Patients receiving health care at end of life (EOL) may receive palliative and/or hospice care for their medical conditions. One task of end-of-life care is to help patients have a death that involves minimal pain and suffering as well as optimal emotional well-being and quality of life as defined by the patient. For patients with pre-existing PTSD, some may have had chronic symptoms, and others may experience a flare of symptoms during EOL, either of which can complicate the dying process for patients and their loved ones. Although there has been very little research on PTSD specifically at EOL, clinically-based suggestions can be combined with such research to identify emerging best practices. This presentation will help clinicians working with patients at EOL to think through how PTSD may present at end of life, and how they may assess for and help patients address PTSD in this unique context.
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