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Insights into Cancer – December 13, 2016

Palliative Care: Finding Healing and Balance in the Face of Serious Illness

Presented by Christopher Pietras, MD

About the Lecture

Patients undergoing cancer treatment often experience significant “symptom burden”, with pain, fatigue, nausea, constipation/diarrhea, dry mouth, and emotional symptoms. While cancer may be well controlled, these symptoms can alter one’s ability to engage in enjoying day-to-day life. What is the best way to treat these symptoms? Although it can be difficult to separate symptoms caused by the disease being treated from the side effects of treatments, effective relief is often available. There have been significant advances in knowledge about optimal approaches to managing symptoms. Often patients, their families, and their oncology professionals are so engaged with the logistics of complex treatments for cancer that there is little time or energy for optimal attention to the management of burdensome symptoms. But effective symptom management can have major benefits in terms of day-to-day functioning, well-being, and quality of life. This presentation introduces the concept of symptom management at all phases of illness, as well as an evidence-based review of the state of the art treatments for many common symptoms. The goal of this lecture is to help patients and families expand their knowledge of symptom management to work effectively with their treatment teams towards the goal of optimal well-being during treatment.

About the Speaker

Christopher Pietras, MD is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the David Geffen School of Medicine. He is board certified in internal medicine with specialty in hospitalist medicine and palliative care. He is part of the palliative care team at UCLA.

Lecture Dedication

deniseIn loving memory of Denise Mignon Railla, 58, Photographer. – A Memorial Lecture Supported by her Friends and Family.

Denise was a pure magic light. Illuminating life with her guitar, songs, photography, videos, Buddhist chants and incense. She was indescribably brave, spiritual, and creative; thirstily contributing to many peoples’ lives. A loved and valuable friend, daughter, sister, and caregiver. She will be sorely missed forever.

Denise was best known for her visual acumen. She was an amazing videographer and photographer. Her website was just started when she became ill. It had not reached her standard of perfection, however, we are grateful to be able to see her vision. Please enjoy.

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