Follow
Share

The only thing wrong with my 98(!) year old father was constant UTIs- this past year he had one a month and in May he had two - one at the beginning of the month and another at the end of May. Doctors indicated maybe it was end of life and we should talk about hospice. That these infections were beginning to affect his kidneys! But other than that he was fine. He took no other medication except for finasteride to help him empty his bladder and control over his prostrate.


Hospice came in and would care for him - he then had a catheter but did not treat anything else - he declined rather rapidly but was still all there mentally. I’m just beating myself up thinking had we gone with palliative care would it have made a difference? He was always such a vibrant man even at his age - and I’m just wondering did we do this poor man a disservice?


Hospice came in June 5 My dear father died July 18! I just can’t get this out of my head.

Palliative care, you can still seek treatment for a condition that would be considered Life limiting.
Palliative in most cases you will not get the full range of services that Hospice offers, you can not get a CNA that will come a few times a week, a nurse may come once a month not every week, you can not request a volunteer or some of the therapies that are offered.
Both will provide comfort and expert advice, you will also not get medications delivered to your door, you will not get as many supplies or equipment. (equipment may be ordered through your insurance though but that would not come from the Palliative care team.)

Neither Hospice nor Palliative care will extend life nor will it shorten it.
both will provide comfort and will strive to keep both the patient and the family informed.
Unfortunately many people are afraid of the word Hospice and are unable to take full advantage of the many services that are offered.
The fact that your Dad died shortly after going on Hospice is sad, but I am sure that if he were on Palliative Care he would have had the same outcome.
The fact that he was not ill for an extended period of time is wonderful, the fact that he was not in a lot of discomfort is wonderful.
Rest well, you did the best that you could, know that he is at peace.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Grandma1954
Report

I’m sorry for your loss. Palliative care is defined as “not a cure” care aimed at maintaining but not fixing issues. Hospice is defined as end of life care. My dad has bladder issues that aren’t fixable and I may be on the road with him you’ve experienced with your dad. The docs haven’t said hospice as of yet, but there are no options left for the bladder issues. He takes the same med you named with little result. My dad is also mentally fine but physically frail. It sounds like your dad’s docs saw things they may not have fully explained to you that made them recommend hospice. 98 is an amazing long life, I hope you’ll get past the pain of questioning yourself and let the good memories bring you some peace and comfort
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Daughterof1930
Report


I am not sure that there is any difference between palliative care and hospice. Both are intended to improve quality of life without aiming to prolong it. Where I am, the expression ‘palliative care’ could mean at home or in a special palliative care residential facility, while ‘hospice’ would always be in a facility.

Your father was very old indeed, and was fortunate to retain good quality of life almost until his death. The doctors told you that it was ‘maybe the end of life’, and that is exactly what happened. You know that you didn’t want (and almost certainly couldn’t arrange) a kidney transplant or dialysis three times a week if indeed his kidneys were packing up. Wouldn’t we all like to die quickly in the way he did?

Stop beating yourself up, and rejoice in such a good outcome! Feel glad for him and for everyone who loved him.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to MargaretMcKen
Report