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My Mom is 84 years old and was diagnosed with Dementia about 8 years ago. Her disease is not being called Alzheimer. My two sisters and I have designated nights we spend the night with Mom. We have a caretaker that stays with her during the day. Mom doesn't really eat, two bites of pancake a day if we are lucky, drinks very little, and cannot get out of bed most of the time. She may get up, with assistance, once every few days. Today her legs gave out and she had to be lowered to the floor. The caretaker has been bathing her in bed for a month now and Mom has wore depends for a couple of years. She sleeps most of the time and stares out the window. She does know who we are, however, she recently has forgotten some of the names of the great grandkids and grandkids. Mom is down to 78 lbs. We had Mom in the ER approximately two weeks ago where she was diagnosed with a UTI and severe dehydration. I know she is already dehydrated again. We have tried to have her associated with Hospice because it is difficult to get her to her Dr. appts. to obtain her refills on her medicines. Because she still knows her name and ours, she didn't qualify for Hospice with her diagnosis of Alzheimer. They are now trying to qualify her based on her lack of nutrition. It is so sad watching her melt away. We love our Mom, but this is no life.

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Thank you all so much. The people on this site have been very supportive and informative. We are fortunate that Mom still knows who we are. She no longer remembers my Dad's name. He passed three years ago. She is beginning to forget the names of her great grandchildren and grandchildren. I don't know if this is a result of the Alhemizers or dehydration. We still chat between her naps....she probably sleeps 20 hours a day. The caretaker that stays with Mom during the day is a blessing. Hospice will be sending a nurse twice a week to check on her and change her bandages...her skin tears so easily. I will savor each of our last conversations and "I Love You's". Thank you all once more.
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Tina my heart is aching for you.
Thinking of you and your mom, we are all here for you...hug
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TMarie I am sorry for your situation. I just came through the same. Mom stopped eating and she passed 11 days later. But, she was eating very little even before that.

I really hope you have another person there with you. Maybe a paid caregiver for a few hours each day? Hospice will only have a nurse there an hour a day at the most....plus a CNA...but only for short period.
I am eternally grateful for the lady caregiver my Mom had each day. This journey was horrific and would have been unendurable without that extra support system! Nothing could have prepared me for that final day!
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Tmarie you are in my thoughts and prayers today. It's so very very hard to lose your mom. When this happened to me all I could do was be there and make her comfortable. Hold her hand, speak to her, let her know you are there and it's ok for her to go. What she has provided to you during your life together will never leave you.
Have confidence you have made the right decision. Surround her with love and all of you will have comfort. Hard to do, I know. 
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Tmarie, my heart goes out to you too. God bless you and your Mom.
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Mom was admitted to Hospice late last night. We are grateful that after three visits they finally were able to approve her. At the same time, it's so sad. I'm having so many mixed emotions. Mom is severely dehydrated, therefore the hallucinations are becoming more frequent. The Hospice Nurse indicated that without food and fluids, Mom wouldn't be with us too much longer. I don't like seeing her this way... but it's so sad....she's my Mom. You only get one.
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Windytown, I'm told it's not Hospice....it's Medicare. They now are assessing Mom for lack of nutrition. This has evidentially replaced failure to thrive. She has to show consistent and extreme weight loss over a period of time. Mom was 112 lbs in Nov, 101 in Jan, and 80 three weeks ago. I can't get her back on the scales because she can no longer get up.  A Hospice nurse is meeting with me at Mom's for a third time tomorrow. I pray they will admit her.
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Careisgiving, you pulled the words right out of my mouth. Since Mom isn't eating or drinking, and is down to 78 lbs, and undernourished, I don't think the antibiotic even cured her UTI.... your body can't heal without nourishment. This and dehydration will continue. I don't plan to treat her. We have kept her in her home and have filled my Daddy's wishes. He ask that we never put her in a nursing home. My sister's and I have stayed nights for over three years now. We all work too. Mom is not "living"....she's existing. It's so sad. It's not an easy decision but I feel it's what she would want. As far as her sugar, Mom doesn't have any sugar issues. They ran all sorts of bloodwork, including that, when we took her to the ER two weeks ago. They even took chest X-rays to check for phenomena. Your input and kind words are very helpful.
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I'm sorry if I sounded harsh in that comment. I just feel your frustration as I also watched my mom waste away. She was probably under 70 pounds when she passed. I wish you and mom the very best. It is so incredibly difficult to witness.
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My mom was admitted to Hospice for failure to thrive in January 2017. I can't think much has changed since then. Contact another Hospice.
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Has the doctor checked her blood sugar? Elevated blood sugar can mimic dementia and UTI symptoms (combative behavior, yelling, screaming, extreme agitation). Elevated blood sugar can be from diabetes (not yet diagnosed) or from stress or from an illness.

