Oxford textbook of palliative care for children



Oxford textbook of palliative care for children

edited by Ann Goldman, Richard Hain, Stephen Liben

(Oxford textbooks in palliative medicine)

Oxford University Press, 2012

2nd ed


Palliative care for children

Textbook of palliative care for children

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Includes bibliographical references and index



The first edition of this book was the first authoritative, systematic and comprehensive text to define the increasingly important and evolving specialty of paediatric palliative care. It explores both the clinical aspects and the multidimensional and holistic nature of care for the dying child, based on the knowledge that all human experience has a physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual impact. The book covers ways of providing support in all of these areas both for the child, families, and carers, recognising the importance of teamwork and taking an evidence-based approach. The Oxford Textbook of Palliative Care for Children is about the care of children for whom cure of their underlying disease is not possible. It encompasses the physical management of symptoms such as pain and nausea, as well as social issues such as accessing appropriate education, emotional issues such as techniques for communication, and spiritual issues such as feelings of guilt and isolation. The book suggests that if we are to maintain the quality of life for a child it is essential to recognise all these dimensions and try to address them. This can only be done by recognising the skills of a wide range of professionals and working together in ways that are not always intuitive to any one discipline. It explores the multidimensional and holistic nature of care for the dying child. Those working in paediatric palliative care recognise that all human experience has emotional, psychological and spiritual impact as well as physical, and this book offers the essential information needed for those involved in paediatric care to find ways of providing support in all of these areas. Comprehensive in scope, exhaustive in detail, and definitive in authority, this second edition has been thoroughly updated to cover new practices, current epidemiological data and the evolving models that support the delivery of palliative medicine to children. Paediatric palliative care is now developing in countries with differing health care systems, and being adapted to suit individual illnesses and the varying resources and geography in different parts of the world. This book is an essential resource for anyone who works with children worldwide.


  • 1. History and epidemiology
  • 2. The child's journey: Transition from health to ill-health
  • 3. Communication
  • 4. Ethics
  • 5. Through the creative lens of the artist: Society's perceptions of death in children
  • 6. The power of their voices: assessing the child and family
  • 7. Children's views of death
  • 8. The psychological impact of life-limiting conditions on the child
  • 9. Adolescents and young adults
  • 10. Children expressing themselves
  • 11. Education and school
  • 12. Impact on the family
  • 13. Spirituality and meaning in children, families, and clinicians
  • 14. Around the time of death - culture, religion and ritual
  • 15. Bereavement
  • 16. Symptoms in life-threatening illness: overview and assessment
  • 17. Using medications in children
  • 18. Introduction to pain
  • 19. Pain assessment
  • 20. Pharmacological approaches to pain: 'By the ladder' - the WHO approach to management of pain in palliative care
  • 21. Pharmacological approaches to pain: Simple analgesics and opioids
  • 22. Pain: Adjuvants for neuropathic and bone pain
  • 23. Pain: An integrative approach
  • 24. Management of the gastro-intestinal tract in paediatric palliative medicine
  • 25. Feeding in palliative care
  • 26. Neurological and neuromuscular conditions and symptoms
  • 27. Depression, anxiety, and delirium
  • 28. Respiratory symptoms
  • 29. Skin symptoms
  • 30. Haematological symptoms
  • 31. Palliative care for children with hiv/aids
  • 32. Care in the final hours and days
  • 33. Integrative medicine in paediatric palliative care
  • 34. Place of care
  • 35. Intensive care units
  • 36. The good-enough health care provider
  • 37. Education
  • 38. Quality improvement
  • 39. Research in paediatric palliative care
  • 40. International aspects
  • Formulary

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