Background: Palliative care has historically been under-utilized in patients with glioblastoma. Furthermore, literature on the utilization of healthcare and life-sustaining interventions during the late-stage of glioblastoma has been limited. Aim: To identify and compare healthcare utilization and life-sustaining interventions between patients with glioblastoma who received palliative care and who did not based on patients identified retrospectively from Taiwan Cancer Registry between January 2007 and December 2017. Design: In this study, palliative care was defined on the basis of claims submitted to the National Health Insurance, which has a specific code for it. Variables included demographic characteristics, the utilization of healthcare services, and invasive life-sustaining interventions. Setting/participants: Of the 1994 patients with glioblastoma identified, 1784 fulfilled the inclusion criteria, 613 (34%) of whom received palliative care. Results: The survival of patients with glioblastoma under palliative care was significantly longer than that of those without palliative care. Those without palliative care had significantly more frequent intensive care unit admissions and a longer cumulative length of intensive care unit stay. Regarding cardiopulmonary or respiratory treatments, patients without palliative care had significantly more invasive interventions than those with palliative care. Patients receiving palliative care had significantly lower odds than those without life-sustaining interventions. Conclusions: Our retrospective analysis reveals that glioblastoma patients without palliative care had greater odds of receiving life-sustaining treatments within 1 year before their death, although no gains in survival as compared to those that received palliative care. These findings highlight the urgent need for palliative care in caring for patients with glioblastoma.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine