Chapter 2: Complex medical situations

Introduction

At the end of life, certain symptoms and conditions may make the patient’s death particularly traumatic for family and paramedics. As has been noted, it's always best to provide families with information about signs of illness progress and imminent death. Nevertheless, while several of these situations are relatively common, they may be difficult to witness and hear regardless of how prepared you or the family are. 

These are challenging circumstances that will require decisions to be made in the moment with the family. It's to be expected that the family may not cope well. This does not suggest a failure on your part.