Palliative Care

Lindsay Andronaco's picture

by Lindsay D. Andronaco RN, BSN, CWCN, WOC, DAPWCA, FAACWS

In the past two blogs I have discussed a controversial topic, skin failure. We all have strong feelings on this topic and have experienced different cases in our practice. Dispute the controversial feelings on KTUs and skin failure; I would like to now just address the viewpoint of the family and how to approach these difficult conversations.

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Lindsay Andronaco's picture

by Lindsay D. Andronaco RN, BSN, CWCN, WOC, DAPWCA, FAACWS

Part 1 in a series on skin failure

A few years ago, a panel of experts gathered to evaluate the nature of skin changes at life's end (SCALE) and to discuss the Kennedy Terminal Ulcer (KTU). The panel concluded that there are observable changes in the skin at the end of life and that these situations are complex. It should be noted that the skin is an organ and it can fail. The skin can also demonstrate what is happening internally, such as multisystem organ failure.

Aletha Tippett MD's picture

by Aletha Tippett MD

In considering this question as to whether amputation can be palliative, let’s keep clear that these are two separate subjects that sometimes interact. It is key to always keep our goals in mind. What is the goal in palliative care? The goals are to provide comfort, relieve pain, prevent infection, and improve or maintain quality of life. These goals are always to be in concert with the desires and wishes of the individual patient.

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Aletha Tippett MD's picture

by Aletha Tippett MD

What a wonderful time we had in Indianapolis in mid-May at the 4th Annual Palliative Wound Care Conference. 150 people from as far away as Turkey were there for two and a half days to learn and share about palliative wound care. We had two full days, Thursday and Friday, with high quality excellent lectures.

Aletha Tippett MD's picture

by Aletha Tippett MD

Once the individual has been thoroughly assessed for palliative care and his or her objectives and needs have been discussed, the wound care provider must determine the wound management strategy to follow. This strategy will depend upon the type of wound being treated for palliation. A summary of each type of wound and an appropriate palliative strategy are listed below, including factors such as removal of the wound cause, pain and drainage management, and odor control:

Aletha Tippett MD's picture
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by Aletha Tippett MD

Assessment of the individual for palliative wound care is not much different from the assessment for any wound patient. Initial questions that that should be asked in your assessment include:

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