Mum losing weight - feel helpless

HopefulDaughter

Registered User
Sep 9, 2022
40
0
Hi there,
My Mum is in a nursing home with late stage mixed dementia (Alz + vascular). She was EOL last Sept but stabilised, but is now increasingly frail and bedbound.
Each time I see her I notice how much weight she is losing week on week, and the past three months she’s gone from 40kg to 30kg, losing the last 3kg in just 12 days. It’s shocking to see and I feel so helpless.
I have asked the nursing home how much she’s eating and they say she’s eating 3/4 to half of each meal and they’re fortifying her drinks. She is now so small in her bed when we visited this week I didn’t even see she was in the bed until I was really close.
I don’t know what I can do? Nursing home aren’t saying anything other than “yes she is losing weight” and I’ve asked for a GP to review her as I just feel so helpless. It is the most devastating thing to witness and I can’t bear to think of her losing any more weight.
I wonder if anyone can help who has been through this.
I’m aware that this maybe the final stage but want to make sure I am doing all I can.
Thank you
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
24,657
0
South coast
Hello @HopefulDaughter

Losing weight is characteristic of the final stage, Im afraid.
When mum reached this stage she lost 6 kg in about 6 weeks. Im afraid there isnt anything you can do as she is eating and having fortified drinks.
I expect that the weight loss is due to cachexia - where the body is beginning to close down and is not processing and absorbing the food properly.
I found this final stage and the physical changes harrowing
(((((((((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))))))))))
 

HopefulDaughter

Registered User
Sep 9, 2022
40
0
Hello @HopefulDaughter

Losing weight is characteristic of the final stage, Im afraid.
When mum reached this stage she lost 6 kg in about 6 weeks. Im afraid there isnt anything you can do as she is eating and having fortified drinks.
I expect that the weight loss is due to cachexia - where the body is beginning to close down and is not processing and absorbing the food properly.
I found this final stage and the physical changes harrowing
(((((((((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))))))))))
Thank you. I’ve asked for the GP to review tomorrow but I think you’re right and the outcome is likely to be that there’s nothing we can do. 😢
 

Happygo

New member
Nov 14, 2023
6
0
Hi my mum has yo-yo between sleeping 18-20 ours a day hardly eating and drinking one week then eating half meals the next. In the last two weeks she has lost about 4 lbs and is a shadow of her size a few months ago. Her dementia is last stage and we have had a bout of delirium as well. The GP said 3 weeks ago she didn’t think she would see Christmas. I see a different mum every time I see her I am confused but hopeful.
 

Seelywheely

New member
Nov 27, 2023
1
0
Hi I really feel for you 😞
I too have a mum with mixed dementia she is in middle stage and has lost a lot of weight she now only weights 6 stone but she eats loads in fact Iv never known her eat the way she does now! My biggest problem is we can’t get her motivated to do anything she sleeps most of the day or is just staring at the tv! My Dad has Cancer and really struggles with her! 🥲
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
24,657
0
South coast
Hello @Seelywheely and welcome to the forum
It sounds to me as though your mum is actually a lot further on than you realise. The picture that you describe, of someone sleeping most of the time, not being able to do things any more and losing a lot of weight sounds much more like someone in advanced stages.

I do hope that your dad has help coming in. Carers coming in regularly can make a big difference at this stage
 

HopefulDaughter

Registered User
Sep 9, 2022
40
0
Thank you to everyone who responded on here. My Mum died earlier this week. I am so sad that she has gone but it was very peaceful in the end and she slipped away in her sleep. I visited her last weekend and managed to say all the things I wanted to say, as per all your advice, so I couldn’t have hoped for a better end to her suffering. Thank you to everyone on here for your support. You have helped me to be there with my mum until the end. I am thinking of you all going through this difficult journey with your loved ones.
 
Last edited:

Chaplin

Registered User
May 24, 2015
348
0
Bristol
@HopefulDaughter I’m sorry for your loss. Pleased your mum had a peaceful passing, I think we all hope for this after the torture of dementia.

Be kind to yourself in the weeks and months ahead, x
 

Jale

Registered User
Jul 9, 2018
1,124
0
So sorry for your loss of your Mum, but glad that she passed away peacefully - I think that is what we all hope for. Be kind to yourself in the days and weeks to come . Take care
 

hammang

Registered User
Dec 23, 2012
11
0
So sorry to read that your mum has died. Wishing you peace, and happy memories of Mum's life in the months to come. We lost dad in October at home with the family around him.
I keep thinking about those last weeks and days- I'm hoping it'll become easier with time. It's an awful illness. x
 
Last edited:

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
24,657
0
South coast
I keep thinking those last weeks and days- I'm hoping it'll become easier with time. It's an awful illness.
Yes @hammang , it is an awful disease.
It will still be very raw for you as it is so recent. I can say, though, that it does get easier with time. It is a few years now since mum died and I have not forgotten it, but it is no longer so painful and I can remember the good times now too
Do be kind to yourself now
xx
 

hammang

Registered User
Dec 23, 2012
11
0
Yes @hammang , it is an awful disease.
It will still be very raw for you as it is so recent. I can say, though, that it does get easier with time. It is a few years now since mum died and I have not forgotten it, but it is no longer so painful and I can remember the good times now too
Do be kind to yourself now
xx
Thank you x