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My father has a sound mind, but has congestive heart failure and refuses to take medication.

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At the hospice where my mom died, they had a bereavement supoprt group and it was mostly widows; I think it helped a lot of them find the value of going on. Maybe that would help your Mom feel like her life could still be worth while and then maybe worth taking medicine. If someone is not taking medicine because it is giving them a side effect they cannot (and maybe SHOULD not) put up with, it is really important to let the doctor know, because there may be a solution like different medicine or something to take it with.
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You really can not force them to take their meds all you can do is report it to their doc and let him or her deal with it-sometime it is a game they play for attention -if you have tried and they will not comply-you know you have done all you can and if it results in health problems that is their choice.
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I have the same issue with my Mom... she is 85 my Father is in heaven and there is a very real part of her that wants to be there too! I don't believe she is suicidal however she will tell me half of me is gone.It breaks my heart, I really miss my Dad and I understand, but I would like to keep her with me. I do not feel I can force her to take her meds either. I said them up for her I have put little reminders on her cupboard and mirror but she just does not want to. She had a heart attack not two weeks after my Dad passed away she is really on VERY little medication.... I really think she feels she has no value without my Dad... We have really tried I have 5 children and 2 grandchildren and the kids try really hard and are very good to her! take care...
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My father has congestive heart failure and has had 2 strokes. He refuses to take his meds. We have tried everything, but he states that it is his choice and his right to refuse medical care as well as taking his meds. I'm stressed out. I don't know what to do. I am his daughter as well as his In Home Provider will I get in trouble for not making him go to the doctor as well as forcing him to take his meds, even though I don't think I can force him. I have tried everything. Yolanda
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At this point she is not able to take care of herself she needs medicial attention either she has to go to her doc or the ER ask her what she wants to do if none of these then she needs to be placed she is going to die if left alone does she want that-if you have not given up on her you have to be the grownup here.
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My grandmom stopped taking her CHF medication a few months ago and now she's all swollen and short of breath again, Im sure her BP is sky high but she wont go to the hospital. We are trying to get her to take her CHF meds but she refuses - said they make her stomach hurt. I told her I love her and I hate this decision but its her life and I wont waste time (shes about to be 81) arguing with her if her decision is made. Its sad and selfish but shes ALWAYS been my biggest supporter so I wont belittle her for this choice, but I sure am sad.
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To be honest, even if he is not of sound mind, he still has the right to refuse medications. I found this out while working in homes for the elderly, we could not force them to take any kind of medication if they refused.
Do like chadburbage1 said about talking to him and loving him. It really does no one any good if you turn your back on him or argue with him. All you can do is try,
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You overlook the obvious. Even if he does take his medications, he'll still die, sooner or later. If he is qualified to make his own decisions about his health care, they are his decisions. Talk to him. Find out how he feels about his life, and how he feels about death. He might learn something from you, and you might learn something from him. Good Luck, and God Bless You.
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I would show him the medications you are taking and ask him if he would show you his.
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I liked chadburges comment too, and want to add just one more thought - it could be that the meds they are trying on him have side effects that make his life not as worth living, like poorer memory, chronic cough, dizziness, headache, etc. See if there is anything else they could try instead if that's the case. The usual CHF meds are beta blockers and ACE inhibitors; if that's what they want to use and he really can't stand them, they could consider digoxin as long as the main thing is trying to make him feel better and have some quality time.

Not knowing how old or how complicated his health really is - is there any chance he would be listed for transplant?
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First of all, you can not and should not FORCE your father to do anything. You did not mention his age, is this a recent diagnosis, are there other health issues, why is he refusing to take his medications? Is your mother still alive? If so, how does she fit into the picture? There are too many unanswered segments to this situation for anyone to give a definitive and knowledgeable response.

That being said, I am wondering if your father is frightened or has given up because he feels his future and outlook are insurmountable? Is he depressed, a common condition in the elderly that might be influencing his thoughts to the negative side, yet something relatively simple to improve. Has the doctor fully explained the disease and prognosis to him?

My father-in-law is 85, has had three by-pass surgeries, two angioplasties, a heart valve replaced, three cardioversions, as well as, CHF. He went deer hunting this fall. It all began in 1982, so there can be a lot of life left even with that diagnosis. It is not without struggle and tons of pills, like 20 plus a day. Maybe your dad just hates swallowing pills. It is getting more and more difficult for my father-in-law to get around and there are side effects. He feels it is worth dealing with all the rough parts to get the good parts in return. However, not all people feel that way. I would suggest you take your father to a good geriatric physician, if he is in that age bracket, and after a complete medical and psychological evaluation, you should discuss and weigh the options with him, as well as, the doctors. In the end, if there are no other medical issues, I think you need to let your father make is own choices with his life. Remember, it is HIS life.

