Have you ever discontinued life support for a family member?

Discussion in 'Forum for Polls' started by dianetavegia, Mar 26, 2005.

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Have you ever discontinued life support for a family member?

  1. Yes

    100.0%
  2. No

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. dianetavegia

    dianetavegia
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    Have you ever been in the position to choose to allow life support to continue or discontinue life support for a family member?
     
  2. dianetavegia

    dianetavegia
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    Poll Results: Have you ever discontinued life support for a family member? (6 votes.)
    Have you ever discontinued life support for a family member?

    Yes 33% (2)
    No 67% (4)
    Do you still think you made the right decision?

    Yes 33% (2)
    No 0% (0)
    I've not ever been in that position, personally. 67% (4)
     
  3. Trotter

    Trotter
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    I was involved in the decision to unplug my best friend. I called him brother, his folks called me son.

    Brain tumor at 32. Bleeding into the brain stem. "He" was already gone, breathing was already gone, only the heart was going. Doctors said that it would stop within six hours, but that his head would be severely deformed by then (bleeding).

    The choice was made, and we staad around him as he passed. Yes, the right decision was made. His wife did not want their kids to have to see thier dad all swollen in his casket (ages 2 and 5).

    In Christ,
    Trotter
     
  4. gb93433

    gb93433
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    Sometimes family members do want to let the person die. They cannot accept that.
     
  5. SaggyWoman

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    My dad at 101 had stomach cancer blocking his large intestine. Even though he had lived a long life, even though the surgery was risky and wasn't positive they could be successful, even though even though even though, I am still an "everything possible" kind of person.
     
  6. just-want-peace

    just-want-peace
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    Had an aunt that had heart and respitory problems @ about 93.

    She had to be put on a respirator after an attack at my mom's home.

    After about 1 week, with no consciousness or improvement, we all decided to disconnect the respirator. She died about 6-8 hours later.

    No regrets!

    Mom's 2nd husband died at 93 also. He was in a nursing home with a feeding tube.

    After about 3 months with the tube, he made the transition to a better "world", but this was due to a "DNR" order rather than any life support being pulled.

    He was totally unaware of any thing around him as far as anyone could tell; literally a vegetable, alive but no comprehension of reality!
     
  7. Marcia

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    My sister and I were faced with this decision for my father, but God intervened.

    My father in 1996 had kidney failure and other health problems. He was almost 80 (having just become a believer in the hospital after being a lifelong agnostic!) and was getting dialysis. His doctor kept trying everything, but when my sister and I would visit our father, nurses would make remarks like, "If he were my father, I would let him go." They would say this without us asking anything. Yet the dr. was not ready to give up.

    Finally, the time came in April when the doctor told us that we had to decide whether or not to disconnect life support (my father was pretty much unconscious but not really in a coma). He said he had done all he could do and that dialysis at that point was futile and difficult and it was only a matter of maybe a few weeks.

    My sister and I did not want to say, "Yes, disconnect him." She and I were both fairly new believers, having come to Christ just 5 yrs. earlier. We prayed that night, and though we did not feel good about it, thought it was the best thing to do.

    The next morning, I called the doctor's office from work to tell him we agreed to do it. I called twice and couldn't get through. I decided to wait about 15 or 20 minutes to try again, and while I was waiting, the doctor's office called to tell me my father had died. So God spared my sister and me from having to say those words.
     
  8. Kayla

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    My uncle died last October, and was on a feeding tube, I remember joking with him about it. He has throat cancer and could not eat. I have no doubt that if he had lived any longer than he had we probably would have, but he went into the hospital, he had been administering his own meds and, The doctor had said that would be ok. But my uncle took medicine and forgot about it, and over dosed himself, with morphine. That's what the literal cause of death was but the throat cancer really killed him.
     
  9. CYBERDOVE

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    My beloved mother had cancer, it had ran rampart threw out her body, she was in a coma and on life support. After discussing her condition with her doctor, I had the task to call my siblings, some were out of state--in state and one had just flew in that day. We decided to DNR. We decided to keep her on life support, however if she were to stop breathing we would let her go; and she did when the doctor went to get the papers. Due to the fact that the papers were not signed yet they tryed to revive her----she passed on. Her doctor came back with the papers but they were no longer needed. My sister believes that she saved us from having to have this decision on our minds. I believe that it was GOD in HIS infinite wisdom --interceded. I was standing right next to her bed, I could not believe it, but I realize now that GOD knows best, HE took her home, no more pain , no more suffering.--------In HIS service----Sheila
     
