All kinds of symptoms can occur in the palliative phase of an illness. They are treated to the extent that it contributes to the quality of life. Medication assessment is often repeated, certainly when the patient will die within the foreseeable future. Does it still make sense to use cholesterol lowers or blood pressure lowers? A lot of medication is stopped.
Antidiabetics will usually be maintained. The blood sugar target values will be relaxed, but not completely released. Very high or very low sugar levels can cause annoying symptoms and acute complications. A hyperglycaemia with a lot of urination, thirst and a lowered consciousness. A hypoglycaemia with feeling unwell and a lowered consciousness. A hypo is difficult to treat in people who have been eating low for a long time, have lost weight and have little appetite. Spraying glucagon is then not very effective. That is why an attempt is made to prevent hypoglycaemia.
Examples of agreements on diabetes regulation in the palliative-terminal phase are:
- Set less strict limits on blood sugar levels, for example between 10 and 20 mmol / l
- Do fewer blood sugar checks, for example 2x a week when using insulin, 1x a week when using oral antidiabetics
- Use nutritional advice smoothly
- Pay attention to mold (candidiasis) in the mouth
- Reduce medication.
Common complaints and symptoms in the palliative and (palliative) terminal phase that you can prevent, postpone or alleviate:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sleep problems
- Ileus (the intestines no longer work due to a closure or because there is no peristalsis)
- Pressure ulcers (pressure spots, bedsores)
- Confusion, unrest, delirium
- Rattling breathing