout the disease trajectory. A growing body of evidence is now available to inform the key domains in the practice of palliative care, including symptom management, psychosocial care, communication, decision-making, and end-of-life care. Findings from multiple studies indicate that integrating palliative care early in the disease trajectory can result in improvements in quality of life, symptom control, patient and caregiver satisfaction, illness understanding, quality of end-of-life care, survival, and costs of care. In this narrative Review, we discuss various strategies to integrate oncology and palliative care by optimizing clinical infrastructures, processes, education, and research. The goal of integration is to maximize patient access to palliative care and, ultimately, to improve patient outcomes. We provide a conceptual model for the integration of supportive and/or palliative care with primary and oncological care. We also discuss how health-care systems and institutions need to tailor integration based on their resources, size, and the level of primary palliative care available. PMID:26598947

  4. Integrating palliative care into the trajectory of cancer care

    PubMed Central

    Hui, David; Bruera, Eduardo

    2016-01-01

    Over the past five decades, palliative care has evolved from serving patients at the end of life into a highly specialized discipline focused on delivering supportive care to patients with life-limiting illnesses throughout the disease trajectory. A growing body of evidence is now available to inform the key domains in the practice of palliative care, including symptom management, psychosocial care, communication, decision-making, and end-of-life care. Findings from multiple studies indicate that integrating palliative care early in the disease trajectory can result in improvements in quality of life, symptom control, patient and caregiver satisfaction, quality of end-of-life care, survival, and costs of care. In this narrative Review, we discuss various strategies to integrate oncology and palliative care by optimizing clinical infrastructures, processes, education, and research. The goal of integration is to maximize patient access to palliative care and, ultimately, to improve patient outcomes. We provide a conceptual model for the integration of supportive and/or palliative care with primary and oncological care. We end by discussing how health-care systems and institutions need to tailor integration based on their resources, size, and the level of primary palliative care available. PMID:26598947

  5. Building a transdisciplinary approach to palliative care in an acute care setting.

    PubMed

    Daly, Donnelle; Matzel, Stephen Chavez

    2013-01-01

    A transdisciplinary team is an essential component of palliative and end-of-life care. This article will demonstrate how to develop a transdisciplinary approach to palliative care, incorporating nursing, social work, spiritual care, and pharmacy in an acute care setting. Objectives included: identifying transdisciplinary roles contributing to care in the acute care setting; defining the palliative care model and mission; identifying patient/family and institutional needs; and developing palliative care tools. Methods included a needs assessment and the development of assessment tools, an education program, community resources, and a patient satisfaction survey. After 1 year of implementation, the transdisciplinary palliative care team consisted of seven palliative care physicians, two social workers, two chaplains, a pharmacist, and End-of-Life Nursing Consortium (ELNEC) trained nurses. Palomar Health now has a palliative care service with a consistent process for transdisciplinary communication and intervention for adult critical care patients with advanced, chronic illness. PMID:23977778

  6. Palliative care and the QALY problem.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Jonathan

    2005-12-01

    Practitioners of palliative care often argue for more resources to be provided by the state in order to lessen its reliance on charitable funding and to enable the services currently provided to some of those with terminal illnesses to be provided to all who would benefit from it. However, this is hard to justify on grounds of cost-effectiveness, since it is in the nature of palliative care that the benefits it brings to its patients are of short duration. In particular, palliative care fares badly under a policy of QALY-maximisation, since procedures which prevent premature death (provided the life is of reasonable quality) or improve quality of life for those with longer life expectancy will produce more QALYs. This paper examines various responses to this problem and argues that in order to justify increased resources for palliative care its advocates must reject the 'atomistic' view of the value of life implicit in the QALY approach in favour of a 'holistic' or 'narrative' account. This, however, has implications which advocates of palliative care may be reluctant to embrace. PMID:16435466

  7. Palliative care in the ambulatory geriatric practice.

    PubMed

    Finucane, Thomas E; Nirmalasari, Olivia; Graham, Antonio

    2015-05-01

    Geriatrics and palliative care often overlap. This article focuses on 2 areas where the disciplines may differ in their approach. The first is planning for extreme illness and death, with explicit acknowledgment that limiting therapy might be a good idea. This situation is likely to have a different impact in the course of a routine geriatrics visit than in a palliative care context. The second is pain management, especially chronic pain. In patients with sharply limited life expectancy, the risk/benefit equation tilts easily toward narcotic use. In frail elders working to remain independent, the calculus may be quite different. PMID:25920055

  8. Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association

    MedlinePlus

    ... How to Submit an Abstract Writing Educational Objectives Palliative Care APRN Fellowships HPNF Chapter Education Grants HPNF Individual ... HPNA Chapters Content Experts Position Statements Fellow in Palliative Care Nursing HPNF and Project on Death in America ...

  9. [Palliative care day hospital and nursing coordination].

    PubMed

    Teillet, Fabienne

    2015-11-01

    The palliative care day hospital is still underdeveloped in France, unlike in Anglo-Saxon countries. Its main mission is to help improve the quality of life at home of the patient suffering from a serious and progressive disease. It offers an inter-disciplinary and global approach in which the nurse's role is quite specific. PMID:26567073

  10. Distress, Stress and Solidarity in Palliative Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    deMontigny, Johanne

    1993-01-01

    Notes that role of psychologist on palliative care unit is to be there for terminally ill, their friends, and their families, both during the dying and the bereavement and for the caregiver team. Focuses on work of decoding ordinary words which for many patients hide painful past. Stresses necessity to remain open to unexpected. (Author/NB)

  11. 'Living choice': the commitment to tissue donation in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Wells, Joanne; Sque, Magi

    2002-01-01

    Professionals working in palliative care pride themselves on respecting patients' views and wishes. Palliative care patients are often aware that they are going to die and so the issue of what is going to happen to them after death becomes more relevant. That they should be involved in decisions about tissue donation seems obvious, yet many palliative care units do not routinely discuss donation with patients and their families. A grounded theory approach was used to develop an explanation of the low commitment to tissue donation by palliative care units. Six registered nurses and two doctors from each of two separate palliative care units participated in semi-structured, audiotaped interviews. Several themes emerged from the interviews to form a theory of why there is a low commitment to tissue donation in palliative care units. We have called the theory 'living choice'. The dominant theme of category was 'patient choice' and this pervaded and influenced 'professional role', 'donation process', 'concerns' and 'knowledge'. All these categories were contained and continuously interacted in the palliative care environment. PMID:11823746

  12. [Recommendations for the palliative care of dying neonates].

    PubMed

    Cignacco, E; Stoffel, L; Raio, L; Schneider, H; Nelle, M

    2004-08-01

    Neonates and infants have the highest mortality rate in the pediatric patient population, but there is a paucity of data about their palliative care. Most neonate deaths occur during the first week of life so it is mostly the staff of NICUS's and obstetrical wards who are confronted with the palliative care of dying neonates. Clinical experience shows that many aspects of care in palliative situations are not well known to the health care providers. This is especially true for pain assessment and pain treatment during the dying process. A search of the literature on this subject resulted in only a few publications; hence, this article basically describes clinical experience in the palliative care of neonates. In this article some recommendations for decision-making and standardization of palliative care for dying neonates are presented. PMID:15326558

  13. Inadequacy of Palliative Training in the Medical School Curriculum.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Nicholas; Cheon, Paul; Lutz, Stephen; Lao, Nicholas; Pulenzas, Natalie; Chiu, Leonard; McDonald, Rachel; Rowbottom, Leigha; Chow, Edward

    2015-12-01

    This report examines the literature on palliative training in the current medical school curriculum. A literature search was conducted to identify relevant articles. Physicians and medical students both report feeling that their training in end-of-life care and in palliative issues is lacking. The literature expresses concerns about the varied and non-uniform approach to palliative care training across medical schools. The authors recommend the development of more palliative training assessment tools in order to aid in the standardization of curriculum involving end-of-life care. In addition, increased exposure to dying patients will aid students in building comfort with palliative care issues. Such a goal may be accomplished through required clerkships or other similar programs. PMID:25487030

  14. Palliative Care: A Partnership Across the Continuum of Care.

    PubMed

    Spaulding, Aaron; Harrison, Debra A; Harrison, Jeffrey P

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care services are becoming more prevalent in the United States as greater portions of the population are requiring end-of-life services. Furthermore, recent policy changes and service foci have promoted more continuity and encompassing care. This study evaluates characteristics that distinguish hospitals with a palliative care program from hospitals without such a program in order to better define the markets and environments that promote the creation and usage of these programs. This study demonstrates that palliative care programs are more likely in communities with favorable economic factors and higher Medicare populations. Large hospitals with high occupancy rates and a high case mix index use palliative care programs to better meet patient needs and improve hospital efficiency. Managerial, nursing, and policy implications are discussed relating to further usage and implementation of palliative care programs. PMID:27455361

  15. What Makes a Good Palliative Care Physician? A Qualitative Study about the Patient’s Expectations and Needs when Being Admitted to a Palliative Care Unit

    PubMed Central

    Masel, Eva K; Kitta, Anna; Huber, Patrick; Rumpold, Tamara; Unseld, Matthias; Schur, Sophie; Porpaczy, Edit; Watzke, Herbert H

    2016-01-01

    Objective The aims of the study were to examine a) patients’ knowledge of palliative care, b) patients’ expectations and needs when being admitted to a palliative care unit, and c) patient’s concept of a good palliative care physician. Methods The study was based on a qualitative methodology, comprising 32 semistructured interviews with advanced cancer patients admitted to the palliative care unit of the Medical University of Vienna. Interviews were conducted with 20 patients during the first three days after admission to the unit and after one week, recorded digitally, and transcribed verbatim. Data were analyzed using NVivo 10 software, based on thematic analysis enhanced with grounded theory techniques. Results The results revealed four themes: (1) information about palliative care, (2) supportive care needs, (3) being treated in a palliative care unit, and (4) qualities required of palliative care physicians. The data showed that patients lack information about palliative care, that help in social concerns plays a central role in palliative care, and attentiveness as well as symptom management are important to patients. Patients desire a personal patient-physician relationship. The qualities of a good palliative care physician were honesty, the ability to listen, taking time, being experienced in their field, speaking the patient’s language, being human, and being gentle. Patients experienced relief when being treated in a palliative care unit, perceived their care as an interdisciplinary activity, and felt that their burdensome symptoms were being attended to with emotional care. Negative perceptions included the overtly intense treatment. Conclusions The results of the present study offer an insight into what patients expect from palliative care teams. Being aware of patient’s needs will enable medical teams to improve professional and individualized care. PMID:27389693

  16. Are family medicine residents adequately trained to deliver palliative care?

    PubMed Central

    Mahtani, Ramona; Kurahashi, Allison M.; Buchman, Sandy; Webster, Fiona; Husain, Amna; Goldman, Russell

    2015-01-01

    Objective To explore educational factors that influence family medicine residents’ (FMRs’) intentions to offer palliative care and palliative care home visits to patients. Design Qualitative descriptive study. Setting A Canadian, urban, specialized palliative care centre. Participants First-year (n = 9) and second-year (n = 6) FMRs. Methods Semistructured interviews were conducted with FMRs following a 4-week palliative care rotation. Questions focused on participant experiences during the rotation and perceptions about their roles as family physicians in the delivery of palliative care and home visits. Participant responses were analyzed to summarize and interpret patterns related to their educational experience during their rotation. Main findings Four interrelated themes were identified that described this experience: foundational skill development owing to training in a specialized setting; additional need for education and support; unaddressed gaps in pragmatic skills; and uncertainty about family physicians’ role in palliative care. Conclusion Residents described experiences that both supported and inadvertently discouraged them from considering future engagement in palliative care. Reassuringly, residents were also able to underscore opportunities for improvement in palliative care education. PMID:27035008

  17. Integrating palliative care with usual care of diabetic foot wounds.

    PubMed

    Dunning, Trisha

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care is a philosophy and a system for deciding care and can be used alone or integrated with usual chronic disease care. Palliative care encompasses end-of-life care. Palliative care aims to enhance quality of life, optimize function and manage symptoms including early in the course of chronic diseases. The purposes of this article are to outline palliative care and discuss how it can be integrated with usual care of diabetic foot wounds. Many people with diabetes who have foot wounds also have other comorbidities and diabetes complications such as cardiovascular and renal disease and depression, which affect medicine and other treatment choices, functional status, surgical risk and quality of life. Two broad of diabetic foot disease exist: those likely to heal but who could still benefit from integrated palliative care such as managing pain and those where healing is unlikely where palliation can be the primary focus. People with diabetes can die suddenly, although the life course is usually long with periods of stable and unstable disease. Many health professionals are reluctant to discuss palliative care or suggest people to document their end-of-life care preferences. If such preferences are not documented, the person might not achieve their desired death or place of death and health professionals and families can be confronted with difficult decisions. Palliative care can be integrated with usual foot care and is associated with improved function, better quality of life and greater patient and family satisfaction. PMID:26813620

  18. Palliative Therapy for Gallbladder Cancer

    MedlinePlus

    ... based on the extent of gallbladder cancer Palliative therapy for gallbladder cancer Palliative therapy is treatment given to help control or reduce ... to advance quickly, doctors try to use palliative therapies that are less likely to affect a person’s ...

  19. Palliative Care Psychiatry: Update on an Emerging Dimension of Psychiatric Practice

    PubMed Central

    Fairman, Nathan

    2013-01-01

    Palliative care psychiatry is an emerging subspecialty field at the intersection of Palliative Medicine and Psychiatry. The discipline brings expertise in understanding the psychosocial dimensions of human experience to the care of dying patients and support of their families. The goals of this review are (1) to briefly define palliative care and summarize the evidence for its benefits, (2) to describe the roles for psychiatry within palliative care, (3) to review recent advances in the research and practice of palliative care psychiatry, and (4) to delineate some steps ahead as this sub-field continues to develop, in terms of research, education, and systems-based practice. PMID:23794027

  20. Palliative care - what the final days are like

    MedlinePlus

    ... D, Caraceni AT, Fainsinger R, et al., eds. Palliative Medicine . 1st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2008:chap 177. Rakel RE, Strauch EM. Care of the dying patient. Rakel RE, Rakel DP, ...

  1. Enhancing family physician capacity to deliver quality palliative home care

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Denise; Howell, Doris; Brazil, Kevin; Howard, Michelle; Taniguchi, Alan

    2008-01-01

    ABSTRACT PROBLEM BEING ADDRESSED Family physicians face innumerable challenges to delivering quality palliative home care to meet the complex needs of end-of-life patients and their families. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM To implement a model of shared care to enhance family physicians’ ability to deliver quality palliative home care, particularly in a community-based setting. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION Family physicians in 3 group practices (N = 21) in Ontario’s Niagara West region collaborated with an interprofessional palliative care team (including a palliative care advanced practice nurse, a palliative medicine physician, a bereavement counselor, a psychosocial-spiritual advisor, and a case manager) in a shared-care partnership to provide comprehensive palliative home care. Key features of the program included systematic and timely identification of end-of-life patients, needs assessments, symptom and psychosocial support interventions, regular communication between team members, and coordinated care guided by outcome-based assessment in the home. In addition, educational initiatives were provided to enhance family physicians’ knowledge and skills. CONCLUSION Because of the program, participants reported improved communication, effective interprofessional collaboration, and the capacity to deliver palliative home care, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to end-of-life patients in the community. PMID:19074714

  2. Palliative care in COPD: an unmet area for quality improvement

    PubMed Central

    Vermylen, Julia H; Szmuilowicz, Eytan; Kalhan, Ravi

    2015-01-01

    COPD is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Patients suffer from refractory breathlessness, unrecognized anxiety and depression, and decreased quality of life. Palliative care improves symptom management, patient reported health-related quality of life, cost savings, and mortality though the majority of patients with COPD die without access to palliative care. There are many barriers to providing palliative care to patients with COPD including the difficulty in prognosticating a patient’s course causing referrals to occur late in a patient’s disease. Additionally, physicians avoid conversations about advance care planning due to unique communication barriers present with patients with COPD. Lastly, many health systems are not set up to provide trained palliative care physicians to patients with chronic disease including COPD. This review analyzes the above challenges, the available data regarding palliative care applied to the COPD population, and proposes an alternative approach to address the unmet needs of patients with COPD with proactive primary palliative care. PMID:26345486

  3. Grief and Palliative Care: Mutuality

    PubMed Central

    Moon, Paul J

    2013-01-01

    Grief and palliative care are interrelated and perhaps mutually inclusive. Conceptually and practically, grief intimately relates to palliative care, as both domains regard the phenomena of loss, suffering, and a desire for abatement of pain burden. Moreover, the notions of palliative care and grief may be construed as being mutually inclusive in terms of one cueing the other. As such, the discussions in this article will center on the conceptualizations of the mutuality between grief and palliative care related to end-of-life circumstances. Specifically, the complementarity of grief and palliative care, as well as a controvertible view thereof, will be considered. PMID:25278758

  4. Prevention of urinary tract infections in palliative radiation for vertebral metastasis and spinal compression: A pilot study in 71 patients

    SciTech Connect

    Manas, Ana . E-mail: amanas.hdoc@salud.madrid.org; Glaria, Luis; Pena, Carmen; Sotoca, Amalia; Lanzos, Eduardo; Fernandez, Castalia; Riviere, Marc

    2006-03-01

    Purpose: To assess the impact of bladder instillations of hyaluronic acid (HA) on the prevalence of urinary tract infection (UTI) in patients receiving emergency radiotherapy for metastatic spinal cord compression. Methods and Materials: Patients were recruited consecutively at one center and assigned to usual care (UC) (n = 34, mean age 62.2 years) or UC with once-weekly HA instillation (UC + HA) (Cystistat: 40 mg in 50 mL phosphate-buffered saline) (n = 37; mean age, 63.1 years). All patients had an indwelling catheter and received radiotherapy. UTI status was assessed at baseline and during hospitalization. Results: At baseline, patient groups were comparable, except for the prevalence of UTI at baseline, which was 11.8% and 0% in the UC and UC + HA patients, respectively (p = 0.0477). During hospitalization, 76.5% (vs. 11.8% at baseline, p < 0.0001) of the UC patients had a UTI compared with 13.5% (vs. 0% at baseline, p = 0.0541) of the UC + HA patients (p < 0.0001). Both groups were hospitalized for similar periods (19.8 days [UC] vs. 18.5 days, p = 0.4769) and received equivalent radiotherapy sessions (4.6 [UC] vs. 5.8 sessions, p = 0.2368). Conclusions: Patients receiving UC + HA had a 5.7-fold decrease in UTI prevalence over the hospitalization period compared to UC patients, suggesting that bladder instillations of HA effectively prevent UTI in patients with indwelling catheters receiving radiotherapy for nerve compression.

  5. Radiofrequency hyperthermia in the palliative treatment of mucinous carcinomatosis of appendiceal origin: optimizing and monitoring heat delivery in western patients.

    PubMed

    Sugarbaker, P H; Sugarbaker, C; Stephens, A D; Chang, D

    2000-01-01

    Mucinous peritoneal carcinomatosis from a primary gastrointestinal malignancy is a lethal condition that has few treatment options with the use of surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Recent advances in hyperthermia technology and in knowledge of the natural history of this disease has suggested the possible utility of hyperthermia in the application of aggressive local-regional therapy. Radiofrequency (RF) hyperthermia to the whole abdomen, to the hemithorax, or to an isolated mucinous tumour deposit obstructing the gastrointestinal tract was used in patients with disseminated mucinous adenocarcinoma of appendiceal origin. There were 228 hyperthermia treatments in 21 patients, with a median of 10 treatments per patient. The maximum number of treatments was 26, and minimum was one. For the first six hyperthermia treatments, escalating doses of deep hyperthermia (41-45 degrees C) was monitored with multiple sensor internal temperature probes and a single sensor subcutaneous temperature probe. After reaching a maximal hyperthermia treatment, this was maintained for all subsequent treatments. Initially, the maximal temperature allowed in tumour and subcutaneous tissue was 43 degrees C. After 50 hyperthermia treatments, this was changed to 45 degrees C. If disease stabilization or response was insufficient and maximal tolerable hyperthermia had been established, the frequency of treatment was increased from every 4 weeks to every 2 weeks, and escalating doses of mitomycin C at 8 mg/m2 were added to the regimen. Mitomycin C was infused during the hyperthermia treatment. For the first 165 treatments, patients were monitored just before and 10 days after hyperthermia with a complete blood count and a full battery of laboratory tests including amylase and lipase. Response was monitored by carcinoembryonic antigen assays on a monthly basis and CT scans on a 6 monthly basis. None of the 21 patients included in this study died, required intensive care, or required

  6. A critical analysis of test-retest reliability in instrument validation studies of cancer patients under palliative care: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Patient-reported outcome validation needs to achieve validity and reliability standards. Among reliability analysis parameters, test-retest reliability is an important psychometric property. Retested patients must be in a clinically stable condition. This is particularly problematic in palliative care (PC) settings because advanced cancer patients are prone to a faster rate of clinical deterioration. The aim of this study was to evaluate the methods by which multi-symptom and health-related qualities of life (HRQoL) based on patient-reported outcomes (PROs) have been validated in oncological PC settings with regards to test-retest reliability. Methods A systematic search of PubMed (1966 to June 2013), EMBASE (1980 to June 2013), PsychInfo (1806 to June 2013), CINAHL (1980 to June 2013), and SCIELO (1998 to June 2013), and specific PRO databases was performed. Studies were included if they described a set of validation studies. Studies were included if they described a set of validation studies for an instrument developed to measure multi-symptom or multidimensional HRQoL in advanced cancer patients under PC. The COSMIN checklist was used to rate the methodological quality of the study designs. Results We identified 89 validation studies from 746 potentially relevant articles. From those 89 articles, 31 measured test-retest reliability and were included in this review. Upon critical analysis of the overall quality of the criteria used to determine the test-retest reliability, 6 (19.4%), 17 (54.8%), and 8 (25.8%) of these articles were rated as good, fair, or poor, respectively, and no article was classified as excellent. Multi-symptom instruments were retested over a shortened interval when compared to the HRQoL instruments (median values 24 hours and 168 hours, respectively; p = 0.001). Validation studies that included objective confirmation of clinical stability in their design yielded better results for the test-retest analysis with regard to both

  7. Metronomic palliative chemotherapy in maxillary sinus tumor

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Vijay M.; Noronh, Vanita; Joshi, Amit; Karpe, Ashay; Talreja, Vikas; Chandrasekharan, Arun; Dhumal, Sachin; Prabhash, Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Background: Metronomic chemotherapy consisting of methotrexate and celecoxib recently has shown promising results in multiple studies in head and neck cancers. However, these studies have not included patients with maxillary sinus primaries. Hence, the role of palliative metronomic chemotherapy in patients with maxillary sinus carcinoma that is not amenable to radical therapy is unknown. Methods: This was a retrospective analysis of carcinoma maxillary sinus patients who received palliative metronomic chemotherapy between August 2011 and August 2014. The demographic details, symptomatology, previous treatment details, indication for palliative chemotherapy, response to therapy, and overall survival (OS) details were extracted. SPSS version 16 was used for analysis. Descriptive statistics have been performed. Survival analysis was done by Kaplan–Meier method. Results: Five patients had received metronomic chemotherapy. The median age was 60 years (range 37–64 years). The proportion of patients surviving at 6 months, 12 months, and 18 months were 40%, 40%, and 20%, respectively. The estimated median OS was 126 days (95% confidence interval 0–299.9 days). The estimated median survival in patients with an event-free period after the last therapy of <6 months was 45 days, whereas it was 409 days in patients with an event-free period postlast therapy above 6 months (P = 0.063). Conclusion: Metronomic chemotherapy in carcinoma maxillary sinus holds promise. It has activity similar to that seen in head and neck cancers and needs to be evaluated further in a larger cohort of patients.

  8. Perceptions of palliative care among hematologic malignancy specialists: a mixed-methods study

    PubMed Central

    LeBlanc, Thomas W.; O'Donnell, Jonathan D.; Crowley-Matoka, Megan; Rabow, Michael W.; Smith, Cardinale B.; White, Douglas B.; Tiver, Greer A.; Arnold, Robert M.; Schenker, Yael

    2016-01-01

    Background Patients with hematologic malignancies are less likely to receive specialist palliative care services than patients with solid tumors. Reasons for this difference are poorly understood. Methods This was a multisite, mixed-methods study to understand and contrast perceptions of palliative care among hematologic and solid tumor oncologists, using surveys assessing referral practices, and in-depth semi-structured interviews exploring views of palliative care. We compared referral patterns using standard statistical methods. We analyzed qualitative interview data using constant comparative methods, to explore reasons for observed differences. Results Among 66 interviewees, 23 oncologists cared exclusively for patients with hematologic malignancies; 43 treated only patients with solid tumors. Seven of 23 hematologic oncologists (30%) reported never referring to palliative care; all solid tumor oncologists had previously referred. In qualitative analyses, most hematologic oncologists viewed palliative care as end-of-life care, while most solid tumor oncologists viewed palliative care as a subspecialty that could assist with complex cases. Solid tumor oncologists emphasized practical barriers to palliative care referral, such as appointment availability and reimbursement issues. Hematologic oncologists emphasized philosophical concerns about palliative care referrals, including different treatment goals, responsiveness to chemotherapy, and a preference to control even palliative aspects of patient care. Conclusions Most hematologic oncologists view palliative care as end-of-life care, while solid tumor oncologists more often view palliative care as a subspecialty for co-managing complex patients. Efforts to integrate palliative care into hematologic malignancy practices will require solutions that address unique barriers to palliative care referral experienced by hematologic malignancy specialists. PMID:25784580

  9. Custom Ocular Prosthesis: A Palliative Approach

    PubMed Central

    Thakkar, Prachi; Patel, JR; Sethuraman, Rajesh; Nirmal, Narendra

    2012-01-01

    The goal of palliative care is the achievement of the best quality of life for patients and their families. Eyes are generally the first features of the face to be noticed. Loss of an eye is a traumatic event which has a crippling effect on the psychology of the patient. Several ocular and orbital disorders require surgical intervention that may result in ocular defects. An ocular prosthesis is fabricated to restore the structure, function, and cosmetics of the defects created by such conditions. Although an implant eye prosthesis has a superior outcome, due to economic factors it may not be a feasible option for all patients. Therefore, a custom-made ocular prosthesis is a good alternative. This case report presents a palliative treatment for a patient with an enucleated eye by fabricating a custom ocular prosthesis which improved his psychological, physical, social, functional, emotional and spiritual needs. PMID:22837616

  10. Predictive modeling of the virtual Hemi-Fontan operation for second stage single ventricle palliation: two patient-specific cases.

