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dad went suddenly blind at 83: advice please on how to help him

(245 Posts)
funnyperson Wed 17-Oct-12 03:47:28

I would really like help on where to go for advice on how to support my dad who went blind yesterday. He has been admitted to hospital, very ill, for septicemia which is improving with iv antibiotics but he suddenly lost all sight in one eye and most of the sight in the other yesterday morning. We managed to get the eye specialists to see him urgently they say he has vitreous haemmorhages.
What do we do when he gets home? How best to cope? What will he need? Who do we ask? Help, we are lost here and very sad for him.

WereTricksPotter Wed 31-Oct-12 21:26:29

Oh my goodness, funnyperson, I am so sorry your Dad is still in the same situation he was at the beginning.

I don't have any practical advice re the substandard care he is receiving but would PALS be any use to you?

I hope someone comes along with a strategy to get yourself heard as a family and stop the unnecessary stresses such as the food problem impacting on your Dad's health.

straighttohellymelly Wed 31-Oct-12 22:36:20

Oh funnyperson, your poor Dad, he is having such an awful time. How terribly upsetting about the meat, that is just rubbish of them to not have upheld that, they must be used to kosher diets etc, and vegetarianism is so common. Not a mistake they should be making. I do agree that hospitals don't pull out all the stops when someone is elderly, but DH's Grandma had eye surgery in her early 90's , so old age doesn't always rule things out. Could you ask to have a family meeting with his consultant and team? My own Dad died a few weeks ago but when he was in hospital we had a few meeting like that which helped to get everyone's perspective and to clarify what was happening. If I were you i would try and push for that tomorrow, and see what their reasons are for the treatment (or lack of) that he is having.
The hourly obs must be horrible. I was on two hour obs in hospital after having dd1, they woke me each time to take my blood pressure and it drove me demented with tiredness.
I am wishing your Dad better soon, you sound such a loving daughter, he must be so proud of you.

gingeroots Fri 09-Nov-12 09:24:41

funnyperson how are things ?

funnyperson Sat 10-Nov-12 21:42:51

Dad is still on a ventilator in ITU. His chest is getting better but his heart in infected.
The latest torture has been to stop the sedation and pain relief and make him wake up with his ventilator tube stuck down his throat. He has been coughing and gagging and tears coming out of his eyes, all day, and the saddest thing has been watching his head twist and turn and his weak hand come up to try to move the tube, and his tongue coming out to try and push it out. He is triggering all his breaths himself .The nurse says and the consultant says he cannot have the tube out, and the nurse has refused to give him any sedation and refuses to accept that he is in pain and discomfort and is suffering and we have watched him suffer for 10 hours today and I have argues with the nurse to no avail even when the consultant said to sedate him because the tube wasnt coming out today. He must be so tired and it is so sad and distressing and inhuman.
I dont care how many degrees or courses they have been on, or how clever they think they are, I think the nurse today was one of the most inhuman persons I have come across in my life.

funnyperson Sat 10-Nov-12 21:44:10

They stopped the sedation yesterday morning and for pain relief put him on oral paracetamol. I made a fuss and they (after an hour of arguing) gave the paracetamol iv as per prescription but it is smashing his liver to bits.

gingeroots Sat 10-Nov-12 23:43:33

What a terrible terrible time for you all .

I wish I had some wise words but my only advice is to complain .

I am so sorry .

At least your father knows you are there .

hugs

hellymelly Sat 10-Nov-12 23:59:08

OMG that is unbelievable, I am so sorry you are all going through this, your Dad suffering, you all having to watch. Why are the nurses going against the consultant? I do think you need to complain higher up. Would age concern be any help I wonder? I would call them and ask for advice as his "care" sounds terrible. He can't go on like this and nor can you. Complain as high up as you can, and be very vocal. Threaten to contact your local paper etc. I hope things improve.

Mollydoggerson Sun 11-Nov-12 00:07:28

I am so sorry your Dad is in so much pain and distress and that your family are going through this.

