Transitioning to Comfort-Focused Care at the End of Life.

Affiliation

Terre Haute Regional Hospital, 3901 South 7th Street, Terre Haute, IN 47802, USA; Indiana University School of Medicine, Terre Haute, IN, USA. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

Shared decision making requires the exchange of information from the patient and the surgeon (and ideally involves the expertise of the entire multidisciplinary team) to determine the medical and/or surgical treatment that best aligns with the patient's goals and values. Should the surgical patient wish to transition to end-of-life care, the transition to comfort-focused care is within the scope of practice for surgeons. Incorporating the expertise of other health care professionals is an important consideration for whole-patient care. Integrating primary palliative care into surgical practice can help mitigate unnecessary suffering and allow a smoother transition to comfort-focused care.

Keywords

Advance care planning,Advanced directives,Comfort measures,End-of-life decision making,Goals of care,Surgical buy-in,Surrogate decision makers,Symptom management,

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