Patients with palliative diseases often suffer from a variety of onerous symptoms with marked impairment in quality of life. The treatment is often difficult. One reason is that patients usually have several problems at the same time. Another reason is that the need for medication can cause additional side effects, which in turn have to be treated as well. In this article we explain most of these symptoms and give treatment recommendations based on the current literature (excluding pain therapy). In particular, this article is divided into the following sub-items: mucositis/stomatitis, dyspnea, nausea, constipation, anxiety, depression, weakness/fatigue, delirium, sleep disorders and terminal restlessness, pruritus, pleural effusion, ascites. Most palliative patients need individualized treatment. Sometimes medication has to be used in an off-label way, and sometimes one must just hold a hand and be there for the patient or their relatives. The most important principle in working with palliative care patients is to maintain or restore quality of life. Our therapy should always be adapted to the needs of the patient and the most important goal is to preserve our patients’ autonomy.
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart ยท New York.