Managing common end-of-life cancer presentations according to the evidence

The ambulance service is increasingly being called to patients suffering from cancer who are near the end of their lives. This presents challenges to clinicians who may not be confident in the management of symptoms near the end of life. The approach to, and management of, these types of patients often requires different considerations to more traditional emergency calls. This article reviews the evidence around the management of common cancer presentations at the end of life. In particular, it will consider the psychological effects of a terminal diagnosis, management of breakthrough pain, breathlessness and neutropenic sepsis.

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