Palliative therapy in adults with cancer: a cross-sectional study

ABSTRACT Objective: To characterize the socioeconomic and clinical profile of adult cancer patients in palliative therapy. Method: Cross-sectional study in an oncology hospital in Paraná, with 124 adult patients who started palliative therapy in the period from Jan. 2 to June 30, 2015. Results: Of the participating population, 60.5% were women, 68.5% white, 48.4% married, 72.6% catholic and with income of one to two minimum wages. Non-smokers, 45.2%, non-alcoholics 75%, and 92% had Performance Status 1 and 2. The predominant primary diagnosis was breast cancer, with previous chemotherapy and radiotherapy. The sites of metastasis were lung/mediastinum/bronchi and lymph nodes. Conclusion: The socioeconomic and clinical context characterized the profile of adult patients in palliative therapy. The demand arising from the increase in cases of advanced cancer requires nursing care at all stages of treatment.