Quarterly scientific journal

Palliative care: management nausea, vomiting and retching

Theodoula Adamakidou , Eleni Theodosopoulou


Recently, increasing attention is being focused on advanced disease care, which includes relief or reduction of symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and retching (NVR). Patients with advanced cancer commonly experience NVR as a result of the malignant process and its treatment. Palliative care is taking a global and holistic approach to all patients. Prechemotherapy preparation and patient education during palliative care are essential in preventing acute and delayed distress from NVR, as well as anticipatory symptoms. Careful assessment of chemotherapy-related symptoms is necessary. Strategies for preventing anticipatory nausea, for instance, may differ significantly from those designed to reduce frequency of vomiting. Management of anticancer treatment-related NVR should incorporate both pharmacologic and alternative therapies, whenever appropriate, with the overall goal of improving and/or maintaining the patient's quality of life.

Keywords: Nausea, vomiting, retching, palliative care, pharmacologic therapies, alternative therapies

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