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PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Loss of ability to manage daily activities is source of significant distress for palliative patients. In the context of end-of-life care, rehabilitation contributes to patients' sense of autonomy, self-worth, and social participation. The present article provides an overview of recent advances in rehabilitation in end-of-life management, drawing on papers published during 2009. RECENT FINDINGS: Palliative patients have rehabilitation needs including difficulties with activities of daily living, disruption to usual routines and roles, and anxieties about being a burden to others. These needs are not adequately identified, leading to patients receiving less than optimal help in living with disability. Research shows that rehabilitation interventions such as exercise programmes have beneficial effects on fatigue and quality of life. In delivering rehabilitation, staff attitudes are important and should support patients' views of themselves as worthwhile, resourceful individuals. SUMMARY: Adequate screening procedures are necessary to identify functional difficulties so that appropriate help might be provided. There is now a growing body of work on the therapeutic benefits of exercise. There is a need for further experimental studies with larger samples to demonstrate effectiveness of interventions, as well as for qualitative studies examining the mechanisms of rehabilitation.

Original publication

DOI

10.1097/SPC.0b013e32833add27

Type

Journal article

Journal

Curr Opin Support Palliat Care

Publication Date

09/2010

Volume

4

Pages

158 - 162

Keywords

Activities of Daily Living, Adaptation, Psychological, Exercise Therapy, Fatigue, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Health Services Needs and Demand, Humans, Neoplasms, Palliative Care, Patient Acceptance of Health Care, Patient Participation, Personal Autonomy, Quality of Life, Self Concept, Social Perception, Stress, Psychological