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Old 08-08-2012, 08:10 PM   #1
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Unhappy Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

My mother died on 7-10-2012. I just got her medical records and found out that she had an abdominal aortic anuerysm that the Dr. never told us about. She did have stage 4 cancer, but her cancer had shrunk in the 2 areas that she had it. It had shrunk 5 cm in her lung, and 1 cm off one adrenal and 2 cm off the other. She was doing excellent. She had more energy than I did at some points. She was 73 years young and a daily volunteer down at our school. This Dr. didn't tell us about this because his feeling was that stage 4 is terminal. She had so much to live for and to find out that what killed her was a ruptured aneurysm that could have been fixed well that pisses me off. Somebody help me with this. Has anyone had this happen to them? Wasn't this out right neglect on the Dr's Part?
Thank you for reading this post.

 
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Old 08-08-2012, 08:29 PM   #2
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I am so sorry for your sudden loss of your Mom. It makes us feel so helpless when something like this happens, and your anger is justified. I believe you and she should have been told, so she could have had some choice in her outcome. She may have chosen not to get it fixed, knowing about the cancer, but at least she would have made that choice, and you would have been more prepared to face the possibility of a sudden decline and death. Perhaps you can find comfort in the fact that her suffering was short compared to what she may have experienced dying from widespread cancer. After you have had some time to cope and grieve, you might consider talking to her Dr. and expressing your feelings about him withholding important information about her health, and depriving her of the chance to make her own end of life decisions. Peace and comfort to you and your family as you work through your loss and grief.

 
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Old 08-08-2012, 09:55 PM   #3
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Thank you so much for that wonderfully worded message. Mom said that she hoped when she passed that she wouldn't linger and suffer like so many other people that we know. I do find comfort in the fact that it was quick and she wasn't in pain. With that being said I still have a hard time with the what if's and what may have been. I just question a Dr. who is in his practice of fighting cancer to save lives can make the decision that my mother wasn't worth saving. We should have been told and she may not have wanted it fixed, but my 2 brothers and 2 sisters would have known that our time was limited with mom. Thank you ladybug for being so positive. I know mom wouldn't want me to dwell on this, but mom was my best friend and we saw and talked to each other daily. There just isn't anyone that can take the place of your mom and I will miss her the rest of my life. I am working on a video of her life for my siblings and I have created a photobook of my mother's life. My mother also hand wrote all of her recipes for my daughter. I am going to publish a book to honor my mother as the great cook that she was and still would be in heaven. I feel that by doing these things I will honor my mother and keep her memories and her positive spirit alive. Again, thank you ladybug. This board has really helped me in grieving for my mother.

 
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Old 08-08-2012, 10:18 PM   #4
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I certainly understand how you must feel. I do not agree with the doctors decision to withhold that information from your mother and your family either. Death is such a mystery in many ways, and we do not get to choose when or how our loved ones go. I do feel it is a blessing when there is the least amount of suffering though.

I just lost both my mother and father tragically, 30 days apart, and I was also left with so many conflicting feelings. In the end, I have had to accept that it was beyond my control. What we do have control of is how we choose to remember them, and honor them, and knowing that you will be putting that book together is the finest gesture of your love and care. That is a beautiful tribute to the woman you loved the most.

I am so sorry for your loss. I know it hurts so badly. I might write a letter to the doctor to express your feelings, and hopefully you can prevent another of his patients the same experience you had. If he is a specialist in caring for the terminally ill, this is something he might change in his routine. I have found that writing things out is very therapeutic as well.

One thing we learn from losing those we love too soon, is how important it is to love those who are here with us. it sounds like your mother had a wonderful life, even with the struggles she had, and she is looking down on you and smiling.

My best to you...

 
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Old 08-09-2012, 06:23 PM   #5
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Writeleft,
If you don't mind me asking...what happened to your parents? My dad is still here and he is doing fine. They had been living in separate bedrooms and basically mom tolerated him but he got on her nerves daily. That is another reason it is hard on me. Being the only one here to help my dad, I am left helping him with packing her things up. He has moved back in her bedroom and is using her closet which he said he wouldn't do yet. I am having to pack some things up each time I go over.
I have a sister that lives in Chula Vista, Ca. She was able to come in, but it was really hard on her. I noticed you live in San Diego and that is why I mention her.
Thank you for your support on this board. As you said writing things out is very theraputic. This has helped me greatly.
Thank you,
Karen

 
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Old 08-10-2012, 03:56 AM   #6
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I am so sorry for your loss. I guess I am missing something there though. How do you know she died of the aneurysm? You don't mention an autopsy. And is it possible she knew about the aneurysm and just elected not to tell you? Perhaps she didn't want you worrying more along with the cancer issues. I'm not sure I'd share all that if it had been me. I don't mean to be disrespectful here at all...just wondering if she was protecting you????

