Follow
Share

My MIL is in the last stages of Alzheimer's, and she just got a catheter put in yesterday. The procedure actually ended up taking almost an hour to put it in because she fought and fidgeted so much. It took two hospice nurses, me, and a dose of ativan to calm her down enough to finally get the catheter in. So, for obvious reasons, I definately want to keep it in until she is in need of a change of catheter. She also lives at home with us, and putting her in a home at this time is not financially feasable.

My problem is that she wants to keep pulling on it, and needless to say, that is a very bad idea. I don't want her to end up pulling it out and causing herself pain or other problems. She needs to have it in for various reasons, so I just want to keep her from taking it out. We have ativan to keep her calm because she fidgets and picks at everything now. I just need advice on how to keep her hands away from her catheter. This morning she woke up and was yanking on it and causing herself pain, which is horrible. Anyone out there who has some experience with this and has some helpful solutions? I would greatly appreciate it. I feel badly that I have to give her drugs to keep her calm, but at this point she is putting herself in danger too.

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Find Care & Housing
MartiColucci, have you looked up catheters on Google? That would give you some background before you discuss this with doctors.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Where can I find out if there are any other types of catheters that can be used? There seems like there has to be another alternative.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

Thank you, jeannegibbs. My husband actually texted her hospice nurse, and he suggested getting medical mitts to put on her hands so she isn't able to grab the catheter. Her pain isn't severe enough for morphine yet, but she is on some pain meds to ease her discomfort. It is just a real challenge. It seems as though something new comes up everyday that we all have to learn to adjust too. At times, it feels overwhelming. I appreciate your input.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

One of the purposes of Hospice is to minimize pain and distress during the dying process. If your MIL was in severe pain, would you feel bad about using the morphine? If her agitation is causing her distress and may also cause pain, I don't think you should feel bad about giving her medication to relieve that agitation. Feel bad about the agitation, yes, but not your efforts to try to relieve it.

Talk to the hospice nurse about preventative measures. Don't wait until the next scheduled visit. Use the 24-hour phone number you were probably given and ask for advice. Some kind of a jumpsuit may help prevent her from getting her hands on the tubing, but you need easy access. Maybe the hospice nurse has seen some clothing adaptations that would work in this situation.

My heart goes out to you. Caring for someone whose body is shutting down and no longer functions properly on its own is heartbreaking. It is also a satisfying privilege to share the end-of-life journey with a loved one, and to be able to ease the passage even a little.
Helpful Answer (0)
Report

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter