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My husband and I were visiting my 92 yr. old Mom in Michigan last August when she passed out. She had taken her blood pressure pills about an hour before it happened. She complained of feeling dizzy so I told her to stay sitting on the couch. In a matter of minutes, I looked over at her and she was sitting there with her eyes wide open but a completely bank stare. She was just not there. We pushed her emergency button and the EMT's arrived within 10 minutes. They did not get any response from her and said she was in cardiac arrest, her pulse was 40. They asked us if she had a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate Order) and I said I wasn't sure. I thought she did but I had never signed or seen any paperwork from her or her doctors. So they quickly started CPR on her and brought her back. She lives on her own, cares for herself and is mentally fine except for some forgetfulness and short term memory issues, so she often repeats things she has already talked about. Her health care is through senior service center provided through the state. They pick her up for doctors’ appointments, and she visits their facility 2-3 times a week. They have been a God send for my sister and I because we both live out of state. We were told by the nurse at the hospital that if Mom has a DNR order the paramedics would not have given her CPR. Nor would they if the same thing happened at the hospital. So another words my Mom would not be with us right now because they would have done nothing for her. Mom is doing excellent now and feeling great.

Here is my question. Why would you or anyone sign papers for DNR when there is a chance they can save you? Mom has a Living Will which already states her wishes about not being kept alive by machines if she is brain dead or in a vegetative state. So to me the DNR makes no sense. Why would anyone agree to not being resuscitated? And why does the senior service center doctor she sees insist that she needs the DNR order? They want us to sign papers for her so next time this will be on her record.

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I would also suggest that you discuss this issue for yourself with your own physician and make decisions for your own future needs.
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DNR is a personal decision if the patient understands what it means. She should do a set of Advanced Directives with her MD and only her MD, not with you present and influencing her decision.
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I think it all boils down to your individual definition of quality of life. At 92 we know our days on earth are numbered. It is very rare to reach such a great age and not suffer some form of pain, to not have to depend on others, mostly strangers, for at least a portion of our daily needs. Often by that age we have outlived most of our friends, our spouse, even our children. My journey as a caregiver has changed my perception of death and dying, my focus now is more on having a "good death" than in beating the odds. When my uncle dropped dead while having lunch with his drinking buddies I though "how wonderful, what a blessing". I knew his health was failing and he would never be happy having to rely on others. I recommend reading the insightful book Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. Keeping someone alive is not the same as restoring them to health, and death will have the final victory.
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There is quite a bit of material out there by professional groups about what CPR can do to a person. So one needs to weigh the benefit vs. pain. Often people with terminal illnesses, including dementia, are not going to survive. The CPR may keep them alive for a little while, but even it does, they may be in a coma, on life support for breathing, tube feeding, suffer infections, and linger in a persistent state. Also, they can suffer fractures from CPR and damage to their internal organs. It can cause further brain damage and extreme emotional trauma in a senior or person with dementia, since they can't understand what is going on.

They may fight tubes after being resuscitated and have to be restrained in the bed. This can cause them much mental anguish as well as increased physical disability. So, for many people, prolonging a terminal patient's pain is not something they want to do.

I'll send you PM with a link of something that helped me.

I now know that if I have dementia or some other terminal illness in which recovery is not likely, I do not want CPR. It's a personal decision, but, it doesn't work out very well with some people and many experts don't recommend it for terminally ill patients.
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