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Palliative Care


 
 

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Dealing with the symptoms of any painful or serious illness is difficult. However, special care is available to make you more comfortable. It’s called palliative care. You can receive palliative care at the same time that you’re receiving treatments for your illness. Its primary purpose is to relieve the pain and other symptoms you are experiencing to improve your quality of life. Palliative care is a central part of treatment for serious or life threatening illnesses. The information in this brochure will help you understand how you or someone close to you can benefit from this type of care.

 

WHAT IS PALLIATIVE CARE?
Palliative care is comprehensive treatment of the discomfort, symptoms and stress brought on by serious illness. It does not replace your primary treatment; palliative care works in conjunction with the primary treatment you are already receiving. The goal is to prevent and ease suffering and improve your quality of life.

 

PALLIATIVE CARE IS COMPREHENSIVE CARE DESIGNED ESPECIALLY FOR YOUR NEEDS
Palliative care can improve your quality of life in a variety of ways. Together with your primary health care provider, your palliative care team combines vigorous pain and symptom control into every part of your treatment.

Team members spend as much time with you and your family as it takes to help you fully understand your condition, care options and other needs. They also make sure you experience a smooth transition between the hospital and other services, such as home care or nursing facilities. This results in well-planned, complete treatment for all of your symptoms throughout your illness – treatment that takes care of you in your present condition and anticipates your future needs.

 

PALLIATIVE CARE STRIVES TO PROVIDE YOU WITH

  1. Expert treatment of pain and other symptoms so you can get the best relief possible.
  2. Open discussion about treatment choices, including treatment for your disease and management of your symptoms.
  3. Coordination of your care with all of your health care providers.
  4. Emotional support for you and your family.

 

PALLIATIVE CARE CAN BE VERY EFFECTIVE
Researchers have studied the positive effects palliative care has on patients. Recent studies show that patients who receive palliative care report improvement in:

  1. Pain and other distressing symptoms, such as nausea or shortness of breath.
  2. Communication with their health care providers and family members.
  3. Emotional support.

 

OTHER STUDIES ALSO SHOW THAT PALLIATIVE CARE:

  1. Ensures that care is more in line with patients’ wishes.
  2. Meets the emotional and spiritual needs of patients.

 

A TEAM APPROACH TO PATIENT-CENTERED CARE
Palliative care is provided by a team of specialists that may include:

  1. Palliative care doctors
  2. Palliative care nurses
  3. Pharmacists
  4. Nutritionists
  5. Counselors and others

 

SPECIAL CARE THAT SUPPORTS YOU AND YOUR WISHES
Palliative care supports you and those who love you by maximizing your comfort. It also helps you set goals for the future that lead to a meaningful, enjoyable life while you get treatment for your illness.

 

HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOU NEED PALLIATIVE CARE?
Many adults living with illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, advanced dementia, lung disease, kidney failure, cystic fibrosis, among others, experience physical symptoms and emotional distress related to their diseases. Sometimes these symptoms are related to the medical treatments they are receiving. You may want to consider palliative care if you or your loved one:

  1. Suffers from pain or other symptoms due to any serious illness/life limiting illness
  2. Experiences physical or emotional pain that is not under control.
  3. Needs help understanding your situation and coordinating your care.

 

HOW PALLIATIVE CARE IS DIFFERENT
Palliative care is available to you at any time during your illness. Remember that you can receive palliative care at the same time you receive treatments that are meant to cure your illness. Its availability does not depend upon whether or not your condition can be cured. The goal is to make you as comfortable as possible and improve your quality of life.

 

START PALLIATIVE CARE AS SOON AS YOU NEED IT
It’s never too early to start palliative care. In fact, palliative care occurs at the same time as all other treatments for your illness and does not depend upon the course of your disease.

There is no reason to wait. Serious illnesses and their treatments can cause exhaustion, anxiety and depression.

Palliative care teams understand that pain and other symptoms affect your quality of life and can leave you lacking the energy or motivation to pursue the things you enjoy. They also know that the stress of what you’re going through can have a big impact on your family. And they can assist you and your loved ones as you cope with the difficult experience.

Getting palliative care is as easy as asking for it In most cases, palliative care is provided in the hospital. The process begins when either your health care provider refers you to the palliative care team or you ask your health care provider for a referral.

At the American Hospital Dubai, palliative care is provided by a team of professionals, including medical and nursing specialists,  pharmacists, nutritionists, clergy and others.

 

 

Doctors in this Department

Other Doctors in this Department

Dr. Mona Tareen

MD
Geriatrician / Hospice and Palliative Care Specialist

American Hospital Dubai