My Mom is refusing to take her medication. Any suggestions? - AgingCare.com

My Mom is refusing to take her medication. Any suggestions?

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Mom has mid stage Alzheimer's and congestive heart failure.

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My m-i-l is now about fifteen years out from her initial diagnosis of dementia. She was placed on Aricept and suffered from terrible nightmares. She was high functioning and we respected her decision. She progressed very slowly and lived independently in a senior living community until recently. We revisited the subject with Neurologist about 4 years ago. He asked if her diminishing memory made her sad or anxious and she said no. His opinion was to leave it alone until that happened. This is such a complicated subject with so many factors impacting the patient. I agree that this is a discussion to have with a physician. We just saw a Geriatric Specialist and found it very helpful. They really have a wonderful knowledge of melds and how they impact Seniors. I also agree that the first logical step would be to ask specific questions before the visit so you have a better understanding of why the reluctance to take the medication - it may be a challenging discussion but it would helpful information to share with your medical professionals.
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You mihht have her swallowing assessed by a speech language pathologist. My mom's lifelong pill swallowing difficulty got worse after her stroke. A speech therapist working with her showed her how to tuck her head down to ease swallowing, not stretch her neck upwards as she had been doing.
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Metoprololl ER should never be crushed! also grapefruit juice will enhance the effects of this drug. Do not drink grapefruit juice with this drug. Do not crush this drug.
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sherry1anne I have absolutely no problem with whatever people do. Its just that for anyone reading the blogs and seeing the comments ...they don't necessarily apply in the UK. ....so with apologies to everyone over the pond this is what our Act states:

A care worker (caregivers sic) (or registered nurse) should not mix medicine with food or drinkIF THE INTENTION IS TO DECEIVE someone who does not want to take the medicine. This is called ‘covert’ administration. The exception to this is when a medical practitioner states that the person lacks ‘capacity to consent to treatment’ and the medicine is essential to their health and well being.

So for example I have an advanced directive which stipulates (while I am of sane mind (sort of!) that in the event I become incapacitated to a level where I cannot physically feed or care for myself then I refuse, in advance, to be given medication serves only to prolong my life. If in these circumstances I were to be given medication then that would be covert administration and illegal - moreover my POA MAY NOT override this

So it is still a grey area over here but if anyone takes it upon themselves to covertly administer in the UK they could well find themselves charged under the Mental Health Act IF they don't get consent from a doctor first.

I think you have laws too that govern covert administration.

HOWEVER if you are administering it in pudding because the person physically can't swallow the meds the traditional way and KNOWS it is in the pudding then that is absolutely fine because there is no intent to deceive

Equally if a doc determines and reviews meds given the decreased level of mental capacity then they may well advocate covert administration and then again all is well

It was never intended to be a criticism of what others do merely keeping some people in the frame as to actions that could be taken.
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I'm not implying that your mom's refusal to take meds is appropriate, but I would consider who her Healthcare POA is. Are they making the decisions on her behalf now? What did she say about taking life prolonging meds previously?

I have read a lot about planning for advanced dementia. It's accepted and even recommended that when it comes to terminal illnesses, and dementia comes in under that category, that the patient only take meds that keep the patient comfortable and pain free. Taking meds that prolong life is a decision to made by either the patient or the Healthcare POA, who is supposed to follow the instruction of the patient, assuming they told her what they wanted prior to becoming incompetent. Some patients only take those that keep them comfortable. It should be an informed decision though.
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my father also refused to take his pills when he was at home, my mother would put them down with his breakfast, he would push them away, she would push them back and finally she gave up. they would be sitting there until lunch time. It is the disease and definitely do NOT crush any pills that should not be, they can harm the person more due to the medicine getting into their system quicker instead of the normal pace. But if you could mask them in pudding that would be good. or even try a liquid form of the medicine that could be mixed in with water. you would have to ask the doctor or pharmacists about if they have that. Now that my father is in the nursing home, they give him meds by pudding. But I truly has to do with the mind disease and them just not thinking about what they are for.
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She MUST take her medication. You're going tp have to trick her into it probably.
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Dear ohJude, we do whatever it takes around here. I don't ask permission from the government to help my mother stay well. It's me who has to take the fall out if she refuses to take her meds. Fortunately for me almost all of my mother's meds are vitamins. She is 104.
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rosette boxes? dosette boxes grrr at predictive text
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Cwillie I couldn't agree more... you just simply cannot adjust medication or alter it in any way unless the doc OKs it. In the event that a court case should evolve for whatever reason and you have adjusted medication it will be you who is in trouble. Slow release tablets must never be crushed they are there to be released slowly hence the name taking them in a one could be lethal for some people.

We are lucky in the UK re medication my mothers is provided in rosette boxes which are sealed. She has one for breakfast lunch tea and evening and that means I know what she is talking because I give it to her AND STAND OVER HER TO WATCH SHE HAS TAKEN IT. Drastic? not after a young child died from eating the 'sweeties' that great grandma had down the side of her chair/.

I do place my trust in the hands of the professionals. If I don't know I ask and if Mum refuse to take meds I note what she is refusing and email the surgery for advice or indeed just to have it noted somewhere on file that I tried but that she refused. It doesn't happen often but I still take no chances.
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