Illness and treatment can have significant physical side effects, like nausea and infertility. But there are also serious non-physical side effects: Patients lose time, money, and independence. I was invited to write about this by the Center to Advance Palliative Care, touching on what clinicians can do to help patients.
In other words, serious illness has serious side effects, both physical and non-physical. While these concepts or discussions may be novel, the impact of serious illness on a patient’s life is not. While acknowledging these non-physical side effects of treatment is the first step, the next is doing something about them. All the side effects listed above are why palliative care is so important. Palliative care focuses on quality of life and relieving both symptoms and stress related to serious illness. These kinds of discussions are the perfect entry point for clinicians to talk about non-physical side effects.
Read the full article here.
Research for this piece was supported by Arnold Ventures.