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Palliative Care Perspectives$
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James L. Hallenbeck

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780195165784

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195165784.001.0001

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Special Therapeutic Issues: Hydration, Nutrition, and Antibiotics in End-of-Life Care

Special Therapeutic Issues: Hydration, Nutrition, and Antibiotics in End-of-Life Care

Chapter:
(p.117) 6 Special Therapeutic Issues: Hydration, Nutrition, and Antibiotics in End-of-Life Care
Source:
Palliative Care Perspectives
Author(s):

James L. Hallenbeck

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195165784.003.0006

This chapter discusses special therapeutic issues in end-of-life care, particularly hydration, nutrition, and antibiotics. Hydration and nutrition are the means of accomplishing the two overt goals of sustaining life through the provision of calories, nutrients, and water and the alleviation of suffering associated with hunger, thirst, and decreased functional status. However, in palliative care, distinctions between life-prolonging and life-enhancing goals are often required because confusion about goals in this area causes a great deal of distress in palliative and end-of-life care. The chapter suggests that the main consideration in giving antibiotics is whether it will be helpful in reaching certain goals.

Keywords:   end of life, special therapy, hydration, nutrition, antibiotics

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