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April 29, 1968

Palliative Care of the Cancer Patient

JAMA. 1968;204(5):408-409. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140180058035

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


This 640 page book attempts to answer the question, "What is needed to assist and to guide in the management of the advanced cancer patient?" In some respects the book is successful. The shortcomings could be explained partially by the size of the volume and the fact that it is difficult for any editor to avoid redundancy, omissions, and contradictions when the chapters are written by 33 different authors representing anesthesiology, surgery, radiation therapy, internal medicine, pediatrics, neurology, neurosurgery, psychiatry, and nursing.

The best chapters are those which discuss perfusion, infusion, neurological complications and nursing care. The chapters pertaining to surgery are more technically complete and better illustrated than those dealing with irradiation. The latter modality could have been more thoroughly discussed and better illustrated in view of the fact that irradiation can accomplish spectacular palliation in many types of advanced cancer. The important use of systemic chemotherapy is barely