The Importance of Communication in Palliative Care

Psychological and psychiatric morbidity is a common problem for cancer patients as well as their carers, relatives and friends, and depression has been found to be especially common for those people with advanced cancer. It has been suggested that 25 -50 of patients suffer from psychological distress (Fallowfield et al. 2001) and it has been further found that the risk of experiencing depression is increased when the disease is advanced (Breitbart 1995 Fallowfield et al. 2001), or when...

For Smokers Unwilling to Quit

Intervention efforts will not be successful without sufficient motivation or readiness to quit smoking on the part of the smoker. For the patient who is presently unwilling to quit smoking, recommending entering a smoking cessation programme may be premature and ineffective. The US practice guidelines suggest following the 5 R's motivational intervention as listed in Table 2 15 . The 5 R's for enhancing motiva- Table 2 Recommendations to enhance motivation to quit tobacco the 5 R's (from 2 )...

Discussing Diagnosis with a Psychologically Vulnerable Patient

With a general clinical impression based on some of the above-mentioned elements and the verbal and non-verbal communication of the patient, the oncologist can identify the patient's strengths and vulnerabilities. If the clinician faces a vulnerable patient who seems to be very stressed and almost unable to cope, communication of the cancer diagnosis should be adapted in a way that the patient obtains the information he needs without increasing the psychological pressure see Table 2 ....