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Neuropalliative Care

Palliative care is an approach to the care of persons living with serious illness and their families that focuses on improving quality of life and reducing suffering. It is person-centered care that addresses physical symptoms, difficult emotions, spiritual wellbeing, and planning for the future.


While traditionally associated with cancer and end-of-life, there is a growing body of evidence supporting the integration of palliative care for any serious illness and at any time along the illness journey, including the time of diagnosis. Since 2013, I have been engaged in the growing field of neuropalliative care, a field that recognizes that persons living with neurologic illness have significant and unique palliative care needs. This is my primary research interest.


My contributions to this field include:



Lewy Body Disease Association Community Webinar Series

‘Prescription for Hope: Using Palliative Care Concepts to Support Self-Management in Lewy Body Dementia.’

Palliative care skillsets provide a great foundation for individuals and families to improve the care they receive, especially with complex conditions like Lewy body dementia. Presented in collaboration with the International Neuropalliative Care Society, ‘Prescription for Hope: Using Palliative Care Concepts to Support Self-Management in Lewy body dementia’ will provide an overview of what palliative care is and how it can support your quality of life. In addition to learning from four experts, you will hear first-hand from a care partner and her experience with palliative care.



Neuropalliative Care: Key Publications

Here is some of my past research if you’d like to learn more about neuropalliative care.

Comparison of Integrated Outpatient Palliative Care With Standard Care in Patients With Parkinson Disease and Related Disorders: A Randomized Clinical Trial

This paper describes the results of a large, multisite randomized controlled trial of team-based outpatient neuropalliative care for Parkinson’s disease. We found that palliative care results in improved patient quality of life, symptom control, motor function, and advance care planning as well as caregiver burden and anxiety. It is a crucial step towards more widespread adoption of this approach in Parkinson’s disease and neurology.

Palliative Care and Neurology: Time for a Paradigm Shift

This paper calls attention to the wide array of challenges facing people living with neurological illnesses and their family. As these many of these needs are not well met under current models of care it calls for a paradigm shift for our field to embrace and integrate palliative care approaches.

Parkinson Disease Patients’ Perspectives on Palliative Care Needs: What Are They Telling Us? 

Palliative Care and Parkinson’s Disease: Caregiver Perspectives

These two papers utilize qualitative interviews to better understand the palliative care needs and preferences of people living with palliative care and their family care partners.

Implementation Issues Relevant to Outpatient Neurology Palliative Care

Practical suggestions for clinics and healthcare providers interested in getting a neuropalliative care clinic off the ground including checklists for all team members.

Palliative Care and Parkinson’s Disease: Meeting Summary and Recommendations for Clinical Research

Summary of the meeting of an international working group on palliative care and Parkinson’s disease including recommendations for where the field should go.

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