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Old 01-27-2015, 07:05 PM
 
766 posts, read 1,160,974 times
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I've been an active participate of my 4 grandparents 'last days'. I witnessed what Lewy Body Dementia did to my mother. I KNOW what 'medical torture' Kenny was subjected to, thanks to 2 different forms of cancer..... I SAW what happened to my Step-dad after his blow out heart attack, that lead to emergency quad by-pass, and all those issues that happened after.....

Somebody stated earlier in this thread..... "DON'T TELL ME HOW TO DIE!"

I'm sorry.... but I've spent the last 20yrs without Insurance. I know I'm getting up there in yrs. I'm accepting that.

I think that 'dieing' is a part of HUMILITY!
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Old 01-27-2015, 09:01 PM
 
336 posts, read 595,555 times
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I actually have a problem with this. My mom and one of my best friends have had health issues for as long as I can remember. If my friend had listened to all of the doctors over the years, she would have ended up in a wheelchair if not dead years ago. Instead, she has learned how to live with her health issues in a way that allows her to still be a productive member of society and she still walks on her own two feet.

As for my mom, she has had poor health for as long as I can remember. She would be in and out of hospitals, but she'd be okay in between admissions. Between 97 and 03 she was on life support 3 times each time being given less than 10% chance of making it through the night. She was off the machines in 21 hours, 3 days, and 5 days. She has had a few heart surgeries, but in 2011, she broke her ankle twice and ended up needed heart valve replacement. She spent more time in the hospital and rehab than she did at home and I can't tell you how many times I heard the word "hospice" and "palliative care" during that time. (Can you imagine how many years I would have been without my mom already had we listened to the doctors?)

In 2012, we moved her in with our family and I began taking care of her. She was in and out of the hospital often as she had many health issues, but she was always okay in between until this past April. No matter what would happen or how many times hospice or DNRs were mentioned, my mom wouldn't hear of it. She was 68 and had told my oldest she was going to live until she was 100. Okay...not the best move on her part, but that was how much she wanted to LIVE despite her health problems and hospitalizations.

As her caregiver, I became very knowledgeable about her conditions, her medicines, the tests that would be run, etc. In June she ended up in the hospital and went between there and rehab as her readmissions would get closer and closer together. The hospital finally convinced her a DNR was the best thing because of how bad her heart and lungs were, but they told her, that only had to do with what happened after her heart would stop if it did. They told her that as far as treatment went she would primarily be kept comfortable, but that everything would be discussed.

I went to pick her up from rehab to bring her home for palliative care only to find her in kidney failure. She was taken to the hospital after she told the rehab center she did NOT want to just be kept comfortable. I talked to every doctor between that Friday night and Saturday morning that came in contact with her and it was agreed that we would wait to talk to a hospice rep on that Monday to determine if it was best to just make her comfortable or if we should give treatments another try. Dialysis was even mentioned.

The doctors said they thought she had left there the week before with hospice in mind and I told them that was NOT what she wanted as did she. Trust me, I thought I was ready to let her go after all she had been through, but she was a fighter and she was proud of it. We told him that she wanted to do palliative care instead and that was what rehab had been doing and rehab even suggested dialysis could be used. The doctor said again that was fine and that we should talk to hospice Monday. Sunday I found out that same doctor I had the most in depth conversation with chose to stop her treatments Saturday night. By the time I got there first thing Monday morning, I was horrified to see the condition my mom was in so quickly from when I had seen her Saturday afternoon. The nurse told me she had been fine the day before. Tired, but alert and that her lab results weren't much worse than they were when she came in Friday. Apparently enough had changed though because she was lethargic and very very confused.

The hospice rep spent 2 minutes trying to talk to her and decided she was already to the point of needing to be admitted to inpatient hospice. That night was the last time I got to talk to my mom and hear her voice as she went into a deep sleep the very next day. She died that Saturday morning.

To this day, I am livid and want to know why that doctor went against what we discussed. Not only did he go against it, but he didn't even call and tell me he was doing it. Yes, my mom had a lot going on, but I can't help but feel like he robbed us of some time even if it was just to do dialysis and get her to the point I could bring her home and maintain her condition with dialysis. She and I wanted one more Thanksgiving together and, if we were lucky, one more Christmas. Instead she died the Saturday before Thanksgiving.

