Impact of Surgical Palliation on Quality of Life in Patients with Advanced Malignancy: Results of the Decisions and Outcomes in Palliative Surgery (DOPS) Trial
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In the United States in 2005, 1.4 million people were diagnosed with and 550,000 died from cancer.1 This represents a significant increase over that in 2002 despite improved diagnosis, therapies, and prevention regimen. As patients progress in their disease and a cure is no longer possible, a variety of signs and symptoms occur. These are most often related to tumor location but can be due to factors secreted from the tumors or paraneoplastic syndromes. Regardless, the resulting symptoms are often debilitating and anxiety-provoking for patients. Patients derive a significant amount of distress from these symptoms and quality of life (overall, physical, psychologic, spiritual and social) is severely decreased.
As this happens, medical practitioners most often define treatment success in terms of survival. However, a patient’s quality of life is increasingly being used as justification in treatment decisions. Medical therapies are now being evaluated and approved using factors that...
KeywordsPalliation Surgical palliation Quality of life Distress Outcomes
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