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My Mother is Hospitalized (AGBF)

Discussion in 'Hangout' started by AGBF, Mar 26, 2008.

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  1. AGBF
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    by AGBF » Mar 26, 2008
    My mother has had a long struggle with a gastrointestinal infection called C-difficile. I believe that she first contracted it last September (2007), although my memory may be off. Given her age (she was then 89 and is now 90), it has been serious because it has recurred even though it has been cured by antibiotics more than once. An internist recently told me that there is a 30% mortality rate within one year in people over age 80 with recurrent C-difficile. No one had told me that before, nor had I come across that in my own research.

    My mother has had a horrible year getting stomach cramps and diarrhea back just when we thought she was getting better and we might be able to get her to eat, get stronger, walk more, etcetera. She has gone backward and gotten weaker. She has started to fall although she uses a walker. She has started to go in and out of the hospital.

    A few night ago her hands and feet were trembling. She couldn't support herself and we had to call "911" for the police and paramedics, who took her to the hospital by ambulance. In the hospital she had seizures for the first time in her life. There was no sign of a CVA (a stroke) and no irregularity on an CT scan or an EEG...until they did an MRI, the test they did last. The MRI showed that she had indeed had a CVA and today, for the first time she exhibited dementia and agitation. My perfectly lucid mother who just two days ago was recommending books, was irrational and wild.

    There are a couple of ironies to this. One is that, as my father has pointed out, my mother could have lived to 100 if it hadn't been for the C-difficile. As he said, "She had the genes for it!". Both her grandmothers lived into their mid-nineties and when she didn't get the Alzheimer's that ruined her own mother's late 80's and killed her in her early 90's, it was wonderful! And, as my father said, she had no bad habits. So that's one irony.

    The other irony is that my mother had the best memory of the three of us (my father, my mother, and I). (My brother isn't hanging around enough discussing novels to be included among the group.) Only she was able to tell us which books we had already read by any given author. Without her memory, we will all be taking out books from the library that we have already read. The only question is whether we will read only a few pages before we realize that we have read them before or whether we will read them all the way through and say, "Darned fine book!" at the end, proving when one's memory is bad enough there are many more good books to read.

    At any rate, things are sad here. I just wanted to share. I do not know if I can tend this thread as I should. My daughter and I have moved to Connecticut and into my parents' tiny house. My husband is alone in Virginia. Everything is upside down. I don't know when I can get to the computer. If I don't return to the thread, you will know why.

    My love to all of you,
    Deb
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Skippy123
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    by Skippy123 » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb, I am so sorry, lots of prayers outgoing for your mom, you and your family. Huge hug dear! Your poor sweet mom; thinking of you and praying hard for her[​IMG]
     
  3. Gypsy
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    by Gypsy » Mar 26, 2008
    Oh Deb. I''m so sorry to hear about your mom. How sad that her stomach problems are affecting her mind and memory-- and her sense of self. That''s such a tough thing to deal with. John''s grandmother suffered from Dementia before she passed and it was a very difficult time. My prayers, thoughts, good wishes and dust to you and all of your family. Don''t worry about the thread. You are reaching out for help and healing good vibes, which we are more than happy to give. We''re weeds, no tending needed, we''ll grow just fine.

    Take care of you and yours. ((HUGE HUGE HUGS))
     
  4. AGBF
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    by AGBF » Mar 26, 2008

    Thanks, Skippette :). Or as my Eye-tal-ian husband would say, Skip-etta :).

    Deb
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Selkie
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Selkie » Mar 26, 2008
    I''m so sorry, Deb. I hope they can keep your mother comfortable and her infection in check. Take care of yourself, too.
     
  6. Kaleigh
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    by Kaleigh » Mar 26, 2008
    Oh Deb
    Huge hugs to you. Sending prayers to your Mom and your whole family. I''m sure it''s a comfort for your Dad to have you there. If there is anything you need, you know how to contact me. Hang in there!![​IMG]
     
  7. Ellen
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    by Ellen » Mar 26, 2008
    Aw Deb, I am so sorry to hear this. I can just imagine how "upside down" things must really feel. My heart goes out to you.

    Remember to take care of you too, and, one day at a time. That''s really important.

    You will most certainly be in my thoughts, moreso than before.


