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New UIC center to study end-of-life transition
Date:12/13/2007

failure, and accurately predicting the end of the illness trajectory for people with this disease will be extremely beneficial to direct care," Ryan said. Such knowledge, she said, could reduce the annual cost of care for these patients -- a cost estimated for 2007 to be $33.2 billion.

Another study will focus on oral health problems in terminally ill cancer patients in hospice care. Dr. Dena Fischer, assistant professor of oral medicine and diagnostic sciences in the UIC College of Dentistry, will direct the study.

"Oral health problems are common for patients in the end of life, though such problems have gone largely unrecognized and may contribute to symptom burden during end-of-life transition," Fischer said. "Our study will be taken from the perspectives of the patient, primary caregiver and oral health professional to determine the primary caregiver's knowledge about oral health problems and treatment."

A third study will utilize a suicide prevention online video to learn how it can raise suicide awareness among Asian American and Caucasian college students in Chicago. Students will complete computerized questionnaires about their cultural orientation and attitudes about suicide after watching the video. The study will be directed by Aruna Jha, research assistant professor of nursing, who has a background in social work.

Jha said Asian Americans have recently emerged as the group with the fastest increase in rates of suicide deaths for men and women aged 20 to 24. "Their rates are now equal to other races in suicide attempts among high school students, and one and a half times the likelihood of whites for serious suicidal intent among college students. This gap is particularly disturbing given the availability of a well-accepted suicide awareness videotape."

Teresa Savage, research assistant professor of nursing, will conduct a fourth project, which will address end-of-life issues for patients with intellectual
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Contact: Sam Hostettler
samhos@uic.edu
312-355-2522
University of Illinois at Chicago
Source:Eurekalert

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