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What is Palliative and End-of-Life Care

Lung Disease

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Who is it for?

There are many types of chron​ic lung disease, such as:

  • chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD or emphysema)
  • interstitial lung disease
  • diseases from environmental exposures

What are the symptoms of lung disease?

Chronic lung disease can cause these symptoms:

  • breathing problems (shortness of breath)
  • difficulty eating and sleeping
  • anxiety and mood problems
  • leg swelling

How does palliative and end-of-life care help people with lung disease?

Respirologists are expert lung doctors who help patients with lung disease. Palliative care works with the respirologist as the person is getting treatment, even in the hospital. When breathing problems from lung disease become severe, medication called opioids (e.g., morphine) are used. Additional medications are used to manage anxiety. Having goals for care and understanding how symptoms are managed can help people and families to feel less stress.

Palliative and end-of-life care can help to:

  • answer questions
  • manage symptoms
  • give emotional support
  • find other supports if people need to transition (e.g., go from home to hospital) for care​