    PubMed

    Kung, Ethan; Baretta, Alessia; Baker, Catriona; Arbia, Gregory; Biglino, Giovanni; Corsini, Chiara; Schievano, Silvia; Vignon-Clementel, Irene E; Dubini, Gabriele; Pennati, Giancarlo; Taylor, Andrew; Dorfman, Adam; Hlavacek, Anthony M; Marsden, Alison L; Hsia, Tain-Yen; Migliavacca, Francesco

    2013-01-18

    Single ventricle hearts are congenital cardiovascular defects in which the heart has only one functional pumping chamber. The treatment for these conditions typically requires a three-staged operative process where Stage 1 is typically achieved by a shunt between the systemic and pulmonary arteries, and Stage 2 by connecting the superior venous return to the pulmonary circulation. Surgically, the Stage 2 circulation can be achieved through a procedure called the Hemi-Fontan, which reconstructs the right atrium and pulmonary artery to allow for an enlarged confluence with the superior vena cava. Based on pre-operative data obtained from two patients prior to Stage 2 surgery, we developed two patient-specific multi-scale computational models, each including the 3D geometrical model of the surgical junction constructed from magnetic resonance imaging, and a closed-loop systemic lumped-parameter network derived from clinical measurements. "Virtual" Hemi-Fontan surgery was performed on the 3D model with guidance from clinical surgeons, and a corresponding multi-scale simulation predicts the patient's post-operative hemodynamic and physiologic conditions. For each patient, a post-operative active scenario with an increase in the heart rate (HR) and a decrease in the pulmonary and systemic vascular resistance (PVR and SVR) was also performed. Results between the baseline and this "active" state were compared to evaluate the hemodynamic and physiologic implications of changing conditions. Simulation results revealed a characteristic swirling vortex in the Hemi-Fontan in both patients, with flow hugging the wall along the SVC to Hemi-Fontan confluence. One patient model had higher levels of swirling, recirculation, and flow stagnation. However, in both models, the power loss within the surgical junction was less than 13% of the total power loss in the pulmonary circulation, and less than 2% of the total ventricular power. This implies little impact of the surgical junction

  11. Vietnam: integrating palliative care into HIV/AIDS and cancer care.

    PubMed

    Krakauer, Eric L; Ngoc, Nguyen Thi Minh; Green, Kimberly; Van Kham, Le; Khue, Luong Ngoc

    2007-05-01

    Vietnam is struggling to meet the growing need for both disease-modifying and palliative care for people with life-threatening chronic diseases such as HIV/AIDS and cancer. Recently, Vietnam initiated rapid development of a national palliative care program for HIV/AIDS and cancer patients that builds on existing palliative care programs and experience and integrates palliative care into standard HIV/AIDS and cancer care. National palliative care guidelines have been issued by the Ministry of Health based on a rapid situation analysis. Plans now call for review and revision of opioid laws and regulations to increase availability of opioids for medical use, training in palliative care for clinicians throughout the country, and development of palliative care programs both in the community and in inpatient referral centers. PMID:17482051

  12. Music therapy in the context of palliative care in Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Hartwig, Rebecca

    2010-10-01

    There has been much written to support music therapy as an adjunct in managing pain and anxiety in palliative care patients in Western societies, but little written on its use in developing countries. In light of increasing numbers of terminally ill patients in Tanzania owing to HIV/AIDS and cancer, limited access to opioids, and a growing interest in palliative care support, this study looks at the application of music in this context. The study reviews the history and principles of therapeutic music and outlines its role in palliative care. A qualitative study was conducted by questionnaire of 17 professionals involved in home-based palliative care in Tanzania. Findings include beliefs about the power of music, how music is being used to bring comfort to the dying patient, and the most important aspects of helpful music to many Tanzanian palliative care patients. Music can powerfully affect body, mind and spirit. It is vocal music, which is an accepted therapeutic music tool used to bring comfort to the palliative care patient and their family members. Finally, music is an active and participatory activity in Tanzanian culture, even for the dying. PMID:20972382

  13. Palliative Care as a Standard of Care in Pediatric Oncology.

    PubMed

    Weaver, Meaghann S; Heinze, Katherine E; Kelly, Katherine P; Wiener, Lori; Casey, Robert L; Bell, Cynthia J; Wolfe, Joanne; Garee, Amy M; Watson, Anne; Hinds, Pamela S

    2015-12-01

    The study team conducted a systematic review of pediatric and adolescent palliative cancer care literature from 1995 to 2015 using four databases to inform development of a palliative care psychosocial standard. A total of 209 papers were reviewed with inclusion of 73 papers for final synthesis. Revealed topics of urgent consideration include the following: symptom assessment and intervention, direct patient report, effective communication, and shared decision-making. Standardization of palliative care assessments and interventions in pediatric oncology has the potential to foster improved quality of care across the cancer trajectory for children and adolescents with cancer and their family members. PMID:26700928

  14. A palliative approach to neurological care: a literature review.

    PubMed

    Gofton, Teneille E; Jog, Mandar S; Schulz, Valerie

    2009-05-01

    This review assesses the current opinion towards early palliative care in neurology and discusses the existing evidence base. A comprehensive literature search resulted in 714 publications with 53 being directly relevant to the scope of this review. The current literature reflects primarily expert opinion and describes a growing interest in the early introduction of palliative principles into neurological care. Early initiation of palliative interventions has the potential to improve quality of life, enhance symptom management and assist in advance care planning. Further data is required to determine whether this shift in philosophy has a positive impact on patient care. PMID:19534328

  15. Palliation and supportive care in radiation medicine.

    PubMed

    Janjan, Nora

    2006-02-01

    The treatment of bone metastases represents a paradigm for evaluating palliative care in terms of symptom relief, toxicities of therapy, and the financial burden to the patient, caregivers, and society. Despite enormous expenditures to treat metastases, patients continue to sustain symptoms of the disease, and uninterrupted aggressive therapies are pursued until death that incur toxicity in approximately 25% of patients. This approach is inconsistent with the goals of palliative care, which should efficiently provide comfort using antineoplastic therapies or supportive care approaches to the patient with the fewest treatment-related side effects, recognizing that the patient will die of the disease.The development of therapies such as bisphosphonates is important in advancing options for palliative care; however, clinical trials demonstrating the efficacy of bisphosphonates have not addressed important issues for clinical practice. The primary study endpoints should primarily address pertinent patient outcomes such as pain relief rather than asymptomatic radiographic findings. These studies should define clear indications of when to start and stop the therapy, the appropriate patient populations to receive the therapy, and the cost effectiveness of the treatment relative to other available therapies such as radiation. Cost-utility analyses, which account for a broader domain of cost effectiveness, need to be performed as part of clinical trials, especially for palliative care endpoints. Clinical trials that include these criteria are critical to future practice guideline development. As health care resources continue to become more limited, the criteria for care must be better defined to avoid administration of therapy with limited benefit. Leadership must come from the specialty as clinical trials and clinical practice increasingly interface with health care policy. Goals of therapy must remain clear for the benefit of the individual and all patients. PMID

  16. Tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion does not correlate with right ventricular ejection fraction in patients with hypoplastic left heart syndrome after Fontan palliation.

    PubMed

    Avitabile, Catherine M; Whitehead, Kevin; Fogel, Mark; Mercer-Rosa, Laura

    2014-10-01

    Tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE) reflects longitudinal myocardial shortening, the main component of right ventricular (RV) contraction in normal hearts. To date, TAPSE has not been extensively studied in patients with hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) and systemic RVs after Fontan palliation. This retrospective study investigated HLHS patients after Fontan with cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) performed between 1 January 2010 and 1 August 2012 and transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE) performed within 6 months of CMR. The maximal apical displacement of the lateral tricuspid valve annulus was measured on CMR (using four-chamber cine images) and on TTE (using two-dimensional apical views). To create TTE-TAPSE z-scores, published reference data were used. Intra- and interobserver variability was tested with analysis of variance. Inter-technique agreement of TTE and CMR was tested with Bland-Altman analysis. In this study, 30 CMRs and TTEs from 29 patients were analyzed. The age at CMR was 14.1 ± 7.1 years, performed 11.9 ± 7.8 years after Fontan. For CMR-TAPSE, the intraclass correlation coefficients for inter- and intraobserver variability were 0.89 and 0.91, respectively. The TAPSE measurements were 0.57 ± 0.2 cm on CMR and 0.70 ± 0.2 cm on TTE (TTE-TAPSE z score, -8.7 ± 1.0). The mean difference in TAPSE between CMR and TTE was -0.13 cm [95 % confidence interval (CI) -0.21 to -0.05], with 95 % limits of agreement (-0.55 to 0.29 cm). The study showed no association between CMR-TAPSE and RVEF (R = 0.08; p = 0.67). In patients with HLHS after Fontan, TAPSE is reproducible on CMR and TTE, with good agreement between the two imaging methods. Diminished TAPSE suggests impaired longitudinal shortening in the systemic RV. However, TAPSE is not a surrogate for RVEF in this study population. PMID:24840648

  17. Developing a service model that integrates palliative care throughout cancer care: the time is now.

    PubMed

    Partridge, Ann H; Seah, Davinia S E; King, Tari; Leighl, Natasha B; Hauke, Ralph; Wollins, Dana S; Von Roenn, Jamie Hayden

    2014-10-10

    Palliative care is a fundamental component of cancer care. As part of the 2011 to 2012 Leadership Development Program (LDP) of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), a group of participants was charged with advising ASCO on how to develop a service model integrating palliative care throughout the continuum of cancer care. This article presents the findings of the LDP group. The group focused on the process of palliative care delivery in the oncology setting. We identified key elements for models of palliative care in various settings to be potentially equitable, sustainable, feasible, and acceptable, and here we describe a dynamic model for the integrated, simultaneous implementation of palliative care into oncology practice. We also discuss critical considerations to better integrate palliative care into oncology, including raising consciousness and educating both providers and the public about the importance of palliative care; coordinating palliative care efforts through strengthening affiliations and/or developing new partnerships; prospectively evaluating the impact of palliative care on patient and provider satisfaction, quality improvement, and cost savings; and ensuring sustainability through adequate reimbursement and incentives, including linkage of performance data to quality indicators, and coordination with training efforts and maintenance of certification requirements for providers. In light of these findings, we believe the confluence of increasing importance of incorporation of palliative care education in oncology education, emphasis on value-based care, growing use of technology, and potential cost savings makes developing and incorporating palliative care into current service models a meaningful goal. PMID:25199756

  18. Successful palliative approach with high-intensity focused ultrasound in a patient with metastatic anaplastic pancreatic carcinoma: a case report.

    PubMed

    Ungaro, Antonio; Orsi, Franco; Casadio, Chiara; Galdy, Salvatore; Spada, Francesca; Cella, Chiara Alessandra; Tonno, Clementina Di; Bonomo, Guido; Vigna, Paolo Della; Murgioni, Sabina; Frezza, Anna Maria; Fazio, Nicola

    2016-01-01

    We report a case of a 74-year-old man with a metastatic anaplastic pancreatic carcinoma (APC). After an early tumour progression on first-line chemotherapy with cisplatin and gemcitabine, even though it was badly tolerated, he was treated with a combination of systemic modified FOLFIRI and high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) on the pancreatic mass. A tumour showing partial response with a clinical benefit was obtained. HIFU was preferred to radiotherapy because of its shorter course and minimal side effects, in order to improve the patient's clinical conditions. The patient is currently on chemotherapy, asymptomatic with a good performance status. In referral centres, with specific expertise, HIFU could be safely and successfully combined with systemic chemotherapy for treatment of metastatic pancreatic carcinoma. PMID:27170835

  19. Discussing the Evidence for Upstream Palliative Care in Improving Outcomes in Advanced Cancer.

    PubMed

    LeBlanc, Thomas W; Nickolich, Myles S; El-Jawahri, Areej; Temel, Jennifer S

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care has received increasing attention at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting since the publication of its provisional clinical opinion on the topic in 2012. Despite frequent discussion, palliative care remains a source of some controversy and confusion in clinical practice, especially concerning who should provide it, what it encompasses, and when and how it can help patients and their families. In this article, we provide a formal definition of palliative care and review the state of the science of palliative care in oncology. Several randomized controlled trials now show that palliative care improves important outcomes for patients with cancer. Related outcome improvements include a reduction in symptoms, improved quality of life, better prognostic understanding, less depressed mood, less aggressive end-of-life care, reduced resource utilization, and even prolonged survival. As such, ASCO recommends early integration of palliative care into comprehensive cancer care for all patients with advanced disease and/or significant symptom burden. Our aim is that this summary will facilitate greater understanding about palliative care and encourage further integration of palliative care services into cancer care. More research is needed to illuminate the mechanisms of action of palliative care and to improve the specificity of palliative care applications to unique scenarios and populations in oncology. PMID:27249764

  20. Smarter palliative care for cancer: Use of smartphone applications.

    PubMed

    Jamwal, Nisha Rani; Kumar, Senthil P

    2016-01-01

    Smartphones are technologically advanced mobile phone devices which use software similar to computer-based devices as a user-friendly interface. This review article is aimed to inform the palliative care professionals, cancer patients and their caregivers about the role of smartphone applications (apps) in the delivery of palliative care services, through a brief review of existing literature on the development, feasibility, analysis, and effectiveness of such apps. There is a dearth need for sincere palliative care clinicians to work together with software professionals to develop the suitable smartphone apps in accordance with the family/caregivers' necessities and patients' biopsychosocial characteristics that influence the technology driven evidence informed palliative cancer care. PMID:26962291

  1. Palliative Radiofrequency Ablation for Recurrent Prostate Cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Jindal, Gaurav; Friedman, Marc; Locklin, Julia Wood, Bradford J.

    2006-06-15

    Percutaneous radiofrequency ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive local therapy for cancer. Its efficacy is now becoming well documented in many different organs, including liver, kidney, and lung. The goal of RFA is typically complete eradication of a tumor in lieu of an invasive surgical procedure. However, RFA can also play an important role in the palliative care of cancer patients. Tumors which are surgically unresectable and incompatible for complete ablation present the opportunity for RFA to be used in a new paradigm. Cancer pain runs the gamut from minor discomfort relieved with mild pain medication to unrelenting suffering for the patient, poorly controlled by conventional means. RFA is a tool which can potentially palliate intractable cancer pain. We present here a case in which RFA provided pain relief in a patient with metastatic prostate cancer with pain uncontrolled by conventional methods.

  2. The Quality Imperative for Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Kamal, Arif H.; Hanson, Laura C.; Casarett, David J.; Dy, Sydney M.; Pantilat, Steven Z.; Lupu, Dale; Abernethy, Amy P.

    2015-01-01

    Palliative medicine must prioritize the routine assessment of the quality of clinical care we provide. This includes regular assessment, analysis, and reporting of data on quality. Assessment of quality informs opportunities for improvement and demonstrates to our peers and ourselves the value of our efforts. In fact, continuous messaging of the value of palliative care services is needed to sustain our discipline; this requires regularly evaluating the quality of our care. As the reimbursement mechanisms for health care in the United States shift from fee-for-service to fee-for-value models, palliative care will be expected to report robust data on quality of care. We must move beyond demonstrating to our constituents (including patients and referrers), “here is what we do,” and increase the focus on “this is how well we do it” and “let’s see how we can do it better.” It is incumbent on palliative care professionals to lead these efforts. This involves developing standardized methods to collect data without adding additional burden, comparing and sharing our experiences to promote discipline-wide quality assessment and improvement initiatives, and demonstrating our intentions for quality improvement on the clinical frontline. PMID:25057987

  3. The quality imperative for palliative care.

    PubMed

    Kamal, Arif H; Hanson, Laura C; Casarett, David J; Dy, Sydney M; Pantilat, Steven Z; Lupu, Dale; Abernethy, Amy P

    2015-02-01

    Palliative medicine must prioritize the routine assessment of the quality of clinical care we provide. This includes regular assessment, analysis, and reporting of data on quality. Assessment of quality informs opportunities for improvement and demonstrates to our peers and ourselves the value of our efforts. In fact, continuous messaging of the value of palliative care services is needed to sustain our discipline; this requires regularly evaluating the quality of our care. As the reimbursement mechanisms for health care in the U.S. shift from fee-for-service to fee-for-value models, palliative care will be expected to report robust data on quality of care. We must move beyond demonstrating to our constituents (including patients and referrers), "here is what we do," and increase the focus on "this is how well we do it" and "let us see how we can do it better." It is incumbent on palliative care professionals to lead these efforts. This involves developing standardized methods to collect data without adding additional burden, comparing and sharing our experiences to promote discipline-wide quality assessment and improvement initiatives, and demonstrating our intentions for quality improvement on the clinical frontline. PMID:25057987

  4. Clinical aspects of palliative care in advanced Parkinson’s disease

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders of the elderly population. Few therapeutic options are available for patients with PD requiring palliative care. Treatment of the early stages of PD is entirely different from later stages. During the later stages, the palliative care model is introduced to provide the patient with comfort and support. Early palliative care in PD requires minimization of dyskinesias and decreasing occurrence of motor and non-motor off times in an effort to maximize independent motor function. In the later stages, the focus of treatment shifts to treating the predominant non-motor symptoms and having a more supportive and palliative nature. The purpose of this review is to provide a summary of the palliative care management issues and palliative care management options of end-stage PD patients. PMID:23098090

  5. Insomnia among patients with advanced disease during admission in a Palliative Care Unit: a prospective observational study on its frequency and association with psychological, physical and environmental factors

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The aims of this study were: 1) to assess the frequency of insomnia among patients during admission in a Palliative Care Unit (PCU); 2) to study the association between emotional distress and insomnia, taking physical, environmental and other psychological factors into account. Methods Prospective observational study including patients consecutively admitted to a PCU during eight months, excluding those with severe cognitive problems or too low performance status. Insomnia was assessed by asking a single question and by using the Sleep Disturbance Scale (SDS), and emotional distress using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Physical, environmental and other psychological factors potentially interfering with sleep quality were evaluated. Association between insomnia and the factors evaluated was studied using univariate and multivariate regression analyses. Results 61 patients were included (mean age 71.5 years; 95% with oncological disease); 38 (62%) answered “yes” to the insomnia single question and 29 (47%) showed moderate to severe insomnia according to the SDS. 65% showed clinically significant emotional distress and 79% had nocturnal rumination. The physical symptoms most often mentioned as interfering with sleep quality were pain (69%) and dyspnoea (36%). 77% reported at least one environmental disturbance. In the univariate analysis, answering “yes” to the insomnia single question was significantly associated with higher HADS score, anxiety, nocturnal rumination, clear knowledge of the diagnosis, higher performance status and dyspnoea; moderate to severe insomnia was significantly associated with nocturnal rumination, higher performance status, environmental disturbances and daytime sleepiness. In the multivariate regression analysis, answering “yes” to the single question was associated with dyspnoea (OR 7.2 [1.65-31.27]; p = 0.009), nocturnal rumination (OR 5.5 [1.05-28.49]; p = 0.04) and higher performance

  6. [Palliative care needs in advanced chronic illness].

    PubMed

    Tripodoro, Vilma A; Rynkiewicz, María C; Llanos, Victoria; Padova, Susana; De Lellis, Silvina; De Simone, Gustavo

    2016-01-01

    About 75% of population will die from one or more chronic progressive diseases. From this projection WHO urged countries to devise strategies for strengthening palliative treatment as part of comprehensive care. In Catalonia, Spain, direct measurement of the prevalence of these patients with NECPAL CCOMS-ICO© tool was 1.5% of the population. This tool is an indicative, not dichotomous, quali-quantitative multifactorial evaluation to be completed by the treating physician. In Argentina there is no information on these patients. Our goal was to explore and characterize the proportion of chronically ill patients in palliative care needs, by NECPAL CCOMS-ICO© tool, in an accessible population of the City of Buenos Aires. General hospitals of the Health Region 2 (Piñero, álvarez and Santojanni) and its program areas were surveyed. In Health Region 1, we surveyed the Udaondo gastroenterology hospital. A total of 53 physicians (704 patients) were interviewed. It was identified that 29.5% of these patients were affected by advanced chronic diseases; 72.1% of them were NECPAL positive, younger (median 64) than in others studies, and more than 98% presented high levels of comorbidity. Palliative care demand (31.4%) and needs (52.7%) were recorded. Specific indicators of fragility, progression, severity and kind of chronic disease were described. The main finding was to identify, with an instrument not based on mortality that, in Buenos Aires City, 1 in 3 patients with chronic diseases could die in the next year and had palliative care needs. PMID:27295702

  7. Developing the Cambridge palliative audit schedule (CAMPAS): a palliative care audit for primary health care teams.

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, M S; Barclay, S I; Todd, C J

    1998-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Problems with the provision of palliative care have been reported. Audit is one means of improving care. Earlier audits of primary care palliative care have been initiated by general practitioners (GPs) and are predominantly retrospective record reviews. Widely applicable methods for the audit of primary care palliative care do not exist. AIM: To develop relevant palliative care standards and to devise an audit schedule (the Cambridge palliative audit schedule, CAMPAS) suitable for monitoring palliative care in diverse primary care settings. METHOD: Primary health care team (PHCT) members collaborated at all stages. Reasonable outcomes and acceptable interventions for PHCTs were identified and standards developed. Each standard was constructed to ensure uniform interpretation, and CAMPAS was structured to collect data necessary for determining whether the standards were met. RESULTS: Over 50% of PHCTs (n = 20) in the health district were recruited and trained to use CAMPAS. A total of 876 contacts with 29 patients was recorded by PHCTs using CAMPAS. Considerable inter- and intra-PHCT variation was found in the achievement of the standards. CONCLUSIONS: The favourable participation rate suggests commitment to audit and improvement in patient care. Overall, the standards were reported to be suitable. Although 100% achievement of some standards may be unrealistic, the level of attainment for many suggests that it is possible. CAMPAS has been reported to be a useful structure for recording assessments and monitoring care, as well as a usable audit schedule. As an audit tool, it identified areas in need of improvement and facilitated feed-back to participants. Future audit is required to determine whether improvements in care have been effected. PMID:9692279

  8. Successful palliative approach with high-intensity focused ultrasound in a patient with metastatic anaplastic pancreatic carcinoma: a case report

    PubMed Central

    Ungaro, Antonio; Orsi, Franco; Casadio, Chiara; Galdy, Salvatore; Spada, Francesca; Cella, Chiara Alessandra; Tonno, Clementina Di; Bonomo, Guido; Vigna, Paolo Della; Murgioni, Sabina; Frezza, Anna Maria; Fazio, Nicola

    2016-01-01

    We report a case of a 74-year-old man with a metastatic anaplastic pancreatic carcinoma (APC). After an early tumour progression on first-line chemotherapy with cisplatin and gemcitabine, even though it was badly tolerated, he was treated with a combination of systemic modified FOLFIRI and high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) on the pancreatic mass. A tumour showing partial response with a clinical benefit was obtained. HIFU was preferred to radiotherapy because of its shorter course and minimal side effects, in order to improve the patient’s clinical conditions. The patient is currently on chemotherapy, asymptomatic with a good performance status. In referral centres, with specific expertise, HIFU could be safely and successfully combined with systemic chemotherapy for treatment of metastatic pancreatic carcinoma. PMID:27170835

  9. Early palliative care and metastatic non-small cell lung cancer: potential mechanisms of prolonged survival.

    PubMed

    Irwin, Kelly E; Greer, Joseph A; Khatib, Jude; Temel, Jennifer S; Pirl, William F

    2013-02-01

    Patients with advanced cancer experience a significant burden of physical symptoms and psychological distress at the end of life, and many elect to receive aggressive cancer-directed therapy. The goal of palliative care is to relieve suffering and promote quality of life (QOL) for patients and families. Traditionally, both the public and medical community have conceptualized the need for patients to make a choice between pursuing curative therapy or receiving palliative care. However, practice guidelines from the World Health Organization and leadership from the oncology and palliative care communities advocate a different model of palliative care that is introduced from the point of diagnosis of life-threatening illness. Early palliative care has been shown to provide benefits in QOL, mood, and health care utilization. Additionally, preliminary research has suggested that in contrast to fears about palliative care hastening death, referral to palliative care earlier in the course of illness may have the potential to lengthen survival, particularly in patients with advanced nonsmall-cell lung cancer. This review summarizes the literature on potential survival benefits of palliative care and presents a model of how early integrated palliative care could potentially influence survival in patients with advanced cancer. PMID:23355404

  10. “Not the ‘Grim Reaper Service’”: An Assessment of Provider Knowledge, Attitudes, and Perceptions Regarding Palliative Care Referral Barriers in Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Kavalieratos, Dio; Mitchell, Emma M.; Carey, Timothy S.; Dev, Sandesh; Biddle, Andrea K.; Reeve, Bryce B.; Abernethy, Amy P.; Weinberger, Morris

    2014-01-01

    Background Although similar to cancer patients regarding symptom burden and prognosis, patients with heart failure (HF) tend to receive palliative care far less frequently. We sought to explore factors perceived by cardiology, primary care, and palliative care providers to impede palliative care referral for HF patients. Methods and Results We conducted semistructured interviews regarding (1) perceived needs of patients with advanced HF; (2) knowledge, attitudes, and experiences with specialist palliative care; (3) perceived indications for and optimal timing of palliative care referral in HF; and (4) perceived barriers to palliative care referral. Two investigators analyzed data using template analysis, a qualitative technique. We interviewed 18 physician, nurse practitioner, and physician assistant providers from 3 specialties: cardiology, primary care, and palliative care. Providers had limited knowledge regarding what palliative care is, and how it can complement traditional HF therapy to decrease HF‐related suffering. Interviews identified several potential barriers: the unpredictable course of HF; lack of clear referral triggers across the HF trajectory; and ambiguity regarding what differentiates standard HF therapy from palliative care. Nevertheless, providers expressed interest for integrating palliative care into traditional HF care, but were unsure of how to initiate collaboration. Conclusions Palliative care referral for HF patients may be suboptimal due to limited provider knowledge and misperceptions of palliative care as a service reserved for those near death. These factors represent potentially modifiable targets for provider education, which may help to improve palliative care referral for HF patients with unresolved disease‐related burden. PMID:24385453

  11. Integration of Palliative Care in the Context of Rapid Response

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Judith E.; Mathews, Kusum S.; Weissman, David E.; Brasel, Karen J.; Campbell, Margaret; Curtis, J. Randall; Frontera, Jennifer A.; Gabriel, Michelle; Hays, Ross M.; Mosenthal, Anne C.; Mulkerin, Colleen; Puntillo, Kathleen A.; Ray, Daniel E.; Weiss, Stefanie P.; Bassett, Rick; Boss, Renee D.; Lustbader, Dana R.

