Sadly I lost Dad in 03. A few days after his 8 years struggle with the disease I had to face the fact that my dear mother who was 80 had the disease. It started a year before that I suppose but I was too caught up in Dad's situation. It is now probaly her 5th year into it. We had to rush her to the hospital by ambulance because she nearly choked to death. She stopped wanting to eat or drink(must be hand fed) so her food was now blended. It turns out she has aspiration pneumonia. They told me she will never eat or drink again. They have her on a fluid bag and her electolites are still good but she has no bowel control for over a year or more..she doesn't speak seems like she tries to but its bad. She hasn't been really lucid in a few years. She has been confined to a wheel chair and became dead weight so I got a hoyer lift and hospital bed. She was up in the afternoon most days dressed and in her chair. I noticed recently aside from the eating problems that she had her head was hanging back now and her mouth is open. I never experienced this level with my Dad...he was still walking after 8 years he had a sepsis infection he died over night at 88 yrs old...very quickly. I now look at that as a great gift. I can overcome any obstical because I loved them both but this I believe is suffering. She is being treated by antibiotics for the pneumonia...how could I have not... Her throat looks dry and like a wall of cobwebs of mucas in her throat...her mouth no longer closes. We have kept her in her own home and have managed with help coming in. She needs full time care. They are suggesting a feeding tube...she will be 86 in April and has lead a long healty life before this happened. She was a beautiful classy woman who would be mortified at what has happened to her. She never liked a hair pulled. There is no living will. I am it. I have to make a decision in a day to stick in a feeding tube. She has no real quailty of life anymore and I do have a dnr order. She speaks with her beautiful eyes...and maybe a mumling word or 2. She does know pain because I see her face when the nurses touch her. I think this tube is not a good thing I need to hear some of your opinion of those of you that have similar situations. I am thinking maybe comfort care in a hospice might be more humane and respectful. I see no where to go but probably but next in a fetal position...bed sores possibly and God knows what. I flip flop back and forth ....with this. Any info helpful.