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Old 01-19-2012, 08:43 AM   #1
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And another fall

I got the call Tuesday night. I had spent the day with Mom, stopped by the Alzheimer's Association to drop of some contributions and talk about our Support Group Meeting. I got home late and had supper to cook. Just as I sat down... the phone rang. Mom was found on the floor, with a huge knot, small cut, bruising, and was "sleeping". HUH? I had the Med Tech call Hospice and request a nurse as I flew out the door. Oh wait, Mom already had her nightly dosage of Melatonin. Long story short, because Mom was "sleeping" it was decided to send her out for a CT scan. Mom was out and could not be successfully aroused. So off to the ER we went with me grumbling all the way.

I have had many bad experiences at this ER. I was mentally armed and ready. When we arrived the nurse was there quickly and efficiently. The doctor was right behind her. WOW... he actually understood Alzheimer's. The tech who took Mom to CT also had a clue. We were in and out in record time and Mom's CT scan was good She just had a nasty bruise and surface bruising from kissing the floor.

What worried me was that Mom could not be aroused. Not just when I got there but at all during the entire process. She was sleeping on the floor when she was found. She was sleeping in a chair when I got there. I watched them touching her, speaking to her, moving her and she never woke up. She was put on the stretcher, taken outside in the cold and rain to the ambulance, moved to the ER bed, put on the CT table, back out into the rain and cold, put in her bed... and she never did wake up!! Three hours later she sat up and smiled at me! She at her breakfast well and was off and pacing! You could tell she was a bit sore from the previous night's fall or perhaps a bit of a headache.... but none the worse for the experience. She was well rested and I was WORN OUT!

People (as with sleepless recent experience) can make a huge different. The doctor that got it was a blessing. The facility cook that saw me that morning and brought me breakfast was a drop of sunshine. Hospice who was present at every turn was amazing. My past experiences melted away into a good experience. Tension filled and tiring but still good So look for those moments of light in all the darkness!

Love, deb

 
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Old 01-19-2012, 08:45 AM   #2
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Re: And another fall

Deb, I am not sure I understand. I thought you put your Mom under hospice and she does not go to the ER anymore?

I sure hope she will get well soon.

Sorry to know this. I am glad people are supporting you now. It is good to know that some people are there for you!

Take care!

Nina

Last edited by ninamarc; 01-19-2012 at 08:47 AM.

 
Old 01-19-2012, 09:51 AM   #3
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Re: And another fall

Sorry that you and your mom had this crisis... but glad it all ended up ok.


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Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
I got the call Tuesday night. I had spent the day with Mom, stopped by the Alzheimer's Association to drop of some contributions and talk about our Support Group Meeting. I got home late and had supper to cook. Just as I sat down... the phone rang. Mom was found on the floor, with a huge knot, small cut, bruising, and was "sleeping". HUH? I had the Med Tech call Hospice and request a nurse as I flew out the door. Oh wait, Mom already had her nightly dosage of Melatonin. Long story short, because Mom was "sleeping" it was decided to send her out for a CT scan. Mom was out and could not be successfully aroused. So off to the ER we went with me grumbling all the way.

I have had many bad experiences at this ER. I was mentally armed and ready. When we arrived the nurse was there quickly and efficiently. The doctor was right behind her. WOW... he actually understood Alzheimer's. The tech who took Mom to CT also had a clue. We were in and out in record time and Mom's CT scan was good She just had a nasty bruise and surface bruising from kissing the floor.

What worried me was that Mom could not be aroused. Not just when I got there but at all during the entire process. She was sleeping on the floor when she was found. She was sleeping in a chair when I got there. I watched them touching her, speaking to her, moving her and she never woke up. She was put on the stretcher, taken outside in the cold and rain to the ambulance, moved to the ER bed, put on the CT table, back out into the rain and cold, put in her bed... and she never did wake up!! Three hours later she sat up and smiled at me! She at her breakfast well and was off and pacing! You could tell she was a bit sore from the previous night's fall or perhaps a bit of a headache.... but none the worse for the experience. She was well rested and I was WORN OUT!

