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My Dad's (94) physician just called me from the Veterans Home where my father has resided since June. He has had a long time problem with bladder issues (urinary retention) and has had to catherize himself up until a year ago. He also suffers from macular degeneration so all that had become very difficult for him at that time. Sept 2014 he fell here at home, has some fractures in the back and never really bounced back from that. He lost about 50 lbs and was in nursing home on private pay. We were lucky enough to get him into the VA and I am very grateful. The problem the whole year has been the intermittent pain of the catheter which he has all the time. I know it must be very uncomfortable for him and he has dealt with this pain for many years. The Doctor has suggested referring him to urology and putting in a super pubic catheter directly into the kidneys with a collection bag. I am familiar with this type because my brother who has MS has one. But I am also aware of the problems that can come with this type- pain on changing it, infection at site etc.


So, I said I would discuss with family and try to get some opinions about the success of this procedure for a man his age. Unfortunately, the use of diapers is not an answer because of the urinary retention. Has anyone gone thru anything like this or know someone who did? If he is expressing interest in having it done should I go along with it? What if things turn out to be worse for him? I am really torn on this because I really don't want him to suffer everyday with this when basically he is doing ok right now at the VA. He is eating better, gained a few pounds and is walking a little with walker and aide right behind him.


I was just settling into a little peace with his care and then comes a new decision to make!


Thanks for your time.

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Thanks for bringing up the anesthesia issue. I had not even given that a moment of thought until I read answers shown above! I am very concerned now about how he would react after being under anesthesia. I am not sure that we should just leave things as they are. I will have to talk to the urologist myself to find out the pros and cons of doing this to a 94 yr old man. Who knows if he would be worse off after the procedure? Not sure it is worth the risk so I will have to consider all options. I am just trying to find a way to take away his pain with the foley catheter.
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I have read some articles on line and it's rather confusing. I see why your aren't sure what to do. I agree, I would get a second opinion. I would also be concerned with the anesthesia. I've heard so many stories about how general anesthesia can be devastating to seniors.
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your dad's age will complicate things. Do you know if they plan to use general anesthesia with this procedure? People of his age don't bounce back mentally all that quick after general anesthesia. Are you being told that this is something thathas to be done soon or can u get a second opinion?If he is at an ok point right now don't be to quick to agree to anything,get a 2nd opinion if possible.Keep us updated on how you are doing, I don't envy your postion. I know what you mean, just when I have one fire put out another fire starts.
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