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Nutrición Hospitalaria

On-line version ISSN 1699-5198Print version ISSN 0212-1611


CHISBERT ALAPONT, Encarna; BENEDITO MONLEON, María Amparo; GARCIA SALVADOR, Isidro  and  LLINARES-INSA, Lucía I. Feeding as a source of conflict between patient and family in palliative care. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2020, vol.37, n.1, pp.137-146.  Epub June 08, 2020. ISSN 1699-5198.


conflicts are part of human relationships. Few studies have looked at the conflicts that food can produce at the end of life, the factors that affect its appearance, and the way to manage them. This knowledge would help healthcare teams to improve the care of these patients and their families.


to analyze the existence of a family conflict linked to food in palliative-care oncological patients, its management, and the influence on their appearance of changes in diet, diet control, need to eat, support, adaptation to disease, and the association of feeding with survival, quality of life, and care.


the design of the study was cross-sectional. Data from 57 palliative-care oncological patient-family caregiver pairs were collected through a validated ad hoc interview and the PACIS scale. The data was analyzed through content analyses and descriptive and inferential analyses.


patients and caregivers recognized the existence of conflict related to the patient's diet (49.1 % and 54.4 %), with approximately 30 % managing it in an inappropriate way. None of the analyzed variables was statistically significant in relation to conflict appearance (considering p < 0.05), except patient need to eat (χ² = 9.163, p = 0,027).


family conflict due to patient feeding is reported as a problem that requires reflection, analysis, and intervention by the healthcare team, given that all factors involved in its appearance could not be established.

Keywords : Palliative care; Cancer; Conflict; Feeding.

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