Background Patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) develop progressive respiratory failure and eventually require supplementary oxygen therapy. However, circumstantial evidence suggests some patients are reluctant to use such treatment. This can be a barrier to providing high quality palliative/supportive care.
Aim To identify attitudes and perceptions of patients with pulmonary fibrosis and their carers towards use of oxygen therapy.
Methods Key databases were searched for papers published between 2008–2018. Supplementary searches were also conducted. We followed Palliative Care Evidence Review Service (PaCERS) methodology¹, developed to conduct rapid reviews requested by clinicians/clinical services.
Results Seven studies met inclusion criteria. Consistent themes included avoidance due to stigma, negative perceptions of prognostic implications, loss of role and social functioning, managing the practicalities, and equipment malfunction.
Conclusion The findings have important implications for multidisciplinary team care prior to and following the introduction of supplemental oxygen, particularly in relation to patient and carer preparedness and education, practicalities of equipment use and the particular needs of carers. Introduction of oxygen should act as a trigger for considering specialist palliative care review.
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