Am J Hosp Palliat Care. 2020 Sep 30:1049909120963075. doi: 10.1177/1049909120963075. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Management of ascites-related symptoms in home hospice and palliative care patients can be challenging. Ultrasound-guided paracentesis is a standard intervention for this indication, but generally requires transfer to a hospital or outpatient interventional-radiology (IR) setting; thus, such interventions are often not practical or attainable for home hospice and palliative care patients.
OBJECTIVE: To describe a mobile, in-home service that provides home-based palliative paracentesis (HBPP) as an interventional palliative option for patients with distressing symptoms related to ascites.
DESIGN: Retrospective case series. Setting/Subjects: Thirty patients with ascites, confirmed by portable bedside ultrasound, who underwent HBPP at their residence.
RESULTS: Thirty-three patients were referred for HBPP for symptomatic abdominal distention from March 1, 2019 to March 1, 2020. Thirty (91%) patients had ultrasound-confirmed ascites and received HBPP. All 30, verbalized appreciable symptom relief post-intervention. There were no reported post-procedural complications.
CONCLUSION: Home-based palliative paracentesis is a safe, effective, and convenient intervention for hospice and palliative care patients with symptomatic ascites.