Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is palliative care temporary?"
How does it work, and what does it do? My mother is very sick, and not expected to make it. There giving her palliative care. What does this have to do with hospice?
Palliative care is a term used to describe a field of health care specializing in symptom relief. Doctors and nurses that specialize in palliative care are very good at knowing how to control someone's pain, nausea, insomnia, and any other symptom they may be having. Palliative care is called in for one of many different reasons. Sometimes they are called in temporarily to help with pain management when someone has been severely injured. Very often they are called in when someone is end stage in a disease and the focus of care is switching to comfort. Palliative care can help make someone more comfortable, more awake, more interactive with family all during a time when they are very sick. Palliative care and hospice are not the same thing, but they are related. Physicians that specialize in hospice also specialize in palliative care. However, not all palliative care is used in hospice. Hospice is a service that provides palliative care to patients who are no longer seeking life-prolonging care. It is an excellent way for very sick people to focus on symptom management, while avoiding the discomfort of painful treatments and hospitalization. I suggest that you schedule an appointment for your mother with the pain and palliative care specialist that works for the hospice you choose for your mother (if this is the direction you are going). I think you will be happy with the service they can provide for your mother.
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