    2015-01-01

    Rapid response teams (RRTs) can effectively foster discussions about appropriate goals of care and address other emergent palliative care needs of patients and families facing life-threatening illness on hospital wards. In this article, The Improving Palliative Care in the ICU (IPAL-ICU) Project brings together interdisciplinary expertise and existing data to address the following: special challenges for providing palliative care in the rapid response setting, knowledge and skills needed by RRTs for delivery of high-quality palliative care, and strategies for improving the integration of palliative care with rapid response critical care. We discuss key components of communication with patients, families, and primary clinicians to develop a goal-directed treatment approach during a rapid response event. We also highlight the need for RRT expertise to initiate symptom relief. Strategies including specific clinician training and system initiatives are then recommended for RRT care improvement. We conclude by suggesting that as evaluation of their impact on other outcomes continues, performance by RRTs in meeting palliative care needs of patients and families should also be measured and improved. PMID:25644909

  12. Inadequate Palliative Care in Chronic Lung Disease. An Issue of Health Care Inequality.

    PubMed

    Brown, Crystal E; Jecker, Nancy S; Curtis, J Randall

    2016-03-01

    Patients with chronic lung diseases suffer higher symptom burden, lower quality of life, and greater social isolation compared with patients with other diagnoses, such as cancer. These conditions may be alleviated by palliative care, yet palliative care is used less by patients with chronic lung disease compared with patients with cancer. Underuse is due, in part, to poor implementation of primary palliative care and inadequate referral to specialty palliative care. Lack of primary and specialty palliative care in patients with chronic lung disease falls short of the minimum standard of competent health care, and represents a disparity in health care and a social injustice. We invoke the ethical principles of justice and sufficiency to highlight the importance of this issue. We identify five barriers to implementing palliative care in patients with chronic lung disease: uncertainty in prognosis; lack of provider skill to engage in discussions about palliative care; fear of using opioids among patients with chronic lung disease; fear of diminishing hope; and perceived and implicit bias against patients with smoking-related lung diseases. We propose mechanisms for improving implementation of palliative care for patients with chronic lung disease with the goal of enhancing justice in health care. PMID:26730490

  13. Reflections on Palliative Care from the Jewish and Islamic Tradition

    PubMed Central

    Schultz, Michael; Baddarni, Kassim; Bar-Sela, Gil

    2012-01-01

    Spiritual care is a vital part of holistic patient care. Awareness of common patient beliefs will facilitate discussions about spirituality. Such conversations are inherently good for the patient, deepen the caring staff-patient-family relationship, and enhance understanding of how beliefs influence care decisions. All healthcare providers are likely to encounter Muslim patients, yet many lack basic knowledge of the Muslim faith and of the applications of Islamic teachings to palliative care. Similarly, some of the concepts underlying positive Jewish approaches to palliative care are not well known. We outline Jewish and Islamic attitudes toward suffering, treatment, and the end of life. We discuss our religions' approaches to treatments deemed unnecessary by medical staff, and consider some of the cultural reasons that patients and family members might object to palliative care, concluding with specific suggestions for the medical team. PMID:22203878

  14. [Use of music in palliative care].

    PubMed

    Skrbina, Dijana; Simunović, Dubravka; Santek, Vjerocka; Njegovan-Zvonarević, Tatjana

    2011-12-01

    Man is mortal, which means that as the earthly body perishes being, final. Disease and death will always be an inevitable and integral part of human experience. The way in which we try to identify and respond to the unique and individual needs of the dying is an indication of our maturity as a society. The number of people requiring palliative care is growing. Palliative care does not intend to either accelerate or postpone death she emphasizes the life and looks at dying as a normal process. It is an active form of care for patients with advanced, progressive illness, with the aim of suppressing pain and other symptoms in addition to providing psychological, social and spiritual support which ensures the best possible quality of life for patients and their families. Therefore requires a coordinated and interdisciplinary contribution team. The variety of professions in a team, and determine the needs of patients should be ready to provide physical, psychological, social and spiritual support using methods that result from an interdisciplinary, collaborative team approach. Development of a holistic approach and awareness in the medical and allied professions has led to a renewal of interest in the inclusion of music and other expressive media in contemporary concepts of palliative care, which are consistent with problem areas, clinical manifestations and the needs of patients. Music offers a direct and uncomplicated medium of intimacy, living in a man who listens to her, has a place where words lose their power. Music is like our existence, constantly polarizing and emotionally stimulating, as it touches the medium of the earliest layers of our becoming. The use of music in palliative care has proved very effective for a variety of effects that music creates in patients. These effects are achieved through the use of various musical techniques, such as musical improvisation, songwriting, receiving creative techniques, guided by imagination and music. These techniques

  15. [Palliative surgery in squamous cell carcinoma of the anterior floor of the mouth].

    PubMed

    Bachmann, G; Hess, A; Guntinas-Lichius, O; Jungehülsing, M

    2004-07-01

    A 62 year old patient presented with a bleeding, incurable squamous cell carcinoma of the anterior floor of the mouth. A curative concept was not possible. After four palliative surgical procedures, a definitive and a palliative radiation therapy and a palliative chemotherapy, the patient remained free of tumor in the head and neck region for 2 years after the initial treatment. Using a combination of palliative procedures, it is possible not only to achieve a full local remission but also to provide a high quality of life. PMID:15309262

  16. Exploring the leadership role of the clinical nurse specialist on an inpatient palliative care consulting team.

    PubMed

    Stilos, Kalli; Daines, Pat

    2013-03-01

    Demand for palliative care services in Canada will increase owing to an aging population and the evolving role of palliative care in non-malignant illness. Increasing healthcare demands continue to shape the clinical nurse specialist (CNS) role, especially in the area of palliative care. Clinical nurse specialists bring specialized knowledge, skills and leadership to the clinical setting to enhance patient and family care. This paper highlights the clinical leadership role of the CNS as triage leader for a hospital-based palliative care consulting team. Changes to the team's referral and triage processes are emphasized as key improvements to team efficiency and timely access to care for patients and families. PMID:24863582

  17. HIFU for Palliative Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer.

    PubMed

    Khokhlova, Tatiana D; Hwang, Joo Ha

    2016-01-01

    Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest malignancies, with only a 6 % 5-year survival rate and over 50 % of patients being diagnosed at the advanced stage. Current therapies are ineffective, and the treatment of patients with advanced disease is palliative. In the past decade, HIFU ablation has emerged as a modality for palliative treatment of pancreatic tumors. Multiple preclinical and non-randomized clinical trials have been performed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of this procedure. Substantial tumor-related pain reduction was achieved in most cases after HIFU treatment and few significant side effects were observed. In addition, some studies indicate that combination of HIFU ablation with chemotherapy may provide a survival benefit. This chapter summarizes the pre-clinical and clinical experience obtained to date in HIFU treatment of pancreatic tumors and discusses the challenges, limitations and new approaches in this modality. PMID:26486333

  18. Healthcare professionals' perceptions toward interprofessional collaboration in palliative home care: a view from Belgium.

    PubMed

    Pype, Peter; Symons, Linda; Wens, Johan; Van den Eynden, Bart; Stess, Ann; Cherry, Gemma; Deveugele, Myriam

    2013-07-01

    There is a growing need for palliative care, with the majority of palliative patients preferring palliative home care from their general practitioner (GP). GPs join specialized palliative home care teams (PHCTs) to perform this task. GPs' views on this collaboration are not known. This study explores the perceptions and preferences of GPs toward interprofessional collaboration. By employing a grounded theory approach, five focus groups were conducted in Flanders, Belgium with a total of 29 participants (professionals from PHCTs; professionals from organizations who provide training and education in palliative care and GPs who are not connected to either of the aforementioned groups). Analysis revealed that GPs considered palliative home care as part of their job. Good relationships with patients and families were considered fundamental in the delivery of high quality care. Factors influencing effective interprofessional collaboration were team competences, team arrangements (responsibilities and task description) and communication. GPs' willingness to share responsibilities with equally competent team members requires further research. PMID:23181267

  19. Family as the primary caregiver: palliative care in the Golan Heights.

    PubMed

    Richman, Elon; Ringel, Amit; Kreniske, Jonah Susser; Safadi, Wajdi

    2015-01-01

    Palliative care is recognised by the WHO as an essential component of care for the seriously ill. Geographically isolated and historically underserved communities, particularly from ethnic minority groups, face obstacles in obtaining adequate palliative care. This case involves the care of a 26-year-old Druze man suffering from a terminal cancer in his Golan Heights village. Local physicians were able to train the patient's father in a palliative care capacity. In the effort of capacity building, the physician and palliative care team also aided the aggrieved family in the process of coping. Robust support networks, both at state and community levels, facilitated the care provided. In showcasing the role of the national and local safety net in activating and building community resources to address a dearth of palliative care services in disadvantaged regions, this case models a potentially effective community-based approach to palliative care for patients from underserved populations. PMID:25858919

  20. Oral Ketamine in the Palliative Care Setting: A Review of the Literature and Case Report of a Patient With Neurofibromatosis Type 1 and Glomus Tumor-Associated Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Soto, Eliezer; Stewart, Douglas R.; Mannes, Andrew J.; Ruppert, Sarah L.; Baker, Karen; Zlott, Daniel; Handel, Daniel; Berger, Ann M.

    2014-01-01

    Ketamine, an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist, has been shown to be effective not only for its anesthetic properties but also for the analgesic and opiate-sparing effects. However, data on efficacy and safety of oral ketamine for the treatment of neuropathic or cancer pain syndromes is limited with most of the evidence based on small clinical trials and anecdotal experiences. In this review, we will analyze the clinical data on oral ketamine in the palliative care setting. After an extensive search using five major databases, a total of 19 relevant articles were included. No official clinical guidelines for the use of oral ketamine in this patient population were found. Studies on oral ketamine for cancer and neuropathic pain have shown mixed results which could be partially due to significant differences in hepatic metabolism. In addition, we will include a case report of a 38-year-old female with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) with history of chronic, severe pain in her fingertips secondary to multiple glomus tumors which evolved into CRPS resistant to multiple therapies but responsive to oral ketamine. Based on our experience with oral ketamine, this drug should be administered after an intravenous trial to monitor response and side effects in patients with an adequate functional status. However, patients in the palliative care and hospice setting, especially the one at the end of their lives, may also benefit from oral ketamine even if an intravenous trial is not feasible. PMID:21803784

  1. Oral ketamine in the palliative care setting: a review of the literature and case report of a patient with neurofibromatosis type 1 and glomus tumor-associated complex regional pain syndrome.

    PubMed

    Soto, Eliezer; Stewart, Douglas R; Mannes, Andrew J; Ruppert, Sarah L; Baker, Karen; Zlott, Daniel; Handel, Daniel; Berger, Ann M

    2012-06-01

    Ketamine, an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist, has been shown to be effective not only for its anesthetic properties but also for the analgesic and opiate-sparing effects. However, data on efficacy and safety of oral ketamine for the treatment of neuropathic or cancer pain syndromes is limited with most of the evidence based on small clinical trials and anecdotal experiences. In this review, we will analyze the clinical data on oral ketamine in the palliative care setting. After an extensive search using five major databases, a total of 19 relevant articles were included. No official clinical guidelines for the use of oral ketamine in this patient population were found. Studies on oral ketamine for cancer and neuropathic pain have shown mixed results which could be partially due to significant differences in hepatic metabolism. In addition, we will include a case report of a 38-year-old female with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) with history of chronic, severe pain in her fingertips secondary to multiple glomus tumors which evolved into CRPS resistant to multiple therapies but responsive to oral ketamine. Based on our experience with oral ketamine, this drug should be administered after an intravenous trial to monitor response and side effects in patients with an adequate functional status. However, patients in the palliative care and hospice setting, especially the one at the end of their lives, may also benefit from oral ketamine even if an intravenous trial is not feasible. PMID:21803784

  2. Smarter palliative care for cancer: Use of smartphone applications

    PubMed Central

    Jamwal, Nisha Rani; Kumar, Senthil P

    2016-01-01

    Smartphones are technologically advanced mobile phone devices which use software similar to computer-based devices as a user-friendly interface. This review article is aimed to inform the palliative care professionals, cancer patients and their caregivers about the role of smartphone applications (apps) in the delivery of palliative care services, through a brief review of existing literature on the development, feasibility, analysis, and effectiveness of such apps. There is a dearth need for sincere palliative care clinicians to work together with software professionals to develop the suitable smartphone apps in accordance with the family/caregivers’ necessities and patients’ biopsychosocial characteristics that influence the technology driven evidence informed palliative cancer care. PMID:26962291

  3. Utility and Potential of Bedside Ultrasound in Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Dhamija, Ekta; Thulkar, Sanjay; Bhatnagar, Sushma

    2015-01-01

    Bedside ultrasound is an important tool in modern palliative care practice. It can be utilized for rapid diagnostic evaluation or as an image guidance to perform invasive therapeutic procedures. With advent of portable ultrasound machines, it can also be used in community or home care settings, apart from palliative care wards. Major applications of bedside ultrasound include drainage of malignant pleural effusions and ascites, nerve blocks, venous access, evaluation of urinary obstruction, deep vein thrombosis and abscesses. Bedside ultrasound leads to better clinical decision-making as well as more accurate and faster invasive therapeutic procedures. It also enhances patient comfort and reduces cost burden. However, use of bedside ultrasound is still not widespread among palliative care givers, owing to initial cost, lack of basic training in ultrasound and apprehensions about its use. A team approach involving radiologists is important to develop integration of bedside ultrasound in palliative care. PMID:26009664

  4. [Resistance from caregivers and doctors to a transfer to palliative care].

    PubMed

    Azémard, Alain

    2014-04-01

    Doctors' and caregivers' knowledge, acquired experience and representation of death might favour or delay a patient's transfer to a palliative care unit. The mobile palliative care team, witnessing resistance to a transfer, is in a position to respond thanks to the multidisciplinary nature of the team and the trust established between the different players in the patient's care. PMID:24881246

  5. Integrating Speech-Language Pathology Services in Palliative End-of-Life Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pollens, Robin D.

    2012-01-01

    Clinical speech-language pathologists (SLPs) may receive referrals to consult with teams serving patients who have a severe and/or terminal disease. Palliative care focuses on the prevention or relief of suffering to maximize quality of life for these patients and their families. This article describes how the role of the SLP in palliative care…

  6. What a wish to die can mean: reasons, meanings and functions of wishes to die, reported from 30 qualitative case studies of terminally ill cancer patients in palliative care

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Despite research efforts over recent decades to deepen our understanding of why some terminally ill patients express a wish to die (WTD), there is broad consensus that we need more detailed knowledge about the factors that might influence such a wish. The objective of this study is to explore the different possible motivations and explanations of patients who express or experience a WTD. Methods Thirty terminally ill cancer patients, their caregivers and relatives; from a hospice, a palliative care ward in the oncology department of a general hospital, and an ambulatory palliative care service; 116 semi-structured qualitative interviews analysed using a complementary grounded theory and interpretive phenomenological analysis approach. Results Three dimensions were found to be crucial for understanding and analysing WTD statements: intentions, motivations and social interactions. This article analyses the motivations of WTD statements. Motivations can further be differentiated into (1) reasons, (2) meanings and (3) functions. Reasons are the factors that patients understand as causing them to have or accounting for having a WTD. These reasons can be ordered along the bio-psycho-socio-spiritual model. Meanings describe the broader explanatory frameworks, which explain what this wish means to a patient. Meanings are larger narratives that reflect personal values and moral understandings and cannot be reduced to reasons. Functions describe the effects of the WTD on patients themselves or on others, conscious or unconscious, that might be part of the motivation for a WTD. Nine typical ‘meanings’ were identified in the study, including “to let death put an end to severe suffering”, “to move on to another reality”, and – more frequently– “to spare others from the burden of oneself”. Conclusions The distinction between reasons, meanings and functions allows for a more detailed understanding of the motivation for the WTD statements of cancer

  7. Clinical trials in palliative care: an ethical evaluation.

    PubMed

    Janssens, R; Gordijn, B

    2000-08-01

    On first sight, clinical trials do not seem to fit well within the concept of palliative care. In palliative care, the needs and wishes of the patient set the norm while participation in experimental trials is potentially harmful for the patient. The dilemma seems hard to solve as optimal care for the dying and improvement of treatment for future patients are both imperative. Yet, the one seems to exclude the other. However, on closer examination it becomes less evident that clinical trials in palliative care confront us with an unsolvable dilemma. Some patients' lives may gain meaning through participation in trials out of solidarity with future patients. In order to clarify this, the notions of authenticity and hope can be illuminative. PMID:10900367

  8. Life is uncertain. death is certain. Buddhism and palliative care.

    PubMed

    Masel, Eva K; Schur, Sophie; Watzke, Herbert H

    2012-08-01

    It is part of a palliative care assessment to identify patients' spiritual needs. According to Buddhism, suffering is inherent to all human beings. Advice on how suffering can be reduced in the course of serious illness might be helpful to patients with incurable and progressive diseases. Palliative care could benefit from Buddhist insights in the form of compassionate care and relating death to life. Buddhist teachings may lead to a more profound understanding of incurable diseases and offer patients the means by which to focus their minds while dealing with physical symptoms and ailments. This might not only be beneficial to followers of Buddhism but to all patients. PMID:22871512

  9. Heart Failure and Palliative Care: Implications in Practice

    PubMed Central

    Penrod, Janice; Fogg, Janet

    2009-01-01

    Abstract The number of people with heart failure is continually rising. Despite continued medical advances that may prolong life, there is no cure. While typical heart failure trajectories include the risk of sudden death, heart failure is typically characterized by periods of stability interrupted by acute exacerbations. The unpredictable nature of this disease and the inability to predict its terminal phase has resulted in few services beyond medical management being offered. Yet, this population has documented unmet needs that extend beyond routine medical care. Palliative care has been proposed as a strategy to meet these needs, however, these services are rarely offered. Although palliative care should be implemented early in the disease process, in practice it is tied to end-of-life care. The purpose of this study was to uncover whether the conceptualization of palliative care for heart failure as end-of-life care may inhibit the provision of these services. The meaning of palliative care in heart failure was explored from three perspectives: scientific literature, health care providers, and spousal caregivers of patients with heart failure. There is confusion in the literature and by the health care community about the meaning of the term palliative care and what the provision of these services entails. Palliative care was equated to end-of-life care, and as a result, health care providers may be reluctant to discuss palliative care with heart failure patients early in the disease trajectory. Most family caregivers have not heard of the term and all would be receptive to an offer of palliative care at some point during the disease trajectory. PMID:19508139

  10. Training Physicians in Palliative Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muir, J. Cameron; Krammer, Lisa M.; von Gunten, Charles F.

    1999-01-01

    Describes the elements of a program in hospice and palliative medicine that may serve as a model of an effective system of physician education. Topics for the palliative-care curriculum include hospice medicine, breaking bad news, pain management, the process of dying, and managing personal stress. (JOW)

  11. [Importance of Anesthesiologists in the Work of a Palliative Care Team].

    PubMed

    Hozumi, Jun; Sumitani, Masahiko

    2016-03-01

    World Health Organization has proposed that palliative medicine should be applied early in the course of the malignant diseases. Regrettably, however, palliative care has been usually provided to patients with the advanced stage of cancer, as terminal care. Recently, palliative medicine begins at the time when patients are diagnosed with cancer. In response to changes in clinical settings of palliative medicine, anesthesiologists, with substantial experience in interdisciplinary pain management, can utilize their advantages in providing palliative medicine to cancer patients: 1) use of opioid analgesics; 2) considering the biopsychosocial model of pain; 3) helping patients live as actively as possible until death; and 4) helping the family cope with the patient's illness and their own bereavement. PMID:27097502

  12. Practical Issues in Palliative and Quality-of-Life Care

    PubMed Central

    Hennessy, John E.; Lown, Beth A.; Landzaat, Lindy; Porter-Williamson, Karin

    2013-01-01

    Although palliative care is not new to health care or to oncology, oncologists still struggle to maximize the value of this type of care across the entire care continuum and across the patient's trajectory of illness. When we don't use what may be the best tools for the job, at the right times in the care path, we miss opportunities to optimize patient and family coping, to limit suffering, and to ensure that our care plans are patient centered. In this article, we look at how we define palliative care and how the tools of palliative medicine can be used to enhance patient care in the outpatient oncology practice setting. PMID:23814513

  13. [Implementation of palliative care in Ivory Coast].

    PubMed

    Coulibaly, J Didi-Kouko; Datie, A-M; Binlin-Dadie, R; Kouame, I; N'guessan, Zc; Barouan, M-C; Koffi, E; Coulibaly, I; Mensah, J; Yenou, H Memain; Dedomey, E; Echimane, Ka; Plo, Kj; Kouassi, B

    2009-05-01

    Ivory Coast adhered to the strategy of the primary cares of health whose leading principles served basis to the definition of the National politics of sanitary development, exposed in the National plan of sanitary development 1996-2005. The improvement of the quality of the cares is the main objective of this plan. The attack of this objective cannot make itself without the hold in account of the palliative cares that are a component of the cares for the patients affected by chronic and incurable affections, since the diagnosis until the death and even after the death. Conscious of the necessity to develop the palliative cares to improve the quality of life of the patients and their families, the ministry in charge of health, in collaboration with the partners to the development, initiated a project of development of the palliative care in Ivory Coast. It is about an innovating gait in Ivory Coast concerning politics of health. This work has for goal to present the big lines and the setting in which this politics has been put in place. PMID:19423486

  14. [When should palliative care for children with life-threatening illnesses begin?].

    PubMed

    Bergsträsser, Eva

    2015-03-11

    Paediatric Palliative Care in Switzerland is still in its infancy. In comparison to palliative care in adults, the knowledge about palliative care in children is limited. To facilitate the decision of when to start palliative care, an instrument for health professionals has been developed. The instrument, called Paediatric Palliative Screening Scale (PaPaS Scale), builds on five domains shedding light on the child's illness: 1) trajectory of disease and impact on daily activities; 2) treatment options and burden of treatment; 3) symptoms, controllability, and problem burden; 4) preferences of patient or parents; and 5) life expectancy. The aims of a reasonably starting palliative care are quality of life and the ability to actively create the rest of life. PMID:25758969

  15. Safety and Palliative Efficacy of Single-Dose 8-Gy Reirradiation for Painful Local Failure in Patients With Stage IV Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Previously Treated With Radical Chemoradiation Therapy

    SciTech Connect

    Topkan, Erkan; Yildirim, Berna Akkus; Guler, Ozan Cem; Parlak, Cem; Pehlivan, Berrin; Selek, Ugur

    2015-03-15

    Purpose: To investigate the safety and efficacy of single-dose 8-Gy palliative chest reirradiation (CRI) in metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (M-NSCLC) patients with painful thoracic failures (TF) within the previous radiation portal. Patients and Methods: We retrospectively analyzed the clinical data of 78 M-NSCLC patients who received single-dose 8-Gy CRI for painful TF after concurrent chemoradiation therapy to a total radiation dose of 52 to 66 Gy between 2007 and 2012. Primary endpoints included significant pain relief (SPR) defined as a ≥2 point decrement in the Visual Analogue Scale for Pain inventory (VAS-P), time to pain relief, and duration of pain control. Secondary objectives were survival and prognostic factors. Results: Treatment was well tolerated, with only 5.1% grade 3 pneumonitis and 1.3% grade 2 esophagitis. Pre-CRI median and post-CRI minimum VAS-P were 7 and 3 (P<.001), respectively. SPR was noted in 67 (85.9%) patients, and only 3 (3.9%) scored progressive pain. Median time to lowest VAS-P and duration of pain control were 27 days and 6.1 months, respectively. Median overall survival (OS) was 7.7 months, and the 1-year OS rate was 26.5%. On multivariate analyses, lower Eastern Cooperative Oncology group score (1-2; P<.001), absence of anemia (P=.001), and fewer metastatic sites (1-2; P<.001) were found to be associated with longer OS. Conclusions: Single-dose 8-Gy CRI provides safe, effective, and durable pain palliation for TF in radically irradiated M-NSCLC patients. Because of its convenience, lower cost, and higher comfort, the present protocol can be considered an appropriate option for patients with limited life spans.

