Navigation Links
Palliative Care May Boost Mood, Survival
Date:8/18/2010

By Kathleen Doheny
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Palliative care is often thought of as a medical measure of "last resort."

But a new study suggests that starting palliative care early in the treatment of patients with advanced lung cancer can boost their quality of life, lift their mood and lengthen their lives.

Researchers compared 74 patients who received standard medical care with 77 patients who had palliative care added to standard care right after diagnosis.

"The patients who received palliative care in addition to standard care had marked improvement in quality of life, a 50 percent lower rate of depression and they lived 2.5 months longer than patients not receiving palliative care early," said study author Dr. Jennifer S. Temel, an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and a thoracic oncologist at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

"In this disease, two months is a significant amount of time," she said. "We were all surprised with the magnitude of the impact."

The study is published in the Aug. 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Patients and their families have misconceptions about palliative care, said study co-author Dr. Vicki Jackson, acting chief of the palliative care service at Mass General. "I think one common misconception is that palliative care is a treatment only for patients in the final days and weeks of their lives," she noted.

Not so, she said. "Palliative care is a service -- a group of clinicians who help patients with serious illness focus on quality of life and help them live as well as they can, as long as they can," she explained.

For instance, palliative care can help patients deal with pain, anxiety and loss of appetite.

A typical palliative care team, Jackson said, includes doctors, social workers, nurse-practitioners and chaplains.

"Palliative care is not hospice," Jackson said. Hospice services are typically launched when people likely have six months or less to live and for whom a cure is not possible.

In the study, all patients had non-small cell lung cancer that had spread. The researchers began seeing them while they were outpatients, though over the course of the study there were hospitalizations.

Patients completed a questionnaire about their mood and quality of life when they started the study and again 12 weeks later. Symptoms of depression reported in the palliative care group were about half those reported in the standard care group, even though the rate of new antidepressant medicine prescriptions was similar for the groups.

Patients in the palliative care group lived an average of 11.6 months, while those in the standard care group lived less than nine months. This was true, the researchers said, even though the palliative care group received less aggressive medical treatments.

"This is the first definitive study that palliative care not only improves quality of life for patients and families, but helps [patients] live longer," said Dr. R. Sean Morrison, president of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

The findings, he said, suggest palliative care should be the standard, launched whenever a serious or life-threatening illness is diagnosed.

About half of all U.S. hospitals have a palliative care program, said Morrison, citing results of his academy's survey.

More information

To learn more about palliative care, visit the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

SOURCES: Jennifer S. Temel, M.D., assistant professor, medicine, Harvard Medical School, and thoracic oncologist, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston; Vicki A. Jackson, M.D., M.P.H., acting chief, palliative care, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston; R. Sean Morrison, M.D., president, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, director, National Palliative Care Research Center, and professor and vice chair, research, Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City; Aug. 19, 2010, New England Journal of Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Split-course palliative radiotherapy confirmed as effective treatment for advanced NSCLC
2. Home palliative sedation checklist may ease concerns
3. Better care at any hour for palliative patients
4. Regence Foundation Awards More Than $300,000 in Grants to Promote Hospital-Based Palliative Care
5. Study shows strong interest in palliative care programs, services and integration vary across nation
6. Palliative Care: Transforming the Care of Serious Illness
7. $1.8 million awarded for palliative care research to improve care of seriously ill patients
8. Hospice Education Network (HEN) and the End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium (ELNEC) announce online Geriatric Palliative Care Curriculum
9. Global Nutrition Firm Takes Dose of SonicWALL to Boost Network Health
10. Aspirin May Boost Breast Cancer Survival
11. A midday nap markedly boosts the brains learning capacity
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Palliative Care May Boost Mood, Survival
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone ... physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If ... at my other children and say he was going to kill them. If we ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, P.A. announced that 20 ... by their peers for this recognition are considered among the top 2 percent of ... honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of Fame: Miami Shareholders ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® ... American Cancer Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to ... and other adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. ... magazine’s Code Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients and their families pay ... be presented at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... New York, NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, ... ... lifestyle publication Haute Living, is proud to recognize Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as ... believes that “the most beautiful women in the world, and the most handsome ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  MedSource announced ... as its e-clinical software solution of choice.  This ... best possible value to their clients by offering ... The preferred relationship establishes nowEDC as the EDC ... for MedSource,s full-service clients.  "nowEDC has long been ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... INDIANAPOLIS , June 23, 2016 Roche ... received 510(k) clearance for its Elecsys BRAHMS PCT (procalcitonin) ... severe sepsis or septic shock. With this clearance, Roche ... provide a fully integrated solution for sepsis risk assessment ... associated with bacterial infection and PCT levels in blood ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , , , WHEN: ... , , , , LOCATION: , , , Online, with ... , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , Frost & Sullivan,s Global Vice ... Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and Unmesh Lal, Program Manager , ... industry is witnessing an exceptional era. Several new demand spaces, such ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: