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Janand

Janand

Registered User
Jan 15, 2016
3
My mom has dementia and needs a mastectomy. Do we ask for her consent or not. She has forgot she has breast cancer
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
I think that because this is quite major you need to explain to her what the situation is and what the choices are - some people would opt not to have surgery. BUT you know your mum best
a) will she understand?
b) are you happy to explain simply but in some detail?
c) do you know what she wants to do or what she would have wanted to do?

This is such a difficult situation and i'm sure others will have other opinions and options to think about before you make a decision about how to move forward
x
 

Mrsbusy

Registered User
Aug 15, 2015
355
I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. I'm afraid only you can really answer the question, but it may help if you tell others what stage she's out, other health issues, and what do oncology consultant recommend. There is also the law in which it depends if she has a power of attorney sorted for her health etc.

You are aware no doubt that having anaesethic will probably help progress the dementia as lots of people notice this.
 

Janand

Registered User
Jan 15, 2016
3
Have had some really good advice regarding GA. My sister and i have had 3 weeks of hell. Poor dad had another stroke boxing day and mom diagnosed last week with breast cancer. Gp doing home visit tomorrow and think we might talk to mom about it then. We need support and help quickly but feel in limbo
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
Oh my goodness you have had the most awful few weeks haven't you. No wonder you are in turmoil. Good idea to speak to GP and see what the options are and what effects treatments might have. Please do keep posting there is a lot of support on here x
 

Janand

Registered User
Jan 15, 2016
3
Thank u. If she doesn't have surgery her lumps will ulcerate and become very painful, pussy and smelly so we have no choice really. It's aggressive cancer so it's about making her as pain free as possible. We have told dad and he wants her to have surgery. Let's see what tomorrow brings
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
U seem to have it covered - go with your instinct but keep posting for support xxxx
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
8,783
Yorkshire
Hi Janand
what a time your family are having
you are the ones who know your mum best, and know how advanced her dementia is, as to whether or not she can give informed consent, and what her wishes would be - she will, though, definitely need appropriately talking through what is happening to her at every stage, especially if she forgets, as she will have to deal with what has happened to her body and the healing process
I had a full mastectomy and removal of lymph nodes several years ago, and it is a big procedure - because mine was 'full' I didn't need any follow up chemo or radiotherapy, I took pills for five years after instead - I healed well, though and the chest area didn't cause trouble, just felt odd
I hope the GP will give you lots of info - and do contact the Breast Cancer Nurses at the hospital, they were a great comfort to me and I'm sure will pay special attention to your mum's needs - they will be able to give you considered and knowledgeable information - maybe link in with an Admiral Nurse if there is one in your area - possibly also talk with your local hospice as they will have experience of these complicated issues
I'd also suggest you ask for a lot of support when she comes home - maybe even consider that she recuperate in a nursing care home so that help is 'on call' all the time
your dad must wonder whether he's coming or going
I wish you all the very best outcome
 
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Spiro

Registered User
Mar 11, 2012
522
Depending on where you live, your local cancer support team e.g. Macmillan Nurses or Marie Curie Nurses or as has been suggested, your local hospice team should be contacted. Your GP can make a referral - they may be able to visit her while she is in hospital.

I don't know how advanced your Mum's dementia is, but I would suggest that you try and find out how dementia aware the ward nurses are and make sure the ward has flexible visiting times, as going into hospital can exacerbate the symptoms of dementia and she may become more confused. I hope her surgeon has informed the ward staff. Maybe ring his secretary and ask if the senior nurse on the ward she is going to be admitted to is aware she has dementia.

Please don't be alarmed, but forewarned is forearmed. Ideally, either you or your sister should be with your Mum during the day while she is in hospital, especially pre and post op.

So sorry to hear about your Dad, I hope he is recovering well. I was wondering if he might be fit enough to visit your Mum, but realise this may be unrealistic.

Hope her surgery goes well and that she is given adequate pain relief; people with dementia cannot always communicate their needs.
 
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