  16. Victoria BGY palliative care model--a new model for the 1990s.

    PubMed

    Downing, G M; Braithwaite, D L; Wilde, J M

    1993-01-01

    If, as palliative care practitioners, we ensure that distressing symptoms such as pain, vomiting, dyspnea, confusion, and pre-death restlessness are fully controlled (note "fully"), then most people are deeply appreciative and continue to live until they die, confident that whatever happens, their worth, desires, and comfort are secure. Credibility (Latin, fides dignus) is remaining true and reliable to what was agreed. Patients registering with palliative care generally desire comfort, which can only occur when palliative care physicians and programs are capable and willing to apply all three types of palliation discussed here--the BGY model. PMID:7510798

  17. The importance of measuring customer satisfaction in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Turriziani, Adriana; Attanasio, Gennaro; Scarcella, Francesco; Sangalli, Luisa; Scopa, Anna; Genualdo, Alessandra; Quici, Stefano; Nazzicone, Giulia; Ricciotti, Maria Adelaide; La Commare, Francesco

    2016-03-01

    In the last decades, palliative care has been more and more focused on the evaluation of patients' and families' satisfaction with care. However, the evaluation of customer satisfaction in palliative care presents a number of issues such as the presence of both patients and their families, the frail condition of the patients and the complexity of their needs, and the lack of standard quality indicators and appropriate measurement tools. In this manuscript, we critically review existing evidence and literature on the evaluation of satisfaction in the palliative care context. Moreover, we provide - as a practical example - the preliminary results of our experience in this setting with the development of a dedicated tool for the measurement of satisfaction. PMID:26837318

  18. "It Was Definitely Very Different": An evaluation of palliative care teaching to medical students using a mixed methods approach.

    PubMed

    Brand, Alison H; Harrison, Amanda; Kumar, Koshila

    2015-01-01

    Given our ageing population and the increase in chronic disease, palliative care will become an increasingly important part of doctors' workloads, with implications for palliative care education. This study used a mixed methods strategy to evaluate second-year medical students' learning outcomes and experiences within a palliative care education program. Analysis of pre- and post-test scores showed a significant improvement in students' attitudinal scores, but no change in knowledge as measured by multiple-choice questions. Analysis of qualitative data revealed that students' learning experience was marked by a lack of clear learning objectives and experiential learning opportunities. Students also reported divergent reactions to death and dying and noted that palliative care was different from other areas of clinical medicine. This study revealed that palliative care teaching results in improved attitudes toward palliative care, reflecting the holistic and patient-focused nature of the palliative care curriculum. PMID:26399087

  19. Statin-Based Palliative Therapy for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Joni Yu-Hsuan; Lee, Fei-Peng; Chang, Chia-Lun; Wu, Szu-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Most hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) patients worldwide do not receive curative treatments. Alternative treatments for most HCC patients include palliative treatments, such as transarterial chemoembolization (TACE), chemotherapy, and radiotherapy. Although statins may be a chemopreventive treatment option for reducing hepatitis B virus (HBV)- and hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related HCC risks, their therapeutic effects are unknown. This study evaluated the effects of statin on HCC patients receiving palliative treatment. Data from the National Health Insurance claims database and cancer registry databases of The Collaboration Center of Health Information Application, Taiwan, were analyzed. We included HCC patients who were treated between January 1, 2001, and December 31, 2010, and followed them from the index date to December 31, 2012. The inclusion criteria were presence of HBV carrier-related HCC, age >20 years, and having received TACE, radiotherapy, or chemotherapy as palliative treatment. The exclusion criteria were cancer diagnosis before HCC was confirmed, surgery, liver transplantation, radiofrequency ablation, or percutaneous ethanol injection as curative treatment, missing sex-related information, HCC diagnosis before HBV, and age <20 years. We enrolled 20,200 HCC patients. The median follow-up duration was 1.66 years (interquartile range, 0.81). In total, 1988 and 18,212 patients received palliative treatment with and without statin use, respectively. HCC patients who received palliative treatment with statin use had lower HCC-specific deaths in all stages than those who received palliative treatment without statin use (P = 0.0001, 0.0002, 0.0012, and 0.0002, and relative risk (RR) = 0.763, 0.775, 0.839, and 0.718, for stages I–IV, respectively). In all-cause and HCC-specific deaths, decreasing trends (P for trend <0.0001) of adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) were observed in all stages with no treatment, statin use only, palliative treatment

  20. Interventions geared towards strengthening the health system of Namibia through the integration of palliative care.

    PubMed

    Freeman, Rachel; Luyirika, Emmanuel Bk; Namisango, Eve; Kiyange, Fatia

    2016-01-01

    The high burden of non-communicable diseases and communicable diseases in Africa characterised by late presentation and diagnosis makes the need for palliative care a priority from the point of diagnosis to death and through bereavement. Palliative care is an intervention that requires a multidisciplinary team to address the multifaceted needs of the patient and family. Thus, its development takes a broad approach that involves engaging all key stakeholders ranging from policy makers, care providers, educators, the public, patients, and families. The main focus of stakeholder engagement should address some core interventions geared towards improving knowledge and awareness, strengthening skills and attitudes about palliative care. These interventions include educating health and allied healthcare professionals on the palliative care-related problems of patients and best practices for care, explaining palliative care as a clinical and holistic discipline and demonstrating its effectiveness, the need to include palliative care into national policies, strategic plans, training curriculums of healthcare professionals and the engagement of patients, families, and communities. Interventions from a five-year programme that was aimed at strengthening the health system of Namibia through the integration of palliative care for people living with HIV and AIDS and cancer in Namibia are shared. This article illustrates how a country can implement the World Health Organisation's public health strategy for developing palliative care services, which recommends four pillars: government policy, education, drug availability, and implementation. PMID:27563348

  1. Sexuality and Life-Threatening Illness: Implications for Social Work and Palliative Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cagle, John G.; Bolte, Sage

    2009-01-01

    Social workers in hospice and palliative care settings have been charged with the responsibility of addressing sexuality with their patients and families. However, little direction has been offered as to how to approach this difficult subject within the context of palliative care. This article provides a critical analysis of the previous…

  2. Interventions geared towards strengthening the health system of Namibia through the integration of palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Rachel; Luyirika, Emmanuel BK; Namisango, Eve; Kiyange, Fatia

    2016-01-01

    The high burden of non-communicable diseases and communicable diseases in Africa characterised by late presentation and diagnosis makes the need for palliative care a priority from the point of diagnosis to death and through bereavement. Palliative care is an intervention that requires a multidisciplinary team to address the multifaceted needs of the patient and family. Thus, its development takes a broad approach that involves engaging all key stakeholders ranging from policy makers, care providers, educators, the public, patients, and families. The main focus of stakeholder engagement should address some core interventions geared towards improving knowledge and awareness, strengthening skills and attitudes about palliative care. These interventions include educating health and allied healthcare professionals on the palliative care-related problems of patients and best practices for care, explaining palliative care as a clinical and holistic discipline and demonstrating its effectiveness, the need to include palliative care into national policies, strategic plans, training curriculums of healthcare professionals and the engagement of patients, families, and communities. Interventions from a five-year programme that was aimed at strengthening the health system of Namibia through the integration of palliative care for people living with HIV and AIDS and cancer in Namibia are shared. This article illustrates how a country can implement the World Health Organisation’s public health strategy for developing palliative care services, which recommends four pillars: government policy, education, drug availability, and implementation. PMID:27563348

  3. [The role of the mobile palliative care team nurse].

    PubMed

    Chrétien, Sophie

    2015-11-01

    The mobile palliative care and support team nurse works in different departments within the hospital. The clinical situation of a patient enables the team to identify in what ways she is declining and thereby participate in the care management in order to favour the patient's return home. PMID:26567068

  4. When Hospice Fails: The Limits of Palliative Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Logue, Barbara J.

    1994-01-01

    Examines feasibility of palliative approach for all patients, showing reasonable people may refuse even the most exemplary care for themselves or an incompetent relative. Medical realities and alleviation of pointless suffering necessitate that policymakers consider other options, including "active" euthanasia, consistent with patient autonomy and…

  5. The cultivation of prognostic awareness through the provision of early palliative care in the ambulatory setting: a communication guide.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Vicki A; Jacobsen, Juliet; Greer, Joseph A; Pirl, William F; Temel, Jennifer S; Back, Anthony L

    2013-08-01

    Early, integrated palliative care delivered in the ambulatory setting has been associated with improved quality of life, lower rates of depression, and even prolonged survival. We outline an expert practice that provides a step-wise approach to cultivating prognostic awareness in patients cared for by a palliative care clinician early in the course of the patient's disease. This approach can be used by both novice and more experienced palliative care clinicians. PMID:23786425

  6. Endoscopic laser palliation for advanced malignant dysphagia.

    PubMed Central

    Bown, S G; Hawes, R; Matthewson, K; Swain, C P; Barr, H; Boulos, P B; Clark, C G

    1987-01-01

    Palliative treatment of malignant dysphagia aims to optimise swallowing for the maximum time possible with the minimum of general distress to these seriously ill patients. Thirty four patients considered unsuitable for surgery because of advanced malignancy, other major pathology or in whom previous surgery had been unsuccessful were treated endoscopically with the Nd YAG laser. Significant improvement was achieved in 29 (85%). On a scale of 0-4 (0 = normal swallowing; 4 = dysphagia for all fluids), mean improvement was 1.7, with 25 patients (74%) able to swallow most, or all solids after treatment. With increasing experience, the average number of treatment sessions required for each patient became less; initial time in hospital became comparable to that needed for intubation. Failures were caused by inappropriate patient selection (3), or laser related perforation (2). The mean survival in the whole group was 19 weeks (range 2-44). Eighteen patients needed further treatment for recurrent dysphagia, a mean of six weeks (range 2-15) after initial therapy. Ten of these responded, but eight eventually required insertion of a prosthetic tube. The duration of good palliation was very variable after initial laser therapy. Images Fig. 3 PMID:2443431

  7. Organization position statements and the stance of "studied neutrality" on euthanasia in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, Megan-Jane

    2012-12-01

    In recent years, palliative care and related organizations have increasingly adopted a stance of "studied neutrality" on the question of whether euthanasia should be legalized as a bona fide medical regimen in palliative care contexts. This stance, however, has attracted criticism from both opponents and proponents of euthanasia. Pro-euthanasia activists see the stance as an official position of indecision that is fundamentally disrespectful of a patient's right to "choose death" when life has become unbearable. Some palliative care constituents, in turn, are opposed to the stance, contending that it reflects an attitude of "going soft" on euthanasia and as weakening the political resistance that has hitherto been successful in preventing euthanasia from becoming more widely legalized. In this article, attention is given to examining critically the notion and possible unintended consequences of adopting a stance of studied neutrality on euthanasia in palliative care. It is argued that although palliative care and related organizations have an obvious stake in the outcome of the euthanasia debate, it is neither unreasonable nor inconsistent for such organizations to be unwilling to take a definitive stance on the issue. It is further contended that, given the long-standing tenets of palliative care, palliative care organizations have both a right and a responsibility to defend the integrity of the principles and practice of palliative care and to resist demands for euthanasia to be positioned either as an integral part or logical extension of palliative care. PMID:22771130

  8. Palliative Home Care: A Designer’s Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Bhatnagar, Tigmanshu

    2015-01-01

    The purpose for this observational research was to understand how Can Support provides palliative care at home and analyze its strengths and weaknesses in various socioeconomic scenarios for future development. In the period of 2 weeks, patients and their caregivers were silently observed in their natural surroundings during home care visits in order to listen their problems, identify the pattern of questions for the home care team, their natural way of storytelling, organizational techniques for medicines and medical reports, care givers lives, patient journey, etc. Such observations have enabled the understanding of the phenomena of home palliative care and have led to the identification of certain influential variables of the practice. PMID:26009683

  9. Motion monitoring in palliative care using unobtrusive bed sensors.

    PubMed

    Holtzman, M; Goubran, R; Knoefel, F

    2014-01-01

    Palliative care needs are growing with the aging population. Ambient sensors offer patients comfortable and discreet point-of-care monitoring. In this study, two palliative care participants were monitored in a sensorized bed. Motion monitoring by a two-tier gross and fine movement detector provided accurate detection and classification of movement, compared to annotations by an observer. However, ascribing the motion to the patient rather than caregivers or visitors would require supplemental sensors. Motion was indicative of pain, with 13% of time spent moving while in pain versus 3% while not noted as in pain. PMID:25571304

  10. Palliative care - shortness of breath

    MedlinePlus

    ... to control shortness of breath: Call your doctor, palliative care team, or hospice nurse for advice Call 911 ... Bicanovsky L. Comfort care: symptom control in the dying. In: Walsh ... . 1st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2008:chap 181.

  11. Spirituality in geriatric palliative care.

    PubMed

    Puchalski, Christina M

    2015-05-01

    This article presents an overview of spirituality as an essential domain of geriatrics palliative care, and provides guidelines for clinicians to diagnose spiritual distress and to integrate spirituality into their clinical practice. PMID:25920059

  12. Center to Advance Palliative Care

    MedlinePlus

    ... Learn More Overview Palliative in Practice Blog Report Card getpalliativecare.org Topics Topics of Interest CAPC ensures ... and Families Payer-Provider PCLC Pediatric Policy Report Card Seminar Membership Membership CAPC makes sure you never ...

  13. Palliation of malignant tracheal strictures using silicone T tubes.

    PubMed Central

    Insall, R L; Morritt, G N

    1991-01-01

    The use of silicone T tubes for intubation of malignant tracheobronchial strictures may provide some degree of palliation of this distressing condition. It was used in seven patients with malignant lesions and two with benign strictures (resulting from tracheal trauma and lung transplantation). Four patients (two with cancer) are still alive and well with the tube in position. All patients noted improvement in dyspnoea and stridor. The main problems were tube migration (one patient), tracheo-oesophageal fistula (one patient), and blockage of the tube by tumour (two patients) or encrusted secretions (three patients). Airway patency was restored when the tube was blocked by cleaning or by laser resection of the tumour. With careful supervision and education of the patient intubation can give useful palliation to patients with distressing upper airways obstruction. Images PMID:1709308

  14. Negotiating futility, managing emotions: nursing the transition to palliative care.

    PubMed

    Broom, Alex; Kirby, Emma; Good, Phillip; Wootton, Julia; Yates, Patsy; Hardy, Janet

    2015-03-01

    Nurses play a pivotal role in caring for patients during the transition from life-prolonging care to palliative care. This is an area of nursing prone to emotional difficulty, interpersonal complexity, and interprofessional conflict. It is situated within complex social dynamics, including those related to establishing and accepting futility and reconciling the desire to maintain hope. Here, drawing on interviews with 20 Australian nurses, we unpack their accounts of nursing the transition to palliative care, focusing on the purpose of nursing at the point of transition; accounts of communication and strategies for representing palliative care; emotional engagement and burden; and key interprofessional challenges. We argue that in caring for patients approaching the end of life, nurses occupy precarious interpersonal and interprofessional spaces that involve a negotiated order around sentimental work, providing them with both capital (privileged access) and burden (emotional suffering) within their day-to-day work. PMID:25246331

  15. Evidence of improved quality of life with pediatric palliative care.

    PubMed

    O'Quinn, Lucy P; Giambra, Barbara K

    2014-01-01

    Pediatric nurses provide holistic family-centered care for children with life-limiting illnesses while being sensitive to children's growth and developmental needs. To learn how pediatric palliative care programs benefit children and their families, the following clinical question was asked: Among children with a life-limiting illness, does the use of a palliative care program compared with not using a palliative care program improve quality of life for patients and their families? Evidence from two studies found that palliative care services improve quality of life for children with life-limiting illness and their families in the areas of the child's emotional well-being and parental perception of preparation for the child's end of life, resulting in a low grade for the body of evidence. Future research should include high quality studies with larger sample sizes and control groups, and include children's perspectives--from both patients and siblings--to give a more complete picture of how best to improve their quality of life. A reliable tool is needed that includes a spiritual component and sensitive indicators specific to children with a life-limiting illness. Future research using this tool will more fully answer how palliative care services improve children's quality of life. PMID:25929123

  16. Methodological Research Priorities in Palliative Care and Hospice Quality Measurement.

    PubMed

    Dy, Sydney Morss; Herr, Keela; Bernacki, Rachelle E; Kamal, Arif H; Walling, Anne M; Ersek, Mary; Norton, Sally A

    2016-02-01

    Quality measurement is a critical tool for improving palliative care and hospice, but significant research is needed to improve the application of quality indicators. We defined methodological priorities for advancing the science of quality measurement in this field based on discussions of the Technical Advisory Panel of the Measuring What Matters consensus project of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association and a subsequent strategy meeting to better clarify research challenges, priorities, and quality measurement implementation strategies. In this article, we describe three key priorities: 1) defining the denominator(s) (or the population of interest) for palliative care quality indicators, 2) developing methods to measure quality from different data sources, and 3) conducting research to advance the development of patient/family-reported indicators. We then apply these concepts to the key quality domain of advance care planning and address relevance to implementation of indicators in improving care. Developing the science of quality measurement in these key areas of palliative care and hospice will facilitate improved quality measurement across all populations with serious illness and care for patients and families. PMID:26596877

  17. Pulmonary medicine and palliative care.

    PubMed

    Tucakovic, M; Bascom, R; Bascom, P B

    2001-04-01

    Gynaecological malignancies affect the respiratory system both directly and indirectly. Malignant pleural effusion is a poor prognostic factor: management options include repeated thoracentesis, chemical pleurodesis, symptomatic relief of dyspnoea with oxygen and morphine, and external drainage. Parenchymal metastases are typically multifocal and respond to chemotherapy, with a limited role for pulmonary metastatectomy. Pulmonary tumour embolism is frequently associated with lymphangitic carcinomatosis, and is most common in choriocarcinoma. Thromboembolic disease, associated with the hypercoagulable state of cancer, is treated with anticoagulation. Inferior vena cava filter placement is indicated when anticoagulation cannot be given, or when emboli recur despite adequate anticoagulation. Palliative care has a major role for respiratory symptoms of gynaecological malignancies. Treatable causes of dyspnoea include bronchospasm, fluid overload and retained secretions. Opiates are effective at relieving dyspnoea associated with effusions, metatases, and lymphangitic tumour spread. Non-pharmacological therapies include energy conservation, home redesign, and dyspnoea relief strategies, including pursed lip breathing, relaxation, oxygen, circulation of air with a fan, and attention to spiritual suffering. Identification and treatment of gastroesophageal reflux, sinusitis, and asthma can improve many patients' coughs. Chest wall pain responds to local radiotherapy, nerve blocks or systemic analgesia. Case examples illustrate ways to address quality of life issues. PMID:11358403

  18. [Palliative care in non-cancer, chronic, progressive diseases].

    PubMed

    Radványi, Ildikó; Nagy, Lajos; Balogh, Sándor; Csikós, Ágnes

    2015-10-18

    Malignant and other chronic diseases cause the death of 2.5 million people in Europe annually. It is anticipated that this number will grow due to the aging of the European population. The death of a significant proportion of patients having progressive chronic disease is preceded by an extended end of life stadium. In this stage the patients have severe symptoms and pain that necessitate their symptomatic treatment and palliative care. The assessment of the life expectancy of patients, estimation of the prognosis of their illness and, therefore, selection of patients with a need of intensified palliative care often pose difficulties. This paper provides a summary on the basic elements of "good palliative care". It introduces the most frequent models for the procession of chronic diseases and those indicators that help practicing doctors to recognise easier patients with a need of intensified palliative care, and as a result provides more adequate medical attendance that is better suited to the specific needs of the patients. PMID:26551310

  19. Research Priorities in Geriatric Palliative Care: Informal Caregiving

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Background Informal care provided by family members is an essential feature of health care systems worldwide. Although caregiving often begins early in the disease process, over time informal caregivers must deal with chronic, debilitating, and life-threatening illnesses. Despite thousands of published studies on informal care, little is known about the intersection of informal caregiving and formal palliative care. Objective The goal of this review is to identify research priorities that would enhance our understanding of the relationship between informal caregiving and palliative care. Design To better understand palliative care in the context of caregiving, we provide an overview of the nature of a caregiving career from inception to care recipient placement and death and the associated tasks, challenges, and health effects at each stage of a caregiving career. This in turn leads to key unanswered questions designed to advance research in caregiving and palliative care. Results Little is known about the extent to which and how palliative care uniquely affects the caregiving experience. This suggests a need for more fine-grained prospective studies that attempt to clearly delineate the experience of caregivers during palliative and end-of-life phases, characterize the transitions into and out of these phases from both informal and formal caregiver perspectives, identify caregiver needs at each phase, and identify effects on key caregiver and patient outcomes. Conclusions Inasmuch as most caregivers must deal with chronic, debilitating, and often life-threatening conditions, it is essential that we advance a research agenda that addresses the interplay between informal care and formal palliative care. PMID:23883146

  20. Using cannabinoids in pain and palliative care.

    PubMed

    Peat, Sue

    2010-10-01

    Interest in the use of cannabinoids in a clinical setting is gradually increasing, particularly in patients where more conventional treatments have failed. They have been reported as offering perceived benefits in a wide range of conditions, but the major interest at present is centred on their place in pain management and in the palliation of symptoms secondary to terminal cancer and neurological disease. The potential benefits include symptomatic relief for patients suffering from intractable neuropathic pain, anorexia, anxiety and muscle spasm. There is clear consensus that cannibinoids should not be used as a first-line monotherapy, but should be considered as valuable adjuvants to more commonly indicated therapeutic options in the management of palliative care patients. Scientific evidence documenting the benefits of the canibinoids nabilone and sativex is accumulating, but needs to be evaluated carefully in the light of the paucity of available data. Both drugs are usually used under the guidance of specialist units. Nabilone and Sativex are now controlled drugs, and are frequently used outside of their licensed indication (control of chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting) and hence particular care needs to be taken in evaluating the rational for their use. Sativex has been recently licenced for use in the management of patients with multiple sclerosis. PMID:20972379

  1. Threading the cloak: palliative care education for care providers of adolescents and young adults with cancer

    PubMed Central

    Wiener, Lori; Weaver, Meaghann Shaw; Bell, Cynthia J; Sansom-Daly, Ursula M

    2015-01-01

    Medical providers are trained to investigate, diagnose, and treat cancer. Their primary goal is to maximize the chances of curing the patient, with less training provided on palliative care concepts and the unique developmental needs inherent in this population. Early, systematic integration of palliative care into standard oncology practice represents a valuable, imperative approach to improving the overall cancer experience for adolescents and young adults (AYAs). The importance of competent, confident, and compassionate providers for AYAs warrants the development of effective educational strategies for teaching AYA palliative care. Just as palliative care should be integrated early in the disease trajectory of AYA patients, palliative care training should be integrated early in professional development of trainees. As the AYA age spectrum represents sequential transitions through developmental stages, trainees experience changes in their learning needs during their progression through sequential phases of training. This article reviews unique epidemiologic, developmental, and psychosocial factors that make the provision of palliative care especially challenging in AYAs. A conceptual framework is provided for AYA palliative care education. Critical instructional strategies including experiential learning, group didactic opportunity, shared learning among care disciplines, bereaved family members as educators, and online learning are reviewed. Educational issues for provider training are addressed from the perspective of the trainer, trainee, and AYA. Goals and objectives for an AYA palliative care cancer rotation are presented. Guidance is also provided on ways to support an AYA's quality of life as end of life nears. PMID:25750863

  2. Prospective integration of cultural consideration in biomedical research for patients with advanced cancer: recommendations from an international conference on malignant bowel obstruction in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Fineberg, Iris Cohen; Grant, Marcia; Aziz, Noreen M; Payne, Richard; Kagawa-Singer, Marjorie; Dunn, Geoffrey P; Kinzbrunner, Barry M; Palos, Guadalupe; Shinagawa, Susan Matsuko; Krouse, Robert S

    2007-07-01

    In the setting of an international conference on malignant bowel obstruction as a model for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in palliative care, we discuss the importance of incorporating prospective cultural considerations into research design. The approach commonly used in biomedical research has traditionally valued the RCT as the ultimate "way of knowing" about how to best treat a medical condition. The foremost limitation of this approach is the lack of recognition of the impact of cultural viewpoints on research outcomes. We propose that interest relevant to cultural viewpoints should be emphasized in conceptualizing and interpreting research questions, designs, and results. In addition to recognizing our cultural biases as individuals and researchers, we recommend two major shifts in designing and implementing RCTs: 1) inclusion of a multidisciplinary team of researchers to inform the diversity of perspectives and expertise brought to the research, and 2) use of mixed methods of inquiry, reflecting both deductive and inductive modes of inference. PMID:17532174

  3. Regional anesthesia for an upper extremity amputation for palliative care in a patient with end-stage osteosarcoma complicated by a large anterior mediastinal mass

    PubMed Central

    Hakim, Mumin; Burrier, Candice; Bhalla, Tarun; Raman, Vidya T; Martin, David P; Dairo, Olamide; Mayerson, Joel L; Tobias, Joseph D

