Dr. Kevorkian - right or wrong?

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Was he right is trying to give the right of choice to suffer or die with dignity?

Our dogs had to be put down- they didn't understand what was happening. 30 second shot, and their sufferig was over. My poor lab had cancer, again. took friend who s nurse antheistist with me to vet, Cab put his head on our kness and just laid there. Very peaceful and dignifieid. Very much loved, went with us everywhere.....Pets our our family too.

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Caring for my dad for quite some time now made me wiser xD and I changed my prayer to “Please God make my heath as long as my life! Ameen” instead of wishing for a long life.
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As an addendum - my mother is nowhere near considering end of life options. She has good days and she has bad days. A few months ago she a VERY bad episode with pain that landed her in the hospital and nursing home to get it back under control. During that period of time, she signed a DNR, because it was so bad. Now she is back to her normal again, which a pain level that averages around 4-5 most days with her medication.
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I actually didn't much care for Kevorkian. I thought he inflamed the general public. I do believe in the right to die with dignity, and I like Oregon's law in that respect.

I have been on Neurontin for my fibromyalgia and had bad reactions to it as well. The Utram (Tramadol) I can only take 1/2 tablet of about every 6 hrs. The oxycodone and hydrocodone are absolute no-no's for me.

People that have bad pain for anything (cancer, bad arthritis, etc) that have the same type of issues I do, will find it difficult to get treatment that allows them to remain comfortable. My mother has had many back surgeries. She has rods and screws and 4 levels of fusions in her back. She's bent over almost double. She's got enough arthritis and osteoporosis in her back she sometimes breaks things just sitting wrong. She's got a spinal cord stimulator implanted to help with pain. She takes oxycodone and oxycontin daily and she's still in pain. I shudder to think what would happen if I had her back, because I couldn't take the medication she does. I think I would lay in my bed and cry and hope Dr. Kevorkian would come by with his cocktail.

I lived with horrible pain for 2 years (I still have fibro, so deal with pain on daily basis, but this was worse). I had a syndrome called frozen shoulders. It was in both of my shoulders. Both of them were literally frozen to my sides. If anyone accidentally jostled me, or tried to pull them up, it was agonizing. One time I was trying to cook dinner, and some grease spattered me, and I instinctively tried to jerk back, and the pain was so intense that I fell to floor vomiting. That was before my intolerance to narcotics. At that time, I was taking 2 vicodin 4x a day. At night, I was washing it down with a drink, and it still wouldn't touch the pain. Horrible. At one point, I put a gun to my head. But I couldn't do that to my family. I knew it would end eventually - I just had to wait it out. If I was terminal and going through that? I'd expect my family to understand that I didn't need to suffer for them.
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Equillot - I've been told that aspirin and Neurontin can work really well for post-op pain, but have not seen or experienced that personally. My hubby just did have a hip done and they did a little Ultram but mostly used IV acetaminophen, aka Ofirmev, and that was completely awesome. He had way better pain control on that than when the IV as out and they sent him home on oxycodone and hydrocodone.

In general, about the Kevorkian approach - I ethically favor the position of not removing ordinary care and absolutely not hastening death by any primary deliberate means, but consider it very permissible to omit burdensome care that limits quality of life with the intent of prolonging it. Some people do better without some interventions - in some studies, patients switched to hospice or comfort care live longer than those doing "everything possible." "Everything possible" to prolong life should never be required. And giving enough medication to manage pain or psychiatric distress even if it shorten life is also permissible.

I do think that assisted suicide is too easy to abuse - one it is an easy solution and cheaper than thoughtful, top-notch medical care or physical assistance, and there have been horrid examples of people in states where it is legal being denied "experimental" cancer treatment (in quotes because it actually wasn't, except form the point of view of the insurance company who wanted to deny it) and getting letters that reminded them that assisted suicide would be covered if they wanted it. And I have seen people with disabilities whose quality of life given appropriate support would have been excellent offered withdrawal of tube feedings instead. Doctors and nurses and even the general lay public vastly underestimate what people can do using technology - I've hear people assume a feeding tube in place mean a person will be unable to SPEAK, and a ventilator meaning a person will be bed-bound.

