Palliative care is a rapidly evolving field focused on the management of problems that undermine the quality of life of patients with progressive incurable medical disorders. It is fundamentally concerned with all factors- physical, psychological, social, and spiritual- that contribute tosuffering, and prevent a death with comfort and dignity. Palliative care is a fundamental aspect to good clinical practice, the "parallel universe" to therapies directed at cure or prolongation of life. All clinicians who treat patients with chronic life-threatening diseases are engaged in providingpalliative care, continually attempting to manage complex symptomatology and functional disturbances. The scholarly foundation of palliative care is advancing, and resources are needed to highlight the findings of empirical research. TOPICS IN PALLIATIVE CARE has been designed to meet the need for enhanced communication in this field. To highlight the diversity of concerns in palliative care, eachvolume of the TOPICS IN PALLIATIVE CARE Series is divided into sections that address a range of salient issues: symptom control, psychosocial functioning, spiritual or existential concerns, and ethics. The authors present and evaluate existing data, provide a context drawn from both the clinical andresearch settings, and integrate knowledge in a manner that is both practical and readable. The specific topics in this volume are: Pediatric Palliative Care, Management of Bone Pain, Psychopathology in Patients with Cancer, and Skin Disorders and their Management.