    2015-01-01

    Tumor progression during end-of-life care can lead to significant pain, which at times may be refractory to routine analgesic techniques. Although regional anesthesia is commonly used for postoperative pain care, there is limited experience with its use during home hospice care. We present a 24-year-old male with end-stage metastatic osteosarcoma who required anesthetic care for a right-sided above-the-elbow amputation. The anesthetic management was complicated by the presence of a large mediastinal mass, limited pulmonary reserve, and severe chronic pain with a high preoperative opioid requirement. Intraoperative anesthesia and postoperative pain management were provided by regional anesthesia using an interscalene catheter. He was discharged home with the interscalene catheter in place with a continuous local anesthetic infusion that allowed weaning of his chronic opioid medications and the provision of effective pain control. The perioperative applications of regional anesthesia in palliative and home hospice care are discussed. PMID:26442759

  4. Overcoming the Obstacles in Promoting Hospice Palliative Care--Sharing Experiences of the Taiwan Changhua Christian Hospital.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Pei-Yu

    2015-01-01

    Hospice palliative care for terminal patients is necessary, yet challenges are on the way worldwide. This study demonstrated that hospice palliative care has been quickly developed in Taiwan due to the support of the National Health Insurance system, the promotion by civil societies and religious groups, patient's legal right for DNR, easier access to pain killers through medical prescription, and well-planned hospice staff training programs. This paper introduces how hospice consultation is provided by a comprehensive hospice palliative team at Changhua Christian Hospital to establish trust and cooperation with the medical team, and to improve hospice-palliative care referral and utilization rates. PMID:26867341

  5. Palliative care team visits. Qualitative study through participant observation

    PubMed Central

    Bueno Pernias, Maria José; Hueso Montoro, César; Guardia Mancilla, Plácido; Montoya Juárez, Rafael; García Caro, Maria Paz

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: To describe the clinical encounters that occur when a palliative care team provides patient care and the features that influence these encounters and indicate whether they are favorable or unfavorable depending on the expectations and feelings of the various participants. Methods: A qualitative case study conducted via participant observation. A total of 12 observations of the meetings of palliative care teams with patients and families in different settings (home, hospital and consultation room) were performed. The visits were follow-up or first visits, either scheduled or on demand. Content analysis of the observation was performed. Results: The analysis showed the normal follow-up activity of the palliative care unit that was focused on controlling symptoms, sharing information and providing advice on therapeutic regimens and care. The environment appeared to condition the patients' expressions and the type of patient relationship. Favorable clinical encounter conditions included kindness and gratitude. Unfavorable conditions were deterioration caused by approaching death, unrealistic family objectives and limited resources. Conclusion: Home visits from basic palliative care teams play an important role in patient and family well-being. The visits seem to focus on controlling symptoms and are conditioned by available resources. PMID:27226663

  6. Palliative Care in the Emergency Department.

    PubMed

    McEwan, Alyssia; Silverberg, Joshua Z

    2016-08-01

    As the geriatric population increases in the United States, there is an increase in number of visits to emergency departments for end-of-life and palliative care. This provides the emergency physician with a unique opportunity to alleviate and prevent further suffering in this vulnerable population. Competency in communication strategies that support shared decision making and familiarity with medicolegal terminology increase physician confidence about addressing complaints at the end of life. Familiarity with evidence-based recommendations for symptom management of pain at the end of life aids the emergency physician in creating a positive experience for the patient and their loved ones. PMID:27475020

  7. The palliation of dyspnea in terminal disease.

    PubMed

    Zeppetella, G

    1998-01-01

    Dyspnea is a complex subjective experience that is common in terminal illness. Patients may present at any time during the course of their illness, although prevalence increases with disease progression. Dyspnea has physical, psychological, social and spiritual components; without recognizing how each of these contributes to the total suffering of dyspnea, management is unlikely to be successful. The management of dyspnea involves both pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatment. The main pharmacological palliative treatments are oxygen, opioids, and benzodiazepines, but the evidence to support these treatments is limited. More research is urgently needed to establish the efficacy of current treatments and to identify new ones. PMID:9866455

  8. Treating nausea and vomiting in palliative care: a review

    PubMed Central

    Glare, Paul; Miller, Jeanna; Nikolova, Tanya; Tickoo, Roma

    2011-01-01

    Nausea and vomiting are portrayed in the specialist palliative care literature as common and distressing symptoms affecting the majority of patients with advanced cancer and other life-limiting illnesses. However, recent surveys indicate that these symptoms may be less common and bothersome than has previously been reported. The standard palliative care approach to the assessment and treatment of nausea and vomiting is based on determining the cause and then relating this back to the “emetic pathway” before prescribing drugs such as dopamine antagonists, antihistamines, and anticholinergic agents which block neurotransmitters at different sites along the pathway. However, the evidence base for the effectiveness of this approach is meager, and may be in part because relevance of the neuropharmacology of the emetic pathway to palliative care patients is limited. Many palliative care patients are over the age of 65 years, making these agents difficult to use. Greater awareness of drug interactions and QTc prolongation are emerging concerns for all age groups. The selective serotonin receptor antagonists are the safest antiemetics, but are not used first-line in many countries because there is very little scientific rationale or clinical evidence to support their use outside the licensed indications. Cannabinoids may have an increasing role. Advances in interventional gastroenterology are increasing the options for nonpharmacological management. Despite these emerging issues, the approach to nausea and vomiting developed within palliative medicine over the past 40 years remains relevant. It advocates careful clinical evaluation of the symptom and the person suffering it, and an understanding of the clinical pharmacology of medicines that are available for palliating them. PMID:21966219

  9. Palliative care, double effect and the law in Australia.

    PubMed

    White, B P; Willmott, L; Ashby, M

    2011-06-01

    Care and decision-making at the end of life that promotes comfort and dignity is widely endorsed by public policy and the law. In ethical analysis of palliative care interventions that are argued potentially to hasten death, these may be deemed to be ethically permissible by the application of the doctrine of double effect, if the doctor's intention is to relieve pain and not cause death. In part because of the significance of ethics in the development of law in the medical sphere, this doctrine is also likely to be recognized as part of Australia's common law, although hitherto there have been no cases concerning palliative care brought before a court in Australia to test this. Three Australian States have, nonetheless, created legislative defences that are different from the common law with the intent of clarifying the law, promoting palliative care, and distinguishing it from euthanasia. However, these defences have the potential to provide less protection for doctors administering palliative care. In addition to requiring a doctor to have an appropriate intent, the defences insist on adherence to particular medical practice standards and perhaps require patient consent. Doctors providing end-of-life care in these States need to be aware of these legislative changes. Acting in accordance with the common law doctrine of double effect may not provide legal protection. Similar changes are likely to occur in other States and Territories as there is a trend towards enacting legislative defences that deal with the provision of palliative care. PMID:21707893

  10. Surgery offers the best palliation for carcinoma of the pancreas.

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, I. S.; Keating, J.; Johnson, C. D.

    1991-01-01

    This debate discusses the palliative management of pancreatic cancer. The arguments in favour of surgical palliation are that this approach allows all symptoms to be treated or prevented, the diagnosis can be confirmed histologically and a final assessment of resectability can be made. The arguments against the use of surgery are that survival is short and that effective alternative therapies are available: endoscopic intubation, percutaneous coeliac plexus block and pancreatic enzyme supplements. The most appropriate policy, however, is to tailor the management plan to suit the individual patient. PMID:1713754

  11. Diet and Nutrition in Cancer Survivorship and Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Bazzan, Anthony J.; Newberg, Andrew B.; Cho, William C.; Monti, Daniel A.

    2013-01-01

    The primary goal of palliative cancer care is typically to relieve suffering and improve quality of life. Most approaches to diet in this setting have focused only on eating as many calories as possible to avoid cachexia. However, as the concept of palliative care has evolved to include all aspects of cancer survivorship and not just end of life care, there is an increasing need to thoughtfully consider diet and nutrition approaches that can impact not only quality of life but overall health outcomes and perhaps even positively affect cancer recurrence and progression. In this regard, there has been a recent emphasis in the literature on nutrition and cancer as an important factor in both quality of life and in the pathophysiology of cancer. Hence, the primary purpose of this paper is to review the current data on diet and nutrition as it pertains to a wide range of cancer patients in the palliative care setting. PMID:24288570

  12. Method for palliation of pain in human bone cancer using therapeutic tin-117m compositions

    DOEpatents

    Srivastava, Suresh C.; Meinken, George E.; Mausner, Leonard F.; Atkins, Harold L.

    1998-12-29

    The invention provides a method for the palliation of bone pain due to cancer by the administration of a unique dosage of a tin-117m (Sn-117m) stannic chelate complex in a pharmaceutically acceptable composition. In addition, the invention provides a method for simultaneous palliation of bone pain and radiotherapy in cancer patients using compositions containing Sn-117m chelates. The invention also provides a method for palliating bone pain in cancer patients using Sn-117m-containing compositions and monitoring patient status by imaging the distribution of the Sn-117m in the patients. Also provided are pharmaceutically acceptable compositions containing Sn-117m chelate complexes for the palliation of bone pain in cancer patients.

  13. Method for palliation of pain in human bone cancer using therapeutic tin-117m compositions

    DOEpatents

    Srivastava, S.C.; Meinken, G.E.; Mausner, L.F.; Atkins, H.L.

    1998-12-29

    The invention provides a method for the palliation of bone pain due to cancer by the administration of a unique dosage of a tin-117m (Sn-117m) stannic chelate complex in a pharmaceutically acceptable composition. In addition, the invention provides a method for simultaneous palliation of bone pain and radiotherapy in cancer patients using compositions containing Sn-117m chelates. The invention also provides a method for palliating bone pain in cancer patients using Sn-117m-containing compositions and monitoring patient status by imaging the distribution of the Sn-117m in the patients. Also provided are pharmaceutically acceptable compositions containing Sn-117m chelate complexes for the palliation of bone pain in cancer patients. 5 figs.

  14. Palliative Care: What You Should Know

    MedlinePlus

    ... Palliative care is provided by a team of doctors, nurses, and other specialists who work together with a ... help you. 3 ? Ask for it! Tell your doctors, nurses, family and caregivers that you want palliative care. ...

  15. Is Palliative Care Right for You?

    MedlinePlus

    ... medical care Understanding the pros and cons (benefits/burdens) of treatments (e.g., dialysis, additional cancer treatments, ... the Media For Clinicians For Policymakers For Family Caregivers What Is Palliative Care Definition Pediatric Palliative Care ...

  16. Palliative Care in the Emergency Department

    PubMed Central

    Mierendorf, Susanne M; Gidvani, Vinita

    2014-01-01

    The Emergency Department (ED) is the place where people most frequently seek urgent care. For patients living with chronic disease or malignancy who may be in a crisis, this visit may be pivotal in determining the patients’ trajectory. There is a large movement in education of emergency medicine physicians, hospitalists, and intensivists from acute aggressive interventions to patient-goal assessment, recognizing last stages of life and prioritizing symptom management. Although the ED is not considered an ideal place to begin palliative care, hospital-based physicians may assist in eliciting the patient’s goals of care and discussing prognosis and disease trajectory. This may help shift to noncurative treatment. This article will summarize the following: identification of patients who may need palliation, discussing prognosis, eliciting goals of care and directives, symptom management in the ED, and making plans for further care. These efforts have been shown to improve outcomes and to decrease length of stay and cost. The focus of this article is relieving “patient” symptoms and family distress, honoring the patient’s goals of care, and assisting in transition to a noncurative approach and placement where this may be accomplished. PMID:24694318

  17. The Nurses' Knowledge and Attitudes towards the Palliative Care

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ayed, Ahmad; Sayej, Sumaya; Harazneh, Lubna; Fashafsheh, Imad; Eqtait, Faeda

    2015-01-01

    Background: Palliative care (PC) is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problem associated with life-threatening illness through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification, impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems like physical, psychosocial and…

  18. [Palliative care: accompanying persons at the end of life].

    PubMed

    Espinar Cid, Victoria

    2012-01-01

    The philosophy, the essence and the therapeutic goals of palliative care help the health professionals offer the patients a high quality assistance on their last stage of life. With both, a human and scientific view, it's possible to deal with the relief of suffer on all dimensions. PMID:22548665

  19. An unusual cause of vomiting in a palliative care setting.

    PubMed

    Railsback, Linda

    2011-09-01

    Control of symptoms, including nausea and vomiting, is central to palliative care. Self-induced vomiting in a middle-aged male patient with a life-limiting abdominal malignancy provided a challenge in diagnosis and management. This case report discusses diagnostic and therapeutic considerations. PMID:21838953

  20. Anger in palliative care: a clinical approach.

    PubMed

    Philip, J; Gold, M; Schwarz, M; Komesaroff, P

    2007-01-01

    Anger in patients and families is a common problem in the care of persons with advanced disease. Whereas it is widely accepted that anger may be a justifiable reaction to significant illness and loss, it frequently creates difficulties for the doctors involved in care. In particular, there is often a personal impact on the doctor at whom anger is directed. This paper examines results of qualitative research with palliative care workers in the context of the broader published literature and the authors' clinical experiences. The ability to interact effectively with angry patients is a skill that is often learned with experience and is extremely useful in both transforming the patients' reaction into a more creative emotion and in developing a therapeutic relationship. Despite conscientious efforts, however, a few patients continue to be angry. A practical approach to anger, useful for the clinician directly involved in care, is outlined along with some strategies to adopt in the face of persistent anger. PMID:17199844

  1. Knowledge and attitude of final - year medical students in Germany towards palliative care - an interinstitutional questionnaire-based study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background To care for terminally ill and dying patients requires a thorough medical education, encompassing skills, knowledge, and attitudes in the field of palliative care. Undergraduate medical students in Germany will receive mandatory teaching in palliative care in the near future driven by recent changes in the Medical Licensure Act. Before new curricula can be implemented, the knowledge of medical students with respect to palliative care, their confidence to handle palliative care situations correctly, their therapeutic attitude, and their subjective assessment about previous teaching practices have to be better understood. Method We designed a composite, three-step questionnaire (self estimation of confidence, knowledge questions, and opinion on the actual and future medical curriculum) conducted online of final - year medical students at two universities in Germany. Results From a total of 318 enrolled students, 101 responded and described limited confidence in dealing with specific palliative care issues, except for pain therapy. With regard to questions examining their knowledge base in palliative care, only one third of the students (33%) answered more than half of the questions correctly. Only a small percentage of students stated they had gained sufficient knowledge and experience in palliative care during their studies, and the vast majority supported the introduction of palliative care as a mandatory part of the undergraduate curriculum. Conclusion This study identifies medical students' limited confidence and knowledge base in palliative care in 2 German universities, and underlines the importance of providing a mandatory palliative care curriculum. PMID:22112146

  2. Endoscopic palliation for inoperable malignant dysphagia: long term follow up.

    PubMed Central

    Maunoury, V; Brunetaud, J M; Cochelard, D; Boniface, B; Cortot, A; Paris, J C

    1992-01-01

    This prospective non-randomised trial of 128 selected patients with unresectable oesophageal or gastrooesophageal junction cancers aims to evaluate the initial relief of malignant obstruction by means of bipolar electrocoagulation for both circumferential and submucosal strictures of Nd:YAG laser for the other patients. A limited dilatation was performed initially if a small calibre endoscope was unable to pass through the stricture. Prompt and significant relief of dysphagia without complications was achieved in 83% of patients. Improved patients were retreated monthly during the follow up period. Radiotherapy was recommended when possible. Symptomatic relief of obstruction lasted 4.2 months on average and 76% of patients remained palliated until death. Monthly retreatment using the most appropriate endoscopic procedure for the tumour configuration and radiotherapy after endoscopic relief of obstruction seems to give the best palliation for patients with unresectable cancers of the oesophagus or gastrooesophageal junction. PMID:1283144

  3. Improving palliative care outcomes for Aboriginal Australians: service providers’ perspectives

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Aboriginal Australians have a lower rate of utilisation of palliative care services than the general population. This study aimed to explore care providers’ experiences and concerns in providing palliative care for Aboriginal people, and to identify opportunities for overcoming gaps in understanding between them and their Aboriginal patients and families. Methods In-depth, qualitative interviews with urban, rural and remote palliative care providers were undertaken in inpatient and community settings in Western Australia. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and coded independently by two researchers with QSR NVivo 10 software used to help manage data. Data analysis was informed by multiple theoretical standpoints, including the social ecological model, critical cultural theories and the ‘cultural security’ framework. Thematic analysis was carried out that identified patterns within data. Results Fifteen palliative care providers were interviewed. Overall they reported lack of understanding of Aboriginal culture and being uncertain of the needs and priorities of Aboriginal people during end-of-life care. According to several participants, very few Aboriginal people had an understanding of palliative care. Managing issues such as anger, denial, the need for non-medical support due to socioeconomic disadvantage, and dealing with crises and conflicts over funeral arrangements were reported as some of the tensions between Aboriginal patients and families and the service providers. Conclusion Early referral to palliative care is important in demonstrating and maintaining a caring therapeutic relationship. Paramount to meeting the needs for Aboriginal patients was access to appropriate information and logistical, psychological and emotional support. These were often seen as essential but additional to standard palliative care services. The broader context of Aboriginal history and historical distrust of mainstream services was seen to

  4. Access to palliative care: insights into ground realities post-2014 amendment to NDPS Act.

    PubMed

    Rajagopal, M R

    2016-01-01

    Medical practice today is disease-focused, ignoring the universally accepted definition of health as not just the absence of disease, but the promotion of complete physical, social and mental well-being. Generations of doctors in India have not studied modern pain management, and palliative care is practically unknown in most parts of the country, causing patients to be rejected by hospitals and doctors when they need help the most. The draconian Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act of 1985, outdated medical and nursing education, lack of public awareness and lack of clear governmental policy are responsible for this sorry state of affairs. The development of a community-oriented palliative care network eventually led to the formulation of a state palliative care policy in Kerala. The acceptance of palliative care as a medical specialty by the Medical Council of India and introduction of a postgraduate degree course in palliative medicine in 2010, the development of a National Programme for Palliative Care in 2012 by the Ministry of Health of the Government of India, and the amendment of the NDPS Act in 2014 have been major positive developments which have the potential to change the current state of affairs. However, these recent achievements represent but one step in the right direction. An improvement in palliative care education, a realistic palliative care policy and implementation of the NDPS Amendment Act are necessary for doing away with the gross, needless violation of the human right to life with dignity. PMID:26826658

  5. The perspectives on including palliative care in the Indian undergraduate physiotherapy curriculum.

    PubMed

    Veqar, Zubia

    2013-04-01

    According to the guidelines which were published by WHO in 2008, palliative care has been defined as "An approach that improves the quality of life of the patients and their families who face the problems which are associated with life-threatening illnesses, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of an early identification, an impeccable assessment and the treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual". The intervention which is provided as a part of the palliative care has to be provided by health professionals who strictly work as a part of multidisciplinary team and have been specifically trained to an optimal level of competency in the field. The impairment of the physical function and pain are two key problem areas in palliative care, which a physiotherapist deals with. Is a physiotherapist who is trained in India, trained to work as an efficient member of the team in this field? THIS ARTICLE DEALS WITH THE FOLLOWING: What is palliative care and what is its importance?A multidisciplinary approach to palliative careThe scenario of palliative care in IndiaThe role of physiotherapy in palliative care.The current scenario of physiotherapy education vis a vis palliative care. PMID:23730677

  6. Palliative Care Training and Research: The Development in Europe and the Bologna Experience

    PubMed Central

    Bolognesi, Deborah; Brighi, Nicole; Muciarelli, Pier-Angelo; Biasco, Guido

    2013-01-01

    Development of palliative care (PC) culture spur the need of proper and formal training. Palliative medicine is not fully recognized as an academic medical discipline due to its humanistic influences, and studies show that physicians declare to be not prepared to provide care and pain management to dying patients. Nowadays, despite leading countries in PC being considered more innovative than other countries,such as Italy, facts show that the achievement of acknowledged discipline went through a long process. In Italy,professionals from about 450 PC units and organizations need to receive a proper and homogeneous training. In Italy, palliative medicine official certification is an undergoing process advocated by a few organizations and in Bologna the Academy of the Sciences of Palliative Medicine operates since 2007 with the defined mission of developing PC culture, also within the University. In order to be as much effective in pursuing its mission, the Academy has strengthened several international cooperation programs and today is leader in PC professional training and research in Italy. The recent law and its feasibility is fastening the process of development of Palliative Care Culture in Italy even if training is not properly regulated and official certification for physician is under evaluation. In Europe, the European Association of Palliative Care is stressing the need for training programs in palliative medicine and the outcomes of the dedicated task force on official certification and specialty in Palliative Medicine will remarkably force policy makers and national councils to officially recognize the discipline. PMID:23766591

  7. Palliative care training and research: the development in europe and the bologna experience.

    PubMed

    Bolognesi, Deborah; Brighi, Nicole; Muciarelli, Pier-Angelo; Biasco, Guido

    2013-01-01

    Development of palliative care (PC) culture spur the need of proper and formal training. Palliative medicine is not fully recognized as an academic medical discipline due to its humanistic influences, and studies show that physicians declare to be not prepared to provide care and pain management to dying patients. Nowadays, despite leading countries in PC being considered more innovative than other countries,such as Italy, facts show that the achievement of acknowledged discipline went through a long process. In Italy,professionals from about 450 PC units and organizations need to receive a proper and homogeneous training. In Italy, palliative medicine official certification is an undergoing process advocated by a few organizations and in Bologna the Academy of the Sciences of Palliative Medicine operates since 2007 with the defined mission of developing PC culture, also within the University. In order to be as much effective in pursuing its mission, the Academy has strengthened several international cooperation programs and today is leader in PC professional training and research in Italy. The recent law and its feasibility is fastening the process of development of Palliative Care Culture in Italy even if training is not properly regulated and official certification for physician is under evaluation. In Europe, the European Association of Palliative Care is stressing the need for training programs in palliative medicine and the outcomes of the dedicated task force on official certification and specialty in Palliative Medicine will remarkably force policy makers and national councils to officially recognize the discipline. PMID:23766591

  8. Rawlsian Justice and Palliative Care.

    PubMed

    Knight, Carl; Albertsen, Andreas

    2015-10-01

    Palliative care serves both as an integrated part of treatment and as a last effort to care for those we cannot cure. The extent to which palliative care should be provided and our reasons for doing so have been curiously overlooked in the debate about distributive justice in health and healthcare. We argue that one prominent approach, the Rawlsian approach developed by Norman Daniels, is unable to provide such reasons and such care. This is because of a central feature in Daniels' account, namely that care should be provided to restore people's opportunities. Daniels' view is both unable to provide pain relief to those who need it as a supplement to treatment and, without justice-based reasons to provide palliative care to those whose opportunities cannot be restored. We conclude that this makes Daniels' framework much less attractive. PMID:25689627

  9. Integrating palliative care in the surgical and trauma intensive care unit: A report from the Improving Palliative Care in the Intensive Care Unit (IPAL-ICU) Project Advisory Board and the Center to Advance Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Mosenthal, Anne C.; Weissman, David E.; Curtis, J. Randall; Hays, Ross M.; Lustbader, Dana R.; Mulkerin, Colleen; Puntillo, Kathleen A.; Ray, Daniel E.; Bassett, Rick; Boss, Renee D.; Brasel, Karen J.; Campbell, Margaret; Nelson, Judith E.

    2012-01-01

    Objective Although successful models for palliative care delivery and quality improvement in the intensive care unit have been described, their applicability in surgical intensive care unit settings has not been fully addressed. We undertook to define specific challenges, strategies, and solutions for integration of palliative care in the surgical intensive care unit. Data Sources We searched the MEDLINE database from inception to May 2011 for all English language articles using the term “surgical palliative care” or the terms “surgical critical care,” “surgical ICU,” “surgeon,” “trauma” or “transplant,” and “palliative care” or “end-of- life care” and hand-searched our personal files for additional articles. Based on review of these articles and the experiences of our interdisciplinary expert Advisory Board, we prepared this report. Data Extraction and Synthesis We critically reviewed the existing literature on delivery of palliative care in the surgical intensive care unit setting focusing on challenges, strategies, models, and interventions to promote effective integration of palliative care for patients receiving surgical critical care and their families. Conclusions Characteristics of patients with surgical disease and practices, attitudes, and interactions of different disciplines on the surgical critical care team present distinctive issues for intensive care unit palliative care integration and improvement. Physicians, nurses, and other team members in surgery, critical care and palliative care (if available) should be engaged collaboratively to identify challenges and develop strategies. “Consultative,” “integrative,” and combined models can be used to improve intensive care unit palliative care, although optimal use of trigger criteria for palliative care consultation has not yet been demonstrated. Important components of an improvement effort include attention to efficient work systems and practical tools and to

  10. Using Technology to Create a More Humanistic Approach to Integrating Palliative Care into the Intensive Care Unit.

    PubMed

    Cox, Christopher E; Curtis, J Randall

    2016-02-01

    A decade ago, the major obstacles to integration of palliative care into the intensive care unit (ICU) were the limited number of providers trained in palliative care, an immature evidence base, and a lack of appreciation for the importance of palliative care in the ICU. In 2016, the palliative care workforce has expanded markedly and there is growing appreciation of the benefits of palliative care, whether provided by a generalist (intensivist, nurse, social worker) or palliative care specialist. However, there is evidence that the quality of ICU-based palliative care is often suboptimal. A major barrier to more broadly addressing this quality problem is the lack of scalable ICU-based palliative care models that use technology to deliver efficient, collaborative palliative care in the ICU setting to the right patient at the right time. To address these challenges, we first review strengths and limitations of current care models as the basis for our novel conceptual framework that uses the electronic health record as a platform on which external innovations can be built, including: (1) screening for patients at risk for poor outcomes, (2) integrating patient- and family-reported needs, (3) personalizing care, and (4) directing generalist versus specialist triage algorithms. In the approaches considered, we describe current challenges and propose specific solutions that use technology to improve the quality of the human interaction in a stressful, complex environment. PMID:26599829

  11. Modern Palliative Radiation Treatment: Do Complexity and Workload Contribute to Medical Errors?

    SciTech Connect

    D'Souza, Neil; Odette Cancer Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario ; Holden, Lori; Odette Cancer Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario ; Robson, Sheila; Mah, Kathy; Di Prospero, Lisa; Wong, C. Shun; Chow, Edward; Spayne, Jacqueline; Odette Cancer Centre, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario

    2012-09-01

    Purpose: To examine whether treatment workload and complexity associated with palliative radiation therapy contribute to medical errors. Methods and Materials: In the setting of a large academic health sciences center, patient scheduling and record and verification systems were used to identify patients starting radiation therapy. All records of radiation treatment courses delivered during a 3-month period were retrieved and divided into radical and palliative intent. 'Same day consultation, planning and treatment' was used as a proxy for workload and 'previous treatment' and 'multiple sites' as surrogates for complexity. In addition, all planning and treatment discrepancies (errors and 'near-misses') recorded during the same time frame were reviewed and analyzed. Results: There were 365 new patients treated with 485 courses of palliative radiation therapy. Of those patients, 128 (35%) were same-day consultation, simulation, and treatment patients; 166 (45%) patients had previous treatment; and 94 (26%) patients had treatment to multiple sites. Four near-misses and 4 errors occurred during the audit period, giving an error per course rate of 0.82%. In comparison, there were 10 near-misses and 5 errors associated with 1100 courses of radical treatment during the audit period. This translated into an error rate of 0.45% per course. An association was found between workload and complexity and increased palliative therapy error rates. Conclusions: Increased complexity and workload may have an impact on palliative radiation treatment discrepancies. This information may help guide the necessary recommendations for process improvement for patients who require palliative radiation therapy.