People (as with sleepless recent experience) can make a huge different. The doctor that got it was a blessing. The facility cook that saw me that morning and brought me breakfast was a drop of sunshine. Hospice who was present at every turn was amazing. My past experiences melted away into a good experience. Tension filled and tiring but still good So look for those moments of light in all the darkness!

Love, deb

 
Old 01-19-2012, 09:55 AM   #4
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Re: And another fall

I think even on Hospice they will always treat you palliatively (in other words, if you get a cut and bleed, they'll stitch you up and give you antibiotics and painkillers).

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Originally Posted by ninamarc View Post
Deb, I am not sure I understand. I thought you put your Mom under hospice and she does not go to the ER anymore?

I sure hope she will get well soon.

Sorry to know this. I am glad people are supporting you now. It is good to know that some people are there for you!

Take care!

Nina

 
Old 01-19-2012, 10:14 AM   #5
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Re: And another fall

oh deb I am so glad that in the end things turned out ok. i know those anxious moments when all the thoughts go through your head and you are thinking what next!!! Amazing that she slept though the whole thing. I am thinking that I wouldn't mind some of whatever she had. Could there be something with the meds at night that you do not know about. The people we meet during a crisis can make the difference of handling a situation camly or can let things get out of control. thank someone upstairs that the right people were where you needed them when you needed them...

now breath...breath...breath..

hugs,judy.

Last edited by jagsmu; 01-19-2012 at 10:16 AM.

 
Old 01-19-2012, 12:23 PM   #6
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Re: And another fall

Nina, there are some situations where it is necessary to go through the ER even on Hospice. Brain trauma is one of them. With Mom non-responsive (for whatever reason) the nurse was not able to make a good call on what was going on. Sometimes you need to know what is going on to know how to proceed. If there was a brain bleed, would we opt for the necessary surgery? No this lady But knowledge is power and helps you make the right decisions. The in hospital Hospice team was alerted that I was on my way there and on call if there was a reason to need them. I am just glad we didn't need them. Suzy you are exactly right. Cuts get sutured, brain trauma gets check out, bandages, routine antibiotics ect are still used. You just find your red line (with the help of Hospice) and know when to stop.

My phone has not stopped today with those that are concerned and caring. Sometimes in this crazy disease you feel so alone but when you open up a bit you find those that truly care and are there for you. Sleep found one this week and I have found a few. Use what life gives you Don't hang your hopes on those you think might but on those that DO! Yes it was a bit of a rough night but there were so many blessing scattered around it made it a good experience.

Love, Deb

 
Old 01-19-2012, 12:46 PM   #7
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Re: And another fall

Well.....I was waiting to hear what happened. THE ER!!! EEK!
Glad she is okay, except for a bit of bruising, but this ER trip is a long long way away from the horror stories of past with our moms at the hospital.
I think that she slept through it all was a gift from above. And that there were actual people on staff who understoond the disease....what a novelty.

Bless all there who stepped up to help or offer words of encouragement.

Love, Meg

 
Old 01-19-2012, 10:09 PM   #8
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Re: And another fall

I thought she was bruised yesterday... but today.. WOW. She is blue from above her eye to the bottom of her nose. But she is up, smiling, walking around, and carrying her stuff from place to place as if nothing happened. She did give that lady in the mirror with the back eye a funny look The LEM called tonight to say she was participating in some of the activities today. Sister 2, the LEM, and Hospice checked on her today so I stayed home. After 12 hours of sleep I feel human and spent the afternoon with a very good friend who is going through the same thing with her parents that I have with mine. I will be back at the facility to check on Mom myself tomorrow.

Love, Deb

 
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Old 01-20-2012, 08:00 AM   #9
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Re: And another fall

Deb, I asked the question because sometime ago you were talking about the ER issues negatively.
I am glad she slept through it all this time.
Sorry that she got the bruise..

