Statistics from Altmetric.com
The integration of palliative care in oncology has advanced rapidly in just a few short years. It is only within the past decade that the landscape of early integrated palliative care even reached a point where multiple clinical trials exist, showing significant improvements in outcomes including quality of life, symptoms and even caregiver well-being. Ensuing policy statements now call for the inclusion of palliative care as a standard component of high-quality, comprehensive cancer care.1 2 However, palliative care use among patients with haematological malignancies remains far less frequent, and is generally underdeveloped as a practice at most centres.
This is certainly not due to a lack of need. Patients with haematological malignancies experience high symptom burden, frequent psychological comorbidities and poor end-of-life quality outcomes.3–5 Indeed, many of us have called attention to these significant issues to date, and advocating for early prognosis-independent integration of palliative care into haematology.6 7
Within this landscape, one might question the need for another study on the palliative care needs of those with haematological malignancies, or the associated poor end-of-life care outcomes. However, the study by Beaussant et al in this month’s issue illustrates a greater level of sophistications that is needed in the literature in this area.8 Haematological malignancies is a catchall term used to describe a remarkably heterogeneous group of diseases, characterised by striking differences in treatment intensities and outcomes. They range from acute to chronic conditions, and portend a variety of responses to disease-directed treatments, sometimes even including the possibility of cure, which is quite unlike most advanced solid tumours. This results in …
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent Not required.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.