  10. dianetavegia

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    We were not involved in the decision to disconnect our 21 year old nephew from life support but supported his parents in their choice. Scott had a bomb go off in his hands in Iraq. He lost both arms, eyes were fried and were removed, his ears burned off and ear drums burst, his nose burned off, his penis burned off, the muscle and skin on his legs was burned off but his feet and one spot on his back were protected by a 'fanny pack' and his combat boots (gortex). Those two spots were the only skin left. His skin was as black and flakey as chicken forgotten on a bbq grill. His espohagus filled with scabs and scar tissue first and then his lungs began to scab over from breathing 'white heat'. He lived a few days without oxygen until the scar tissue in his lungs grew too thick and he died.

    He couldn't speak and doctors thought he couldn't hear but his brothers and sisters, mother and father had time to fly out to be with him when he died.

    There's a BIG difference in the type life and death decisions mentioned above and withholding a 'cup of water' from one who is thirsty. For those who cannot SEE the difference, I feel so very sorry for you.

    Diane
     
  11. Thankful

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    Diane, I have never had to make the decision to remove life support, but I have had to make decisions about putting loved ones on life support.

    When my father at the age of 92,could not eat any more, there was a question of whether to use a feeding tube to keep him alive.

    Fortunately, we had a doctor who took the time to explain to us about feeding tubes. He showed us an entire wing at a nursing home of people on feeding tubes who were being kept alive and had been for years. These people were bedfast and uncommunicative. He explained to us that once a person is on a tube, it is a difficult decision to take the person off the feeding tube.

    But we thought our father would starve to death, the doctor explained that he would not starve to death, that his organs would shut down. The final decision was up to my mother. After a discussion with her pastor, she decided that it was against God's order of things to try to prolong my Daddy's life, and that Daddy should die peacefully.

    I also had to decide whether to place a loved one on dialysis. I had POA and had to make the decision because the patient could not. After a discussion with the doctors and the nurses, we did not put the person on dialysis. We thought that he was getting better, but then he had a relapse. He stopped eating, slipped into a comma and lasted 6 more days.

    Just recently, my 92 year old mother could have lived longer with a feeding tube, but we did not approve one because she was fighting lack of oxygen and bladder infections, which sent her to the hospital about twice a month. She was ready to meet her Lord and Savior.

    Do I regret any of these decisions? No,
    I had Christian doctors and pastors who guided me through these difficult decisions.

    I did not want anyone to die, but it would have been selfish of me to prolong their misery and pain.

    In each of the above situations, the people actually died of old age without any heroic means to prolong their lives.

    I miss them very much, but have comfort that they are with our Lord and Savior.
     
  12. Scarlett O.

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    Thankful,

    Your post is such a blessing. I know that those decisions you made were not easy at all.

    I am generally opposed to feeding tubes. I know that there can be exceptions when the tubes can prolong quality of life. But they are simply that...exceptions.

    My mother had an aunt last year whose grandson, her only guardian, had been talked into giving her a feeding tube. It only prolonged agony.

    My great-aunt was not able to communicate in any form. Her internal organs were slowly ceasing to function. She was dying. And the tubes were not going to bring her any peace, only an extension of this state of "life" that she would have never wanted.

    Her grandson didn't know what to do. He wanted her back like she was, but that wasn't going to happen.

    He asked my mother if she thought it would be inhumane to request a removal of the tubes. My mother and he had long talks about it and she explained to him what she knew from prior experience with death and the elderly that in my aunt's instance, she would not "starve". Her digestive system wasn't passing along nutrients to the rest of her body anyway.

    The doctor was very kind and he explained that when patients get to this point that they don't "starve" and they aren't "dying of thirst". They don't feel these needs anymore, because the body doesn't require it. The body is shutting down.

    My great-aunt's grandson had the tube removed and she died within three days. She died peacefully and our family does not regret the decision that was made.

    Peace-
    YSIC
    Scarlett O.
    &lt;&gt;&lt;
     
  13. annie

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    I have not been in the position before.

    My grandfather did pass this past October.
    I do know they did discontinue life support since his body had already started shutting down.
    Had not been able to take nourishment at the end.

    He died at home with loved ones around singing hymns and praying.
    We will see him again in glory.
     
  14. msinave

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    I don't believe in discontinuing life support because I don't believe in life support in the first place. My family knows that if I am unable to live upright and on my own in this life, they are to be loving and unselfish enough to let me go on to my next life.
     

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