Korean J Hosp Palliat Care.  2010 Dec;13(4):243-251.

Nurses' Perception on Fluid Therapy for Terminally Ill Patients

  • 1Department of Nursing, Suwon Women's College, Suwon, Korea.
  • 2Department of Nursing, Jeju National University, Jeju, Korea.
  • 3The Catholic University of Korea, College of Nursing, Seoul, Korea. ysyoo@catholic.ac.kr


This study was conducted to investigate how nurses who take care of terminal patients perceive fluid therapy and how this therapy is currently being used in hospitals.
This survey included 200 nurses, 87 of whom were working in the oncology units of 3 university hospitals in Seoul, Korea, and 113 were working in 18 hospice centers. The data for this study were collected by means of structured questionnaires and analyzed by using the Statistical Analysis System software. The differences in perception towards fluid therapy between nurses working in oncology units and those working in hospice centers were examined using the chi-square test and analysis of covariance.
Fluid therapy was perceived more negatively by the nurses from hospice centers than by those from oncology units. Continuous subcutaneous infusion was used in hospice centers, but not in oncology units. In addition, the average amount of fluid infused daily differed significantly between the oncology units and hospice centers.
Our results show that there were differences in the perception towards fluid therapy between nurses in different clinical settings. Nurses caring for terminal and palliative care patients should not simply provide or withhold fluid therapy, but rather develop a wider range of views on fluid therapy, focusing on effective alternative interventions.


Terminally ill; Fluid therapy; Perception
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