2005, Number 6
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ABSTRACTRecent research in both the biology of cancer and the treatment of patients has increased the life expectancy of cancer patients with recurrence and who have a longer survival rate. Cancer is no longer considered a lethal but a chronic disease. More patients survive, but above all there are more patients with recurrences thus increasing the need for physical or psychological treatment of patients with longer lives. The American Cancer Society reported in 1992 that in the U.S. more than 8 million people survived between 4 and 5 years. This produces both an ethical and medical challenge for treatment of cancer patients. This paper reviews the actual criteria for palliative care: treatment for pain and the ethical and psychological treatment of advanced cancer patients and their families.
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