Cancer is a terrible disease that affects everyone in some way, whether through personal experience or from the experience of a family member or friend. Cancer is a result of uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. While treatments and medicine for cancer have improved dramatically over the history of oncology, it is still one of the leading causes of death in the world.
Other diseases or causes of death may be sudden or without much time to prepare. By comparison, cancer usually slowly develops and takes over. The slow decline is one of the reasons why it is so devastating.
During the time your loved one is dealing with cancer, your doctor or lead medical staff member may bring up the option of hospice care. It is easy to believe that this is a signal of giving up, but this is far from the case. Hospice care allows your loved one to take control of his or her care.
What is Hospice or Palliative Care?
Hospice care is palliative in nature, meaning that hospice care does not seek to cure a patient. It focuses on comforting our patients so they can enjoy the last stent of their lives as pain-free as possible.
Hospice care is carried out by a team of medical professionals who are experts in palliative care. Their job is to help your loved one manage pain as best as possible to spend time with friends and family and live the final days on his or her terms.
Why is Hospice Care a Good Option for Cancer Patients?
Hospice care is an excellent option for cancer patients because it allows them to have more control over the last few months of their life. Rather than remaining in a hospital or other cancer treatment facility, they can be at home and have their team come to visit them.
A few reasons why hospice treatment is a good option after a regular cancer treatment plan, laid out in one of our previous blogs, are:
- It allows your loved one to be in a familiar environment.
- There are comprehensive plans offered carried out by competent individuals.
- Hospice allows for more personalized care and support.
How Does Hospice Care Work for Cancer Patients?
Hospice care is generally for patients whose doctors have determined to have six months or less to live. If the patient elects to have hospice care, they will no longer receive treatment targeted at reducing the cancer cells, but rather, they would receive treatment for their symptoms.
When is it Time to Move to Hospice Care?
While this is an incredibly difficult decision to make, the decision to move to hospice care needs to come after the cancer treatment doctor has talked with the patient to discuss goals of care. This way, your loved one is fully aware of how much the cancer has progressed and how high the chance is of it going into remission.
Remember, if you and your loved one choose hospice care, it isn’t a sign of giving up. For many cancer patients, hospice care will help them to live longer than they may have in regular care. While rare, some patients show signs of improvement in their condition, and they can return to treatment.
Getting the Right Team for You
Remember, consulting with a hospice group isn’t giving up. It’s giving yourself the chance to enhance your last days and to take control of your care. If you are looking for hospice care with a compassionate and caring staff, contact Crown Hospice of Cape Girardeau and Poplar Bluff, MO. We will give your loved one the physical, mental and spiritual care needed for the best end-of-life care.
*As the COVID-19 pandemic has become top of mind to the healthcare community, we want you to know that we are following CDC, CHAP and state health department guidelines to minimize our patients’ chance of exposure while still giving them excellent care. Read our statement here.