Cancer is a type of chronic disease and one of the leading causes of death. Cancer patients, like other chronic-disease-patients, receive palliative care. A chronic disease patient is the one suffering from one or more diseases at the same time for more than one year. Furthermore, such patients need persistent medical attention and may need to limit activities of daily living. Supportive care or palliative care provides care for the terminally ill, chronic patients, and their families.
Palliative Care For Cancer Patients
Palliative care is also known as supportive care. It is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families. Particularly those families and patients that have an association with a life-threatening illness.
Furthermore, the objective is to support the patients in their treatment by reducing their suffering. Moreover, providing emotional, physical, psychological, spiritual, and psychosocial support to the patients and their families.
A cancer patient or any other chronic disease patient capable of leading to death while undergoing treatment suffers multiple problems. Palliative care centers try to provide a solution to these problems. Furthermore, these centers work as a team.
The team consists of healthcare professionals like a medical provider, social worker, and chaplain. Moreover, they work with the physician of the patient. In the case of cancer patients, they work with their oncology care team. Moreover, to provide a better quality of life to the patients.
Is Palliative Care A Hospice Care?
Hospice care is a type of palliative care only available to patients who are on the verge of death. All hospice care can be called palliative care. However, you cannot use the term palliative care for hospice care. Even though the aim is the same, the difference lies in the availability of care during the disease course. Furthermore, palliative care is available regardless of the stage of the disease. But hospice care is only for those whose treatment was unsuccessful and whose doctors have no hope of their recovery. Furthermore, patients who are no longer willing to prolong their lives with disease-directed treatment receive hospice care.
A patient can start palliative care whenever he wants. Cancer patients can begin with palliative care at any stage of cancer. However, receiving palliative care at an early stage increases the possibility of survival and recovery.
Thus, the patient saves money as they spend less time in the hospital. Furthermore, it is not necessary to receive palliative care only when you are approaching the end of life. However, those patients who have only six months or less to live, as per the doctor, receive hospice care.
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How Is Palliative Care Beneficial?
Every patient has a different experience with palliative care. Moreover, palliative care for each person is different from others. Furthermore, it entirely depends upon the condition and requirements of the patient and the disease he is suffering. In the case of cancer patients, the palliative care team works with the oncology team of patients. Moreover, to better understand the situation and risks. And then develop a productive methodology that can give a better quality of life to the patient.
Through palliative care, managing some symptoms becomes easy. Symptoms include anxiety, pain, constipation, depression, fatigue, and insomnia. Furthermore, they include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness in various areas of the body, trouble urinating, and shortness of breath. Palliative care uses medications, dietary changes, and lifestyle alterations to manage these symptoms.
Pain management and emotional support are essential elements of palliative care. The palliative care team recommends family members to support and be caregivers for patients. Furthermore, such measures encourage patients to be hopeful of their recovery. Moreover, family care enables cancer patients to fight depression associated with the disease.