Palliative care is a particular medical caregiving approach to optimize quality of life and mitigate suffering among severe, complex illnesses. To fight with a disease like cancer, one needs to stay strong mentally. The chemotherapy process, regular visits to hospitals, painful surgeries, and sometimes the body part removal are not easy to deal with. In such a scenario, palliative care has its benefits. This medical specialty has its distinct mission: to relieve suffering and improve the quality of life for people with serious illnesses.
What is Palliative Care?
People often think only of cancer after listening to palliative care. But palliative care is a relatively new field of medicine, and no, it is not the same as hospice care. It doesn’t serve only the people who are in the probable condition of dying. Instead, it aims to improve life and comfort everyone living with severe, chronic, and life-threatening illnesses. These conditions include cancer, congestive heart failure, kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and Alzheimer’s.
When to go for Palliative Care?
The process of palliative care can start as soon as the patient receives a serious illness diagnosis; simultaneously, they continue to pursue a cure. It does not signify that a patient has given up on recovery.
Palliative care is not always necessary for all patients. Some patients recover and leave palliative care. In addition, palliative care may be needed on a case-by-case basis for some people with chronic diseases, such as cancer. The quality of patients’ lives is improved through palliative care if they cannot find a cure for their life-threatening illness. Palliative care is a form of treatment based on the patient’s needs, not on the prognosis. The treatment is appropriate for all ages and stages of illness.
What to expect from Palliative Care?
Phrases like “a happy patience” or “a peaceful patience” or ” a mentally strong patient” are tough to say and believe because when you get a tag of a patient of serious illness, the mind gets disturbed more than the body. At any point in life, the mind plays the most crucial role in shaping the quality of life. Here are some of the benefits of palliative care:
- Quality of Life
- Relief From Symptoms and Stress
- Emotional and Mental Support
- Nutritional Monitoring
- Meetings with in-charge Doctors with families
Palliative Care: The Process
Each patient has a different idea about the quality of life. There is no one suffering the same way. As each individual and family are unique, so are their dynamics. Our team always asks the patient what’s most important to them. Upon discussing the patient’s goals and values with them or their families, we develop a plan of care and strategy that meets those goals and values.
Palliative care: How effective is it?
Focusing on all aspects of one’s well-being, even one’s family and relationships, does palliative care genuinely improve quality of life?
According to a study, patients who received early palliative care were less likely to suffer from depression and anxiety issues and enjoyed a higher quality of life than patients who received only standard treatment. Palliative care in hospitals provides effective treatments for depression, better pain and symptoms management, or a shorter hospital stay.
Investing in new chemotherapy agents that prolong a patient’s life by three months would be a huge deal, and everyone would invest in it without giving a second thought. Then why not go for the exceptional care that tries to reduce the suffering and provide you the strength to fight.
A palliative care program may prove beneficial for you or someone close to you if you’re facing a severe illness. Get in touch with us to know more.