So to start, I am a caregiver for my mother. She's 53, but in poor health. A lot of her issues started in 2010 when she had surgery to remove a craniopharyngioma. When she had the surgery, they had to remove 3/4 of her pituitary which caused her to have diabetes insipidus. Unfortunately, they misdiagnosed which type of DI she had, and she ended up in the ER in critical condition. She had multiple organ failure and from the vasopressors to raise her blood pressure, she lost half of each foot. She ended up recovering (which in itself was a miracle, when they transferred her the doctor gave her a 50/50 chance of making it to the other hospital alive). Later that year, she ended up with pulmonary embolisms leading her to taking warfarin for the rest of her life because she's confined to a wheelchair because of the amputations.
In the past year, she had pancreatitis back in march/april, and then her health was ok for awhile. Since November, things have changed. She's been hospitalized 3 or 4 times, and they can't tell me what's wrong with her. In November, she had an infection and ever since she has had little to no appetite. She has been anemic since her bout of pancreatiis, but they found a bleeding ulcer in her stomach that they repaired this last hospitalization (Dec. 23 - Jan 2nd). This last hospitalization she had sepsis from an infection in her leg.
Presently, what concerns me so much is that since her last hospitalization, she's changed. She's sleeping almost the entire day and night (Normally she sleeps a few hours at a time, but is awake and aware the rest of the time), only eating about a cup of jello with fruit each day (she hasn't been eating much since November, but this is even less than she was eating), and not really doing the things she normally does. She normally spends a lot of her free time on her computer, but hasn't touched it the past two days. She tells me that she's ok, but my uncle who lives with us as well also has noticed that she's not acting right.
As far as the eating goes, she's been to the doctor and hospital and we've asked about it each time but no one seems overly concerned about it. I almost feel like I'm watching someone who has given up on life and is preparing to die right now. They think the anemia was caused by the bleeding ulcer.
Anyone have any suggestions on what to do or what might be wrong? I plan on making a doctor's appointment tomorrow morning if her condition hasn't changed, but I also don't expect anything to really be done.
well, she sounds like she's had a very tough time. It's not hard to imagine someone wanting to give up. Maybe having her talk to a councilor about her feelings. Sometimes it helps to talk to someone who isn't family, because family members don't want to depress other members with their worries.
Maybe a mild antidepressant might help. But please investigate for side effects. Some of the more powerful ones can cause sugar problems. Any way, this could help her appetite.
If she's not willing to eat much, she might want to eat better. A healthy protein drink with lots of calories might help her gain some energy. Also, consider a B12 shot. An MD will have decide if this is appropriate. Add to this a good multivitamin.
If she starts feeling better, then maybe a short trip if she would like a change might be another thing to try.
Kimmy, I'm so sorry to hear about your mom's condition.
The ONE main thing to do for her is to get her ENGAGED in life again!
She's disengaged almost completely from anything which will give her
some meaning & purpose, so she can have reasons to continue living.
It will take an tremendous amount of effort & support from everyone close to her AND some professional help in order to turn her mental & physical health around.
Some physical activity -according to her ability is necessary- Physiotherapy,upper body stretches, calisthenics and anything else possible. Her muscles are atrophying and her circulation has slowed down to a crawl, affecting he already compromised immune function even further
The suspected bleeding ulcers could be treated with:
a. demulcent herbs like aloe vera, which can soothe, protect and help repair inflammed or damaged internal tissue.
b. medium chain fatty acids, which would make up for the likely shortage of short chain fatty acids-the main energy source for the tissues lining the G/I
and digestive system and help keep these tissues well-nourished & healthy.
SCFAs are only produced by healthy gut bacteria and require good digestive function, however MCFAs are easily available through coconut oil
intake and are mutiple times more absorbable than SCFAs!
She probably has many deficiencies and she may have to get some essential nutrients directly injected in her body (IV Vitamin/Mineral Therapy).
It would be very important to spend as much time with her every single day,doing breathing exercises in order to normalize her breathing again.
Breathing is a sub-conscious autonomous function and if practiced enough, the subconscious will pick up the correct pattern after a few weeks. It could make a world of difference.
I cannot stress enough how vital this is!
Please go to the normal breathing website for details.
Within the conventional medical system, I cannot see much likelihood for her improvement. You need to take greater charge of her health matters and step outside the current medical box.
Please let me know if you need any more details, however, my suggestions and comments are not intended as a substitiute for medical advice.
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