Klin Padiatr 2011; 223(06): 374-375
DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1283141
Short Communication
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Palliative Sedation in 2 Children with Terminal Cancer – an Effective Treatment of Last Resort in a Home Care Setting

Palliative Sedierung zweier krebskranker Kinder in der Terminalphase – eine effektive Therapie auch in der häuslichen Versorgung
M. Kuhlen
K. Schneider
U. Richter
A. Borkhardt
G. Janßen
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
03 November 2011 (online)


As defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), palliative care aims to improve quality of life in patients suffering from life-threatening disease. When dealing with intolerable and treatment-refractory symptoms, palliative sedation (PS) is an option of last resort. The European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC) defines PS as the monitored use of medications intended to induce a state of decreased or absent awareness in order to relieve the burden of otherwise intractable suffering in an ethically acceptable manner (Cherny N, Radbruch L. Palliative Medicine 2009; 23: 581–593). Although PS has gained increasing research interest and is widely accepted as important and necessary therapy in palliative medicine, guidelines exist only for adults (Kirk T, Mahon M. J Pain Symptom Manage 2010; 39: 914–923).

In particular, little is known about the feasibility and effectiveness of PS in children. The present report concerns 2 children with end-stage cancer and severe, treatment-refractory dyspnea cared for by our specialized pediatric palliative care team (PCT) in a home-care setting.