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Do not resuscitate?

(10 Posts)
LondonLassInTheCountry Wed 20-Sep-17 23:43:46


My mother in law is 59. Has had health problems in the past and is currently poorly, weak, tired and has a ln infection but as of yet no diagnosis. Shes been in hospital since last night. But only with an infection .

She was asked today by a senior doctor
"If anything goes wrong, do you want to be resuscitated.....

Shes 59 and has not been diagnosed with a terminal illness

Has anyone been asked this?

We think its very odd. We tried to talk to a doctor today. But noone was avaiable today

Thank you

Skyllo30 Wed 20-Sep-17 23:52:29

Sorry to hear your MIL is in hospital. Healthcare staff are now asking patients more and more in advance about their wishes. Sounds like your MIL is quite unwell and if her heart stopped suddenly, that would be because she wasn't strong enough to keep going, not because of anything that could be fixed.

This is a link to a leaflet given out in Scotland that's very helpful - your local hospital might have something similar.

onlyfortonight Thu 21-Sep-17 00:02:27

It is entirely normal to be asked that question these days when being admitted to hospital. We ask everyone as it is important to understand people's wishes on such an important issue. Please don't be upset or worried, in your MILs case it sounds as if it was about filling in an important piece of paperwork, not discussing likely prognosis.
flowers hope you MIL is better soon

PinkDaffodil2 Thu 21-Sep-17 00:08:17

We are supposed to be asking everyone who is admitted to hospital, they've added the form to our admission proforma with a bit about 'ceiling of care' i.e. Would you want to be resuscitated / admitted to ITU etc.
When people deteriorate it's often overnight when their usual team aren't around. It should of course be done sensitively but IMO much better when for patients and families to give the matter some thought when they're just a bit unwell, than have the discussion for the first time when admitted really poorly, or even miss the opportunity to have their wishes considered at all.

Spartak Thu 21-Sep-17 00:10:16

Everyone is asked that on admission to the ward I work on, even the patients in their 30s.

TinselTwins Thu 21-Sep-17 00:19:05

Why is it odd? It's called future care planning. If she did get in the position of actually needing it it would be too late to ask her for her input if it hadn't been asked in advance!

To be honest OP, I think it's odd to why away from these sort of conversations. People should be talking about death and illness when they're well not at the last minute when things are critical!

LondonLassInTheCountry Thu 21-Sep-17 13:46:59

Its odd because although ill we dont know that shes very ill if that makes sense

Iv been at the hospital with lots of family memebers and they have never been asked this before. Ofcourse its better to plan ahead but why wouldnt she want to be resucitated at 59. I know it doesnt work for everyone but she has children and grand children, a house in Florida. Shes 59.
We was and still are all shocked. But im glad afew other people on this thread said it seems to be the norm.

Thank you everyone for your comments.

lougle Thu 21-Sep-17 13:59:38

Please don't worry, it doesn't indicate that the team necessarily think she may need to be resuscitated any more than another patient. It's more about having clear communication and stepping away from that paternalistic mode of medicine where we assume that we know what a patient might want because of how we view them. Someone in their 30s may have witnessed loved ones dying slow and painful deaths and be completely adamant that they never want to be put in that position, so may ask for a DNACPR order. Conversely, someone in their 80s may still be extremely active, hill walking, working, etc., and feel that they have 15 years of good health left in them.

BagelDog Thu 21-Sep-17 14:48:22

It isn't any reflection on your MILs state of health, or how the team feel she is going to do. It is something that every patient of any age should be asked on admission. If anyone gets to the point where their heart stops they have a low chance of survival and an even lower chance of neurologically intact survival. Deciding to resuscitate at this point can commit family and patient to a long and often still fruitless series of interventions. The plan is always that we don't let them get to this point! However it is much easier to ascertain the patients feeling on this when they are relatively well and awake, rather then us speculating when the worst happens.

Had asked everyone on my last take, and for a change over half of them were under fifty. Sounds like it may not have been explained especially well in this case?

LondonLassInTheCountry Fri 22-Sep-17 23:19:44

Thank you

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