When deciding on treating your mother for this or that, and in this case, another UTI, consider her quality of life before and after the medical condition that lead to her being this way. Think about what her life will be like after this bout of UTI. I'm not advocating you don't treat your mother...just consider the big picture of her life will be like in the next few years. Talk it over with family... Would she want to live in her current state? Aging of the body and mind doesn't stop and another medical issue is on the horizon. It's so, so hard to make the tough choices when it comes to caring for our aging loved ones. We always want more time with them. We always want them with us.

Hugs to you...
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Thank you for your input careisgiving. We are trying to get her admitted to Hospice. She is no longer getting up. Mom is barely drinking anything, will not drink juice or any type of nutrition shake, and is sometimes eating one bite of pancake at her "meal time"... other times none. She started acting irrational and angry  yesterday, banging on her table with whatever she can get her hands on, and speaking nonsense. I'm assuming she has another UTI and is once again dehydrated. As stated, she was treated for this just two short weeks ago. Her Dr. has indicated that we either need to treat her or make the decision not to. It's a vicious cycle. I appreciate everyone's kind words and advice. Thanks again.
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This is a sensitive question and I think you should talk this over with your mother's doctor because he/she can better assess your mother's health status than any of us. There are multiple variables involved in end-of-life care and it's different for every patient. You have a lot going on and you don't want to be encouraged or discouraged by someone's answer to your question. You can simply Google how long can someone live without food if you need to ease your mind.

The best you thing you can do is to just be at your mother's side as much as you can. Encourage her to drink Boost shakes, water, juice; she doesn't have to drink the full cup. Also, make sure she's isn't constipated. My mother will not eat any meals - but will drink Boost shakes, water and juice - whenever she's constipated.

Have you looked into Palliative care? If not, you should ask for an evaluation. Try to find a Palliative care agency that also does Hospice so your mother will have the same doctor. The Palliative doctor can take over all of your mother's prescriptions and order in-home labs, x-rays, etc., so your mother will not have to see outside doctors. If your mother's mobility and/or strength has given, then taking her outside to this or that doctor may not be work her so Palliative care is a good option to now consider.

My thoughts are with you during this difficult time.
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How long can you go without food?
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Thank you all for your concerns. I met with Hospice this past Tues. The issue is Medicare. Just as with insurance policies, Medicare has altered their guidelines for Admittance under Alhemizers. The Dr. referred Mom to Hospice under Alhemizers and Faliure to Thrive. Failure to Thrive is no longer a recognized diagnosis for Hospice, according to Medicare. The nurses were great and are looking for another possible reason under the permitted codes by Medicare. Lack of Nutrition is the one we are waiting to hear bk on. According to Medicare, there is a specific order of decline that is necessary for them to qualify Mom under Alhemizers. Because she knows her name, and knew where she was and our names, she doesn't qualify. Medicare claims that the complete mind is the last to go...not failure to eat and dropping to 78 lbs. It's crazy! The organization I'm working with to get her admitted are trying everything they can. Oh and freqflier, Mom use to drink a bit of the breakfast drinks but ceased from doing that totally at least six months ago. You have all been very helpful. Thank you.
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My heart aches for you too, hugs
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My heart aches for you, wish you the best. ❤
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I feel so badly for you! My mom has advanced dementia and she is getting to the point where she doesn't really eat that much. I took her to the doctor recently & was told to start looking at nursing homes, because my mom refuses to move in with me.

I can imagine the struggles you are going through however, I just don't understand why Hospice won't step up to the plate. Please call them again and get your mother's doctor involved!
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My goodness! Your mother should certainly be eligible for hospice care! Who told you she wasn't? Did someone from a hospice program come out and evaluate her? If not, get them to do that. If so, ask a different hospice organization to come.
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Tmarie, sadly it sounds like your Mom is failing to thrive mixed in with late Alzheimer's, thus she should be able to get Hospice care. Eating becomes too painful as the stomach no longer wants to process food.

My Mom didn't want to eat, either, she was painfully thin. Her nurse found out that if she put ice in a cup with Boost or Ensure, my Mom would drink it. As for knowing names, my Mom would always call me by name when she saw me... but one time while visiting her, she also called a couple of Aides by my name... [sigh].

Yes, it is sad watching a love one disappear before our eyes. With my Mom her passing was welcomed because she had no quality of life left.
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