 
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Old 08-10-2012, 09:59 PM   #7
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Titchou,
No we didn't get an autopsy done, but she went from sitting next to my dad to gone in less than 30 seconds. CPR didn't work and it wouldn't have worked in the case of an aneurysm. She didn't know about the aneurysm because I took her and stayed with her at every Dr. visit. I was there when she got the results of her ct scan. I was by her side every time she went for chemo. Mom was my best friend and no she may not have told me everything, but I was there at every Dr. visit. Also, to restress this, her cancer had shrunk significantly. She was doing so much better and now she is gone. It has been 1 month since she died. Sorry, but this has been a bad day for me. Having some medical problems of my own and wishing my mom was here to help me through this. I am assuming if you are on this board then you have lost someone you love. How would you feel if you found out that a Dr. neglected to tell you an important detail that could kill your loved one and now he/she passed away? These Doctors aren't God and they should still tell them even if they may decide not to do anything. Not giving her that option took her away from us. An anuerysm can rupture at any time. Had she known she had one then we would have been more prepared to bury my mother.

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 07:06 AM   #8
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I certainly did not mean to upset you further and understand that your original post was written at a time of grief and stress. I just questioned because you didn't say how oyu knew it was an anuerysm or how you knew she didn't know. I was just trying to get clarity and evidently didn't ask in as a concerned manner as I could have. I asked about the autopsy because it seemed to me that you are considering legal action against this doctor and you would need one to prove the cause of death. I was looking at your situation from a logistical point of view.

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 07:44 AM   #9
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Karmil1,
I can imagine how difficult it is to be packing up things already. Perhaps now that your Dad has made his move back into the bedroom, you can let him know how hard this is on you, and you need time to adjust before you do any more of that. I would ask him to do what he needs to do behind the scenes (without your help) and leave things they way they are for a bit until you can get over this shock. Many people take 6 months or longer to start dealing with personal belongings, etc. I think it is too soon for you to have to participate in that aspect.
I think the cookbook idea you have is wonderful, and will give you something positive to focus on and will be a great legacy to hand down to the future generations. I also like the idea of the letter writing. In fact, I would write a letter to that Dr. now, as long and angry and scathing as you want to be, as a therapeutic release for yourself. You can tuck it away when you are finished, and write a more civilized letter later when the pain is less acute, and actually send the second one. As for Titchou's concerns, the cause of death will be stated on your Mom's death certificate, which her Dr. would have determined and signed. I would just check to see what it says when you receive those. Please take care of yourself now, and it is ok to set boundaries on what people ask of you.

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:00 AM   #10
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Titchou View Post
I certainly did not mean to upset you further and understand that your original post was written at a time of grief and stress. I just questioned because you didn't say how oyu knew it was an anuerysm or how you knew she didn't know. I was just trying to get clarity and evidently didn't ask in as a concerned manner as I could have. I asked about the autopsy because it seemed to me that you are considering legal action against this doctor and you would need one to prove the cause of death. I was looking at your situation from a logistical point of view.
I understand that and was just reclarifying the situation. I totally understand and didn't mean to sound upset in my writing. It has been a rough month to say the least. We are considering legal action but it may or may not occur. I am upset with a Dr. that is supposed to be in the business of caring for the very sick and doing everything he can for them. In my opinion, this Dr. failed to do that when he didn't tell us some crucial information. I know mom didn't know and I didn't know. If we had then maybe each time I said goodbye to her I would have made sure not to leave anything unsaid. It is hard when someone you love dies and it is even harder when it is a parent that you adore and love and was everything to you. My daughter, who will be 18 in October and will graduate next year, was everything to my mother. They adored each other and she was so looking forward to being at her graduation next Spring. It is just really hard right now and it may never ever be "normal" again. I love my dad, but it just isn't the same. Does this make sense? There is another thread on here that says emptyhole/unhappy/miss talking to my mom and that about sums it up.

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 12:55 PM   #11
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

karmil,

In answer to your question, my mother (80) had been taking care of my father (85) to the point of exhaustion and dehydration. Although I lived just blocks away and was there everyday, my mother would never allow anyone to help her and one night simply collapsed on the back porch after taking the recycling out to the bin, as she did every night. The fall resulted in a broken neck and after 23 days of suffering, she passed away. My dad was simply broken hearted, and did not want to live without my mother, after 65 years of marriage. He simply declined into almost a child like state within days, and was taken to our wonderful hospice facility where he passed away after 14 days without food or water. His death was exactly 30 days after my mothers.

As shocking as it was, all I can think of is the love story that it told. Blessings to you and all that you have to face now. Please feel free to vent any emotions you have, good or bad. It can be so helpful and that is what we are here for.

