Hello to all nurses. my name Hanif and i'm fresh graduate diploma in nursing. I'm currently doing home care for a part time job. I want to asked for help about care of patient with Alzheimer's disease. My patient 87years old. The first time i take care of the patient was ok. His appetite was good. After 3 month, his appetite become low. I have tried variety the food menu but doesn't work at all. Can somebody teach me what should i do?
Go to the website for the Alzheimer's Association; they list the varying stages of the disease. . .Given the fact it is a progressive degenerative neurologic disorder, no cure; only have treatments that may potentially abate the symptoms. . .the end point is death. Read through the stages of the disease; the end is typically near when the appetite wanes; when the "swallow and gag reflexes" are gone; that will be the end point. Many affected individuals, as well as family members do have unrealistic expectations. . . Share the information with them; it will help them to focus on what the reality of the disease is. I took care of my mother 24/7; she had strokes and then was finally diagnosed with Alzheimers; it broke my heart to watch her slipping into that abyss; there was nothing I could do to halt it. It was by far the most difficult thing I ever had to do as a nurse/daughter/mother. I was her court appointed guardian as well, I had to abide/bound by her wishes, not mine. . . I pray everyday that there is a cure found for this awful disease. My hope is that with the current advances in Biomedicine/Genetics, an answer will be found to benefit all.
Many patients may experience a worsening of the condition with the current treatment; i.e., the risks outweigh the benefits . . . Supportive care, keeping the patient warm, dry, and safe are about all you can do in the end. . .initiating life extending processes (feeding tubes) could be viewed as unusually cruel; you have to ask, who is it for? If not for the patient in question, rather for the "guilt" that some family members may feel. . . One has to first and foremost observe only the wishes of the patient (via advanced directives); that takes precedence. Hospice is the kinder alternative for the patient. For that to occur, one has to accept the inevitable. . .
Last edited by NURSEDETROIT; 06-24-2012 at 05:11 PM.