Oral morphine for terminally-ill cancer patients

Once it comes into effect, the morphine programme would be a blessing for many end-stage cancer patients in the State.

Reddy made the assurance during the Day Care anniversary programme organised by Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology here.
Dr Lingegowda K B, Head of Department of Palliative Medicine, said people including government officials had the wrong notion that high dosage of morphine would be bad for cancer patients.

"Unlike normal people, cancer patients in advanced stage take oral morphine to ease the pain and would not be addicted to it," he said. There are 850 patients in Kidwai who are on oral morphine at present. The Department of Palliative Care sees 5,000 patients, both old and new, every year.

He said, "Terminally ill cancer patients usually keep thinking about the terrible death they would have. To distract them from it and to occupy their mind, we (Kidwai) started the day-care programme with 30 volunteers, last year," Dr Lingegowda said.
He pointed out that Kerala constitutes 70 per cent of voluntary activities in Palliative care, while Karnataka contributes hardly two per cent.   

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