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My mother and aunt live together, and I help them out through the week, taking them shopping and to health care visits. Should I honor my aunt's wishes, since she knows the risks involved?

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I think she's being perfectly rational if the surgery is more than just removing a mole. The risks of surgery and post-surgical dementia can be scary for someone that age. She likely couldn't tolerate radiation and/or chemotherapy, either. Unless she is refusing something very, very basic, it seems to me that she should have the right to make this decision. I hope if I get to be that age, my own wishes will be respected.
Take care - and never miss a chance to tell her you love her.
Carol
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Thank you so much for your sensitive response, and I do tell her every chance I get that I love her. I think that helps both of us.
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My 95 yr. old mother-in-law went into the hospital last month with severe pain under her ribs..The doctor called my husband and told us the ct scan showed kidney cancer..He said there was't a surgeon practicing who would operate on her or put her through the rigors of treatment..He asked us would we be on the same page and agree to send her straight to a nursing home..All he would say is to keep hospice in mind..No diagnosis and no biopsy..My husband went along with him..She is not a wealthy woman and none in the family are..She has enough to get through maybe three months on private care after medicare stops..The nursing home assured us that they would be able to keep her comfortable but lately her pain is back..She's so unhappy where she is that she won't say anything most of the time when she is in pain to the staff..We have not told her that she has cancer frankly because we wanted to make her transition to the home easier..Now we're not so sure we made the right decisions..The problem one day she nearly herself and the next she's completely confused..We're doing the best we can and in love but we don't want to make matters worse for her..We are considering at the point of telling her of the kidney mass to explain her pain..We're just not sure what to do..Thanks
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The first thing to do, in my opinion, is to bring hospice in. They should be able to control the pain.

Then I think you have a good idea to tell her about the "kidney mass" as an explanation of the pain. She may read between the lines and conclude she has untreatable cancer, or she may choose not to know that. I'd pick a time when she is nearly herself to tell her this.

But whatever you decide to tell her, bring in the angels from hospice.
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