And on here, we all know that sometimes QOL for caregiver and caregivee can both really suck - but we also know about greed and desires to see things end before potential inheritances are used for care. Respect for life ultimately matters to all of us, and the Kevorkian approach was not respectful of the value of life and did not seek non-lethal solutions in many of his cases.
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Jstmealone..... I have had numerous occasions to be working with Hospice.... yes they know when to give Morphine....I wouldn't say that Morphine is the ultimate killer.... but when they are anxious, struggling, it does ease the transition.....but I have also seen where it was not used at all.... so ultimately it depends on the patient , their end of life struggles, and how the family feels about this......
And end of life does not always mean a matter of days..... it can be months.... One of my charges only lasted 5 days, another ,3 months....so please talk with the Dr about your concerns and any questions you have... the Hospice nurses are also able to answer any questions you have..... Utilize the staff of the Hospice, that is what they are there for... not just the patient, but the family as well..... sending you hugs while you are in this part of your journey.
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This conversation has blown me away! A couple weeks ago my mom had pneumonia. She was taken to hospital n was half dead when she got there. 7 days of antibiotics n back to nursing home. Admin called a meeting. They advised me that end if life is here. That was 50 days ago! Hospice is in etc. Hasn't eaten in forever. Of course family has been visiting much more often. She's done a 360 physically. Alert, talks talks talks. Lol. Of course she's in London in WWII ( she was a nurse during the war and is from Ireland ). Also she's 90 yrs old. Reason I'm writing is that all I've been saying is if Mom was lucid for 5 minutes n asked me "Kathleen what's wrong w me ?" If I was given just 1 chance to tell her she would ORDER me to call Dr K ASAP. So I'm happy to read all your posts n comments re: end of life! They have her on morphine as needed. N she hasn't needed it I guess cause she hasn't it. I have a question. Does hospice know when it's time for the morphine? Like I never realized til then and now that morphine administered properly is the ultimate killer? Maybe I'm wrong but quite interested.
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About choosing suicide -- I've read of the times when elders walked into the woods or out onto the ice when their time came. A while back I read that walking onto the ice was legal in Alaska all the way into the 1980s, when public outcry caused an end to the practice. I thought about what would happen now if an elder wandered into the woods or on the ice. The authorities would "rescue" them. They would be locked in a memory facility and given Haldol for the rest of their lives.

I am not Catholic, but I do feel that suicide is a bad thing. I do feel, however, that refusing treatment is completely okay. Sometimes it sickens me to see a person of advanced years unable to get out of the bed to poo, yet being given drugs to prevent high cholesterol or osteoporosis. And don't get me started on giving mammograms or pap smears to a 90-year old. I think it is totally okay for a person who is ready to cross the bridge to quit taking medicines and refuse treatment of any kind. I think that family members often keep trying to keep their elders alive because they fear looking like they didn't try hard enough.
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With Jeff, the swelling in his brain was horrible. They were discussing putting in a shunt when he died. Something burst.

I call what I have an allergy to keep the docs away from me. It's actually an intollerance. It causes more pain than it cures, and it's with all types - synthetic and non-synthetic. Anything that acts on the opiod receptors in the brain. I can now take tramadol, but only 1/2 tablet. If I take a whole one, I get the same reaction. Even though it is not an opiod itself, it binds itself to the same receptors in the brain. Lucky me. And it makes no difference how the medication is given - IV, Patch, oral, whatever. I will get horrible, horrible pains in my abdomen that will lead me to the emergency room. Screaming type pains. I was able to take vicodin, but not codeine for years, then I developed that sensitivity too. I now have Fibromyalgia and can take very little for the pain, and live in fear of not being able to take anything if I get cancer. I will have to have my hips replaced within the next couple of years, and I don't know how I'm going to handle that without painkillers. Maybe let them keep me unconscious for the first week while they work my hips for me???
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hmmm.
yesterday edna told " that woman " that as far as that goes shed just as soon bobby be here as sharon kay .
it makes me wonder who " that woman " was , and how much chatter like that it would take out of edna to have MPOA changed with one court document .
cappy may already be mpoa and not even know it . edna is not comfortable with PIA and everyone can see it -- from the moment i intervened and took edna to er 8 months ago with pneumonia ..
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wow equillot . thanks . my aunt is complaining about her head hurting and the back of her eyeballs , then she rubs the sides of her head way around to her ears . it doesnt take much imagination to visualize whats going on there . i hope NH medicates as they wish despite pia cause shes an emotional train wreck with no thoughts for anything but her own interests . i trust the docs here . they know pia is flaky , theylle sidestep her .
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