Palliative Care for Cancer

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Cancer treatment can cause a lot of side effects. These can be physical, social, and emotional. For extra support, your cancer care team may suggest you try palliative care for cancer.

What is Palliative Care for Cancer? 

The word "palliative" means relief. This kind of care aims to relieve your pain and suffering. 

This care focuses on your quality of life through:

  • Symptom relief
  • Pain management 
  • Stress Reduction

Your team can provide massage therapy and acupuncture. They can also help you manage follow-up appointments.

Your Palliative Care for Cancer Team

At UVA Cancer Center, you'll get care from: 

  • Nurses
  • Social workers
  • Nutritionists
  • Music therapists
  • Chaplains
  • Massage therapists 
  • Psychologists

Who Gets Palliative Care?

Palliative care is a holistic healthcare approach for anyone facing serious illness. You can start as soon as you’re diagnosed with cancer. You can be in the early or advanced stages of cancer. And you can continue getting care for as long as you wish. 

Where Does It Take Place?

You can get palliative care at:

  • Your home
  • A nursing facility
  • The hospital 
  • An outpatient clinic

Visit the UVA Palliative Care Clinic.

Will Insurance Cover It?

If you're unsure about insurance:

If you’re a veteran, check with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

What If I Face Death?

If you face a terminal cancer, you have choices. You can sign up for clinical trials. You can still receive treatments. The palliative team can help you decide what makes sense for you and what to expect.

You can continue with pain management and comfort care up until your death. The team can also help you, your family, and your caregivers through the dying process. The team can provide other end-of-life care options or transition you to hospice, if that is your wish.