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Medicine LibreTexts

2: In the Moment

  • Page ID
    10200
    • 2.1: Management of Pain and Physical Symptoms
      Perhaps one of the greatest concerns of patients who are nearing the end of life is pain and discomfort. Most terminal illnesses are associated with one or more physical manifestations of discomfort. For instance, patients with cancer usually have some type of pain, and patients with chronic pulmonary disease suffer from breathlessness. The International Association for the Study of Pain defines pain as “an unpleasant sensory or emotional experience associated with tissue damage” (IASP, 2014).
    • 2.2: Management of Emotional and Spiritual Distress
    • 2.3: Ethical Concerns in End-of-Life Care
      There are often ethical issues that can arise in the context of end-of-life care, particularly when patients and families make decisions regarding the care they will accept or not accept. As nurses, sometimes our morals and values are in conflict with those that our patients have, and this can cause some distress for the nurse. By having an understanding about some of the issues that can arise during end of life decisions, the nursing student or novice nurse can be better prepared.
    • 2.4: Care at the Time of Death
      Dying is a process. It involves the cessation of physical, psychological, social and spiritual life here on earth. What happens beyond death is unknown to those reading this book. Typically, before a person dies, there is a cascade of events that are collectively known as the dying process. The dying process is the transition that a person goes through that ultimately ends in death. Each person’s dying process and death is individual to that person.
    • 2.5: Nurse–Patient–Family Communication
      The importance of good communication between the nurse and patient/family cannot be overstated. Communication has been found to be a central part of the nurse-patient relationship and is based on the formation of trust and personal attitudes (Lowey, 2008). Most students, and even novice nurses, think that if they are not performing an actual skill for a patient, they are not performing effective and important nursing care. However, there is so much good that nurses can do by simply communicating