Hope you got over the virus!

Take care,
Nina

Last edited by ninamarc; 01-20-2012 at 08:01 AM.

 
Old 01-20-2012, 10:53 AM   #10
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Re: And another fall

although no fall is great I will take the brusing over breakage anyday, Your mom must look like a prize fighter. My mom looked in the mirror the other day and could not figure out who was looking back at her and wondered who put the picture up on the wall and why did it move when she did..then she looked at me and with a straight face told me how I was looking old.... geeze...gotta love them....I do hope your mom has no lasting effects, at this age it takes a while for the brusing to go away. my moms shinner took almost a month..

hugs,judy

 
Old 01-20-2012, 05:25 PM   #11
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Re: And another fall

Nina, I have had some horrible experiences at that ER and I did go with Hospice to eliminate unnecessary ER visits just in case. Now the Hospice nurse checks Mom first and unless there is a legitimate reason she doesn't go to the ER. The last four falls did not result in an ER visit. Without Hospice they would have. This was different because we didn't know if she was knocked out or just stayed there long enough to go to sleep. If she had been alert after the fall she would not have gone. The fact she already had the Melatonin complicated matters.

Judy, so much good has come out of this fall. There has been major changes in the staffing and it's all good. Yep, Mom looks like a prize fighter that lost the round!! But she is in good humor and moving normally. She was even string together words today!! "You get little"... not sure little what but oh well "where you going?"... yep, I was ready to leave but delayed a bit. "I got it".. not sure what but she smiled really big.

The person in the mirror being a mystery is not uncommon. They can not tell reflection from real. My Dad would get upset at that man in his bathroom. Mom gives the lady in the mirror strange looks. One of Mom's unit mates has long conversations with the lady in the mirror. She thinks it is her Mom! Well she does look a lot like the pictures of her Mom that are in her room Just a word of caution. Sometimes these strangers in the mirror can be frightening. If someone with dementia hesitates to go near a mirror or gets upset when they are in the room with a mirror you might want to cover the mirror. I eventually did that for Dad and it did help! The mirror at the end of the hall has now been moved. At least they don't see their reflection every time they walk down the hall and hesitate It is amazing how the decreased cognition changes their perception of their physical world.

Mom had almost stopped eating after the facility quarantine. It didn't take me long to figure it out. White bread sandwich in a white Styrofoam container with light potato chips and vanilla pudding. Mom could not distinguish the food from the container. I took it out of the container and put it on a red plastic plate and she ate it all. She could finally see what it was. Sharp color contract can be helpful not only in eating but also in the bathroom. If the walls are a darker color then the toilet, sink, and shower stand out. If the walls are white it all looks alike

Love, deb

 
Old 01-21-2012, 03:38 PM   #12
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Re: And another fall

glad to know your mom is ok now. you are so on top of things and i really admire you for that.

 
Old 01-21-2012, 08:04 PM   #13
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Re: And another fall

Thank you Debbie I try! I had to smile today. The staff knew I was leaving town to attend the funeral of a family friend. Just the fact that I would drive three house away says I am more comfortable with what is going on in the facility now. The Med Tech called as I was leaving town to tell me Mom was up, eating breakfast, and having a good day. I also had a special message from the new third shift saying Mom had slept all night. I got a call on the way home from the LEM to say he had personally made sure Mom enjoyed her Shrimp and Grits for supper (they are her favorite!) What a different two weeks makes with a new good ED! It's all about the admin!

Love, deb

 
Old 01-22-2012, 01:55 PM   #14
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Re: And another fall

glad to hear that.

 
Old 01-22-2012, 02:02 PM   #15
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Re: And another fall

Thanks, Deb, for the explanantion. I just need the info. in case my FIL will need hospice.

I am glad you have many people to support you!

Hugs,
Nina

 
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