    {{{major hugs}}}
     
  8. Libster
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    by Libster » Mar 26, 2008
    (((Deb)))

    I''m sorry to hear about your Mom. I have experienced C-Diff personally and it is a rough ride. I acquired it while I was inpatient in the hospital a few years ago. It can tend to hide in the loops of the bowels and more than one course of antibiotics can be required, or that is what happened in my case. Please know you and your family are in my prayers.
     
  9. AGBF
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    by AGBF » Mar 26, 2008

    Gypsy,

    You are such a sweetheart, but have such a double standard!!! Your standard for yourself was set so high that you had to answer every poster personally in the thread about your mother''s hospitalization! Now, suddenly, the posters you tended like hothouse orchids I am supposed to treat like weeds!!! I just HUG you, woman! I can''t check your wedding thread right now, but I sure hope everything is coming along wonderfully!!! Also with John''s job search!

    Deb
    [​IMG]
     
  10. AGBF
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    by AGBF » Mar 26, 2008
    Thank you, Selkie, Lisa, Ellen, and Libster. I am so happy that you all posted while I was still on-line! I appreciate all your words. I knew that if I posted that I would feel less lonely. My mother has had this for a long time, but it has reached crisis proportions now.

    I really appreciate feeling part of a caring group. Libster, I am sorry that you went through this!

    Deb
    [​IMG]
     
  11. Catmom
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    by Catmom » Mar 26, 2008
    Oh Deb, I''m so, so sorry about your Mom. I''m sending out my most positive thoughts that she is able to overcome this and return to her strong form. My heart and hugs go out to you and your family and please, don''t worry about not being able to keep up with this thread. You''ve got way more important things on your mind!
     
  12. chizzy1982
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    by chizzy1982 » Mar 26, 2008
    AGBF,

    Firstly you are in thoughts and prayers at this difficult time.

    I don''t know the severity of your mothers condition but I just wanted to let you know that it is common for CVA patients to be agigtated post event especially if there has been a bleed rather than an infarct (MRI''s shows bleeds much better than CT which could be a reason why it didn''t show on the first CT). In my experience this does settle. I know it can be devasting to see and watch but as the cerebral irritation settles the agigtaion normally does as well. Again post event patients are very confused and this also tends to settle (again I don''t know the extent or site of your mothers CVA but in general this does tend to improve). I just wanted to let you know that this may well be a "passing symptom" of your mothers diagnosis

    With the C-diff - I myself have had this infection so I can completley sympathise. Hopefully with the right antibiotics your mother will get over and start to make gains.

    Hugs to you and healing prayers to your mother

    take care

    Lizzie
     
  13. bee*
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    by bee* » Mar 26, 2008
    Sending my prayers towards your mum! I hope that she will recover fully.
     
  14. mrssalvo
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    by mrssalvo » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb, just wanted you to know you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers and they will continue until you can update us. please take care of yourself too[​IMG]
     
  15. Gypsy
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    by Gypsy » Mar 26, 2008
    What''s a little double standard between friends. [​IMG]Besides... *I* don''t go around shipping cakes around the country. LOL. Thank you for all the good wishes. And I''m sending them, and MORE hugs right back at you. TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. And if there is anything I can do... I''m pretty sure Mara has my email and you have hers. Don''t hesitate to ask.
     
  16. justjulia
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    by justjulia » Mar 26, 2008
    That is a lot to take in in a short time. I''m so sorry to hear about the stroke. It sounds like it may have affected some of her executive functioning, and that takes such a toll on personality. Are they trying any medications to help with the agitation? I hope you are taking good care of yourself. My heart goes out to you. Hang in there.
     
  17. FireGoddess
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    by FireGoddess » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb, I''m sorry to hear this. I''m sending positive thoughts, prayers, and hugs your way. [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  18. AGBF
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    by AGBF » Mar 26, 2008
    Thank you, Michelle, Lizzie, bee*, mrssalvo, and SDL. I sneaked back onto the computer this evening because my brother came back down from northern Connecticut where he lives and works to be with our mother again. The poor guy just went home last night after spending two days and a night here and now now he''s back and spending the night again tonight! (No one expected the dementia and agitation.) When he is here, there are more of us to share the time at the hospital. My brother is a good guy. In fact I have a really good family. I am very lucky :).

