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Psychiatric symptoms in palliative care 

Psychiatric symptoms in palliative care
Psychiatric symptoms in palliative care

Max Watson

, Rachel Campbell

, Nandini Vallath

, Stephen Ward

, and Jo Wells

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date: 22 August 2019

This chapter covers the common psychiatric symptoms experienced in people with palliative care needs. It covers the challenges of diagnosis in this particular population and the need to take account of both the patients’ own coping mechanisms and the health challenges that they are facing as they approach the end of life. Palliative care is the provision of holisitic management to individuals and their carers/families who are facing issues associated with life-limiting illness. It embraces a biopsychosociocultural and spiritual approach with emphasis on quality of life. Consequently, the maintenance of psychological and emotional health and well-being is an essential component in the provision of comprehensive care. Initial diagnosis—and the circumstances surrounding this—is a time of great challenge for most patients, and the potential for strong emotional reactions and intense feelings of distress is heightened.

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