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My mother fell in the NH a month and a half ago and broke her hip. She will be 85 in November. She is in rehab at the facility. Her mind has not been the same since she fell. At first they thought it was the pain meds well they are not giving her pain meds like they were in the beginning. She is on Depakote because she is delusional has been on it for probably 7 months. She has started not cooperating with rehab and I got a call last night to tell me they were going to back to her normal dose of Depakote. I never knew they had decreased it. I go everyday except weekends if I can help it.....no one told me this. I have told them that she was not acting right they checked her for a UTI it was negative. She is tired...I myself do not believe that she will ever walk again. Her brain and feet do not seem to be together. They really are good to her there and are very attentive, but this has me baffled. I believe it is because this all is just too hard for her and I know she has to do it or be bedridden. They did a CT scan on her head when she fell and found nothing. It is almost like I am watching her mind fade right before my eyes. A broken hip is no joke it is a horrible addition to an already bad situation. I know she will never recover what little bit she had. She could use the walker to go to the bathroom. She is now in diapers and when she does use the bathroom it is with a lift. Everything has always been a struggle with her in the pass 14 years I have taken care of her it has never been easy even since she has been in the nursing home (15 months) it continues to be hard. Being an only child is hard, sometimes liking her is hard...always has been and I believe always will be ;(

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They usually call me when they change anything and I did ask the other day why they keep drawing from her. They mentioned testing her Depakote level so I talked to the head nurse who said that should only be done when it is taken for seizures which my mom does not have so she said she would make sure that was not done any longer. My mom was under hospice care up until two day before she fell because she had leveled out not improved but had not got any worse either so I had become accustom to "comfort care". I moved a table right next to my mom's wheelchair so she can get her drinks and I always make sure when I come that she has a couple of drinks on the table. Dehydration has never seemed to be a problem. I question them all the time especially since her mental state has declined, never dawned on me they had cut her Depakote. So how did your mom do ? My mom also has COPD, CHF, Chirrosis of the liver, she has had mini strokes she had a ton of health issues. I never intended for her to be in a NH but it just became more than I could handle. The last time she fell at home she laid in the floor smoking with her life alert button and the phone right next to her so that was when I made the decision she had to be placed. She has been delusional for a long time...I could go on and on but it wears me out. She has rehab twice a day plus aides and they do take her to the toilet, but she is incontinent both urine and bowel...I told my husband if she could look down at herself she would be appalled at the state she is in. It is sad, scary and I do not understand how she hangs on sometimes. My prayer is that she does not get any worse I do not want her to be a mass in a bed ;(
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It is all frustrating, especially since we'd like to make it all go away and have our 'old Mom' back! Since you visit everyday, here are a few thoughts. Find out when the doctor visits occur. If you can't be there for the visit, make sure to speak with the head nurse afterwards to see what the medical notes say. Ask specifically about any change in Meds. Tell them you want to be informed of any changes but ask each week regardless. (My experience is the communications in these places is seriously lacking!)

Be assured that the changes your Mom has experienced, fall, hospitalization, surgery, move to rehab all take their toll! Make sure your Mom is hydrated as this too adds to confusion. I saw the aides bring a pitcher of water in to my Mom's room and leave it on the tray. With her newly pinned hip, there was no way she could reach it. Coax your Mom to drink several beverages while you are there. Enlist the aides help in filling a cup and handing it to your Mom. Ask you Mom if she needs the toilet when you arrive and before you leave. Get the aides to assist her to the toilet. (It's much easier for THEM to change the diaper!)

Also, try to visit while the therapy is going on! Watch and use the same terms when you are helping your mom to do a movement. After my Mom was in rehab and getting ready for discharge, they were ordering equipment for her. I asked about the walker. They laughed at me and told me to bring hers from home. She had never used a walker before the hip break. I told them this at admission but b/c of her age (mid-90s) I guess they 'assumed' she had used a walker. No wonder she wasn't making a lot of progress. They weren't taking her from step one!!

When she isn't in therapy, make sure she is sitting in a chair. Even that helps the legs rather than laying in bed. Some of these places are too happy to let the patient 'veg'. As the family, you have to advocate. Don't be afraid to push. Good luck
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I went back and reread my whining...I just want some normal...no worrying, no phone calls, no answers to questions asked, but I also just want to know how all this is going to end. They say you shouldn't question God well he made me and he knows how I am. Ok that's all....
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