    I thank all of you. I am especially grateful that you have the expertise to tell me what you did, Lizzie, and that you took the time to do so. It makes it so much easier to bear the dementia if one thinks it may be a passing symptom. We have not yet seen a neurologist since we learned that it was a CVA, you see, and I expect that the other physicians didn''t tell us much because they expected him (the neurologist) to do so. Or maybe they were just busy or we didn''t ask. I had wondered if the anti-seizure medication was causing the dementia because of its very sudden onset. She was fine last night and totally demented and agitated this morning. Yet the MRI, which showed there had been a CVA, was done yesterday while she was still perfectly lucid.

    This morning, unlike the previous two mornings, she had no seizure. I was wondering whether the anti-seizure medication could have "kicked in" suddenly, thereby protecting her from seizures for the first time and also causing dementia. I had planned to ask the neurologist if that were possible, but I have not yet seen him!

    At any rate, thank you for the information. I will tell my father and brother. You can really find out anything on Pricescope!!!

    Deb :)
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Dee*Jay
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    by Dee*Jay » Mar 26, 2008
    Biggest hugs outgoing to you and your dad, and also healing vibes to your mom. Please keep us posted.
     
  20. monarch64
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    by monarch64 » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb, my most positive thoughts outgoing to your mom and you and your family. I know exactly what it is like to watch a parent go from seeming fine and themselves one day and then a few days later seeing them turn into a totally different human being due to illness. It''s not a pretty picture and very hard to watch. I''m sorry your husband can''t be with you, but glad that you and your daughter are able to be with your mom and dad. Take care of yourself, and please do not feel obligated to respond.
     
  21. SarahLovesJS
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    by SarahLovesJS » Mar 26, 2008
    I am so sorry to hear about your Mom. I will keep you and your family in my prayers!
     
  22. canuk-gal
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    by canuk-gal » Mar 26, 2008
    HI:

    Devistating news Deb. Heartfelt hugs to you and yours during these trying times.....

    kind regards across the miles--Sharon
     
  23. isaku5
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    by isaku5 » Mar 26, 2008
    Oh Deb, I feel your pain and can relate from my own mom''s experience. My mom was the most lucid and alert woman I''ve ever known well into her 80''s. Physically, her only health problem was her falling (like your mom). Even though she must have fallen almost once a day, she never cracked or broke a bone. She usually scraped her elbow, and once gashed her forehead. Since the nursing home wanted to be on the safe side (not always the way), she went by ambulance numerous times to the hospital. Every single time she had to be taken to the hospital, she became totally disoriented, illogical and forgetful. Once she was back in her private room at the nursing home, she was back to normal.

    Try not to worry too much about her mental state right now; it could correct itself quickly. As for her physical problems, I can''t comment at all.

    You''re one the kindest people on this board sending cakes around the country (as Gypsy mentioned), and you''ve had more than your share of worries recently. My prayers and healing vibes are going out for you and your mom tonight. (((BIG HUGS))))[​IMG]
     
  24. strmrdr
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    by strmrdr » Mar 26, 2008
    *hugs*
    prayers outgoing!
     
  25. diamondseeker2006
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    by diamondseeker2006 » Mar 26, 2008
    Hugs to you, Deb, and I''ll pray for your mom!
     
  26. bebe
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    by bebe » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb, my heart goes out to you.
    My own 90yr. old mom is suffering from dementia/alzheimer''s.
    She recently was hospitalized with what was thought to be strokes, but
    as it turns out, no. We still don''t know what happened to her.

    This is a side thought, but be sure she is well hydrated.
    I was told by a RN that being dehydrated can cause confusion
    and shaking. I knew that, but never considered her condition
    could be worsened by dehydration. I felt so dumb!

    Take care, >>>
     
  27. iheartscience
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    by iheartscience » Mar 26, 2008
    So sorry to hear about your mom-she sounds like an amazing lady and I hope she is on the mend. I''ll be sending healing thoughts your way!
     
  28. Diamond*Dana
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    by Diamond*Dana » Mar 26, 2008
    Aw, I am so sorry to hear of your mothers struggles. I will keep her in my thoughts and prayers.
     
  29. movie zombie
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    by movie zombie » Mar 26, 2008
    Deb,

    just got home and just saw your post: please know you''re in my thoughts. i think you''ve got my home phone number and i know you''ve got my private e-mail: use either or both anytime.

    movie zombie
     
  30. coatimundi_org
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    by coatimundi_org » Mar 26, 2008
    So sorry about to hear about your mother Deb.
    ((HUGS))
    Sending healing thoughts her way.
     
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