June 21, 2010

Father's Day Update

This is a follow on to last night's post. We are all at a loss...

Last night at around midnight, my husband said Pop just snapped out of it and started to talk. He was thirsty.

So my husband went to find the nurse that was their main nurse, and for some reason I think my husband knows this man already. I need to find that out. There is one male nurse at the hospital my husband knows pretty well and I think this was him.

He says to the nurse, "My Dad is really thirsty. He's not had a lot to eat or drink today. He's asking for a glass of water, is there some place I can get him one?"

And the nurse said, "YOUR Dad is speaking? He ASKED for a glass of water?"

To which my husband replied, "yeah..."

And the nurse said that in all his years of working, he had absolutely NEVER seen anything like this. One minute my father in law was babbling, they took him to nuclear and he went into a full rigid unresponsive state, and then five hours later, he's babbling again and not stiff.

The neurologist is running tests. The nurse said to my husband to keep dogging this down, he really really thinks it's meds. He also said to us to really watch the rehab places, it's not uncommon for them to give the wrong meds or the wrong doses. My husband asked if there was a better rehab place and the nurse shook his head and said, "No. They're all the same."

That leaves us feeling kind of helpless. We may have to go to 24/7 private nursing care while he's in rehab just to make sure they get his meds right.

So... we don't get it. I suspect he'll be on a rant today. Evidently I've slighted him by not having him live with me for the last 10 years. Ask me if I feel guilty.

You can guess that answer...

Posted by Boudicca at June 21, 2010 06:38 AM

Rehab places are horrible, seen to many family members in them just be totally ignored.

We've been though all of this with hubbies grandmother, she had parkinsons. After she broke her hip she started going down hill, it took a few years after her broken hip but once the parkinsons got to a point in which she was catatonic (staring, jaw open, etc) and alzhimers set in it was less then a year and she was gone.

I am sending my thoughts and prayers and big hugs for you and your family.

Posted by: Quality Weenie at June 21, 2010 07:41 AM

happy thoughts heading your way
hugs to you

Posted by: w at June 21, 2010 08:29 AM

Sometimes modern medicine is a crock of shit in that it prolongs life and alleviates some suffering, but brings a whole host of other problems/side effects with it. But...Pop has y'all looking after him...this is an agonizing, frustrating time, but he has all of you looking out for him. He knows that. You know that.

Prayers and hugs...

Posted by: Mrs. Who at June 21, 2010 08:56 AM

My grandmother died of Parkinson's and Lupus when I was 16. I have some idea of what you are speaking. Praying for strength for all of you and a little more time for your boys.

Posted by: patti at June 21, 2010 08:57 AM

Please don't take on guilt. It is undeserved.
Sending peace for all.

Posted by: Jean at June 21, 2010 09:48 AM

Glad to hear he is back among the living - even if he wants to complain about it! It's probably a good thing you didn't move him into your house. It would have been a war zone, I think, if he is anything like my father-in-law (and from what you have said, I think he is). I am sure your husband understands that too!

Posted by: PeggyU at June 21, 2010 10:14 AM

Try not to let the negative overwhelm you. I've had two relatives pass who went through a real nasty phase, saying all sorts of mean and hurtful things. It can be difficult to not let those times overwhelm and poison all the memories- doubly so when the relationships are somewhat strained to begin with. It can be really hard on kids and teens, whose last memories can be tainted so much by a single harsh word- I know I struggle with some of that myself.

Knowledge is one thing, but our feelings do what they want. All my best to you and yours.

Posted by: Sean at June 21, 2010 12:11 PM

Speaking of those unpleasant things he said...my m-i-l (God rest her soul) said it was part of nature as someone gets closer to dying....to create a distance so that it's not as sorrowful when they die...

Posted by: Mrs. Who at June 21, 2010 02:50 PM

Oddly enough it sounds very very similar to what happens to people who have skull fractures as they heal. I saw it happen once and I was astounded. This petite young woman was in with a fracture. An incredible stream of filthy language, accusations, you name it was spewing forth. (I had read about it in school - but it's quite another thing to see it happen). Her family, already upset because of the accident, were stunned at this turn of events. Even though they had been warned it might happen. Two days later she was completely normal again and heading home! Quiet, soft spoken, polite, and tremendously embarrassed. *sigh*

The brain is such a complex organ, it reacts in what we think are random ways, when it's very likely not random at all - plus the person doesn't actually feel that way - it's due to the physical changes.

My father slipped into that same type of catatonic state for several days. They moved him to hospice care. Stopped all meds... he was awake and talking within 24 hours. He was on the slow downward spiral by then - but this was September - 3 more times they told us it was the end - before he finally passed away in December.

There is not any sort of handle on taking care of the elderly. There just isn't. The most we can hope for is to have people who care about the job helping along the way (instead of those who just want a paycheck).

{{{HUGS}}} and prayers for you all - it's a horrid thing to have to go through.

Posted by: Teresa at June 21, 2010 05:49 PM

well, I guess if he's complaining he's feeling better. Like I said, hang in there. It's going to get worse before it gets any better, if it does.

Posted by: caltechgirl at June 21, 2010 09:41 PM

I saw the following article (or something like it) in last night's paper: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/21/science/21delirium.html

as well as this general article: http://www.emaxhealth.com/1506/hospital-delirium-puts-elderly-risk

{{{{{Hugs for your family}}}}} and I hope everthing is going better.

Posted by: The Thomas at June 22, 2010 08:24 AM

Here are the links in html

Hallucinations in Hospital Pose Risk to Elderly

Hospital Delirium Puts the Elderly At Risk

Posted by: The Thomas at June 22, 2010 08:27 AM

Bou - lots of thoughts and prayers for all of you.

Posted by: Kris, in New England at June 22, 2010 05:39 PM

My prayers for the FIL. I hope this is one of those things that is a result of out of kilter blood chemistry and is easily fixed.

Posted by: Carl Brannen at June 22, 2010 08:25 PM

I rather desperately hope that a friend would leave me a loaded gun if I went into one of those places. When Life is not worth living, save some grace and bow out. To linger in the alternative, nope.

Posted by: Curtis at June 26, 2010 09:28 PM