Symptoms: Dehydration and Decreased Fluids at End of Life

In hospice palliative care, patients often experience dehydration at end of life. This symptom can be complex for family to understand in terms of treatment. In this role play, Kath Murray plays the concerned family member and Misha Butot plays the counsellor. Together they explore dehydration from the perspective of a concerned family member. This scenario demonstrates ways to provide useful information to families that assists them in understanding hospice palliative care options for helping their loved ones experiencing dehydration with dying.


  • 0:00 Introduction to Misha Butot
  • 1:40 Role Play – Daughter of patient who is dying has concerns and talk with the counsellor.
  • 9:20 Options about dehydration – pros and cons
  • 12:45 Changes in energy and strength may influence decisions about rehydration
  • 15:05 Alternatives to fluids – mouth care
  • 19:54 End

Written and preformed by Kath Murray All Rights Reserved. Life and Death Matters, 2010.