Topic: Sensitive: Is this the end?

SENSITIVE: I have not posted much but have been lurking for months and appreciate so much everyone's support. My father was finally diagnosed with CC in Feb 2012 after having been diagnosed with liver cancer of unknown primary in August 2011.

Since last week my father has taken a turn---was just sleeping all the time and not eating and jerking a lot so was taken to the ED by my step-mother. He was admitted to an ICU for antibiotics (initially thought sepsis) and IV fluids but he has not improved and I think he is making his final journey. Over the last 5 days he has been severely agitated (constantly trying to climb out of the bed), hallucinating and also doing the hand movements that others have described here. We decided to admit him to an inpatient hospice facility 3 days ago and since that time he has been getting morphine for pain (although he never has complained of pain) and seroquel for the agitation. He is pretty much sleeping all the time and will intermittently wake up and be agitated all over again. I am so heartbroken to see him so debilitated and am praying that his journey will end soon so that he does not continue to suffer with the agitation, it just seems so disturbing to him.

Just needed to vent and wanted to see if other people went through the same thing with their loved ones. I was a little upset, one of the hospice nurse's said to us that this was not the end because his vitals were too stable and he wasn't thin enough but then another said that this is terminal agitation and his journey is coming to an end. I am so confused and only want the best for him and really want to take him home but am scared he is not going to get out of this in patient facility.

Thanks again for the support, I know I am rambling. :-)

Re: Sensitive: Is this the end?

SENSITIVE:  Laddie, I can only talk to you about my experience with Teddy. He got very agitated although he was in an immense amount of pain. If Dad is not in pain I am wondering how much Morphne they are giving him and why as his hallucinations could be from the Morphine. Ativan helped Teddy with the agitation. He also did a lot of 'picking' at his sheets and he did not want to have anything on his body. Here is what I had written about 'the end'.

   SENSITIVE:  It is NOT all that scary, honestly. I used the time to be nearer to him in every way and when the end came it was something I had never witnessed in my life. I have never been afraid of dying and it even convinced me more so. My daughter was right with me and Teddy's last day was awesome! Robin kept saying, "Mom do you know how privileged we are to be a part of this". Some privilege, I know, but you would have had to be a part of it. Teddy sadly was in a lot of pain for about 4 hours but as his body started to close down the pain slowly left. He laid there for hours with his eyes wide open but never blinked. They DO know what is going on and they DO hear. I told him several times it was OK to go to his peace and that I loved him. Each time he put his fingers in his ears. He was NOT ready. He was waiting for something. As the pain started to decline he began "greeting" others from beyond! He would hold out his arms, encircle them with a big Teddy bear hug and even smooched his lips to kiss them. This went on for about 3 hours! There are no words to describe the calm and beauty of those 3 hours. I cry now as I think about it, not tears of losing him but tears at the awesomeness of it all. After his meet and greet was over the chest rale started which is the heart shutting down. If you are not prepared it is a rather disturbing noise and loud. I understand now there is a patch for it which we did not have.  I explained to Robin that he is not feeling any pain, it just sounds bad. There was only the 2 of us there, as 2 teen Grandsons were home. When the rale started Robin called the boys and told them Papa was passing but they did not have to come. With in 15 mintues they walked in. Robins said, "Papa. Kyle and Brandon are here". 3 minutes later he passed. That is what he was waiting for. I feel he didn't want Robin and I to be alone and she felt it was one last life lesson that he was teaching the boys. Sorry to be graphic but to me this is a good graphic. Hang in, be strong and do not be afraid! I hope this helps. And I hope he stays very comfortable. Do not be afraid!


Re: Sensitive: Is this the end?

I am sorry that you are going through this horrible ordeal with your Dad.  My Mom got ill in Sept 2011 and passed in Feb. 2011.  She had to have a number of biopsies to try to come up with a diagnosis and then a number of stent change outs.  After her first and only chemo treatment she really went down hill.  She got really filled up from eating near the end and was not able to eat. The doctor said that without chemo she had 6 months.  She never got the 6 months.  I cared for her at home.  She was so anxious and complained of the waiting around.  At times she would reach out with her hands.  After that, the hospice nurses started giving more meds.  Mom's eyes did not look well.  The nurses would take her vital signs which seemed okay, but that was no way to judge how much time was left.  In the beginning, a surgeon advised chemo and then perhaps an operation could be done so I did have hope that she would be here longer.  This was not meant to be.  I miss her.  We are here for you.  God Bless You.