JUN 16, 2016 5:01 AM PDT

When is it Time to Stop?


Deciding when to stop cancer treatment is an agonizing decision and one every patient makes in their own way. While the first response to an illness like cancer is to fight it with everything available, at some point the better choice is comfort care as opposed to aggressive treatments that have painful side effects and impact quality of life. When this switch from the fighting for your life to acknowledging the end of your life happens is different in every patient, but it's a defining moment in the course of the illness.

At a recent meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago research was presented that showed three out of four cancer patients are still getting aggressive, and likely futile, cancer treatments in the last 30 days of their lives. While this might seem like just what anyone would do to stay alive, most doctors feel that patients and their families would be better off if care switched to comfort measures instead of invasive treatments. Having treatment that alleviates pain and can give a patients time to spend away from hospitals and treatments and with their families is the model most oncologists would like to see. Convincing patients of this might take some time though.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
JUL 13, 2020
Neuroscience
Can COVID-19 Be Diagnosed by Vocal Patterns?
JUL 13, 2020
Can COVID-19 Be Diagnosed by Vocal Patterns?
Researchers from the Lincoln Laboratory have found early evidence that subtle changes in peoples' voices may indicat ...
JUL 16, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Turbulence: A Treat for Both Eyes and Minds
JUL 16, 2020
Turbulence: A Treat for Both Eyes and Minds
What do the air inside your lung, the tap water in pipes, the Great Red Spot of Jupiter, and the hurricane over the Atla ...
AUG 11, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
AUG 11, 2020
High THC Cannabis Linked to Anxiety
Researchers have found that people who use strains of cannabis high in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive comp ...
SEP 08, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Reusable Chinese Space Craft Lands Returns Earth
SEP 08, 2020
Reusable Chinese Space Craft Lands Returns Earth
The Chinese government has announced the safe return of a reusable spacecraft, called Chongfu Shiyong Shiyan Hangtian Qi ...
SEP 10, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
Reprogramming Virus to Build Better Li-ion Batteries
SEP 10, 2020
Reprogramming Virus to Build Better Li-ion Batteries
There's no doubt that the word "virus" is currently on everyone's mind. However, there's a lot mor ...
OCT 22, 2020
Space & Astronomy
Why Do Galaxies Come in Different Shapes?
OCT 22, 2020
Why Do Galaxies Come in Different Shapes?
When looking it galaxies, it takes little to realize that they come in different shapes- whether they're swirling bl ...
Loading Comments...