As some of you are aware, my father in his second back-to-back rehab post hospitalization, the latter for 4 simultaneous infections. One of the conditions relates to his dysphagia. He's in a very good rehab center for the second time. I've been very pleased with the staff and consulting doctor. For the second time in this second rehab, I've met an NP with a rehab/physiatrist medical group, the same one I decided to boycott years ago after being told by one doctor somewhat bluntly that Dad is old, and he's going to have pain, and there's nothing to do but get used to it. I boycotted them as well after one of the doctors refused to script for TENS in PT I requested. I've had TENS therapy in PT; it works just as well if not better than anything for me in relieving pain.
In addition, I wrote on the intake papers that I won't allow any medical or personal information on me to be shared with any ACO. That caveat was neglected and an ACO contacted me. That did it. I don't return to or even consider a firm that can't follow basic instructions on privacy issues and release information to a for profit corporation making money off of my medical information and Medicare. Now, that firm is "treating" my father; it wasn't involved the first time, so this apparently is a new arrangement. Given that the therapists and the therapy director are top notch, I don't see what this firm is adding. This group is finding its way into what I considered a top notch rehab facility, and the NP is making decisions that I don't feel are either consistent with the facility's policy (nominal meds) or our own philosophy.
One of those decisions is to use a scopolamine patch on Dad's neck to decrease the secretions and/or counteract the thickness of the secretions and mucus. I did some quick research as soon as I got home and learned that scopolamine is countraindicated for someone who has glaucoma, which Dad does. It's unclear to me how she justifies this, given that that information was included in the Discharge Instructions from the hospital. So I called the evening shift nurse and asked her to hold the patch until I spoke with the rounding doctor.
I'm obviously unhappy about this, but also don't want to deprive Dad of something that might mitigate the effect of mucus in his dysphagia. But I'm still very uncomfortable with trying an entirely new treatment on a 99.5 year old man. So I'm wondering though if anyone else has any experience with the scopolamine patches for someone with dysphagia. Good, bad, reactions - I'm interested in it all.
Thanks for sharing your experiences.