Living with a terminal illness

You are here

One always has choices: Make informed choices!

Your doctor has told you that you are dying. It is a defining moment in your life, one that calls you to muster all your strength to make the most of your time, communicate the news to your loved ones, organise arrangements for your children or parents, organise finances and legal matters and all that is without counting the vertiginous grieving process, which is an entire challenge in itself. Every individual is an entire world and what works for one person will not necessarily please another.

27 July 2015

Terminal Illness - Euthanasia

No! It's not feeling ill at the airport!

A terminal illness is one from which there is no expectation of recovery. The problem however lies not in the definition but in the interpretation of the definition.

In the Netherlands where euthanasia is legal, terminal has a concrete definition; it literally means "concrete expectancy of death".

In Oregon where assisted suicide is legal in 'terminal cases', terminal is described as conditions which will "within reasonable judgement, produce death within six months."

20 March 2015

Terminal cancer: how to live with dying

What is it like to live with a terminal illness? Kate Granger, who was told her cancer was incurable a year ago, describes her battle to maintain a normal life.

Twelve months ago, at the age of 29, I was told I had terminal cancer. The median length of life from diagnosis to death for patients with desmoplastic small-round-cell tumour is reported in medical literature as 14 months. That technically means my time should be up in October, but I'm doing well and will in all probability survive longer than this.

02 October 2014

Facing death after a terminal illness

Support for those facing the end of life after a terminal illness.

‘I’m sorry – there’s little else we can do’

Spoken by the medical profession, these are words that can shatter the lives of families who have been hoping against hope that treatment would cure or slow the progress of a life-threatening illness. Already emotionally scarred and physically tired by the roller-coaster ride of alternating hope and despair, this news brings with it a whole new and difficult set of circumstances to cope with and adjust to.

26 September 2014

Facing Terminal Illnesses Realistically

In modern times, dying is more and more often portrayed as a cold, clinical reality to be kept at arm's length, relegated to the closed doors of a hospital, almost hermetically sealed from the rest of our lives. When it comes to the event itself, we diligently work to avoid confronting it, addressing it, or acknowledging it. Because of this cultural backdrop, patients receiving a diagnosis of a terminal illness can be tempted to indulge in unrealistic expectations about what lies ahead, clinging to unreasonable treatment options and hoping for highly improbable outcomes.

26 September 2014

Helping Yourself Live When You Are Dying

You have learned that you are dying. Terminal illness presents human beings with an exceedingly difficult and contradictory challenge; you are dying, you know you are dying, yet it is your nature to want to live. The thoughts in this brochure are intended to help you deal with this tension and to continue to live even though you are dying.

19 September 2014

Importance of family - Joost van der Westhuizen and motor neurone disease

Joost van der Westhuizen is not going to spend the time he has left apologising for mistakes and wrong turns made.

Arguably South Africa’s best scrum half ever, the 40-year-old, diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (MND), admits to having faltered, but now is his time. “If I do only have a few years left, then I am going to spend them with my children. I am going to walk, talk, laugh and play with them as much as I can.”

It has been a tumultuous few years for the former Springbok who has been dogged by controversy surrounding his personal life.

29 August 2014

Motor neurone disease - personal care

People with motor neurone disease (MND) gradually lose the use of their voluntary muscles and often need assistance with personal care. They may also need support to cope with the emotional impact of a progressive and disabling illness. Access to appropriate aids and equipment, as well as providing emotional and psychological support, can help maximise the quality of life of people with MND.

Emotional aspects of MND

29 August 2014

Coping With a Loved One's Terminal Illness

By Beth Morrisey

06 June 2014

Responding to Critical Issues: Children and HIV/AIDS

Globally, the number of children infected or affected by HIV/AIDS continues to grow. Preventing children from being infected by their HIV-positive mothers, and treating and caring for those children who are infected or affected by HIV is now increasingly possible.

Progress Achieved by September 30, 2006, in the 15 focus countries:

Prevention/PMTCT: Emergency Plan-supported programs have averted an estimated 101,500 infant infections (including an estimated 54,400 in fiscal year 2006).

24 March 2014


Copyright © 2013