Topical Hyssopus officinalis (hyssop) essential oil for the reduction in terminal respiratory secretions
AbstractPurpose: Terminal respiratory secretions (TRS) occur in up to 90 percent of all dying persons and are often distressing to caregivers. Unfortunately, current pharmacological approaches to reduce TRS are often ineffective. The purpose of this project was to review the literature for ascertaining the effectiveness of topically applied Hyssopus officinalis (hyssop) essential oil for TRS reduction in patients at end-of-life. Methods: A literature search was conducted for peer-reviewed journal articles with the keywords: human, essential oil, hyssop and its chemical constituents, death rattle, TRS, and end-of-life, resulting in a combined 245,067 articles. A filtering-down approach was used to narrow articles by respiratory, human, clinical trial and topical. Results: The literature review found insufficient information regarding topically applied Hyssopus officinalis (hyssop) essential oil for reduction of TRS in patients at end-of-life. No studies were found assessing any essential oil efficacy for TRS. Several studies of pharmacological approaches to TRS management were found; however, none demonstrated efficacy. Conclusion: The TRS-reducing efficacy of topical Hyssopus officinalis (hyssop) essential oil has not been previously investigated, but has been demonstrated in home hospice use. This literature review provides a foundation for future research investigating topically applied Hyssopus officinalis (hyssop) essential oil for TRS reduction in patients at end-of-life.
AffiliationDepartment of Physiological & Technological Nursing