I am sure it is extremely difficult for you and you feel helpless standing by while he refuses to take, what appear to be, the necessary steps to extend his life. You must love him a great deal and want to fight tooth and nail to keep him with you as long as possible. I feel the same about my mother and would go to the ends of the earth to prolong the time I have with her. Yet, having just lived through a six year struggle with my mother-in-law and dementia before she was allowed to find peace and now I am watching my mother, as a hospice patient, slowly slip away while dying with kidney disease and dementia, plus my father-in-law and his issues, believe me, I know how long and hard the road can be for them. What I have finally learned from all of this is that it is still THEIR life; they get to chose how they want to live and die. How would you feel if someone was forcing you to do something against your will? We can encourage them, do tons of research to become knowledgeable about their conditions and share our findings with them, we can speak to medical personnel about all aspects and do our best to help them find peace and hope. However, we can not force them to live if they chose not to, that would be wrong. I could have a feeding tube put in my mother to selfishly extend her time on this earth, but that would be cruel.

Would you be up to having a non-confrontational talk with your father and let him know how much you love him and still have a lot of life you want to share with him? Can you also allow him to openly and honestly share his feelings with you? Then, and most importantly, graciously accept his decision? If he elects to allow nature to take its course, will you honor his wishes and make the very best of every precious moment you have left with him? You may discover his reasons are based on fear or some other emotion that, once discussed and faced, could bring renewed excitement about life and he may just find the will to live and gladly take his medications. Don’t ruin this time fighting and arguing over his choice whether he wants to take his medication or not. Life is too precious to waste. May you both find peace, love and resolution together.
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Can you have the drugs made in liquid form and just put in his coffee. He may not be of such sound mind if he refuses to take his meds. Part of the problem may be depression and some professional therapy might be a good idea. When he realizes how important he is to you, perhaps he will do otherwise . The guy up there who said just leave him alone is a jackass. Dad does have rights but if he does not have a basis or rationale for not taking his meds he may need help other than just medical doctor help. Please consider this.
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I would encourage you to remember he is an adult... I know that you love him and you want him to take his medication so he will be okay. I have gone thru this with my Mom... take care,J
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Steven, My father died of congestive heart failure at 75. His heart had become enlarged and hardened from years of high blood pressure not being controlled. He did not want to die. He had a pace maker put in and saw a cardiologist and medical doctor faithfully. He tried cutting out salty foods and fluids. He tried exercise and elevating his bed. He took a water pill. His heart could not pump the fluids through his body efficiently anymore. He had to be hospitalized 3-4 times a year to get "drained". He would fall down because the blood was not getting pumped to his brain. His legs and feet swelled like cantaloupes. It is a slow and miserable death. All you can do is make sure he is safe, comfortable and loved. June
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Doc Sylvester18 its not vitamins its congestive heart failure,and high blood pressure medicines!
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Doctors don't always have the answer to life's problems. They ALWAYS push a pill down someone's throat and then collect their 150 bucks for the office visit.
There are MANY other ways to fight CHF such as diet and exercise.

Have you asked him how the medication makes him feel? Maybe he doesn't like the way it makes him feel, because there are side affects to ALL medication. And to the person who said they would "leave him alone", I bet the person you are taking care of is either dead or wishing they were.
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i agree whole heartedly with chadburbage1. he is right on the mark about what to do in this situation. we should never completely abandon our loved ones no matter what. we should always be there for them and let them know how much we care no matter what.
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Firstly don't give up on your father, continue to love him and visit and express that he is needed, of value and you and you want him around. That said, a refusal to take meds might indicate less than clear thought and while you might believe him to be mentally ok, he is not. The reason needs to be determined. Has your father shared thoughts in the past about being ill? Be patiient and investigate and do seek the advice of an experienced doctor. Some might involve others to help such as clergy, other children, attorney, friends. Easy does it though. Balance respect with "your desire". It is his life. But, he really needs to understand that his life, the continuation thereof, means the world to you and others. Maybe he has a reason. Know the reason and help to put the reason/objection into context. Just don't push and make him defensive. Love works.
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You can't force him to do anything while his mind is clear even when my husband showed signds of dementia the social worker told me I was wrong -yiu might have hie evaluated by his doc and if he says he can make his own decisions and is mind is clear I would report this to social services and just stay away it will only be a stressor for you do not get caught up in his crazeness he enjoys the attention you can call him on occasion and ask how he is then go about your own life he relishes all this attention and probably enjoys making you misserable this type of behaivior is not uncommon, been there done that-
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Your father continues to have his right to make his own health care decisions as long as he is mentally capable to do so. Talk to his doctor ask him/her what their opinion is of your fathers mental status.
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I would call his doctor and talk to him or the office nurse about it.
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What is the problem? Is he just wanting to die already? If it were my dad, I'd be sitting him down and telling him how selfish he's being. He's still got his brain for crying out loud, he's only got a bad ticker? What a crock that is. And if my dad sill wouldn't take his meds, then I'd leave him alone. I'd REALLY leave him alone by not going to see him, no more visits etc. He can just kill himself, by himself and not make me an accomplice. But then, that's what I would do.
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