  12. Factors affecting recruitment to an observational multicentre palliative care study

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Patrick C; Gwilliam, Bridget; Keeley, Vaughan; Todd, Chris; Kelly, Laura C; Barclay, Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Objectives To identify those factors which adversely affected recruitment to a large multicentre palliative care study. Methods Patient accrual to a multicentre, observational, palliative care study was monitored at three critical junctures in the research process. (1) Eligibility—did the patient fulfil the study entry criteria? (2) Accessibility—was it possible to access the patient to be able to inform them about the study? (3) Consent—did the patient agree to participate in the study? The reasons why patients were ineligible, inaccessible or refused consent were recorded. Results 12 412 consecutive referrals to participating clinical services were screened for study inclusion of whom 5394 (43%) were deemed to be ineligible. Of the remaining patients 4617/7018 (66%) were inaccessible to the research team. The most common reasons being precipitous death, ‘gatekeeping’ by clinical staff or rapid discharge. Of the 2410 patients who were visited by the research team and asked to participate in the study 1378 (57%) declined. Overall 8.2% (1018/12 412) of patients screened participated in the study. There were significant differences in recruitment patterns between hospice inpatient units, hospital support and community palliative care teams. Conclusions Systematic monitoring and analysis of patient flows through the clinical trial accrual process provided valuable insights about the reasons for failure to recruit patients to a clinical trial and may help to improve recruitment in future studies. PMID:24644750

  13. ‘The ICECAP-SCM tells you more about what I’m going through’: A think-aloud study measuring quality of life among patients receiving supportive and palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, Cara; Kinghorn, Philip; Orlando, Rosanna; Armour, Kathy; Perry, Rachel; Jones, Louise; Coast, Joanna

    2016-01-01

    Background: The ICECAP-Supportive Care Measure is a self-complete questionnaire developed to aid economic evaluation of supportive care interventions. Aim: To determine the feasibility of completing ICECAP–Supportive Care Measure alongside EQ-5D-5L and ICECAP-A (generic measures used in economic evaluation) among patients receiving hospice care, close persons and healthcare professionals. Design: Participants were asked to ‘think aloud’ while completing ICECAP-Supportive Care Measure and two other generic measures used in economic evaluation, EQ-5D-5L and ICECAP-A, and then participate in a semi-structured interview. From verbatim transcripts, five raters identified the frequency of errors in comprehension, retrieval, judgement and response. Qualitative data were analysed using constant comparison. Setting/participants: Eligible patients were identified from one UK hospice by a research nurse. Close persons and healthcare professionals were identified by the patient. In all, 72 semi-structured interviews were conducted with patients (n = 33), close persons (n = 22) and healthcare professionals (n = 17). Results: Patients and close persons reported that the ICECAP-Supportive Care Measure was most appropriate for measuring their quality of life. It appeared more meaningful, easier to complete and had fewest errors (3.9% among patients, 4.5% among close persons) compared to EQ-5D-5L (9.7% among patients, 5.5% among close persons). Healthcare professionals acknowledged the value of the ICECAP-Supportive Care Measure but had fewer errors in completing the EQ-5D-5L (3.5% versus 6.7%). They found it easier to complete because it focuses on observable health states. Conclusions: The ICECAP-Supportive Care Measure is feasible to use and perceived as appropriate for evaluating palliative care interventions. Healthcare professionals with limited knowledge of the patient who act as proxy completers may find the measure difficult to complete. PMID:26819326

  14. Palliative care and quality of life in neuro-oncology

    PubMed Central

    Mummudi, Naveen

    2014-01-01

    Health-related quality of life has become an important end point in modern day clinical practice in patients with primary or secondary brain tumors. Patients have unique symptoms and problems from diagnosis till death, which require interventions that are multidisciplinary in nature. Here, we review and summarize the various key issues in palliative care, quality of life and end of life in patients with brain tumors, with the focus on primary gliomas. PMID:25165570

  15. Palliative Care Eases Symptoms, Enhances Lives | NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine

    MedlinePlus

    ... cancer, heart disease, lung disease, kidney failure, AIDS, cystic fibrosis and other diseases, experience physical symptoms and emotional distress. Sometimes these are related to the patient's medical treatment. You may want to consider palliative care if ...

  16. Acceptance of dying: a discourse analysis of palliative care literature.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Camilla

    2012-07-01

    The subject of death denial in the West has been examined extensively in the sociological literature. However, there has not been a similar examination of its "opposite", the acceptance of death. In this study, I use the qualitative method of discourse analysis to examine the use of the term "acceptance" of dying in the palliative care literature from 1970 to 2001. A Medline search was performed by combining the text words "accept or acceptance" with the subject headings "terminal care or palliative care or hospice care", and restricting the search to English language articles in clinical journals discussing acceptance of death in adults. The 40 articles were coded and analysed using a critical discourse analysis method. This paper focuses on the theme of acceptance as integral to palliative care, which had subthemes of acceptance as a goal of care, personal acceptance of healthcare workers, and acceptance as a facilitator of care. For patients and families, death acceptance is a goal that they can be helped to attain; for palliative care staff, acceptance of dying is a personal quality that is a precondition for effective practice. Acceptance not only facilitates the dying process for the patient and family, but also renders care easier. The analysis investigates the intertextuality of these themes with each other and with previous texts. From a Foucauldian perspective, I suggest that the discourse on acceptance of dying represents a productive power, which disciplines patients through apparent psychological and spiritual gratification, and encourages participation in a certain way to die. PMID:22513246

  17. [Palliative care: an approach based on the professional health categories].

    PubMed

    Hermes, Hélida Ribeiro; Lamarca, Isabel Cristina Arruda

    2013-09-01

    Palliative care has emerged as a humanitarian philosophy of caring for terminally ill patients, alleviating their pain and suffering. This care involves the action of an interdisciplinary team, in which all the professional recognize the limits of their performance will help the terminally ill patient to die with dignity. This article deals with the issue of death and dying, both from the traditional and the contemporary standpoint, and how palliative care have been treated in the job categories of medicine, social work, psychology and nursing. The methodology of this study consists of a literature review of articles in the SciELO database, electronic journals and technical books related to the topic. Analysis of the articles revealed a shortage of subjects that deal with the theme of death in professional curricula, as well as few palliative care services in Brazilian society and barriers faced by this new approach to the terminal patient. This research aims to broaden the discussion of palliative care in public health, and provide information for future studies that will address the theme. PMID:23989564

  18. The role of palliative care in population management and accountable care organizations.

    PubMed

    Smith, Grant; Bernacki, Rachelle; Block, Susan D

    2015-06-01

    By 2021, health care spending is projected to grow to 19.6% of the GDP, likely crowding out spending in other areas. The 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA) attempts to curb health care spending by incentivizing high-value care through the creation of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), which assume financial risk for patient outcomes. With this financial risk, health systems creating ACOs will be motivated to pursue innovative care models that maximize the value of care. Palliative care, as an emerging field with a growing evidence base, is positioned to improve value in ACOs by increasing high-quality care and decreasing costs for the sickest patients. ACO leaders may find palliative care input valuable in optimizing high-quality patient-centered care in the accountable care environment; however, palliative care clinicians will need to adopt new models that extrapolate their direct patient care skills to population management strategies. We propose that palliative care specialists take on responsibilities for working with ACO leaders to broaden their mission for systemwide palliative care for appropriate patients by prospectively identifying patients with a high risk of death, high symptom burden, and/or significant psychosocial dysfunction, and developing targeted, "triggered" interventions to enhance patient-centered, goal-consistent, coordinated care. Developing these new population management competencies is a critical role for palliative care teams in the ACO environment. PMID:25723619

  19. The Role of Palliative Care in Population Management and Accountable Care Organizations

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Grant; Block, Susan D.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract By 2021, health care spending is projected to grow to 19.6% of the GDP, likely crowding out spending in other areas. The 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA) attempts to curb health care spending by incentivizing high-value care through the creation of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), which assume financial risk for patient outcomes. With this financial risk, health systems creating ACOs will be motivated to pursue innovative care models that maximize the value of care. Palliative care, as an emerging field with a growing evidence base, is positioned to improve value in ACOs by increasing high-quality care and decreasing costs for the sickest patients. ACO leaders may find palliative care input valuable in optimizing high-quality patient-centered care in the accountable care environment; however, palliative care clinicians will need to adopt new models that extrapolate their direct patient care skills to population management strategies. We propose that palliative care specialists take on responsibilities for working with ACO leaders to broaden their mission for systemwide palliative care for appropriate patients by prospectively identifying patients with a high risk of death, high symptom burden, and/or significant psychosocial dysfunction, and developing targeted, “triggered” interventions to enhance patient-centered, goal-consistent, coordinated care. Developing these new population management competencies is a critical role for palliative care teams in the ACO environment. PMID:25723619

  20. Oncologists’ Perspectives on Concurrent Palliative Care in an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

    PubMed Central

    Bakitas, Marie; Lyons, Kathleen Doyle; Hegel, Mark T.; Ahles, Tim

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To understand oncology clinicians’ perspectives about the care of advanced cancer patients following the completion of the ENABLE II (Educate, Nurture, Advise, Before Life Ends) randomized clinical trial (RCT) of a concurrent oncology palliative care model. Methods Qualitative interview study of 35 oncology clinicians about their approach to patients with advanced cancer and the effect of the ENABLE II RCT. Results Oncologists believed that integrating palliative care at the time of an advanced cancer diagnosis enhanced patient care and complemented their practice. Self-assessment of their practice with advanced cancer patients comprised four themes: 1) treating the whole patient, 2) focusing on quality versus quantity of life, 3) “some patients just want to fight”, and 4) helping with transitions; timing is everything. Five themes comprised oncologists’ views on the complementary role of palliative care: 1) “refer early and often”, 2) referral challenges: “Palliative” equals hospice; “Heme patients are different”, 3) palliative care as consultants or co-managers, 4) palliative care “shares the load”, and 5) ENABLE II facilitated palliative care integration. Conclusions Oncologists described the RCT as holistic and complementary, and as a significant factor in adopting concurrent care as a standard of care. PMID:23040412

  1. Palliative Radiotherapy with or without Additional Care by a Multidisciplinary Palliative Care Team: A Retrospective Comparison

    PubMed Central

    Dalhaug, Astrid; Pawinski, Adam; Aandahl, Gro; Haukland, Ellinor; Engljähringer, Kirsten

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To analyze pattern of care and survival after palliative radiotherapy (RT) in patients managed exclusively by regular oncology staff or a multidisciplinary palliative care team (MPCT) in addition. Methods. Retrospective analysis of 522 RT courses. Comparison of Two Groups: MPCT versus none. Results. We analyzed 140 RT courses (27%) with MPCT care and 382 without it. The following statistically significant differences were observed: 33% of female patients had MPCT care versus only 23% of male patients and 37% of patients <65 years had MPCT care versus only 22% of older patients. MPCT patients were more likely to have poor performance status and liver metastases. In the MPCT group steroid and opioid use was significantly more common. Dose-fractionation regimens were similar. Median survival was significantly shorter in the MPCT group, 3.9 versus 6.9 months. In multivariate analysis, MPCT care was not associated with survival. Adjusted for confounders, MPCT care reduced the likelihood of incomplete RT by 33%, P > 0.05. Conclusions. Patterns of referral and care differed, for example, regarding age and medication use. It seems possible that MPCT care reduces likelihood of incomplete RT. Therefore, the impact of MPCT care on symptom control should be investigated and objective referral criteria should be developed. PMID:25006507

  2. [Suicidal drug overdose while receiving palliative home care: a case report].

    PubMed

    Mosich, Veronika; Müller-Busch, H Christof

    2014-05-01

    Suicidal thoughts are a common phenomenon in palliative care which can be seen in around 10% of the patients. There is very little knowledge about attempted and committed suicide. This article is a case report about a patient with lung cancer in a terminal state of illness who ingested drugs in a toxic dose while receiving palliative home care. This article deals with ethical issues in medical treatment and various ways of decision-making. PMID:24733303

  3. Development and evaluation of the feasibility and effects on staff, patients, and families of a new tool, the Psychosocial Assessment and Communication Evaluation (PACE), to improve communication and palliative care in intensive care and during clinical uncertainty

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background There are widespread concerns about communication and support for patients and families, especially when they face clinical uncertainty, a situation most marked in intensive care units (ICUs). Therefore, we aimed to develop and evaluate an interventional tool to improve communication and palliative care, using the ICU as an example of where this is difficult. Methods Our design was a phase I-II study following the Medical Research Council Guidance for the Development and Evaluation of Complex Interventions and the (Methods of Researching End-of-life Care (MORECare) statement. In two ICUs, with over 1900 admissions annually, phase I modeled a new intervention comprising implementation training and an assessment tool. We conducted a literature review, qualitative interviews, and focus groups with 40 staff and 13 family members. This resulted in the new tool, the Psychosocial Assessment and Communication Evaluation (PACE). Phase II evaluated the feasibility and effects of PACE, using observation, record audit, and surveys of staff and family members. Qualitative data were analyzed using the framework approach. The statistical tests used on quantitative data were t-tests (for normally distributed characteristics), the χ2 or Fisher’s exact test (for non-normally distributed characteristics) and the Mann–Whitney U-test (for experience assessments) to compare the characteristics and experience for cases with and without PACE recorded. Results PACE provides individualized assessments of all patients entering the ICU. It is completed within 24 to 48 hours of admission, and covers five aspects (key relationships, social details and needs, patient preferences, communication and information status, and other concerns), followed by recording of an ongoing communication evaluation. Implementation is supported by a training program with specialist palliative care. A post-implementation survey of 95 ICU staff found that 89% rated PACE assessment as very or

  4. Palliative care in end-stage kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Fassett, Robert G; Robertson, Iain K; Mace, Rose; Youl, Loren; Challenor, Sarah; Bull, Rosalind

    2011-01-01

    Patients with end-stage kidney disease have significantly increased morbidity and mortality. While greater attention has been focused on advanced care planning, end-of-life decisions, conservative therapy and withdrawal from dialysis these must be supported by adequate palliative care incorporating symptom control. With the increase in the elderly, with their inherent comorbidities, accepted onto dialysis, patients, their nephrologists, families and multidisciplinary teams, are often faced with end-of-life decisions and the provision of palliative care. While dialysis may offer a better quality and quantity of life compared with conservative management, this may not always be the case; hence the patient is entitled to be well-informed of all options and potential outcomes before embarking on such therapy. They should be assured of adequate symptom control and palliative care whichever option is selected. No randomized controlled trials have been conducted in this area and only a small number of observational studies provide guidance; thus predicting which patients will have poor outcomes is problematic. Those undertaking dialysis may benefit from being fully aware of their choices between active and conservative treatment should their functional status seriously deteriorate and this should be shared with caregivers. This clarifies treatment pathways and reduces the ambiguity surrounding decision making. If conservative therapy or withdrawal from dialysis is chosen, each should be supported by palliative care. The objective of this review is to summarize published studies and evidence-based guidelines, core curricula, position statements, standards and tools in palliative care in end-stage kidney disease. PMID:21175971

  5. Integration of palliative care in the context of rapid response: a report from the Improving Palliative Care in the ICU advisory board.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Judith E; Mathews, Kusum S; Weissman, David E; Brasel, Karen J; Campbell, Margaret; Curtis, J Randall; Frontera, Jennifer A; Gabriel, Michelle; Hays, Ross M; Mosenthal, Anne C; Mulkerin, Colleen; Puntillo, Kathleen A; Ray, Daniel E; Weiss, Stefanie P; Bassett, Rick; Boss, Renee D; Lustbader, Dana R

    2015-02-01

    Rapid response teams (RRTs) can effectively foster discussions about appropriate goals of care and address other emergent palliative care needs of patients and families facing life-threatening illness on hospital wards. In this article, The Improving Palliative Care in the ICU (IPAL-ICU) Project brings together interdisciplinary expertise and existing data to address the following: special challenges for providing palliative care in the rapid response setting, knowledge and skills needed by RRTs for delivery of high-quality palliative care, and strategies for improving the integration of palliative care with rapid response critical care. We discuss key components of communication with patients, families, and primary clinicians to develop a goal-directed treatment approach during a rapid response event. We also highlight the need for RRT expertise to initiate symptom relief. Strategies including specific clinician training and system initiatives are then recommended for RRT care improvement. We conclude by suggesting that as evaluation of their impact on other outcomes continues, performance by RRTs in meeting palliative care needs of patients and families should also be measured and improved. PMID:25644909

  6. Palliative Care: A Holistic Discipline.

    PubMed

    Greer, Steven; Joseph, Marie

    2016-03-01

    Although mind and body are inextricably interwoven, psychological factors have received insufficient attention within medicine. The biomedical model though necessary is not sufficient. In medicine and particularly in palliative care, a holistic biopsychosocial approach is required. A number of examples from clinical practice in a hospice setting are presented. PMID:26631259

  7. Palliative radiotherapy: past, present and future-where do we go from here?

    PubMed

    Lutz, Stephen; Chow, Edward

    2014-10-01

    Radiotherapy is successful, time efficient, cost effective, and safe means to provide palliative relief for a variety of symptoms suffered by oncology patients. While the value of palliative radiotherapy has been understood for more than century, the radiation oncology specialty has only incompletely embraced its role in this setting. The optimization of palliative oncology requires accurate survival prognostication and a dedication to existing hypofractionated radiotherapy regimens that minimize toxicity and improve patient and caregiver convenience. The future of palliative radiotherapy demands more extensive treatment guidelines that explain the proper use of existing and novel technologies while remaining attentive to a growing population of cancer patients and a limited amount of resources with which to provide them care. PMID:25841908

  8. Inoperable esophageal cancer and outcome of palliative care

    PubMed Central

    Besharat, Sima; Jabbari, Ali; Semnani, Shahryar; Keshtkar, Abbasali; Marjani, Jeran

    2008-01-01

    AIM: To determine the outcome of esophageal cancer patients referred for palliative care, in Gorgan and Gonbad gastrointestinal clinics, northeast of Iran. METHODS: This cross-sectional study was done on inoperable esophageal cancer cases referred to gastrointestinal clinics in Gorgan and Gonbad city (2005-2006). Demographic data were collected during the procedure and cases were followed up every one month. Improvement proportion was calculated with 95% confidence interval, to determine the rate of improvement. Survival analysis and Kaplan-Meier methods were used to estimate the duration of palliative care effectiveness. RESULTS: We recruited 39 cases into the study. Squamous cell carcinoma was the most prevalent (92.3%). The middle third of the esophagus was involved predominantly (51.3%). Dilation was the most preferred method (89.7%) and stenting was done in 4 cases. Decreasing dysphagia score was not related to palliation method or pathology type of carcinoma. Age of the patients was significantly related to the improvement of dysphagia score. Mean survival time was 137.6 d and median was 103 d. CONCLUSION: Results of this study showed a low survival rate after palliative care in esophageal cancer cases despite dysphagia scores’ improvement after dilating or stenting. PMID:18595139

  9. Reality of evidence-based practice in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Visser, Claire; Hadley, Gina; Wee, Bee

    2015-09-01

    There has been a paradigm shift in medicine away from tradition, anecdote and theoretical reasoning from the basic sciences towards evidence-based medicine (EBM). In palliative care however, statistically significant benefits may be marginal and may not be related to clinical meaningfulness. The typical treatment vs. placebo comparison necessitated by 'gold standard' randomised controlled trials (RCTs) is not necessarily applicable. The complex multimorbidity of end of life care involves considerations of the patient's physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs. In addition, the field of palliative care covers a heterogeneous group of chronic and incurable diseases no longer limited to cancer. Adequate sample sizes can be difficult to achieve, reducing the power of studies and high attrition rates can result in inadequate follow up periods. This review uses examples of the management of cancer-related fatigue and death rattle (noisy breathing) to demonstrate the current state of EBM in palliative care. The future of EBM in palliative care needs to be as diverse as the patients who ultimately derive benefit. Non-RCT methodologies of equivalent quality, validity and size conducted by collaborative research networks using a 'mixed methods approach' are likely to pose the correct clinical questions and derive evidence-based yet clinically relevant outcomes. PMID:26487964

  10. Palliative care for the terminally ill in America: the consideration of QALYs, costs, and ethical issues.

    PubMed

    Yang, Y Tony; Mahon, Margaret M

    2012-11-01

    The drive for cost-effective use of medical interventions has advantages, but can also be challenging in the context of end-of-life palliative treatments. A quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) provides a common currency to assess the extent of the benefits gained from a variety of interventions in terms of health-related quality of life and survival for the patient. However, since it is in the nature of end-of-life palliative care that the benefits it brings to its patients are of short duration, it fares poorly under a policy of QALY-maximization. Nevertheless, we argue that the goals of palliative care and QALY are not incompatible, and optimal integration of palliative care into the calculation of QALY may reveal a mechanism to modify considerations of how optimal quality of life can be achieved, even in the face of terminal illness. The use of QALYs in resource allocation means that palliative care will always compete with alternative uses of the same money. More research should be conducted to evaluate choices between palliative care and more aggressive therapies for the terminally ill. However, current limited data show that investing in palliative care makes more sense not only ethically, but also financially. PMID:22071573

  11. Intimate Partner Violence in an Outpatient Palliative Care Setting

    PubMed Central

    Wygant, Carmella; Bruera, Eduardo; Hui, David

    2013-01-01

    Although a few studies have evaluated intimate partner violence (IPV) in the oncology setting, to our knowledge no studies exist of IPV among palliative care patients. IPV may be exacerbated at the end of life because patients and their caregivers often experience significant stressors associated with physical, emotional, social, and financial burdens. We discuss IPV in the palliative care setting using the example of a patient with advanced cancer who experienced IPV. A better understanding and awareness of IPV at the end of life could help clinicians support and counsel patients and ameliorate the suffering caused by this “unspoken” trauma. We further discuss 1) the prevalence and indicators of IPV, 2) how to initiate conversations about IPV, 3) the resources available to clinicians, and 4) various management strategies. PMID:23948161

  12. Palliative care of First Nations people

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, Len; Linkewich, Barb; Cromarty, Helen; St Pierre-Hansen, Natalie; Antone, Irwin; Gilles, Chris

    2009-01-01

    ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE To understand cross-cultural hospital-based end-of-life care from the perspective of bereaved First Nations family members. DESIGN Phenomenologic approach using qualitative in-depth interviews. SETTING A rural town in northern Ontario with a catchment of 23 000 Ojibway and Cree aboriginal patients. PARTICIPANTS Ten recently bereaved aboriginal family members. METHODS Semi-structured interviews were conducted, audiotaped, and transcribed. Data were analyzed using crystallization and immersion techniques. Triangulation and member-checking methods were used to ensure trustworthiness. MAIN FINDINGS First Nations family members described palliative care as a community and extended family experience. They expressed the need for rooms and services that reflect this, including space to accommodate a larger number of visitors than is usual in Western society. Informants described the importance of communication strategies that involve respectful directness. They acknowledged that all hospital employees had roles in the care of their loved ones. Participants generally described their relatives’ relationships with nurses and the care the nurses provided as positive experiences. CONCLUSION Cross-cultural care at the time of death is always challenging. Service delivery and communication strategies must meet cultural and family needs. Respect, communication, appropriate environments, and caregiving were important to participants for culturally appropriate palliative care. PMID:19366951

  13. Best practices for pediatric palliative cancer care: a primer for clinical providers.

    PubMed

    Levine, Deena; Lam, Catherine G; Cunningham, Melody J; Remke, Stacy; Chrastek, Jody; Klick, Jeffrey; Macauley, Robert; Baker, Justin N

    2013-09-01

    Cancer is the leading cause of disease-related death in children and adolescents. Pediatric patients with cancer suffer greatly at the end of life. However, palliative care interventions can reduce suffering and significantly improve the care of these patients and their families. A large percentage of pediatric deaths occur outside of the hospital setting where pediatric palliative resources may not be readily available. Patients in the home setting may be cared for by community hospice programs, which are typically staffed for adult populations. Increasingly, nonpediatric providers are asked to provide palliative care for children and adolescents at the end of life, yet they receive little formal training in this area. This review focuses on the principles of best practice in the provision of palliative care for children and adolescents with cancer. Our intent is to aid clinical providers in delivering optimal care to this patient population. Topics unique to pediatric palliative care that are addressed include: providing pain and symptom management in the broad pediatric range from neonate to adolescent; caring for and interacting with developmentally distinct groups; engaging in shared decision making with parents and adolescents; providing accommodations for prognoses that are often more uncertain than in adult patients; and delivering concurrent disease-directed therapy with palliative care. PMID:24400391

  14. [The present and future of community/home-based palliative care in Taiwan].

