Answering Two Questions About Palliative Care

For those that have been unfortunate enough to have developed a serious medical condition, it is important to have a thorough understanding about the various treatment options that may be available. When your condition is particularly severe and chronic in nature, you may benefit from palliative care. However, if you have limited experience or knowledge about this approach to care, it can be difficult to make an informed choice about utilizing this option. By considering the answers to the following couple of questions, you will find that you are better prepared to evaluate if this care is right for you.

What Is The Goal Of Palliative Care?

The goal of palliative care is to improve the quality of life for patients that are suffering from chronic medical conditions. While it is common for some patients to assume that this type of care is confined to hospice programs, this is not actually the case. Hospice programs are typically designed for individuals that are suffering from the late stages of terminal illness. To accommodate patients that are suffering from milder conditions, palliative medicine will work to holistically address the symptoms that are most likely to improve the patient's quality of life by either slowing or reversing the most serious symptoms of their condition.

What Type Of Care Should A Palliative Care Patient Expect?

When a patient starts to receive palliative care, they will usually be teamed with a group of doctors and other care specialists that will work together to create an effective treatment plan that is tailored to the unique care needs of the patient. For example, individuals that are suffering from severe kidney disease may work with a team of experts that specialize in both renal medicine and nutrition to help minimize the painful side effects of kidney disease. Your lead doctor will help to organize your overall treatment, and they will monitor your condition for any changes that will need to be addressed. As a result, you should expect to make frequent visits to this doctor for both examinations and continued consultations about your condition.

Additionally, patients that have conditions which make living on their own difficult may be assigned a caregiver that can help them with a number of daily tasks around the home. This person may help the patient with meal preparation, administering medicine and monitoring vital signs. Also, these caretakers will be able to ensure that medical assistance is contacted in the event you suffer a serious complication.

Palliative care can be an excellent approach for patients that have been unfortunate enough to have developed serious medical conditions. By understanding that this approach to care is designed to improve the quality of life for patients with severe chronic conditions and the way that this care is administered, you will find it easier to accurately weigh this option for treating your condition. Visit for more information about palliative care.