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Semin Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2009 Summer;21(2):164-71. doi: 10.1053/j.semtcvs.2009.06.006.

Palliative care for the patient with mesothelioma.

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Harvard Medical School, Adult Palliative Care, Department of Psychosocial Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


The role of palliative care in the medical management of malignant mesothelioma is multifaceted, requiring proficiency in multiple disciplines. Pain management is a key aspect of this care. The most common sources of pain are postthoracotomy syndrome, chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy, involvement of the intercostal nerves by tumor invading the chest wall, and dyspnea. The palliative care provider also must be prepared to recognize and treat psychological disorders, to identify other social and spiritual sources of distress, including anxiety and depression, and to provide or arrange for counseling to patient and family for advance care planning, as well as grief and bereavement.

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