    PubMed

    Ueng, Ruey-Shiuan; Hsu, Su-Hsuan; Shih, Chih-Yuan; Huang, Sheng-Jean

    2015-04-01

    In Taiwan, the Department of Health (DOH) has implemented regulations and policies related to hospice and palliative care since 1995. Taiwan is the first country in Asia to have a Natural Death Act, promulgated in 2000. Although recognition of the need for palliative care in non-cancer terminally ill patients is increasing, at present, the needs of these patients are often not met. Moreover, while a majority of the population prefers to die at home, the percentage of patients who die in the home setting remains small. The palliative care system should be adjusted to improve the accessibility and continuity of care based on the needs of patients. Therefore, the Jin-Shan Branch of the National Taiwan University Hospital has run a pilot community palliative care service model since 2012. National Health Insurance reimbursement was introduced in 2014 for community-based palliative care services. Establishing a formal system of community-based palliative care should be encouraged in order to improve the quality of care at the end of life and to allow more patients to receive end-of-life care and die in their own communities. This system will require that skilled nurses provide discharge planning, symptoms control, end-of-life communications, social-resources integration, and social-support networks in order to achieve a high quality of end-of-life care. PMID:25854944

  15. Pain Management and Symptom-Oriented Drug Therapy in Palliative Care

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Carsten; Lang, Ute; Bükki, Johannes; Sittl, Reinhard; Ostgathe, Christoph

    2011-01-01

    Summary Patients with advanced life-limiting disease often suffer from symptoms that considerably impair their quality of life and that of their families. Palliative care aims to alleviate these symptoms by a multidimensional approach. Pharmacotherapy is an essential component. The objective of this review is to give an overview of symptom-oriented drug therapy for the most important symptoms in palliative care. Leading symptoms that affect quality of life include pain, dyspnea, nausea and emesis, weakness and disorientation. Careful examination and history taking help to understand the individual mechanisms underlying these symptoms. Specific pharmacotherapy provides an efficient way to achieve symptom control in the context of palliative care. PMID:21547023

  16. Managing a palliative oncology program: the role of a business plan.

    PubMed

    Walsh, D; Gombeski, W R; Goldstein, P; Hayes, D; Armour, M

    1994-02-01

    Today's health-care environment demands that palliative-care programs operate in a businesslike manner. This report summarizes the business plan and the process followed to develop the Palliative Care Program at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation (CCF). The benefits generated from this effort and the lessons learned that may be helpful to other program managers are described. By disciplining itself to focus on financial, marketing, and operational issues, the Palliative Care Program is in a better position to advance its clinical services within the organization and in its market area, and can thereby serve its patients more effectively. PMID:7517428

  17. The Use of Emergency Medication Kits in Community Palliative Care: An Exploratory Survey of Views of Current Practice in Australian Home-Based Palliative Care Services.

    PubMed

    Bullen, Tracey; Rosenberg, John P; Smith, Bradley; Maher, Kate

    2015-09-01

    Improving symptom management for palliative care patients has obvious benefits for patients and advantages for the clinicians, as workload demands and work-related stress can be reduced when the emergent symptoms of patients are managed in a timely manner. The use of emergency medication kits (EMKs) can provide such timely symptom relief. The purpose of this study was to conduct a survey of a local service to examine views on medication management before and after the implementation of an EMK and to conduct a nationwide prevalence survey examining the use of EMKs in Australia. Most respondents from community palliative care services indicated that EMKs were not being supplied to palliative care patients but believed such an intervention could improve patient care. PMID:24871345

  18. Attachment Theory and Spirituality: Two Threads Converging in Palliative Care?

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Jakob; Frick, Eckhard; Petersen, Yvonne; Mauer, Christine

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to discuss and explore the interrelation between two concepts, attachment theory and the concept of spirituality, which are important to palliative care and to founding a multivariate understanding of the patient's needs and challenges. Both concepts have been treated by research in diverse and multiform ways, but little effort has yet been made to integrate them into one theoretical framework in reference to the palliative context. In this paper, we begin an attempt to close this scientific gap theoretically. Following the lines of thought in this paper, we assume that spirituality can be conceptualized as an adequate response of a person's attachment pattern to the peculiarity of the palliative situation. Spirituality can be seen both as a recourse to securely based relationships and as an attempt to explore the ultimate unknown, the mystery of one's own death. Thus, spirituality in the palliative context corresponds to the task of attachment behavior: to transcend symbiosis while continuing bonds and thus to explore the unknown environment independently and without fear. Spiritual activity is interpreted as a human attachment behavior option that receives special quality and importance in the terminal stage of life. Implications for clinical practice and research are discussed in the final section of the paper. PMID:24319482

  19. [Hospice palliative care is a universal value and the essence of nursing].

    PubMed

    Chao, Co-Shi Chantal

    2015-04-01

    This article uses four examples to illustrate the recent rise of hospice palliative care as a universal value. These examples include the story of Dame Cecily Saunders, the pioneer of the palliative care movement in the U.K.; the national healthcare plan currently promoted by United States' President Obama; a survey on the topic of quality of death in 40 countries conducted by the Lien Foundation (Singapore); and the story of the Hospice Movement in Taiwan. This article further describes how hospice palliative care has changed the healthcare culture and presents the World Health Organization's definition of palliative care and the implications of this definition. Additionally, this article identifies the common palliative-care mistakes that have been made by the general public and by healthcare workers. Healthcare professionals must acquire essential relevant knowledge and skills in order to ensure that hospice palliative care addresses the needs of terminally ill patients adequately. Finally, the author describes a novel approach to instilling proper palliative-care concepts and practices that is entitled Life, Peace, Care, and Honor (LPCH or the "3344" concept). PMID:25854942

  20. Outpatient Palliative Care for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: A Case Series

    PubMed Central

    Yount, Susan; Szmuilowicz, Eytan; Rosenberg, Sharon R.; Kalhan, Ravi

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background: Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) have well-documented symptoms that affect quality of life. Professional societies recommend palliative care for such patients, but the optimal way of delivering this care is unknown. Objective: To describe an outpatient palliative medicine program for patients with COPD. Design: Retrospective case series. Setting/Subjects: Thirty-six patients with COPD followed in a United States academic outpatient palliative medicine clinic. Measurements: Descriptive analysis of sociodemographic data, disease severity and comorbidities, treatments, hospitalizations, mortality, topic discussion, and symptom assessment. Results: Thirty-six patients (representing 5% of the total number of patients with COPD seen in a specialty pulmonary clinic) were seen over 11 months and followed for 2 years. Seventy-seven percent of patients were Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) stage 3–4 and 72% were on oxygen at home. No patients had documented advanced directives at the initial visit but documentation increased to 61% for those who had follow-up appointments. The most commonly documented topics included symptoms (100%), social issues (94%), psychological issues (78%), and advance care planning (75%). Of symptoms assessed, pain was the least prevalent (51.6%), and breathlessness and fatigue were the most prevalent (100%). Symptoms were often undertreated prior to the palliative care appointment. During the 3-year study period, there were 120 hospital admissions (median, 2) and 12 deaths (33%). Conclusions: The patients with COPD seen in the outpatient palliative medicine clinic had many comorbid conditions, severe illness, and significant symptom burden. Many physical and psychological symptoms were untreated prior to the palliative medicine appointment. Whether addressing these symptoms through a palliative medicine intervention affects outcomes in COPD is unknown but represents an

  1. Malignant biliary obstruction: From palliation to treatment

    PubMed Central

    Boulay, Brian R; Birg, Aleksandr

    2016-01-01

    Malignant obstruction of the bile duct from cholangiocarcinoma, pancreatic adenocarcinoma, or other tumors is a common problem which may cause debilitating symptoms and increase the risk of subsequent surgery. The optimal treatment - including the decision whether to treat prior to resection - depends on the type of malignancy, as well as the stage of disease. Preoperative biliary drainage is generally discouraged due to the risk of infectious complications, though some situations may benefit. Patients who require neoadjuvant therapy will require decompression for the prolonged period until attempted surgical cure. For pancreatic cancer patients, self-expanding metallic stents are superior to plastic stents for achieving lasting decompression without stent occlusion. For cholangiocarcinoma patients, treatment with percutaneous methods or nasobiliary drainage may be superior to endoscopic stent placement, with less risk of infectious complications or failure. For patients of either malignancy who have advanced disease with palliative goals only, the choice of stent for endoscopic decompression depends on estimated survival, with plastic stents favored for survival of < 4 mo. New endoscopic techniques may actually extend stent patency and patient survival for these patients by achieving local control of the obstructing tumor. Both photodynamic therapy and radiofrequency ablation may play a role in extending survival of patients with malignant biliary obstruction. PMID:27326319

  2. Malignant biliary obstruction: From palliation to treatment.

    PubMed

    Boulay, Brian R; Birg, Aleksandr

    2016-06-15

    Malignant obstruction of the bile duct from cholangiocarcinoma, pancreatic adenocarcinoma, or other tumors is a common problem which may cause debilitating symptoms and increase the risk of subsequent surgery. The optimal treatment - including the decision whether to treat prior to resection - depends on the type of malignancy, as well as the stage of disease. Preoperative biliary drainage is generally discouraged due to the risk of infectious complications, though some situations may benefit. Patients who require neoadjuvant therapy will require decompression for the prolonged period until attempted surgical cure. For pancreatic cancer patients, self-expanding metallic stents are superior to plastic stents for achieving lasting decompression without stent occlusion. For cholangiocarcinoma patients, treatment with percutaneous methods or nasobiliary drainage may be superior to endoscopic stent placement, with less risk of infectious complications or failure. For patients of either malignancy who have advanced disease with palliative goals only, the choice of stent for endoscopic decompression depends on estimated survival, with plastic stents favored for survival of < 4 mo. New endoscopic techniques may actually extend stent patency and patient survival for these patients by achieving local control of the obstructing tumor. Both photodynamic therapy and radiofrequency ablation may play a role in extending survival of patients with malignant biliary obstruction. PMID:27326319

  3. Colorectal Stenting: An Effective Therapy for Preoperative and Palliative Treatment

    SciTech Connect

    Jost, Rahel S. Jost, Res; Schoch, Erich; Brunner, Brigit; Decurtins, Marco; Zollikofer, Christoph L.

    2007-06-15

    Purpose. To demonstrate the effectiveness of preoperative and palliative colorectal stent placement in acute colonic obstruction. Methods. Sixty-seven consecutive patients (mean age 67.3 years, range 25-93 years) with clinical and radiological signs of colonic obstruction were treated: 45 (67%) preoperatively and 22 (33%) with a palliative intent. In 59 patients (88%) the obstruction was malignant, while in 8 (12%) it was benign. A total of 73 enteric Wallstents were implanted under combined fluoroscopic/endoscopic guidance. Results. Forty-five patients were treated preoperatively with a technical success rate of 84%, a clinical success rate of 83%, and a complication rate of 16%. Of the 38 patients who were successfully stented preoperatively, 36 (95%) underwent surgery 2-22 days (mean 7.2 days) after stent insertion. The improved general condition and adequate bowel cleansing allowed single-stage tumor resection and primary end-to-end anastomosis without complications in 31 cases (86% of all operations), while only 5 patients had colostomies. Stent placement was used as the final palliative treatment in 22 patients. The technical success rate was 95%, the clinical success rate 72%, and the complication rate relatively high at 67%, caused by reocclusion in most cases. After noninvasive secondary interventions (e.g., tube placement, second stenting, balloon dilatation) the secondary patency of stents was 71% and mean reported survival time after stent insertion was 92 days (range 10-285 days). Conclusion. Preoperative stent placement in acute colonic obstruction is minimally invasive and allows an elective one-stage surgery in most cases. Stent placement also proved a valuable alternative to avoid colostomy in palliation.

  4. Palliative care in neonatal neurology: robust support for infants, families and clinicians.

    PubMed

    Lemmon, M E; Bidegain, M; Boss, R D

    2016-05-01

    Infants with neurological injury and their families face unique challenges in the neonatal intensive care unit. As specialty palliative care support becomes increasingly available, we must consider how to intentionally incorporate palliative care principles into the care of infants with neurological injury. Here, we review data regarding neonatal symptom management, prognostic uncertainty, decision making, communication and parental support for neonatal neurology patients and their families. PMID:26658120

  5. Palliative Care: Video Tells a Mother's Story of Caring Support

    MedlinePlus

    ... this page please turn JavaScript on. Feature: Palliative Care Video Tells a Mother's Story of Caring Support ... the treatment …" Frequently Asked Questions What is palliative care, and when is it provided? Palliative care combines ...

  6. The global state of palliative care-progress and challenges in cancer care.

    PubMed

    Reville, Barbara; Foxwell, Anessa M

    2014-07-01

    All persons have a right to palliative care during cancer treatment and at the end-of-life. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines palliative care as a medical specialty that addresses physical, psychological, social, legal, and spiritual domains of care by an interdisciplinary team of professional and lay health care providers. Widespread adoption of this universal definition will aid policy development and educational initiatives on a national level. The need for palliative care is expanding due to the aging of the world's population and the increase in the rate of cancer in both developed and developing countries. However, in one third of the world there is no access to palliative care for persons with serious or terminal illness. Palliative care improves symptoms, most frequently pain, and improves quality of life for patients and their families, especially in the terminal disease phase. Accessibility to palliative care services, adequately trained health care professionals, availability of essential medicines, and gaps in education vary greatly throughout the world. Pain management is an integral concept in the practice of palliative care; however, opioiphobia, insufficient supply of opioids, and regulatory restrictions contribute to undue suffering for millions. Ongoing advocacy efforts call for increased awareness, palliative care integration with cancer care, and public and professional education. Enacting necessary change will require the engagement of health ministries and the recognition of the unique needs and resources of each country. The aim of this review is to examine progress in palliative care development and explore some of the barriers influencing cancer care across the globe. PMID:25841689

  7. Aberrant Opioid Use and Urine Drug Testing in Outpatient Palliative Care.

    PubMed

    Arthur, Joseph A; Haider, Ali; Edwards, Tonya; Waletich-Flemming, Jessica; Reddy, Suresh; Bruera, Eduardo; Hui, David

    2016-07-01

    Aberrant opioid use is a public health issue, which has not been adequately described in the palliative care literature. With the increasing integration of palliative care into oncologic care, palliative care clinicians are seeing patients earlier in the disease trajectory, and therefore, more outpatients with chronic pain requiring chronic opioid therapy. This may have resulted in a concomitant rise in the number of patients with aberrant opioid use. In this article, we report on two patients with aberrant opioid-related behavior seen at our palliative care clinic. A high suspicion of opioid abuse, misuse, or diversion based on certain behavioral cues necessitated the ordering of a urine drug test (UDT). The tests helped the medical team to confirm an already existing pattern of maladaptive opioid use. In both cases, we provided ample opioid education and implemented effective strategies to address their aberrant opioid use. These cases suggest the need for palliative care clinicians to develop strategies to effectively address this issue in our field of medicine. It also highlights the usefulness of UDT in the outpatient palliative care setting. PMID:27171327

  8. Understanding the challenges of palliative care in everyday clinical practice: an example from a COPD action research project.

    PubMed

    Hynes, Geralyn; Kavanagh, Fiona; Hogan, Christine; Ryan, Kitty; Rogers, Linda; Brosnan, Jenny; Coghlan, David

    2015-09-01

    Palliative care seeks to improve the quality of life for patients suffering from the impact of life-limiting illnesses. Palliative care encompasses but is more than end-of-life care, which is defined as care during the final hours/days/weeks of life. Although palliative care policies increasingly require all healthcare professionals to have at least basic or non-specialist skills in palliative care, international evidence suggests there are difficulties in realising such policies. This study reports on an action research project aimed at developing respiratory nursing practice to address the palliative care needs of patients with advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The findings suggest that interlevel dynamics at individual, team, interdepartmental and organisational levels are an important factor in the capacity of respiratory nurses to embed non-specialist palliative care in their practice. At best, current efforts to embed palliative care in everyday practice may improve end-of-life care in the final hours/days/weeks of life. However, embedding palliative care in everyday practice requires a more fundamental shift in the organisation of care. PMID:25514830

  9. Stomach-interposed cholecystogastrojejunostomy: A palliative approach for periampullary carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Chun-Yi; Su, Xiang-Qian; Ji, Jia-Fu; Huang, Xin-Fu; Xing, Bao-Cai

    2005-01-01

    AIM: For patients of periampullary carcinoma found to be unresectable at the time of laparotomy, surgical palliation is the primary choice of treatment. Satisfactory palliation to maximize the quality of life with low morbidity and mortality is the gold standard for a good procedure. Our aim is to explore such a procedure as an alternative to the traditional ones. METHODS: A modified double-bypass procedure is performed by, in addition to the usual gastrojejunostomy, implanting a mushroom catheter from the gall bladder into the jejunum through the interposed stomach as an internal drainage. A retrospective review was performed including 22 patients with incurable periampullary carcinomas who underwent this surgery. RESULTS: Both jaundice and impaired liver function improved significantly after surgery. No postoperative deaths, cholangitis, gastrojejunal, biliary anastomotic leaks, recurrent jaundice or late gastric outlet obstruction occurred. Delayed gastric emptying occurred in two patients. The total surgical time was 150±26 min. The estimated blood loss was 160±25 mL. The mean length of hospital stay after surgery was 22±6 d. The mean survival was 8 mo (range 1.5-18 mo). CONCLUSION: In patients of unresectable periampullary malignancies, stomach-interposed cholecystogastr-ojejunostomy is a safe, simple and efficient technique for palliation. PMID:15800996

  10. Experience in Strategic Networking to Promote Palliative Care in a Clinical Academic Setting in India

    PubMed Central

    Nair, Shoba; Tarey, SD; Barathi, B; Mary, Thiophin Regina; Mathew, Lovely; Daniel, Sudha Pauline

    2016-01-01

    Background: Palliative care in low and middle-income countries is a new discipline, responding to a greater patient need, than in high-income countries. By its very nature, palliative as a specialty has to network with other specialties to provide quality care to patients. For any medical discipline to grow as a specialty, it should be well established in the teaching medical institutions of that country. Data show that palliative care is more likely to establish and grow in an academic health care institution. It is a necessity that multiple networking strategies are adopted to reach this goal. Objectives: (1) To describe a strategic approach to palliative care service development and integration into clinical academic setting. (2) To present the change in metrics to evaluate progress. Design and Setting: This is a descriptive study wherein, the different strategies that are adopted by the Department of Palliative Medicine for networking in an academic health care institution and outside the institution are scrutinized. Measurement: The impact of this networking was assessed, one, at the level of academics and the other, at the level of service. The number of people who attended various training programs conducted by the department and the number of patients who availed palliative care service over the years were assessed. Results: Ten different strategies were identified that helped with networking of palliative care in the institution. During this time, the referrals to the department increased both for malignant diseases (52–395) and nonmalignant diseases (5–353) from 2000 to 2013. The academic sessions conducted by the department for undergraduates also saw an increase in the number of hours from 6 to 12, apart from the increase in a number of courses conducted by the department for doctors and nurses. Conclusion: Networking is an essential strategy for the establishment of a relatively new medical discipline like palliative care in a developing and

  11. Operationalizing reflexivity to improve the rigor of palliative care research.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Bridget; Pringle, Jan; Buchanan, Deans

    2016-08-01

    Reflective practice involves deliberate consideration of actions, attitudes and behaviors. Reflexivity in research is considered important for ensuring that research is ethically and rigorously conducted. This paper details the challenges of conducting research involving patients with palliative care needs within the acute hospital environment. It discusses the contribution of reflexivity to a pilot study using the Patient Dignity Question (PDQ) "What do I need to know about you as a person to take the best care of you that I can?" as a brief intervention to foster a more person-centered climate. Challenges that emerged are discussed from the perspectives of the researchers, the participants, and the setting; they relate to: timing and recruitment, the nature of palliative care illness, attitudes to research, and the research environment. Awareness of such issues can prompt researchers to devise appropriate strategies and approaches that may inform and assist the rigor and conduct of future research. PMID:26620579

  12. Benchmarking: a tool for excellence in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Murray, J A; Murray, M H

    1992-01-01

    Quietly and without fanfare, total quality management (TQM) is being implemented in a branch of health care where quality of care has particular impact on the patient's comfort and well-being. Some palliative care providers, dedicated to improving the quality of life for the dying, have fulfilled all the criteria to be contenders for prestigious quality honors like the Baldrige Award in the United States and the Canada Award for Excellence. Their secret is simple: the patient defines quality, and the palliative care team acts on that definition. Benchmarking, a TQM tool, allows institutions and organizations to benefit from sharing their best processes, and keeps the TQM continuous improvement cycle on track. PMID:1487793

  13. [Palliative pain therapy, cannabinoids].

    PubMed

    Radbruch, L; Elsner, F

    2005-10-01

    Cancer pain treatment should follow the recommendations of the World Health Organisation. Treatment should be with oral application, regular application times and following the analgesic step-ladder. Non-opioids such as dipyrone or non-steroids are used for slight to moderate pain, step-2 opioids such as tramadol or tilidine/naloxone for moderate pain and step-3 opioids such as morphine, oxycodone or hydromorphone for severe pain. Transdermal application of fentanyl or buprenorphine offer a non-invasive parenteral alternative for patients with stable pain syndromes. Cannabinoids such as tetrahydrocannabinol offer a valuable add-on option for cancer patients with refractory pain, spasticity, nausea or appetite loss. PMID:15965665

  14. Influence of the treatment schedule on the physicians' decisions to refer bone metastases patients for palliative radiotherapy: a questionnaire survey of physicians in various specialties.

    PubMed

    Saito, Tetsuo; Toya, Ryo; Semba, Akiko; Matsuyama, Tomohiko; Oya, Natsuo

    2016-08-01

    We investigated whether the treatment schedule influences physicians' decisions to refer their patients for radiotherapy. We presented a questionnaire to 104 physicians in various specialties at three hospitals. It included three hypothetical patients with uncomplicated painful bone metastasis: patients with an expected life span of one year (case 1), 6 months (case 2), and 2 months (case 3). The physicians were asked whether they would refer their patients for radiotherapy when a radiation oncologist presented three different treatment schedules: a short (8 Gy/1 fraction/1 day)-, a medium (20 Gy/5 fractions/1 week)-, and a long (30 Gy/10 fractions/2 weeks) schedule. We used Cochran's Q-test to compare the percentage of physicians across the three schedules and a mixed-effect logistic model to identify predictors of the selection of only the one-day schedule. Of the 104 physicians, 68 (65%) responded. Of these, 37 (54%), 27 (40%), and 26 (38%) chose to refer patients for radiotherapy when the short-, medium-, and long schedules, respectively, were proposed in case 1 (p = 0.14). These numbers were 44 (65%), 29 (43%), and 15 (22%) for case 2 (p < 0.001), and 59 (87%), 12 (18%), and 1 (1%) for case 3 (p < 0.001). Hypothetical patient and the physicians' years of practice and perspective regarding side effects were independently predictive of the selection of only the one-day schedule. In conclusion, the treatment schedule influenced the physicians' decisions to refer patients for radiotherapy. PMID:27578911

  15. Palliative care communication curriculum: what can students learn from an unfolding case?

    PubMed

    Goldsmith, Joy; Wittenberg-Lyles, Elaine; Shaunfield, Sara; Sanchez-Reilly, Sandra

    2011-06-01

    Limited attention to palliative care communication training is offered to medical students. In this work, we pursued unfolding case responses and what they indicated about student tendencies to use palliative care communication as well as what medical students can learn from their own reflective practice about palliative care. Findings showed an overwhelming trend for students to avoid palliative care communication or inclusion of topics including advance directives, place of care, family support, and dying. Instead, students relied heavily on the SPIKES protocol, communication that was strategically vague and ambiguous, and discussions that centered on specialty care and referral. In reflecting on their own case study responses, students noted an absence of direct communication about prognosis, no coordination of care, late hospice entry, and patient pain resulting from communication inefficacies. Future research should focus on the development of formal and adaptive curriculum structures to address these communication needs. PMID:21071434

  16. [Palliative care network, from coordination towards the integration of players].

