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My mom is in a nursing home and has apparently had the hip fracture for 2+ weeks. She's already so compromised by multiple medical problems, but until now, has managed to stay ahead of cancer. Had a colon cancer in 2000, but colon resection got that, no chemo or radiation needed. However, all these medical problems with heart, diabetes, etc. have rendered her not a good candidate for any more surgeries. So with this new development, hip fracture, we are faced with few options. Looks like she's a really poor risk for surgery so will almost for sure have to just let nature take its course. She has been nonambulatory for years, so that's not an issue, but I am concerned about chronic pain and suffering. I am very torn up, not sure what to expect, or what to do. Any advice or words of wisdom from someone who has "been there" would be much appreciated. What to expect?

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Pain can be managed, so ask for a pain specialist to see her. Injections work pretty quickly when properly placed at the site. You are making the right decision. If the bones are weak, the implant won't solve much, other bones will break instead. Keep her comfortable first and foremost.
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My father had degeneration in his thigh bone due to metastasis from prostate cancer. He was able to walk with a walker but the last ten days of his life, he was limited to a wheelchair. A MRSA infection took him out but he was feeling pain all the time that was controlled with pain pills. I don't know what would have happened if he had continued living. He developed a large bedsore from sitting all the time.
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Thanks for the responses, everyone! I SO appreciated it! I do need to correct some information. I initially posted that the cause of the hip fracture was cancer because that is what the bone specialist had led us to believe. However, he had not gotten the final reports on tests that were to confirm his diagnosis and when they came back, it was NOT cancer. Her bones are extremely deteriorated and porous, and the hip bone in particular has degenerated terribly---not sure why it is so much worse than the rest of her bones, but I did mention to him that was the leg that she'd had a horrible MRSA infection (took almost a year to heal)back when they harvested the veins for her heart bypass surgery. Since we have more information now, and my mom has been told the basics in language she can understand, I'm letting her give direction as to what she wants to do. Even with the dementia, she understands enough to know that the surgery would be very, very risky. It is not a "simple" surgery. She would need a special hip implant that replaces her entire hip and most of her leg bone, and would require general anesthesia, probably for a prolonged amount of time. She told me the bone doctor had talked with her, told her the surgery was "too dangerous" and then stated (very certainly) "I agree." I always try to respect her decisions and give her as much control as possible, within reason. So I'm concurring with all the doctors' opinions as well as hers--no surgery. I was mainly concerned that if nothing was done, she would be in excruciating, unending pain, and I can't bear that, so it was good to hear that others in similar circumstances are not suffering a great deal. She hasn't walked since 1999, so she would not really gain any significant benefit to having a hip implant, and her heart is so weak, it's almost a certainty that she would not survive the surgery even. Jeannegibbs final statement was very comforting. Thank you for that!
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My mom broke her hip two months ago and because of her MS and she wasn't walking at all anyways she decided to not have the surgery. Two months later she is only in pain if her leg gets moved the wrong way. Otherwise if she isn't moving she is pain free. Hopefully that will be the case for your Mom also. Kids are pulling at me so I can't write more (I just had to respond to you when I saw it) but if you have questions for me please ask!
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About a year ago my mother broke her hip. She was not a good candidate for surgery. In fact, the hospital palliative care nurse advised us she might not live through the end of the week. She went back to the nursing home on hospice care. She fooled us all and improved greatly, regained her weight, and no longer fit the "failure to thrive" profile. After 3 months she was dismissed from hospice care. We took her back to the surgeon. When I saw the new x-rays I cried. There was clearly not anything that could be done surgically.

She was walking before the hip break and now she is a two-person transfer with a lift device. She spends all her time in a comfortable wheelchair or her bed. She participates in many of the nh's activities, wouldn't miss bingo for anything, loves the live entertainment, enjoys the meals, and in general is content.

Pain was an issue even before the break, and unfortunately she cannot tolerate narcotics. There are a limited number of pain meds that help, but she seems pretty comfortable most of the time.

We are letting nature take its course (because there are no other options). I guess I can say I've been there and am still there. It is not what any of us would have wished for, but it is not as horrible as we feared.
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Yes get some clarification from the doctor as to why no surgery, but also it sounds like she may benefit from comfort cares provided by pain specialists. If her prognosis is extremely poor, then your doctor should have already discussed the possibility of hospice care, they can help a lot with pain management, if she is at that stage of life yet.
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If the surgeon won't do the surgery due to poor surgical risk, you may ask for another opinion. You should have asked these questions with the surgeon since he seen the X-rays and knows her. If he's not willing to answer your questions it would be a good idea to seek another opinion anyway. In fact, why don't you simply call his office and ask to talk to the doctor. You *ARE ENTITLED* to answers.
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