As I have suspected:
Cancer doctors dodge the death talk – CNN.com
…Only one-third of terminally ill cancer patients in a new, federally funded study said their doctors had discussed end-of-life care.
Surprisingly, patients who had these talks were no more likely to become depressed than those who did not, the study found. They were less likely to spend their final days in hospitals, tethered to machines. They avoided costly, futile care. And their loved ones were more at peace after they died.
I’m often shocked, and saddened, that as an EM doc I’m apparently the first to discuss end of life plans with patients having terminal diagnoses. (Yes, life is a terminal state, but don’t change the subject). I do, as it’s what should be done, but it’s often uncomfortable for everyone.
Still, not as uncomfortable as dying in an ICU.