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HealthInfo Waitaha Canterbury

Weakness & tiredness in palliative care

It's quite common for people who have palliative care needs to feel weak and tired.

This can affect you in several ways. You might have low energy or poor concentration and motivation. You might feel emotionally low and your weakness may mean you have less independence.

Several things could be causing your weakness and tiredness. These include:

If you're having problems with feeling weak and tired, you should discuss this with your doctor. They might ask you to keep a diary to work out when you're getting tired and how it is affecting your day-to-day life.

If there are any obvious causes that are making you weak and tired, your doctor will try to treat them. For example, they may try ways to manage your pain better, treat your constipation, give you antibiotics for an infection or treat any depression.

Sometimes, finding a way to manage your day so you can conserve your energy will help. Several things can help you do this:

If you do not have support people who can help you, your doctor may be able to arrange help. This can be for housework, preparing meals, showering and dressing. Your doctor can also refer you to an occupational therapist who can work with you to manage your energy.

Written by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Endorsed by Canterbury DHB and community palliative care specialists. Last reviewed November 2020.


Page reference: 350390

Review key: HIPAL-17434