My father had a brain stem stroke five days ago. The doctors told me it was very bad from the beginning. He had a blood clot and it is still there. We chose not to have a thrombectomy done to remove the clot because it had a 90 percent failure rate and seemed very risky...yet I wish we had done it. My father has very low response. He can hold our hands (firm grip) and moves his eyebrows when you say his name but that is about it. he is pretty much unconscious. He can breathe on his own but they use the vent anyway to help him...they think he can swallow...and his vital signs are good. He has pneumonia now but otherwise is okay as far as his body goes, we just can't get him to "wake up"...they say the prognosis is poor and our choices are to let him die or keep him alive on a trach and feeding tube indefinitely. We can't decide what to do because we don't know what the chances are of him being able to be rehabilitated. My quesiton is this, are there patients with poor prognosis that are unconscious that wake up and recover well or is that just miracle stuff you see on t.v.? Doctors are all very pessimistic and are not giving us hope based on damage done and the cat scan results.......
I don't want to kill my dad unless he has a fighting chanc,e but i dont' want him in a nursing home on a feeding tube in a vegetative state either. Please help me, my heart is broken and we are being pushed to make a decision by the hospital.
Sorry to hear your situation. In my opinion, I doubt he will get better than what he is doing now. He has had a brainstem stroke, and I am surprised he survived that. I am not saying there can't be some "miraculous recovery" but I HIGHLY doubt that. Being that the clot is still in the brain there is a high possibility he could have another.
Secondly, think about him; what would his wishes be? Would he want to be kept alive with a "trach and feeding tube?" Or keep him comfortable and let what happens happen? Please think about HIM and not yourselves.
Keep us posted. Think about the situation keeping his wishes and his quality of life in mind.
We had this situation recently with my mother-in-law. My FIL wanted (against her wishes) to keep her going even though she was on all the machines, tubes etc.
The doctors were pessimistic, and she had pneumonia. Then she got MRSA from all the antibiotics. She recovered to a point where she moved to a nursing home, but she never spoke, never got up, never could do anything, and passed away shortly thereafter and to me, in way more pain. She could not go home as she was completely bed-ridden. She would sort of grip hands like you said, but I really think that is was more of a reaction, not like she would reach out for you.
I would advise you to consult whatever clergy or counsel you need to help you as this is not easy, and I hope you can come to peace with this. But do think of him and his dignity.
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