Essay On Terminal Cancer

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Previous studies suggested that the ED is highly utilized by patients with terminal cancer in Saudi Arabia.12,13 This mandated research to identify the pattern and causes of EDVs by patients with terminal cancer in our setting. The current study is probably the first from our region to address this issue.
Themajority (77%) of patients with terminal cancer who died at the KAMC-HC visited the ED at least once during the last 3 months of life. This confirms what had been suggested before, that patients with terminal cancer visit the ED frequently in
Saudi Arabia. This high percentage supports the results from other countries. In a population-based study from Ontario
(Canada) that included more than 91 000 cancer deaths, 84%visited
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Like in previous studies, uncontrolled symptomswere themain cause of EDVs by patients with advanced cancer.1,9,10 The top 3 chief complaints in our study were pain, dyspnea, and vomiting.
These 3 symptoms were among the top chief complaints in other studies that investigated EDVs by patients with advanced cancer
9,10 as well as patients with all stages of cancer.14,15
The most frequent (46%) chief complaint recorded among our patients was pain, especially abdominal pain (30%). In the population-based study from Canada, abdominal pain was the most common reason for EDVs by patients with cancer at the EoL.1 Delgado-Guay et al found that pain was the most common (36%) reason to attend the ED by PC patients with cancer. Pain as a reason to visit the ED is not limited to patients with terminal cancer.9 In another 2 studies that included patients with all stages of cancer, pain was the most commonly reported chief complaint.14,15 The prevalence of pain as a reason to visit the ED in our setting is higher (46%) than that reported in other studies. This may indicate that cancer pain may be inadequately controlled in our setting. The reasons behind this should be investigated and optimizing pain control is among the strategies that may reduce EDVs by our terminally ill patients with cancer.Dyspneawas the secondmost
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