May 2018

May 2018

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

When You Think It Can't Get Worse. . .

In April, we thought mom was on her way out.  She was lethargic, refusing to eat, and losing weight rapidly.  Since she could no longer walk, she was moved to the fourth floor where there's equipment to lift her in and out of bed and her wheelchair.

After several days on the fourth floor, the doctor and staff decided mom no longer needed Ativan for Sun Downers Syndrome.  Ativan controlled mom's anxiety, but also made her extremely drowsy.  As a result, mom appeared to come back from near death.  Her memory didn't improve, but she began eating when being fed and engaging in conversation.  Best of all for dad, mom began smiling and laughing at his jokes again.  As a realist, however, I hated seeing dad so pleased when I knew the "improvement" wouldn't last long.

The descent began a few weeks ago.  While less medication is allowing mom to be more animated, she is also becoming extremely aggressive toward the staff, hitting, biting, kicking, and cursing.  So a couple of weeks ago, the doctor put mom on three doses a day of Depakote.  She's drowsy, again, but not like she was on Ativan.  However, mom's anger is not diminishing.  In my meeting yesterday with several of mom's primary caregivers, I was told she will probably be back on Ativan soon.  At which time, we can expect little-to-no response from her.

So now I have to tell dad that thing's are about to get worse.  He's already sad that mom on Depakote is, once again, drowsy during his visits.  But clearly mom's agitation isn't good for anyone, including herself.

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