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    When is paracentesis advisable for a cancer patient?

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Posted on Wed, 1 Jun 2016 in Cancer
Question: Hospice seeks to minimize interventions, except for managing comfort. When is it appropriate for a patient to ask for paracentesis? My wife has metastatic breast cancer to the liver and has ascites driven weight gain of 107lb ( baseline) 132 - 138 - 148 over a three week period. Is the point to wait until extreme discomfort and provided somebody can project a lifespan of more then two weeks, then ask for the procedure? Even though it may only relieve the symptoms for two weeks?
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Answered by Dr. Indranil Ghosh 4 hours later
Brief Answer:
paracentesis may be acceptable

Detailed Answer:
Hi
Thanks for your query.

It is true that interventions are minimized in hospice. But paracentesis is often used to relieve the patient of distress.

If it appears that patient is going to die in 1-2 days then probably not worth. But even it is a week or so, it can give meaningful comfort.

Hope this helps.
Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Indranil Ghosh

Oncologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 1527 Questions

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