Pain Management

Symptom Management
Common Symptoms:
Bowel Management
Nausea and Vomiting
Terminal Phase
Changing Awareness

Altered Elimination
Respiratory Changes
Agitation or Restlessness
Signs of Impending Death
Caregiver Support

The Terminal Phase of Illness

Altered Elimination
The body begins the process of gradually shutting down its usual functions as part of this terminal phase of the illness.

Urinary output decreases due to decreased intake and a shunting of the blood away from the kidneys to the brain and heart. Assess for bladder distension and treat underlying causes if appropriate.

Constipation may continue to be a problem, or become a new symptom at this stage. Assessment is needed to determine if the lack of stool is a sequelae of decreased intake and a slowing of peristalsis, or if treatment is necessary. No passage of stool for three or four days in the terminal phase of the illness may be normal.