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I am totally confused and scared. My 83 yo mother has gallbladder cancer and along with chemo and radiation (which she tolerated very well), she got a biliary drain and blood clots in leg. When they placed the biliary drain they knicked a blood vessel. She got her first sepsis attack 1 month ago. We were told it was from the biliary drain. After IV fluids and antibiotics for 2 weeks she seemed clear of it and was sent to an acute care hospital to recover. She cannot walk, is barely able to sit, cannot swallow, and is very weak. Only 1 week later she got sepsis again and rushed to ER for another treatment of IV fluids and antibiotics. This time the hospitals palliative care doctors told us that my mother will more than likely keep getting sepsis because of her cancer (they refuse this time to say it is from the biliary drain that had knicked her blood vessel) and suggested we take her home with hospice care and let her die "comfortably". From my understanding sepsis is not something you can die comfortably with. They said hospice can continue the IV and antibiotic treatments at home if we so chose and this would stop her visits to ER. My mother is adamant that she wants to stay in the hospital. She does not want the burden placed on me to care for her and she believes nurses and doctors in a hospital is best for her. But the last few days she has gotten so weak, is barely coherent, and has started to have delusions, she sees people that are not there. She keeps telling the nurses she wants to die, she does not want to live like this, to give her a shot and let her die, she begs me to help her die. I am so scared and so uncertain on what to do.

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Losing a parent is so hard and watching them die is even harder. I lost my mom last year to cancer. Her organs and bones were being destroyed by cancer and it was hard to watch her go from walking and talking to not able to get up, to having broken bones to finally watching her organs stop working a little at a time. Luckily her end came quickly and she was on hospice at the very end which was able to ease her pain. My only regret was that we did not know of hospice earlier. I didn't realize that she was dying until she had only a week of her life left so she was suffering unnecessarily. Spend time with your mom. Be near her. Assure her you are going to be ok and try to come up with ways you will be. It won't be easy but at least she won't be suffering anymore.
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Wishing you strength, SD. I hope it goes gently with your mother.
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SDisHomeNow, thinking of you, big hug!!
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SDisHomeNow,
Thanks for the update about your mom. I am sorry about the news, but, it's a relief to know that your mom is receiving comfort and pain relief under Hospice care. This must be so difficult. Sending positive thoughts and prayers for your mom and your family.
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SD - I lost my Dad to sepsis, among other things, 4 years ago. At this point in time, I would stop worrying about how it was caused and simply enjoy what time you have left with your mom. She can indeed be made comfortable by hospice at home, and will probably rest or sleep much of the time while her body goes through the necessary processes. Please understand none of us here are trying to be harsh by confirming what the doctors are telling you - it's just that we've all been there in some respect, with one or both parents. We know how hard this is for you because we've been there.

Please know we're here for support, to talk, vent, cry or whatever you need. But do spend as much time as possible by your mother's side and reassure her that you're there - but it is equally as important to let her know that it's ok for her to go when the time comes. Tell her that you love her and will miss her, but that you'll be ok, and it's ok for her to go when she needs to. Sometimes they need us to tell them that so they can let go. I've had to do this with 3 relatives now (both parents and a grandparent), and they were gone within minutes of being told it was ok to let go - like they were just waiting for that confirmation.

I hope you have some peaceful days with Mom.
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Sorry to hear this. Just enjoy the time you have left with her-comfort her, talk to her and let her know you are there and not to be frightened.
You too of course. It's so hard to lose a parent, especially your mom.
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Update:
My mother, to me, seemed to be getting better. They got her low blood pressure, rapid heart rate, and pneumonia under control. Then she started to vomit and complain of sever nausea. Her kidney and liver values have increased and the palliative doctors said her organs are shutting down. She had gotten so much better and more alert than I have seen her in weeks. She is being transferred to a Hospice House later today, the doctors say she only has days...
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Yes let the hospice staff take over; they will assess the care she needs and see to it that she is comfortable. My guess is they won't be able to keep her in the hospital but will transfer her to a hospice facility or send her home. These days Acute hospital beds are needed and hospitals try to transfer or discharge the patients elsewhere. Try to transfer her to a hospice facility or hospice wing at that hospital.
If you opt for hospice at home the hospice staff will not be there 24/7 to provide your mom care and the family will need to provide most of her direct care with bathing, toileting, etc. If she continues to develop sepsis I hate to say this but her time to pass may be near - in that case who knows they may keep her hospitalized.
Good luck to your family and God Bless your mom. Hope her suffering is soon over.
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This is a very difficult time for you and it is very understandable that you are scared and confused. Hospice does sound like the best option and as Pam said many hospitals do have hospice beds as do some nursing homes. Once hospice has evaluated her they will decide what kind of treatment or medications she needs. The two most important one are for pain and anxiety. if she is ready to die then continuing with IV fluids will probably place undue stress on her body. Antibiotics are also not very productive as you have already seen. Many people do not recover from sepsis even if they are young and healthy. It is also possible the cancer has spread so prolonging her life will only cause more suffering. if she wants to remain in the hospital that is probably the best place for her to be if that can be arranged.
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Dear SD,

I'm so sorry to hear what are going through with your mom. I think its only natural to be scared and confused. Navigating this phase of life is very hard.

Please consult with the hospice and see what they can do to help your during this very difficult time. Try to reach out and get any support you can through counseling or a support group.

Thinking of you.
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Ask about a Hospice bed in the hospital. Many have floors or wings dedicated to hospice patients. I think that is her best option, not just sitting in a regular hospital room, which is not as comfortable. Home hospice means you have to be there 24/7.
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Hospice is wonderful. If your mom likes the hospital setting then she can be put in a hospice facility. If she decides to die at home they will arrange transportation home. They come to the house to bath her and keep her comfortable. They are wonderful and very caring people . Everything is covered 100 % by Medicare.
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