My aunt (83) was admitted for cellulitis and put on iv antibiotics in hospital, she was awake and in good health.

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She was moved after 3 days to rehab/nursing home and was sleeping all day and night, nurses said her days and nights mixed up , no iv anitbotics given, and I was took I was NOT in a book so they could not give me any infor. Well, she was abuse by a man aid and started to bleed, She was taking to another local hospital, I was told she developed a infection below and had a CAT scan. She was dehydrated and was not eating and lost alot of weight in that rehab in only a short time. She was taken to another new rehab, from the outside looked like a ski lodge, but again inside, food was bad for elder, hard small hand size pizze burnt, wraps in hard shells, the food was bad for anyone, Baked beans just put all over the dish as a meal, just awful. But for her health, again sleeping, I would sit on the bed and try to wake her, it was hard but she woke up but was drugged, you could tell, her talking and her eyes, She was afraid. When I entered the room, 1st time, the aid was moving her bed in circles all around the room, When I entered the aid was stunned. She fix the bed and left in a hurry, It was called Virbra Life in Mechanicsburg PA, Another time when I went I again sleeping,got her to sit up, she wanted to go into wheelchair , it was around 130PM, but the nurse came in and said, NO WAY, she must be in the bed from 1-600PM. Then she can get out of bed, doctors orders. SHe just did not want her to try to get well. I am the neice and her kids were not around. But I informed them. She was always sleeping because they drugged her there so they did not have to help her. She started to throw up blood, and still losing weight there. She was taking back to the hosptial and again she was very dehragrated and infection was not any better. There were to be treated her for her legs and it seemed no one cared. In the hospital after 1 day, she was back to normal because they gave her the iv she needed and FOOD she could eat, she told me that her kids did not want to come to see her because they were afraid, she may have to come to their home for help until she got better. I am upset with the care in this rehabs in the Harrisburg area in PA. Also she needed help just with her legs IV with the proper anitbotics. Each rehab had their own doctors and their don't treat the patients with the correct meds. What is going on in this world? This lady was fine and just needed some meds for her legs. This started in May 2016 and now she is DEAD. After I visited her in the Hbg PA hospital, 4th floor the internal/gast. dr. informed me, thinking I was were daughter, that here insides were ok and she could eat, so I got her some Rice pudding from teir cafteria, she inhaled it, she asked me to get her some gum for her breath and I did. She ask me to shave a few hairs on her chin, the nurse helped me. The next day I get a call from her son saying she was dying, and in her final stages. she had a disease called sipa, something like that. but no one ever said she did. She was just sleeping due to no food and meds. I feel that the hospital called in Hospice and morfin iv and she died in 2 days. after I last saw her. She was fine what did the hbg hospital due to her. I'm a niece and her kids didn't care. I did and could help. WHy? Laws need to change. Please help me understand this.

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Joanniece, so sorry you lost your aunt. I think you are right, she was on hospice care. That is something she consented to, but she probably did not want to talk about it. Infections that become systemic are hard to beat and if they stopped the antibiotics, it means they were no longer helpful. At that point you give them enough painkillers to keep them comfortable, and wait for them to pass. It's hard on the nurses too, to lose a patient.
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I'm sorry for your loss. That must be tough. I will tell you that cellulitis is very serious and stubborn. I am not sick or a senior, but I got it in my hand and it was a VERY stressful and painful experience. I had 3 surgeries and multiple doctor visits. I thought I was going to lose my finger. I was on 3 different types of antibiotics and none of them really helped. I can't imagine a senior surviving the kind of ordeal that I experienced. I was not able to function from the pain. It lasted for weeks! Antibiotic resistant bacteria is very dangerous. Even with all kinds of medications, they can be fatal.
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Joanniece, I am so sorry your aunt passed away. It sounds like she had sepsis. It's basically when an infection spreads to the blood. It can happen with a UTI or any infection (like cellulitis) and is hard to treat at that stage. It can be treated but it needs to be done aggressively, and sometimes they are not successful in treating it.

When facilities have been unresponsive to family concerns, it really muddies the waters. With very frail people, their bodies cannot fight infection on their own. If they are of advanced age, they often have multiple and competing health issues. So sometimes the doctors and staff are trying to juggle treatments very carefully, so that one treatment doesn't make another issue worse. But when staff behave in the manner you described, it is really hard not to question whether they were making the best decisions.

A couple of things: you can report your aunt’s mistreatment to your county’s nursing home ombudsman and if she was being covered by Medicare, report this to them as well. If the facility was owned by a corporation, you can contact their patient advocate office at their headquarters, and then submit a complaint in writing.

It will probably take a while to come terms with what you’ve been through. You have to cope with losing your aunt and seeing her suffering. And then you have to accept that there were people who could have done more to help her and chose not to. That is really a tough one. Sometimes it helps to focus your thoughts on the people who did show compassion, even if it’s just one or two people.

I hope you will find comfort in knowing you did the right thing for your aunt.
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