Our mother, 76 yrs old, has a serious balance issue. It has gotten progressively worse over the last 3 years since our stepfather passed. She has had more MRI's, CT scans, exams than I can count. She has also had 2 spinal fusion surgeries, both of which we thought may alleviate the problem but it didn't. She has been seen by her general physician, orthopedic, neurosurgeons, etc. No firm diagnoses. Over the last 2 years, I estimate that she has been to the ER 12 plus times for stitches. Has broken her collar bone, C1 vertebrae, nose twice and seriously dislocated her shoulder (All separate incidents) She now has to endure shoulder replacement surgery before the end of the year! These are the accidents that we KNOW of. There are others where we see the bandaids and bruises that she shrugs off as "nothing". We have pushed for her to move to assisted living so much that now she is extremely defensive about any suggestions we make. Gets angry to the point of screaming and shutting us down. Insists that she is fine living by herself. As much as we have insisted that she at least use her walker (Has 3 types plus a scooter) we see her continue to walk (wobble) around the house without it. When she does she is usually carrying something in one hand (glass of wine, knife to but an apple, phone, etc). Seriously won't work like that!!
With the upcoming surgery we are strongly recommending that she be released to an inpatient rehabilitation center. She was at one after she broke her neck for 6 weeks and seemed to enjoy the attention! Now she is adamant that she will NEVER go to a place like that again. It was actually a beautiful facility, clean, no odors, very well staffed, regular PT everyday, both physical and occupational, etc. We can't let her be released to go home after. She got angry at my sister last night, screaming...."Don't worry, I will make sure that you and your sister don't HAVE to stay with me!! She also has a VERY low tolerance to pain meds. Gets really loopy and tends to act like a 5 yr old, if you know what I mean. :) Between my sister and I we could manage to stay with her at night for a few days but she would still be alone in the day. She has a housekeeper who gladly takes her to PT appts but she is almost as frail as mom.
My sister has a power of attorney, don't know anymore than that. I'm sure there are different levels of "power". Don't know if it's medical, financial, etc.
I'm sure we're not alone, any advice?