If someone wants to die, that's one thing. A person should have directives in place that clearly tell people what they want. My mom was very clear in her directives and the doctors didn't listen to either of us. I'm not okay with this.
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Old 01-27-2015, 09:44 PM
 
143 posts, read 132,971 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by isis297 View Post
If someone wants to die, that's one thing. A person should have directives in place that clearly tell people what they want. My mom was very clear in her directives and the doctors didn't listen to either of us. I'm not okay with this.
If she had a written Advanced Care Directive on file with her health care providers that stated that she was to receive any and all treatments to keep her alive and the doctors and/or hospitals failed to do so then you should talk to a lawyer.
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Old 01-27-2015, 10:15 PM
 
10,824 posts, read 8,081,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi3 View Post
After my mother survived a heart attack in her mid-nineties , she went to an assisted living center where she was a high level resident. Her living will stated she did not want to be resuscitated if she experienced a life threatening situation. The supervisor at the ALC came in every 6 months for her to update the living will. Mother lived for 16 months and this happened twice during that time. Turns out she died in her sleep one evening after the evening meal, so it didn't have to be tested.

It was as if the powers that be did not like her wishes and hoped they would change so she could be resuscitated if need be. This was in 2000. Perhaps attitudes have changed to be more willing to follow a patient's wishes.
The ALC wasn't trying to get your mom to change her mind. They were reinforcing her right to use a directive to express her current wishes.

ALC's are state regulated and most or all states require them to provide proof that the patient's right to health care directives is honored. The best way for the ALCs to prove compliance is to maintain a current directive in their files. That's why most or all ALCs ask all their patients to review and renew their directives frequently. Every six months is a common cycle.
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Old 01-27-2015, 10:26 PM
 
10,824 posts, read 8,081,485 times
Reputation: 17038
Quote:
Originally Posted by isis297 View Post
If someone wants to die, that's one thing. A person should have directives in place that clearly tell people what they want. My mom was very clear in her directives and the doctors didn't listen to either of us. I'm not okay with this.
I assume her written directive appointed you as her agent to make decisions if she was unable to respond. In which case, and in view of your mother's impaired condition in those final hours, the doctor and hospital were legally mandated to include you in the discussion of whether to continue or terminate treatment.
I agree with northwesty that you should talk to a lawyer.
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Old 01-28-2015, 08:29 AM
 
Location: Western Colorado
11,111 posts, read 12,501,220 times
Reputation: 26239
OMG! Soylent Green is PEOPLE!!!!!!
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:10 PM
 
685 posts, read 565,832 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delahanty View Post
Oh goodie. Another excuse to keep from admitting seniors, and put them on "observation status" even longer.
That status will then allow the senior to go bankrupt and lose his/her house. Lovely things are done to us.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,765,919 times
Reputation: 32309
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeaceOut001 View Post
That status will then allow the senior to go bankrupt and lose his/her house. Lovely things are done to us.
What would be your proposed remedy? The only one I can think of is for the tax-payers to pick up everybody's tab, and I don't like that either. Some problems do not have a please-everybody solution.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:15 PM
 
685 posts, read 565,832 times
Reputation: 1004
Quote:
Originally Posted by biscuitmom View Post
I assume her written directive appointed you as her agent to make decisions if she was unable to respond. In which case, and in view of your mother's impaired condition in those final hours, the doctor and hospital were legally mandated to include you in the discussion of whether to continue or terminate treatment.
I agree with northwesty that you should talk to a lawyer.
Yes, talk to a lawyer and this really makes me mad. We have binders with our living will and all that stuff. My directions are clear and my partner will sue the doctor and hospital if it's not followed.

My dad made a mistake. I had his Trust and POA and was responsible for making decisions for him. But his documents that could've helped me were found when I was cleaning up and clearing out one of his homes. Keep them in one place. Get that living will to your local hospital (we have one here only) and to your own doctor to cover your bases.
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Old 01-29-2015, 03:17 PM
 
685 posts, read 565,832 times
Reputation: 1004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
What would be your proposed remedy? The only one I can think of is for the tax-payers to pick up everybody's tab, and I don't like that either. Some problems do not have a please-everybody solution.
I'm not picking up anyone's tab. I promise you won't pick up mine. Observation Status is a pitfall primarily for seniors and a money maker for hospitals. Move the ill person out of the hospital to hospice or another care center.
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