European Journal of Palliative Care - 1996

Neuropathic pain in young children with cancer
Grisell Vargas-Schaffer and Evelyne Pichard-Léandri
pp 95-98
Neuropathic pain in children with cancer has the same clinical characteristics as in adults. It is permanent pain, involving lancinating discomfort and can be burning, vice-like, constricting, tingling or shooting. This pain usually relates to a partial or total lesion in the central or peripheral nervous system and is only rarely combined with a functional anomaly.
Patient-controlled analgesia in cancer pain
Stavroula Georgaki and Kyriaki Mystakidou
pp 99-99
Chronic cancer pain occurs in 60–80% of terminally ill cancer patients. The World Health Organisation has called cancer pain a worldwide medical emergency.
Achievements and intentions – the work of the NCHSPCS
Jean Gaffin
pp 100-104
The National Council for Hospice and Specialist Palliative Care Services was set up in 1991 as the co-ordinating and representative body for the hospice movement in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It gives the movement a single national voice and a focus in its discussions with the National Health Service (NHS), government, politicians and other healthcare providers without constraining the work of those it represents. Yet finding a common agenda has not always been easy.
Designing and producing a patient leaflet on morphine
Hazel Blanchard and Belinda Batten
pp 106-108
Staff at the Prince of Wales Hospice (PoWH) noticed that patients often have misconceptions and a poor knowledge of morphine and they thought that a leaflet for patients would overcome such problems. A leaflet offers a number of benefits besides being a memory aid. Increasing the patient’s knowledge and understanding of morphine should help to allay anxiety and increase compliance. If written in simple language, it should be accessible to patients and their families. The first step was to find out what questions patients had about the treatment.
Auditing palliative care in general practice
John Holden
pp 109-112
There is room for improvement in the quality of care terminally ill patients and their families receive. Those of us with responsibility for professional education face the challenge ‘to stimulate and motivate colleagues to practise patient-centred medicine in this difficult and demanding field’.
Promoting effective palliative care in India
Gilly Burn
pp 113-117
India, with a population of 900 million, has nearly one million new cancer patients each year. Of these, 800,000 will require palliative care. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has nominated three key elements that need to be in place before effective palliative treatment can be offered: l Legislation. l Drug availability. l Education for healthcare professionals
Voices for Hospices – a dream that became a reality
Sheila Hurton
pp 118-120
On a Saturday in October 1988, 200 singers and nearly as many members of the congregation left Christ Church in Esher, Surrey, UK, uplifted and moved after taking part in a ‘singalong’ performance of Haydn’s Creation. This was arranged to benefit the work of the local Princess Alice Hospice.
The use of touch in palliative care
Norman Autton
pp 121-124
The ministry of touch has been a somewhat neglected sphere of study in the care of the sick. Physical touch is one of the most basic forms of communication and the most personally experienced of all sensations. Our deepest thoughts and fears can be communicated only by touch.
Beyond symptom management
Ira Byock
pp 125-130
Symptom management is the first priority for clinicians caring for people with progressive, incurable illness. Whether practised in the context of a specialised palliative care team, such as a hospice programme, or in a general clinical setting, symptom management is a fundamental part of medical care for people who are dying. Studies have documented that pain has been inadequately evaluated and treated among patients with advanced illness.