Show Summary Details
Page of

Sexuality and Intimacy in Serious Illness and at the End of Life 

Sexuality and Intimacy in Serious Illness and at the End of Life
Sexuality and Intimacy in Serious Illness and at the End of Life

Heather Shaw

, and Joshua Fronk

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 30 July 2021

Intimate relationships and sexual expression are fundamental human experiences that are impacted by serious illness and the end of life. People will experience changes in the physical, psychological, social, and spiritual aspects of their relationships and expressions of their sexuality. While people wish to talk with their healthcare providers about changes in their intimate and sexual relationships, many barriers exist. Despite a lack of prospective studies to guide assessment of the sexual and intimate needs of people at the end of life, healthcare providers can and should strive for inclusivity by using the multidisciplinary team, asking open-ended questions, and assessing the physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual needs of their patients. While some physical symptoms can be palliated, the physical and emotional changes that accompany serious illness and the dying process can be normalized and supported by healthcare providers.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.