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She doesn't spit up food. And has been put on a pureed diet which hasn't really helped. She's 87 with dementia.

DW's nose would start to run while eating certain foods. Usually spicey foods.
But if I were you I would get her checked out completely. Better to be safe than sorry.
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Reply to OldSailor
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Chills ran up and down my spine when I read about the coughing and white foam.    My father had the same problem on the last day he was at home.   The good caregiver was there that day and told me when I arrived that she was ready to call EMS if I hadn't arrived in the next 10 minutes or so.

Dad was coughing up white foam, gagging and choking.    Not to be gross, but his mouth appeared to have been stuffed with soap; it extended onto his tongue, all the way back from his throat.   And he clearly was in distress.

EMS arrived quickly; I learned in the ER that he had 4 infections, one of which was the throat infection.  Right now I can't recall what it was, whether it was a candida infection (I think not) or something else.  

At the hospital he had to be suctioned regularly; his ER nurse wasn't particularly cooperative and told him to either suction himself or have me do it.   

If I were you, I'd take her to the ER;   I was so glad I did b/c that evening after I left (after 7" of snow fell during the afternoon), I learned when one of the treating doctors called me at 1 am the next morning that Dad had had a cyonatic episode and turned blue from lack of oxygen, b/c his throat was blocked from the infection.   I shudder to think what would happened if he'd been home alone.   

I don't know about the running nose, whether it's related or not.   But spitting up food, choking, white foam...that sounds like a potentially volatile combination.
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Reply to GardenArtist
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I would run your description by her doctor. Be as specific as you were here about the fact that it seems to be slimy mucous and white foam with NO FOOD. Be certain that the cough isn't continuing after the eating, as this could indicate some aspiration into the lung of her food.
If she is eating HOT liquidy soups the nose running would be normal,so keep the food at room temperature and keep the eating a slow process in which each spoonful is not following the one before for some seconds.
If your Mom has not seen a therapist for a swallow evaluation this should be done just to rule out difficulties with swallowing.
Good luck and update us if you have the time.
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Reply to AlvaDeer
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Youngestsister, being that your Mom's nose starts to runs, makes me wonder if there is food allergy or intolerance to something in the food. That would cause post nasal drip and the slimy mucous. Keep a food diary to help pin point if this in fact something she is eating. Milk and other dairy items would cause such a problem.

Another thing, have Mom checked for acid relux. I get the coughing and white foam myself if I dive into too much tomato sauce. But that usually happens hours later.

Hope you can find the mystery to this.
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Reply to freqflyer
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She's already on a pureed diet but are her fluids thickened as well? Beyond those measures there isn't a lot that can be done once this stage is reached beyond carefully ensuring that meals are eaten slowly and portions are kept small.
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Reply to cwillie
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I'm with Tothill this does sound like she is aspirating her food. She needs to be tested!
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Reply to Shell38314
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Sounds like she is aspirating her food. Has she had a swallow test done?
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Reply to Tothill
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