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Going "off legs" any hope? A sad ramble.

(14 Posts)
Helenluvsrob Sun 21-Feb-16 00:36:40

Dads mobility is on a definite down hill plummet at the moment.

When the he moved here/ to the home in May he used a stick but was v wobbly especially when turning. A delta walker produced marked improvement indoors and we wheelchaired him outside but he'd push the chair himself a little too.

Since maybe November he's been walking less well. Falling more - though still " falling well" iyswim!

On Friday he couldn't get out of the chair without a significant boost from me, I wheeled him to the front door as I didn't think he'd make it .

He's now shoving the walker further and further away from him and his shuffly little steps don't keep up. He does not seem to straighten his legs either and telling him to straighten and think tall ,lasts about 2 steps. Getting inthe car is really hard - he's balancing on a bent leg for a start and sometimes even picks the wrong foot up. He wet himself when we got back as we couldn't get him out of the chair and in the loo fast enough.

We have a falls clinic in April - by which time I doubt we will even get him in the car sad we've changed this for an urgent geri appointment. There are no local private geriatricians.

I'd love to hear positive rehab stories, but he's 92 and frail with hearing impairment and dementia with a big language issue- so he doesn't hear/ or proscess instructions to help. I'm scared he's forgetting how to even sequence walking and the less he does the worse it'll get.

Would love to hear " we fixed it with X" but I'm afraid this is it. I don't know how to give him quality of life if we can't get him out for a cuppa or a cheeky prosecco sad

He just sleeps loads now. Apart from eating that's about it. He can. " watch tv" but he can't really. He can't follow plots etc and just sleeps again.

I guess he could spend his money on wheelchair taxis. Maybe that's the answer for a bit..

Lindor Sun 21-Feb-16 00:53:09

So sorry to hear you're going through this. At such a great age, and with a diagnosis of dementia, in my experience, everything deteriorates over time sad

Sounds like you are doing all the right things to support him.
I'm sure more knowledgeable people will be along soon. x

Bubblesinthesummer Sun 21-Feb-16 01:03:17

I'm so sorry. flowers

I would try a wheelchair. They don't have to be expensive. My first transfer wheelchair was about £100.

You can also hire them which may be an idea to see how he gets on.

CMOTDibbler Sun 21-Feb-16 09:14:50

Helen, I can't remember - does your dad have frontotemporal dementia? This has issues with planning, so mum has the physical strength to stand up from the car seat, but is losing the planning of 'twist round, hand on door handle, swing legs' but can still just about be talked through it.
Depending on his weight and your strength, you could practice doing wheelchair/car transfers with a slide board and see if you can manage.
Mum has a very lightweight foldy wheelchair which is good for quick pops into places, and a traditional folding 'attendant propelled' one. The OT adjusted the foot rests so they point up which stops mum sliding her feet off .

Helenluvsrob Sun 21-Feb-16 12:13:19

We have two wheelchairs ( there posh!) an eBay one we got as an emergency for mum and a nice little folding one in the car. When in them it's great but transfer to car is really tricky. I don't think he'd cope with side transfer with a slide board but if we ever manage to see one I could ask a Physio. It's a thought not to be written off.

CMOT he had mixed vascular / Alzheimer's I'm sure the vascular predominates especially the way specific " but" of him have gone eg speech proscessing ( he can do what I term " reflex " speech eg someone says " bye" and he responds " do come again") . I think maybe he's getting some spasticity in his legs - bend knee to get foot on foot plate was met with a kicking out of the leg.

So much just " goes wrong" at a great old age doesn't it. If he was a car he'd be scrapped !

Again I'm just thankful he at least doesn't seem to be suffering. The" oh help me" lady seem so distressed. Every outing is is still " lovely " even when he's slept most of it !

Fell again last night. sad

CMOTDibbler Sun 21-Feb-16 13:52:26

Mum does little 'set piece' things too - her diagnosis is alzheimers, but her primary damage is in the temporal lobes so her first signs were behavioural and language. Any health encounter used to get a thing about her knee (least of her problems) which was a bit trying as you couldn't get her off it.

Its terrible that he's falling so much and won't be seen for that till April. Where my parents are there is a rapid access falls thing based at the day centre so its very quick. I think the Integrated Locality Team are probably dealing with those as well now (I love them, its the best thing in elderly care ever - joined up thinking!)

Do the home have a lifting and handling co-ordinator? They should be able to show you how they are doing chair to wheelchair transfers.

Bubblesinthesummer Sun 21-Feb-16 14:05:47

Do try a slide board. I thought I didn't think I would get on with one but it does make it much easier for me, DH or whoever is helping me.

Helenluvsrob Tue 23-Feb-16 23:07:27

Update. He's proper poorly with a uti. Off legs can't eat/ drink.

Still at home though the huge good will of the carers who love him. Hope he's turning the corner tomorrow after 48hrs antibiotics. I'm more worried he'll be admitted than he'll die really. I know which will be more cruel.

Heck sad

Helenluvsrob Wed 24-Feb-16 03:38:47

And now we and in a&be courtesy of night staff who didn't even show the advanced care plan to the ambulance or call me before they left for hospital ( I am less than 5 mins away ). Lazy so and sos. Probably agency I fear. Argh !
Been here 1hr and not seen a doc yet

CMOTDibbler Wed 24-Feb-16 09:35:29

Sorry to hear your dads been admitted, and how frustrating that they didn't call you. Hope he's been seen now

Helenluvsrob Wed 24-Feb-16 14:27:03

Thanks CMOT. We were very lucky to have a confident and holistic doc when we were finally seen and he was back at the home by 9.15 am with appropriate X-rays and scan all clear and only a single , appropriate blood test done not a huge list that were bound the show some abnormalities !

His mobility is awful though. Hope it picks up soon.

thesandwich Wed 24-Feb-16 22:19:16

Sorry to hear about your dad Helen. It must be so hard to watch. Take care

Runner05 Wed 24-Feb-16 22:43:44

Sorry to hear about your dad.

My mum has just gone the same way in the past few weeks. It happened so quickly it was a complete shock. She's now had to move in to a care home but seems happy and is being looked after very well.

It's really sad but almost a relief when they go down hill quickly and skip the confused/scared/angry stage. She (like your dad) is just quite happy finding a comfy spot to snooze.

I hope your dad starts feeling better soon and you get a bit more quality time with him.

whataboutbob Thu 25-Feb-16 21:22:23

Helen, my Dads mobility declined steeply in the autumn to the point where he was falling repeatedly throughout the day, and would also lash out when people tried to get him back up again. It took 3 to raise him up. In the end the ambulance service refused to do it anymore and he went into hospital. In the 5 weeks he was there I didn;t see him walk once.We were told quite categorically he had no rehab potential (by a physio, and OT and a doctor). Now, he's in a home and walking again. In hospital he got MRSA, had a chest infection, very bad skin around his groin and possibly shingles too. With all these problems have been sorted out, he's mobile again
So I think mobility can be seriously impaired by infections, and improve quite dramatically once they are sorted out. I hope it works out well for your Dad.

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