Janet

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 06:48 PM   #12
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I am so sorry to hear how they suffered. I am so sorry for you and how hard that must have been when it happened. I guess I can say that I am glad that moms death was quick and peaceful. She didn't want to suffer. She had told me that many times. As I am writing this I am crying for her. I miss her so much. Now I am having health problems and mom isn't here for me to tell her what is going on. My parents were also married for a long time 57 years. My dad is doing ok though. He took down all the recent pictures of her and put up a picture of her in her twenties. I would give anything to have just 1 more day with her. I am hoping to see her in a dream, but so far I haven't. I know that she was probably in shock when she passed and I don't know how things go on the other side. I know mom wasn't expecting to pass she was making so many plans for her future. We were both ****** at dad for still smoking and this was her 2nd lung cancer. We had both said that if anyone should have gotten lung cancer that it should have been dad. He has smoked over 2 packs a day for over 50 years. Not wishing anything on my dad, but realistically she wasn't smoking...he was. It all still hurts so much. Thank you so much for helping me in dealing with this heartache. My dad has done some things since mom passed that he should have done a long time ago. He switched an insurance that wasn't paying anything to one that will help with medicare. He should have done that a long time ago. We tried to get him to in Feb. and I even gave him the guy that he ended up getting it with. A lot of things just **** me off. Now he is complaining about how much her medical bills are and honestly he didn't want her to take chemo because of the cost. oh so many things I could say right now but I better stop. I will discuss more later. Thank you for everything

 
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:05 PM   #13
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

Ladybug,
Thank you for the suggestions. I will try to wait a while to do anything. The problem that I face is my dad is talking about moving and selling the house. Mom didn't want her things just tossed out or sold. She had wanted everyone in the family to get some of her things. I just can't stand the thought of him throwing her things away. He has already done that with some things and he is talking about selling some other things. I also like the thought of writing 2 letters. That way I can get a lot of things aired out. Thank you for everything.

 
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:10 PM   #14
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I can understand your frustration at some of your dads actions. I encourage you to remember that he is an a very new and difficult position. and might not be reacting as you would expect him to. I am not sure how your parents did things, but I quickly realized that it was my mother that was the major force behind my parents marriage. While I always looked up to my dad as a strong and mighty man, it was mother behind the scenes that allowed him to do all he did. My dad had never allowed himself to imagine my mother would not survive the fall she took. When she passed away, he simply fell apart. It was shocking and horrifying to see my father crumbled into bits.

He lost it right in front of my eyes. I really felt I needed him to pull himself together and take care of things, like he always had, but he could not. Within days he was hallucinating at night about the three wars he fought in. He was in diapers within a few days. He stopped eating, and was in hospice by day 12. It was like a nightmare before my eyes, and suddenly he was gone!

So many things went through my mind, none of it seemed right, or just or fair or real. But it all was very real.

Although you have many issues with your dad from the past, and now the present, I can see why you can find fault with his decisions now. Perhaps if you go to him in a reassuring way and try to discuss your reasons for wanting to go through your mothers things yourself, he will see it as a relief.

None of know how we will act in times of grief, and it can be impossible to understand how others deal with it. I encourage you to use this chance to create positive memories with those left in your family. Avoiding regrets will make his eventual passing that much easier on you. Live on in the spirit of your mother, and find strength you never knew you had. I hope any of this helps you, I have just let my thoughts run.

Mostly, I want to offer my deepest synpathy and understanding. I know just how hard this is for you.

 
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:32 PM   #15
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Re: Dr. didn't tell us about an aneurysm

I can understand your frustration at some of your dads actions. I encourage you to remember that he is an a very new and difficult position. and might not be reacting as you would expect him to. I am not sure how your parents did things, but I quickly realized that it was my mother that was the major force behind my parents marriage. While I always looked up to my dad as a strong and mighty man, it was mother behind the scenes that allowed him to do all he did. My dad had never allowed himself to imagine my mother would not survive the fall she took. When she passed away, he simply fell apart. It was shocking and horrifying to see my father crumbled into bits.

He lost it right in front of my eyes. I really felt I needed him to pull himself together and take care of things, like he always had, but he could not. Within days he was hallucinating at night about the three wars he fought in. He was in diapers within a few days. He stopped eating, and was in hospice by day 12. It was like a nightmare before my eyes, and suddenly he was gone!

So many things went through my mind, none of it seemed right, or just or fair or real. But it all was very real.

Although you have many issues with your dad from the past, and now the present, I can see why you can find fault with his decisions now. Perhaps if you go to him in a reassuring way and try to discuss your reasons for wanting to go through your mothers things yourself, he will see it as a relief.

None of know how we will act in times of grief, and it can be impossible to understand how others deal with it. I encourage you to use this chance to create positive memories with those left in your family. Avoiding regrets will make his eventual passing that much easier on you. Live on in the spirit of your mother, and find strength you never knew you had. I hope any of this helps you, I have just let my thoughts run.

Mostly, I want to offer my deepest synpathy and understanding. I know just how hard this is for you.

 
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