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87 Year Old Man With Congestive Heart Failure/Afib
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87 Year Old Man With Congestive Heart Failure/Afib

My father recently passed away from complications from congestive heart failure at the age of 87.  He developed congestive heart failure after a heart attack approximately 5 years ago.  He had a triple bypass and was on meds for congestive heart.  He also suffered from afib.He was on 40 mg of lasix daily but occasionally had to go the hospital to clear the fluid from his lungs.
The last couple of times he was treated for fluid buildup they said his heart was enlarged.  What could we have done differently?He exercised   daily up until about 6 months ago and watched his diet plus took his meds religiously. Should we have given him more lasix when he was having ttrouble breathing.  We were worried about harming his kidneys.  Please advise.
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First off Kelley i am so sorry for your loss...i lost my Dad a couple of years ago and it was a pretty tough time for our whole family and he was 74.  The main thing that i think you and your family should come to terms with Kelley is that the average lifespan for a male in the United States is 75.6 so for absolutely sure your Dad beat the odds on that one.  I think for myself when my Dad passed away i looked at those numbers and it made me feel a little better anyway.  As far as what you and your family could have done differently the answer no doubt would be absolutely nothing....CHF is a pretty tough disease and for many becomes progressive in the later stages almost at warp speed....sounds to me like the doctors were pretty proactive with his treatment planning and did the best they could as well..as far as you giving your father more Lasix....from the get out that wasn't your decision to make Kelley it was up to the doctor to administer the correct dosage which i am sure they did...the end results of congestive heart failure is exactly as you have described with the fluid build up, difficulty breathing, and many times because of that fluid build up and the strain it puts on the heart atrial fib will pop up.  It is easy for any of us to dole out the could haves, should haves, would haves...but Kelley the result at the end of the day will be the same....your father had a very long, active and i am sure happy life and beat the national averages on longevity of life...we should all be so lucky and i can only hope that i will have the chance to live as long as your father did...i think it comes down to quality not quantity of life and it sounds like you all enjoyed a very close and happy relationship and its obvious that you cared very very deeply about your dad.  This is something that each and every one of us is facing in our future...we just don't know when and we just don't know how but personally i would count myself lucky that you had your dad longer than most of us did or will.....there is absolutely nothing i am sure that you or your family could have done to change the outcome Kelley....my thoughts are with you all and i wish you all and i sincerely wish you all a wonderful New Year filled with hope......
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Thanks so much Cindy for your response.  I guess my Mom and I knew that my Dad was declining.  We just didn't want to believe it.  Since his last visit to the hospital in August to drain excess fluid, my Dad did not want to eat or get out of bed and was depressed.  He would drink 4 Glucernas a day and eat frozen yogurt and fruit and maybe pancakes and turkey bacon for breakfast.  Other than that, he picked and ate very little.  He was having trouble breathing and could barely walk.  He spent his days in the recliner watching his big screen t.v.  This was hard for a man who was used to exercising and hanging out with his friends at his health club.  He was definitely blessed with a long life.  He passed  peacefully while in home hospice surrounded by his family.   He willed his body to medical science.  I am proud that he was my Dad.
Your response helped.  Thanks.
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