Keep screaming and fighting for him, surely something can be done. Threaten solicitors/media. I am thinking of you and wishing you strength.

funnyperson Sun 11-Nov-12 14:56:54

Thank goodness dad was sedated last night and this morning when they woke him up the consultant on today said he was clearly very active and uncomfortable and recommended pain relief. I could have cried with relief. Thank goodness.

Mollydoggerson Sun 11-Nov-12 22:47:20

That's good to hear x

funnyperson Mon 12-Nov-12 21:54:59

Wonderful news today: the eye doctors have been and say that dad can see light with the blind eye! His eyes are improving with all the drops!

CMOTDibbler Mon 12-Nov-12 22:00:37

Brilliant news ! Hope he's getting some better care too.

gingeroots Tue 13-Nov-12 08:32:52

Delighted to hear that funnyperson .

And what Dibbler said .

How are you yourself ?

funnyperson Fri 16-Nov-12 05:36:16

Dad is stable on his ventilator and, thank goodness, they have been sedating him.
He is stuck because he has a different nurse every day and they don't want to /can't be bothered to wean him off. Its bizarre- the consultants will say that the tube will come out tomorrow and ask the nurse to change the settings, and it simply doesn't happen. There is a lack of nursing will to progress him, in case he deteriorates, and the doctors, who are more confident, simply aren't around enough.
The nurses are dead keen for dad to have a tracheostomy- it makes it easier for them. But dad didn't want anyone to cut his throat so we've told the staff in writing that he and we don't want that. They are cross. Families and patients shouldn't have opinions. We have been hauled up before a panel of 5 tomorrow, only one of whom is actually involved in dad's care.
Mum and I are shattered.

funnyperson Fri 16-Nov-12 05:37:46

In three weeks he has only ever had the same nurse twice.

funnyperson Fri 16-Nov-12 05:38:26

They rotate because 'the nurses like variety'.
Nothing to do with the patients then.

gingeroots Fri 16-Nov-12 08:56:28

I am so sorry you are all going through this .

Well done for expressing your wishes and for putting it in writing .

I'm desperately trying to think that the meeting might be a good thing ? If you can just get one senior person to see sense things might alter .
Can you take someone to support you ,would PALS help ?

I'm wondering which hospital this is ,I imagine you can't say .

Thinking of you .

funnyperson Sun 18-Nov-12 05:41:43

We had a good meeting. Everyone agreed that dad needed pain relief, and since then he has been prescribed some and is more settled. He is very very weak now and even with the best nursing and medical care I fear he will not survive.
We would so like to scoop him up and bring him home.

gingeroots Thu 22-Nov-12 09:21:43

How's it going funnyperson ?

Could you take him home ?

funnyperson Fri 23-Nov-12 05:35:47

To our happy surprise dad has turned a corner! He is sitting up, alert and breathing, though the tube is still down. He has a marvellous nurse, has had the same one for three days which has been fantastic. His pain relief is about right. He is coughing and gagging on the tube though which is very worrying. But they turn the pain relief off to help him wake up for a short time every day. This will strengthen his muscles. His eyes are better- he is alert and looking around and taking in all that happens in the ITU. He is signing because he can't talk with the tube down. So happy.

botandhothered Fri 23-Nov-12 06:00:07

So glad to hear such good news about your Dad, funnyperson. I hope he has another good day, today.

CMOTDibbler Fri 23-Nov-12 07:38:06

Brilliant news ! Sending him strength to keep going, and to you too

gingeroots Fri 23-Nov-12 09:25:20

Fantastic news .

Look after yourself funnyperson ,IME it's when the pressure relents that one is inclined to collapse !

hellymelly Fri 23-Nov-12 16:29:54

Funnyperson that is very very good news. I check the thread for updates and often think of your Dad. Here's hoping he is home again soon.

BeerTricksPott3r Fri 23-Nov-12 16:34:50

Excellent news.
I'm sorry you have had the added stress of fighting to get your Dad the basic considerate patient-centred care he needs though.

And gingeroots is right. It might sound silly, but take some extra vitamins and grab as much rest as is possible. x

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