Mark Twain

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Through My Caregiver Eyes - Hospitalization

Short note - she is hospitalized!

Mom's rash continued to grow and spread and generally make her miserable.  All efforts to treat seemed to fail.  Finally she was hospitalized last Tuesday with the intent that an Infectious Disease Physician take control of this condition and aggressive treatment started.

Carbuncles is the initial diagnosis.  IV antibiotics and a surgical lancing of one of the boils has been ordered.  She is on pain patches and morphine.  It has been a difficult time.

My days are now consumed with her care once again. I am with her from early morning until evening.  She is too weak to stand or even to adjust her position in bed.  She is too weak to feed herself.  Her pain medicine is a mercy but also a poison to her health.  Without the morphine she has bad pain, with the morphine she has some relief but sleeps the entire time which only continues to weakens her.  And even when she was healthy, she could not respond to questions of the doctors so I become her voice.

Although hospitalization is meant to focus and intensify the process of disease identification and treatment ... vigilance becomes the caregiver's main job.  Nurses are busy people.  They don't have time to meet every need.  They cannot note every change.  And they can't come when needed if the person can't remember to push the Nurse Button.  I become her hands.

And when ordered tests conflict with the current needs of the patient, you have to step in and say "no." Early in the admission mom's ability to void stopped.  A catheter was ordered - but not immediately done.  And then after a time transport arrived to take her for additional testing in the hospital - and I flipped.  The poor transport guy must have thought I was nuts when I said she wasn't going anywhere until her bladder was drained and I went to find the nurse.  I made her aware that everything - including testing would be halted until she put in mom's catheter.  She complied.  Mom's pain was reduced by half.

All these people mean well, but they only see their little part of the process.

Vigilance!

My time is now not my own.  Blogging will cease for now.

If you are a praying person, I ask for your prayers.  Hospitalization, while sometimes necessary, often negatively impacts the patient who is 88 and can start a downward slide that cannot be controlled.



11 comments:

  1. Your mom (and you) will remain in my thoughts and prayers! Be ever vigilant, but remember to take some time to eat and rest.

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  2. I will indeed keep your Mom and you in my thoughts and prayers......you are such a blessing to her but remember to look after yourself. If you get run down you won't be able to help her. All positive and healing thoughts headed your way.

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  3. I am so sorry that you are going through this! I will pray for both mom and you! It never gets easier, does it. And sometimes those damn nurses are just too lazy to get into a big hurry to do what needs to be done now. I am a nurse, remember, so I won't be making any excuses for them. They need to learn to prioritize. A full bladder before anymore testing. Duh!

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  4. Oh Elaine I am so sorry to hear this. Of course I will be praying for her and your whole family.
    What a blessing you are.

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  5. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your Mom. I know from experience what a difficult time this is for you both. Take good care of yourself, as well, so that you can continue to be there for her.

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  6. Praying for you Mom and I hope things will improve! Wishing you a strength of spirit!

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  7. "Although hospitalization is meant to focus and intensify the process of disease identification and treatment ... vigilance becomes the caregiver's main job." An excellent point. You and your mom are in my prayers.

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  8. I am praying for your mom and for you. She is blessed to have you as her on the scene advocate.

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  9. You are indeed in my prayers - you and your mom. She is lucky to have you and I know you will be graced by your spending time with her. I pray for you to have strength and peace and that she is not in pain. Take care!

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  10. Prayers for your mom. A caregivers job is so important..your mom is blessed to have you be her voice and hands.

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