    PubMed

    Prudent, Joëlle

    2015-11-01

    The ageing of the population and increase in progressive chronic pathologies constitute a major challenge for society. In parallel, the array of care systems and the partitioning between the different players pose organisational and conceptual difficulties. In the face of this, a palliative care network can seize the opportunity to develop its missions to improve the care pathway for patients and make it easier for them to remain at home. PMID:26567069

  17. Integration of legal aspects and human rights approach in palliative care delivery-the Nyeri Hospice model.

    PubMed

    Musyoki, David; Gichohi, Sarafina; Ritho, Johnson; Ali, Zipporah; Kinyanjui, Asaph; Muinga, Esther

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care is patient and family-centred care that optimises quality of life by anticipating, preventing, and treating suffering. Open Society Foundation public health program (2011) notes that people facing life-threatening illnesses are deeply vulnerable: often in severe physical pain, worried about death, incapacitation, or the fate of their loved ones. Legal issues can increase stress for patients and families and make coping harder, impacting on the quality of care. In the absence of a clear legal provision expressly recognising palliative care in Kenya, providers may face numerous legal and ethical dilemmas that affect the availability, accessibility, and delivery of palliative care services and commodities. In order to ensure positive outcomes from patients, their families, and providers, palliative care services should be prioritised by all and includes advocating for the integration of legal support into those services. Palliative care service providers should be able to identify the various needs of patients and their families including specific issues requiring legal advice and interventions. Access to legal services remains a big challenge in Kenya, with limited availability of specialised legal services for health-related legal issues. An increased awareness of the benefits of legal services in palliative care will drive demand for easily accessible and more affordable direct legal services to address legal issues for a more holistic approach to quality palliative care. PMID:27563351

  18. Integration of legal aspects and human rights approach in palliative care delivery—the Nyeri Hospice model

    PubMed Central

    Musyoki, David; Gichohi, Sarafina; Ritho, Johnson; Ali, Zipporah; Kinyanjui, Asaph; Muinga, Esther

    2016-01-01

    Palliative care is patient and family-centred care that optimises quality of life by anticipating, preventing, and treating suffering. Open Society Foundation public health program (2011) notes that people facing life-threatening illnesses are deeply vulnerable: often in severe physical pain, worried about death, incapacitation, or the fate of their loved ones. Legal issues can increase stress for patients and families and make coping harder, impacting on the quality of care. In the absence of a clear legal provision expressly recognising palliative care in Kenya, providers may face numerous legal and ethical dilemmas that affect the availability, accessibility, and delivery of palliative care services and commodities. In order to ensure positive outcomes from patients, their families, and providers, palliative care services should be prioritised by all and includes advocating for the integration of legal support into those services. Palliative care service providers should be able to identify the various needs of patients and their families including specific issues requiring legal advice and interventions. Access to legal services remains a big challenge in Kenya, with limited availability of specialised legal services for health-related legal issues. An increased awareness of the benefits of legal services in palliative care will drive demand for easily accessible and more affordable direct legal services to address legal issues for a more holistic approach to quality palliative care. PMID:27563351

  19. Influence of the treatment schedule on the physicians’ decisions to refer bone metastases patients for palliative radiotherapy: a questionnaire survey of physicians in various specialties

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Tetsuo; Toya, Ryo; Semba, Akiko; Matsuyama, Tomohiko; Oya, Natsuo

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT We investigated whether the treatment schedule influences physicians’ decisions to refer their patients for radiotherapy. We presented a questionnaire to 104 physicians in various specialties at three hospitals. It included three hypothetical patients with uncomplicated painful bone metastasis: patients with an expected life span of one year (case 1), 6 months (case 2), and 2 months (case 3). The physicians were asked whether they would refer their patients for radiotherapy when a radiation oncologist presented three different treatment schedules: a short (8 Gy/1 fraction/1 day)-, a medium (20 Gy/5 fractions/1 week)-, and a long (30 Gy/10 fractions/2 weeks) schedule. We used Cochran’s Q-test to compare the percentage of physicians across the three schedules and a mixed-effect logistic model to identify predictors of the selection of only the one-day schedule. Of the 104 physicians, 68 (65%) responded. Of these, 37 (54%), 27 (40%), and 26 (38%) chose to refer patients for radiotherapy when the short-, medium-, and long schedules, respectively, were proposed in case 1 (p = 0.14). These numbers were 44 (65%), 29 (43%), and 15 (22%) for case 2 (p < 0.001), and 59 (87%), 12 (18%), and 1 (1%) for case 3 (p < 0.001). Hypothetical patient and the physicians’ years of practice and perspective regarding side effects were independently predictive of the selection of only the one-day schedule. In conclusion, the treatment schedule influenced the physicians’ decisions to refer patients for radiotherapy. PMID:27578911

  20. Palliative care - fluid, food, and digestion

    MedlinePlus

    ... J. Martin, MD, MPH, ABIM Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Atlanta, GA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team. Related MedlinePlus Health Topics Palliative Care Browse the Encyclopedia A.D. ...

  1. Palliative Treatment of Malignant Colorectal Strictures with Metallic Stents

    SciTech Connect

    Paul Diaz, Laura; Pinto Pabon, Isabel; Fernandez Lobato, Rosa; Montes Lopez, Carmen

    1999-01-15

    Purpose: To assess the effectiveness and safety of self-expanding metallic stents as a primary palliative treatment for inoperable malignant colorectal strictures. Methods: Under radiological guidance 20 self-expanding metallic Wallstents were implanted in 16 consecutive patients with colorectal stenoses caused by malignant neoplasms, when surgical treatment of the condition had been ruled out. The patients were followed up clinically for 1-44 months, until death or termination of this study. Results: The stents were successfully implanted in all cases and resolved the clinical obstruction in all the patients except one, who underwent subsequent colostomy. During follow-up of the remaining 15 patients, clinical complications arising from the procedure were pain (two patients), minor rectal bleeding (one patient), and severe rectal bleeding (one patient) (26%). There were three cases of stent migration and three cases of stent occlusion, and reintervention by us was necessary in 20% of cases (3/15). The mean life span following the procedure was 130 days, and none of the patients exhibited clinical symptoms of obstruction at the time of death (12 patients) or termination of the study (3 patients). Conclusion: Deployment of metallic stents under radiologic guidance is an effective alternative as a primary palliative measure in malignant colorectal obstruction, though the possible clinical complications and need for repeat intervention during follow-up should be taken into account.

  2. Surgical palliative care in Haiti.

    PubMed

    Huffman, Joan L

    2011-04-01

    Palliative care in itself has many challenges; these challenges are compounded exponentially when placed in the setting of a mass casualty event, such as the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Haiti itself was an austere environment with very little infrastructure before the disaster. US surgeons, intensivists, and nurses worked hand in hand with other international providers and Haitian volunteers to provide the best care for the many. Improvisation and teamwork as well as respect for the Haitian caregivers were crucial to their successes. Sisyphean trials lie ahead. Haiti and its people must not be forgotten. PMID:21419263

  3. Where there is no morphine: The challenge and hope of palliative care delivery in Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Mervyn; Hartwig, Kari; Mmbando, Paul Z.; Sayed, Abduraoof; de Vries, Elma

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Background In Tanzania, a country of 42 million, access to oral morphine is rare. Aim To demonstrate the effectiveness of palliative care teams in reducing patients’ pain and in increasing other positive life qualities in the absence of morphine; and to document the psychological burden experienced by their clinical providers, trained in morphine delivery, as they observed their patients suffering and in extreme pain. Setting One hundred and forty-five cancer patients were included from 13 rural hospitals spread across Tanzania. Method A mixed method study beginning with a retrospective quantitative analysis of cancer patients who were administered the APCA African POS tool four times. Bivariate analyses of the scores at time one and four were compared across the domains. The qualitative arm included an analysis of interviews with six nurses, each with more than five years’ palliative care experience and no access to strong opioids. Results Patients and their family caregivers identified statistically significant (p < 0.001) improvements in all of the domains. Thematic analysis of nurse interviews described the patient and family benefits from palliative care but also their great distress when ‘bad cases’ arose who would likely benefit only from oral morphine. Conclusion People living with chronic cancer-related pain who receive palliative care experience profound physical, spiritual and emotional benefits even without oral morphine. These results demonstrate the need for continued advocacy to increase the availability of oral morphine in these settings in addition to palliative care services. PMID:26245417

  4. Symptom burden, palliative care need and predictors of physical and psychological discomfort in two UK hospitals

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The requirement to meet the palliative needs of acute hospital populations has grown in recent years. With increasing numbers of frail older people needing hospital care as a result of both malignant and non-malignant conditions, emphasis is being placed upon understanding the physical, psychological and social burdens experienced by patients. This study explores the extent of burden in two large UK hospitals, focusing upon those patients who meet palliative care criteria. Furthermore, the paper explores the use of palliative services and identifies the most significant clinical diagnostic and demographic factors which determine physical and psychological burden. Methods Two hospital surveys were undertaken to identify burden using the Sheffield Profile for Assessment and Referral to Care (SPARC). The Gold Standards Framework (GSF) is used to identify those patients meeting palliative care criteria. Participants were identified as being in-patients during a two-week data collection phase for each site. Data was gathered using face-to-face interviews or self-completion by patients or a proxy. Descriptive analyses highlight prevalence and use of palliative care provision. Binary logistic regression assesses clinical diagnostic predictor variables of physical and psychological burden. Results The sample consisted of 514 patients and elevated physical, psychological and social burden is identified amongst those meeting palliative care criteria (n = 185). Tiredness (34.6%), pain (31.1%), weakness (28.8%) and psychological discomfort (low mood 19.9%; anxiety 16.1%) are noted as being prevalent. A small number of these participants accessed Specialist Palliative Care (8.2%). Dementia was identified as a predictor of physical (OR 3.94; p < .05) and psychological burden (OR 2.88; p < .05), being female was a predictor of psychological burden (OR 2.00; p < .05). Conclusion The paper highlights elevated levels of burden experienced by patients with

  5. [Palliative Care in Nursing Homes: Characteristics and Specificities].

    PubMed

    Gremaud, Grégoire; Mazzocato, Claudia

    2015-02-25

    Elderly patients in palliative situations residing in a nursing home present characteristics and specificities that clearly distinguish them from patients with advanced cancer. Besides the difficulty to define a precise prognosis, their many comorbidities, their communication difficulties because of cognitive disorders, their high sensitivity to primary and secondary effects of drugs render their management a real challenge for physician and caregivers. Accompanying these patients at the end of their life also raises many ethical problems, especially when they are no longer able to express their wishes and have not previously expressed advance directives. PMID:25711788

  6. Palliative Mitral Valve Repair During Infancy for Neonatal Marfan Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Kitahara, Hiroto; Aeba, Ryo; Takaki, Hidenobu; Shimizu, Hideyuki

    2016-05-01

    An infant with neonatal Marfan syndrome (nMFS), a condition that is nearly always lethal during infancy, was referred to our hospital with symptoms of congestive heart failure resulting from severe mitral valve insufficiency. During mitral valve repair, the use of an annuloplasty ring was waived until annular dilatation was achieved after 2 palliative mitral valvuloplasty procedures. After the definitive operation, the patient's mitral valve function remained within normal limits until the last follow-up when the patient was 11 years old. To the best of our knowledge, this patient has the longest recorded survival after mitral valve repair. PMID:27106438

  7. Minimally Invasive Spinal Stabilization Using Fluoroscopic-Guided Percutaneous Screws as a Form of Palliative Surgery in Patients with Spinal Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Kwan, Mun Keong; Chan, Chris Yin Wei

    2016-01-01

    Study Design Prospective cohort study. Purpose To report the outcome of 50 patients with spinal metastases treated with minimally invasive stabilization (MISt) using fluoroscopic guided percutaneous pedicle screws with/without minimally invasive decompression. Overview of Literature The advent of minimally invasive percutaneous pedicle screw stabilization system has revolutionized the treatment of spinal metastasis. Methods Between 2008 and 2013, 50 cases of spinal metastasis with pathological fracture(s) with/without neurology deficit were treated by MISt at our institution. The patients were assessed by Tomita score, pain score, operation time, blood loss, neurological recovery, time to ambulation and survival. Results The mean Tomita score was 6.3±2.4. Thirty seven patients (74.0%) required minimally invasive decompression in addition to MISt. The mean operating time was 2.3±0.5 hours for MISt alone and 3.4±1.2 hours for MISt with decompression. Mean blood loss for MISt alone and MISt with decompression was 0.4±0.2 L and 1.7±0.9 L, respectively. MISt provided a statistically significant reduction in visual analog scale pain score with mean preoperative score of 7.9±1.4 that was significantly decreased to 2.5±1.2 postoperatively (p=0.000). For patients with neurological deficit, 70% displayed improvement of one Frankel grade and 5% had an improvement of 2 Frankel grades. No patient was bed-ridden postoperatively, with the average time to ambulation of 3.4±1.8 days. The mean overall survival time was 11.3 months (range, 2–51 months). Those with a Tomita score <8 survived significantly longer than those a Tomita score ≥8 with a mean survival of 14.1±12.5 months and 6.8±4.9 months, respectively (p=0.019). There were no surgical complications, except one case of implant failure. Conclusions MISt is an acceptable treatment option for spinal metastatic patients, providing good relief of instability back pain with no major complications. PMID:26949465

  8. Integrated oncology and palliative care: five years experience at the National Cancer Institute of Mexico.

    PubMed

    Allende-Pérez, Silvia; Verástegui-Avilés, Emma; Mohar-Betancourt, Alejandro; Meneses-García, Abelardo; Herrera-Gómez, Angel

    2016-04-01

    Under the national plan for addressing cancer, prevention and detection play important roles. However, the cost of treatments and late diagnosis represent a significant burden on health services. At the National Cancer Institute, more than half of patients present with tumors in advanced stages, and approximately 10% of patients seen for the first time exhibit terminal-stage malignancies, where there are no feasible cancer treatment options, and the patients are instead admitted to the hospital exclusively for palliative symptomatic management. In 2010, the National Cancer Plan began implementing a model of integrative management of palliative care in oncology that has gradually come to include symptomatic palliative care, involving ambulatory, distant and hospitalized management of patients with cancer, in its final stages and, more recently, in earlier stages. PMID:27557392

  9. Designing research with hospice and palliative care populations.

    PubMed

    Wohleber, Ashley M; McKitrick, Daniel S; Davis, Shawn E

    2012-08-01

    Research in palliative care and hospice populations is important for improving quality of care, quality of life, and provider understanding of individuals at the end of life. However, this research involves many potential challenges. This review seeks to inform and assist researchers targeting to design studies targeting hospice and palliative care patients by presenting a thorough review of the published literature. This review covers English-language articles published from 1990 through 2009 listed in the PsycInfo, Medline, or CINAHL research databases under relevant keywords. Articles on pediatric hospice were not included. Issues discussed include study design, informed consent, and recruitment for participants. Synthesized recommendations for researchers in these populations are presented. PMID:22104045

  10. Pediatric palliative care online: the views of health care professionals.

    PubMed

    Ens, Carla D L; Chochinov, Harvey M; Bérard, Josette L M; Harlos, Mike S; Stenekes, Simone J; Wowchuk, Suzanne M

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to evaluate the role of an online resource for dying children, their family members, and health care providers from the perspective of pediatric palliative care experts. Semistructured interviews with 12 leaders in pediatric palliative care in North America were conducted, exploring their perceptions and attitudes towards various aspects of Web-based resources for dying children and their care providers. Informants felt that an online resource may allow for a different form of expression, a connection between people undergoing a rare event, and an increase in education and support. Major challenges, such as accessibility, monitoring, and remaining current, would be ongoing. Other key themes included access, information, and anonymity. The data suggest that developing Web-based resources for dying young patients and their families may have merit. Should this take place, a feasibility study will be necessary to further determine the value of such a Web site for these vulnerable populations. PMID:18459596

  11. Barriers to using palliative care: insight into African American culture.

    PubMed

    Drisdom, Sheronda

    2013-08-01

    As the hospice care setting becomes more racially and ethnically diverse, attending to the different conditions and needs of various groups is essential to providing optimal care. African Americans make up only a small percentage of hospice users in the United States. This article highlights barriers associated with the underenrollment of African Americans into hospice and palliative care programs. A thorough analysis of the literature was conducted to define hospice and palliative care and assess circumstances that impact the use of hospice services by African Americans. Many African Americans are not choosing hospice care because of cultural issues or knowledge deficits, whether through lack of communication or low literacy. Healthcare providers can begin by familiarizing themselves with hospice organizations and developing and putting into practice strategies to communicate with and educate patients and families about hospice care in a culturally sensitive manner. PMID:23899976

  12. Palliative treatment of malignant ascites: profile of catumaxomab

    PubMed Central

    Ammouri, Lila; Prommer, Eric E

    2010-01-01

    Malignant ascites is the abnormal accumulation of fluid in the peritoneal cavity associated with several intrapelvic and intra-abdominal malignancies. The development of ascites leads to significant symptoms and poor quality of life for the cancer patient. Available therapies for palliation include treatment of the underlying disease, but when there are no treatment options, the use of diuretics, implantation of drainage catheters, and surgical shunting techniques are considered. None of these symptom palliation options affect the course of disease. The development of trifunctional antibodies, which attach to specific overexpressed surface markers on tumor cells, and trigger an immune response leading to cytoreductive effects, represents a new approach to the management of malignant ascites. The purpose of this review is to highlight current therapies for malignant ascites and review data as to the effectiveness of a new trifunctional antibody, catumaxomab. PMID:20531969

  13. Trappings of technology: casting palliative care nursing as legal relations.

    PubMed

    Larsen, Ann-Claire

    2012-12-01

    Community palliative care nurses in Perth have joined the throng of healthcare workers relying on personal digital assistants (PDAs) to store, access and send client information in 'real time'. This paper is guided by Heidegger's approach to technologies and Habermas' insights into the role of law in administering social welfare programs to reveal how new ethical and legal understandings regarding patient information add to nursing's professional responsibilities. This qualitative research interprets data from interviews with twenty community palliative care nurses about clients' legal rights to informational privacy and confidentiality. It explores nurses' views of their nursing responsibilities regarding clients' legal rights, liability issues, bureaucratic monitoring and enforcement procedures. It concludes that nurses and clients are construed as legal subjects entrenched in legal relations that have magnified since these nurses began using PDAs in 2005/2006. PMID:23134278

  14. Understanding the optimal learning environment in palliative care.

    PubMed

    Connell, Shirley E; Yates, Patsy; Barrett, Linda

    2011-07-01

    The learning experiences of student nurses undertaking clinical placement are reported widely, however little is known about the learning experiences of health professionals undertaking continuing professional development (CPD) in a clinical setting, especially in palliative care. The aim of this study, which was conducted as part of the national evaluation of a professional development program involving clinical attachments with palliative care services (The Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach [PEPA]), was to explore factors influencing the learning experiences of participants over time. Thirteen semi-structured, one-to-one telephone interviews were conducted with five participants throughout their PEPA experience. The analysis was informed by the traditions of adult, social and psychological learning theories and relevant literature. The participants' learning was enhanced by engaging interactively with host site staff and patients, and by the validation of their personal and professional life experiences together with the reciprocation of their knowledge with host site staff. Self-directed learning strategies maximised the participants' learning outcomes. Inclusion in team activities aided the participants to feel accepted within the host site. Personal interactions with host site staff and patients shaped this social/cultural environment of the host site. Optimal learning was promoted when participants were actively engaged, felt accepted and supported by, and experienced positive interpersonal interactions with, the host site staff. PMID:20850915

  15. Progress in palliative care in Israel: comparative mapping and next steps

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Palliative care was established rapidly in some countries, while in other countries its establishment has taken a different trajectory. This paper identifies core steps in developing a medical specialty and examines those taken by Israel as compared with the US and England for palliative care. It considers the next steps Israel may take. Palliative care aims to provide quality of life for those with serious illnesses by attending to the illness-prompted physical, mental, social, and spiritual needs of patients and their families. It has ancient roots in medicine; its modern iteration began against the backdrop of new cures and life-sustaining technology which challenged conceptions of how to respect the sanctity of life. The first modern hospice was created by Saunders; it provided proof that palliative care works, and this has occurred in Israel as well (the first step). Another key step is usually skills development among clinicians; in Israel, few education and training opportunities exist so far. Specialty recognition also has not yet occurred in Israel. Service development remains limited and a major shortage of services exists, compared to the US. Research capacity in Israel is also limited. Policy to develop and sustain palliative care in Israel is underway; in 2009, the Ministry of Health established policy for implementing palliative care. However, it still lacks a financially viable infrastructure. We conclude that palliative care in Israel is emerging but has far to go. Adequate resource allocation, educational guidelines, credentialed manpower and specialty leadership are the key factors that palliative care development in Israel needs. PMID:22913773

  16. Relieving suffering at the end of life: practitioners' perspectives on palliative sedation from three European countries.

    PubMed

    Seymour, Jane E; Janssens, Rien; Broeckaert, Bert

    2007-04-01

    This paper reports findings from visits to palliative care settings and research units in the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands. The aim was to learn about clinicians' (both nurses and doctors) and academic researchers' understandings and experiences of palliative sedation for managing suffering at the end of life, and their views regarding its clinical, ethical and social implications. The project was linked to two larger studies of technologies used in palliative care. Eleven doctors, 14 nurses and 10 researchers took part in informal interviews. Relevant reports and papers from the academic, clinical and popular press were also collected from the three countries. The study took place in a context in which attention has been drawn towards palliative sedation by the legalisation of euthanasia in the Netherlands and Belgium, and by the re-examination of the legal position on assisted dying in the UK. In this context, palliative sedation has been posited by some as an alternative path of action. We report respondents' views under four headings: understanding and responding to suffering; the relationship between palliative sedation and euthanasia; palliative sedation and artificial hydration; and risks and uncertainties in the clinician-patient/family relationship. We conclude that the three countries can learn from one another about the difficult issues involved in giving compassionate care to those who are suffering immediately before death. Future research should be directed at enabling dialogue between countries: this has already been shown to open the door to the development of improved palliative care and to enhance respect for the different values and histories in each. PMID:17250941

  17. Using routine data to improve palliative and end of life care

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Joanna M; Gao, Wei; Sleeman, Katherine E; Lindsey, Katie; Murtagh, Fliss E; Teno, Joan M; Deliens, Luc; Wee, Bee; Higginson, Irene J; Verne, Julia

    2016-01-01

    Palliative and end of life care is essential to healthcare systems worldwide, yet a minute proportion of research funding is spent on palliative and end of life care research. Routinely collected health and social care data provide an efficient and useful opportunity for evaluating and improving care for patients and families. There are excellent examples of routine data research in palliative and end of life care, but routine data resources are widely underutilised. We held four workshops on using routinely collected health and social care data in palliative and end of life care. Researchers presented studies from the UK, USA and Europe. The aim was to highlight valuable examples of work with routine data including work with death registries, hospital activity records, primary care data and specialist palliative care registers. This article disseminates that work, describes the benefits of routine data research and identifies major challenges for the future use of routine data, including; access to data, improving data linkage, and the need for more palliative and end of life care specific data. PMID:26928173

  18. [Personal and dignified death. The role of pastoral care in palliative medicine].

    PubMed

    Breit-Keßler, Susanne

    2016-03-01

    Palliative pastoral care is not about "adding days to life, but about "adding life to days". It does not matter whether the dying process is short or long. What matters is to ensure the best possible quality of life until the very end through mindful companionship. Palliative pastoral care is a path towards a personal dying, dying where the person is taken seriously as an individual until the last moment. Palliative care includes medical assistance, careful care, psychosocial support, and counselling that addresses the spiritual needs of the dying. This palliative care includes inpatient and outpatient hospice work and accompanies not only the patients but also their relatives. It must become the standard procedure in end of life care. The palliative pastoral care also take the needs of medical staff into account: Time-consuming care for the dying exceeds the staff's time budget. A sudden death can be perceived as traumatic. In this case palliative pastoral care must perform the tasks of crisis management, crisis intervention and de-escalation. The debriefing of involved staff can prevent the development of burn-out syndrome. In the view of holistic healthcare, health insurance funds should co-finance pastoral care. Society and humanity benefit from addressing the needs of the dying. In an economically dominated environment it is a social responsibility to make dying humane. PMID:26983110

  19. The development of an instrument that can identify children with palliative care needs: the Paediatric Palliative Screening Scale (PaPaS Scale): a qualitative study approach

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The introduction of paediatric palliative care and referral to specialised teams still occurs late in the illness trajectory of children with life-limiting diseases. The aim of this ongoing multipart study was to develop a screening instrument for paediatricians that would improve the timely identification of children who could benefit from a palliative care approach. Methods We used a qualitative study approach with semi-structured interviews (Part 1) and a focus group discussion (Part 2) to define the domains and items of the screening instrument. Seven international paediatric palliative care experts from the UK, France, USA, and Canada took part in face-to-face interviews, and eleven paediatric health professionals from the University Children’s Hospital, Zurich, participated in a subsequent focus group discussion. Results This preliminary phase of development and validation of the instrument revealed five domains relevant to identifying children with life-limiting diseases, who could benefit from palliative care: 1) trajectory of disease and impact on daily activities of the child; 2) expected outcome of disease-directed treatment and burden of treatment; 3) symptom and problem burden; 4) preferences of patient, parents or healthcare professional; and 5) estimated life expectancy. Where palliative care seems to be necessary, it would be introduced in a stepwise or graduated manner. Conclusions This study is a preliminary report of the development of an instrument to facilitate timely introduction of palliative care in the illness trajectory of a severely ill child. The instrument demonstrated early validity and was evaluated as being a valuable approach towards effective paediatric palliative care. PMID:23657092

  20. Evaluating outcomes of palliative photodynamic therapy: instrument development and preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goodell, Teresa T.; Bargo, Paulo R.; Jacques, Steven L.

    2002-06-01

    Background: Subjective measures are considered the gold standard in palliative care evaluation, but no studies have evaluated palliative photodynamic therapy (PDT) subjectively. If PDT is to be accepted as a palliative therapy for later-stage obstructing esophageal and lung cancer, evidence of its effectiveness and acceptability to patients must be made known. Study Design/Materials and Methods: This ongoing study's major aim is to evaluate subjective outcomes of PDT in patients with obstructing esophageal and lung cancer. Existing measures of health status, dysphagia and performance status w