Is there anything I can do?

Discussion in 'End of life care' started by youngestdaughte, Jan 29, 2015.

  1. youngestdaughte

    youngestdaughte Registered User

    Jan 29, 2015
    2
    I wish I found this forum years ago but at least I am here now. My mum is 86 was diagnosed 12 years or so ago and has been in the 'late stages' now for at least 7 years. My father could not cope and she was put into a care home where I have not seen her out of bed now for about 6 years. She is on statins and painkillers, rarely opens her eyes, makes no noise at all. Is skeletal and contorted through arthritis. But she breathes.. and I really do feel that is as as good as it gets. Sometimes she also coughs. I used to feed her chocolate buttons but stopped about two years ago through fear of choking her
    I spoke to her Gp about 8 months ago asking for her to be taken off the meds but after consulting a solicitor he said no. She has had bouts of Pneumonia which they treat with antibiotics and she continues to breathe. They assist her to eat by pulling lightly on her jaw and she swallows the pureed food. I have queried the practice but the GP told me it is not force feeding as she has no bruises. Heartless, I thought. But his criteria not mine.
    I feel so helpless in this, there is no way my mother would have wanted this and I struggle to visit now as it is so awful.
    Is there anything I can do?
     
  2. TinaT

    TinaT Registered User

    Sep 27, 2006
    7,095
    Bolton
    #2 TinaT, Jan 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2015
    I would contact your local Hospice as they are the experts on palliative care and you can get good advice and support from them. I would also ask the care home what kind of end of life care they have in place for your mother and why you have not been asked to contribute to this.

    I contacted my local Hospice and asked that a specialist nurse visit my husband as I did not think he was getting the right kind of support. I gave details of why I felt this during the telephone conversation. I was told that they visit only on a GP's request but as it was a Bank Holiday and I was very concerned they would request that a nurse visit.

    To be honest it was the very best thing I could have done. Within 24 hours my husband was transferred to the Hospice and he died there three weeks later after having received excellent care.

    It may not be as urgent in your mother's case but I'm sure that you can ask for an appointment for you to visit them and talk over the very valid worries you have regarding your mother's care.

    Best Wishes
    TinaT
     
  3. garnuft

    garnuft Registered User

    Sep 7, 2012
    6,588
    I must have interpreted your post differently as I didn't feel you were worried about your mother's care rather, to me, it reads as if you feel she is having too much care.

    I feel, just upon reading your post, that they are tending to your Mum's needs as well as they can, your Mum has arthritis and painkillers are vital.
    She needs help with eating but still eats, she has developed pneumonia but recovers from it after administration of ABs.

    You should make sure and end of life plan has been discussed and is in her care plan...no hospital admission and DNR.

    You ask if there's anything you can do? I would say...keep on visiting, supporting and loving your Mum...I reckon that's the most important thing you can do.

    I hope your Mum stays peaceful and painfree...she has fought a long battle and you must be exhausted too.
    Best wishes.
     
  4. TinaT

    TinaT Registered User

    Sep 27, 2006
    7,095
    Bolton
    I too read the post as mum having very good care.

    I only cited my own experience which was quite different than the posters to encourage contact with the Hospice as they not only give support to patients but to relatives. I know the understanding of having a loved one in such a position as the poster's mother even when she is getting good care can be helped by talking with Hospice Staff who have a great deal of experience of dealing with end of life care and the effects this has on a relative going through the experience.

    It is a very traumatic time for any relative to have to go through and any help to ease this may be welcome.

    Best wishes
    TinaT
     
  5. garnuft

    garnuft Registered User

    Sep 7, 2012
    6,588
    Oh yes, Tina, I agree.

    The advice and support of specialists in palliative care is vital, even if it's only to say that everything is being done that can be done.
    Wondering and therefore worrying, is agonising.
     
  6. youngestdaughte

    youngestdaughte Registered User

    Jan 29, 2015
    2
    Thanks you have both answered me perfectly, just as the GP and people at the care home have. I guess every so often I just feel I need to check. xx
     

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