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Update on mum - complications in hospital

Metalpetal

Registered User
May 10, 2020
113
So my last real mum update was to say that we’d had confirmation of Alzheimer’s and that they were trying her on some type of medication while she stayed in hospital for 2 more weeks so they could monitor any affects on her heart.

Tuesday, we had a call to say she’d acquired ‘a touch of pneumonia’! Luckily they’d caught it early, and so they popped her on antibiotics straight away. But they said they were going to scan her lungs as her breathing was quite bad and they wanted to see if there were any clots due to her atrial fibrillation.

Yesterday we had a call to say the scan had showed fluid on her lungs (this has happened a few times before due to her heart failure) and they’d Increased her diuretic but she’d had a bit of a bad reaction, leading to them having to give her oxygen. But that she then got quite ‘sleepy’ which they were concerned about. So they were calling to say they’d transferred her back to the other main hospital the other side of the city (the hospital she’s been in of late is more for rehab to prepare her for home, it‘s not an ‘acute care’ type hospital). We heard last night that she’s settled a bit since being there and they’re giving her IV diuretics that seem to be doing the job. So hopefully she’ll rally and be popped back to the other hospital in a couple of days to continue her rehab and prepare to go home.

Worryingly, when my brother spoke to a nurse at the new hospital ward last night they had no idea of her recent Alzheimer’s diagnosis! Which seems a little surprising. I’d have hoped that would be CLEARLY marked on her records, as she does tend to talk about some odd things - they must have wondered what she was on about! (Assuming she was even well enough to talk). But I guess it doesn’t matter too hugely as hospitals must be used to dealing with a variety of unusual situations so I’m sure they’d put 2 and 2 together that she’s elderly and possibly got some sort of dementia.

I guess this will almost certainly put timescales back a bit. We’d been told she could be home around the 11th (once the 2 weeks were up) but the pneumonia and heart issues will have hit her physically a bit and I’m guessing she’ll need a bit more rehab to build her strength back before they’ll be happy to send her home. We’ll see!

In the meantime I’m STILL battling to get the Bank to accept our Power of Attorney status! Long story that I can’t even be bothered going into at the moment ;-)

Hope you’re all doing ok.... take care.
 

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
6,910
Bristol
What a hard time you are having, Metalpetal. It is a bit worrying that the dementia diagnosis was not on her records, but hopefully that is well known now. It's been a while since my OH was in hospital, but I think they used to put a butterfly above the bed to indicate dementia so nurses were aware. Physios are usually the last word on whether anyone is fit for discharge at our local hospital, so if you can speak to one it may give you a better idea.
Anyway, I hope your mum will recover soon and you can get the POA hassle sorted as well.
 

RosettaT

Registered User
Sep 9, 2018
485
Mid Lincs
My OH went into hospital with an infection, he was in for 12 weeks and the thing I found most concerning when my OH transferred either to a different ward or to rehab was I had to constantly point out he had alzheimers.
Like you @Metalpetal I expected it to be clearly marked on his records. If it was it was obviously the staff didn't read the notes. I had to constantly point out they couldn't leave his meal or drink sitting on the table as he just didn't know what to do with them. Admittedly it was the infection causing the problem but I would have thought they would have been more aware than they were. The only reason I can think of is there is no specialist dementia ward in out local hospital and he was just put wherever there was a spare bed.
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
1,842
Dorset
Whenever The Banjoman went into hospital I always made sure to tell them that he had Lewy Body Dementia because certain dementia medication could have had an adverse affect.
 

Sarasa

Registered User
Apr 13, 2018
1,366
Sorry to hear about your mum @Metalpetal and I hope she's back in the re-hab hospital soon. Also hope you sort out the problem with the bank. Mum had money with various banks and I found some were better than others.
Is the idea that your mum goes back home with carers after the rehab or is she moving to a care home? It sounds like a care home might be better, but I guess it depends how well she does in rehab.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,566
South coast
Im so sorry to hear about these complications. I do hope that she is well enough for discharge soon. You might want to think about where she is being discharged to, though. It is often easier to get someone discharged to a care home from hospital, rather than from home.

BTW, You could also contact the hospital SW and tell them about the problem with the POA - they may be willing to sign a declaration that your mum no longer has capacity. Mums hospital SW signed the form for the court of protection saying that she no longer had capacity so that I could apply for deputyship (its called something different in Scotland, I know)
 

Metalpetal

Registered User
May 10, 2020
113
Thank you everyone for your replies and kind words. The good news is that mum has ’settled’ since she’s been at the new hospital, and she even gave my brother a call last night (she did stress to him to let me know she was ok, so at least she remembers I exist haha). Her heart rate has gone down a lot apparently (it was sky high) and they seem pleased with the way things are going. So hopefully she’s over this setback. She told my brother they’ve said she might be back at the other hospital today - but whether that’s reality or not, we’re unsure. Interestingly, she knew she was in hospital - which hasn’t been the case these past few weeks. So a certain amount of lucidity...although she was talking about ‘home’, but it was the one she lived in 40 years ago.

@Sarasa @canary - yes we continue to have concerns that trialling her at home is the right thing to do. Tbh, if it wasn’t for Covid we’d probably have short-listed some homes by now. But a) we have concerns about the virus control if she went to a CH; and b) we can’t visit them for a recce at the moment, and I really don’t want to have to put her somewhere we haven’t even visited. If needs must, of course we’ll have to - but I’d rather not.

The care home thing is all tied into the bank/POA pallavar too - we need to start getting a good idea of her finances. We know she has a ‘fairly’ healthy income but I’m not sure if it’s carehome fees level! So we need to know that so we can work out what to do. We can, of course, sell her house - but again, Covid is sort of putting a spanner in the works as far as that’s concerned at the moment. I believe we’ve found a way through the current issue - long story short, mum’s consultant is going to write a letter re her lack of capacity to make decisions. But he won’t send it to us directly - he insists on sending it to a solicitor! So I’ve had to contact the chap who signed the copies of our attorney certificates to check he’s ok with that. Seems a slightly unnecessary step, but perhaps the consultant is thinking otherwise it would be too easy for someone to forge such a letter? We can get the Solicitor to sign and verify it’s genuine I suppose?

Thanks as ever, folks.
 

Palerider

Registered User
Aug 9, 2015
1,801
North West
I wouldn't worry too much about the letter @Metalpetal on capacity going to a solicitor, its probably best its done that way and sorted by a solicitor, if anything it shows you've had no influence over this part of the decision making -which is always a good thing, should problems arise later.
 

Metalpetal

Registered User
May 10, 2020
113
I wouldn't worry too much about the letter @Metalpetal on capacity going to a solicitor, its probably best its done that way and sorted by a solicitor, if anything it shows you've had no influence over this part of the decision making -which is always a good thing, should problems arise later.
Yes, my thoughts too. It’s delaying things a bit but, hey ho - it’s taken about 5 weeks so far, what’s another few days! Patience is a virtue, so they say ;-)
 

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