Patient beliefs about chemotherapy, cancer influence care choices at the end of life
the ONA take:
In an assessment of the impact of patients’ beliefs on their choices for care at the end of life, researchers found that patients with advanced cancer who believed chemotherapy might cure their cancer were more likely to receive chemotherapy in the last month of life and less likely to enroll in hospice care before death.
The study examined 722 patients with stage IV lung or colorectal cancer who completed a baseline survey and died during the study period.
The association of understanding goals for chemotherapy with its use in the last month of life and hospice enrollment before death was assessed using logistic regression. One-third of the patients understood that chemotherapy was “not at all” likely to cure their cancer.
However, use of chemotherapy among these patients was similar to that of other patients at end of life.
The study concludes that patients with advanced cancer who were well informed about chemotherapy's goals received late-life chemotherapy at rates similar to those for other patients. However, understanding the incurable nature of cancer is associated with increased hospice enrollment before death.
Patients with advanced cancer who believed chemotherapy might cure their cancer were more likely to receive chemotherapy.
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