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Thread: Worried about my dad - heart failure

  1. #1
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    Worried about my dad - heart failure

    So on Saturday I had to take my 75 year old dad to A&E with suspected heart failure and Iím terrified weíre going to lose him.

    Heís had worsening swelling in his lower half and legs and shortness of breath for some weeks now. I had no idea how bad he was until last week and I made him an apt at the drs Saturday morning. The dr took one look at him and said we needed to go to A&E.

    To make things worse, A&E processed him wrong and he was made to wait, alone as I got kicked out, for 6 hours in a stuffy waiting room without his oxygen which was running out of battery. I went back to take him a sandwich and didnít leave because I was furious he was still waiting.

    They finally got him to medical assessment and admitted and he started being examined straight away. They suspect pulmonary oedema caused by heart failure.

    I donít dare google heart failure but I know itís not good and Iím scared weíre going to lose him.

    Does anyone have any encouraging words or experiences of heart failure??


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  2. #2
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    Quote Originally Posted by fizzymoon86 View Post
    So on Saturday I had to take my 75 year old dad to A&E with suspected heart failure and Iím terrified weíre going to lose him.

    Heís had worsening swelling in his lower half and legs and shortness of breath for some weeks now. I had no idea how bad he was until last week and I made him an apt at the drs Saturday morning. The dr took one look at him and said we needed to go to A&E.

    To make things worse, A&E processed him wrong and he was made to wait, alone as I got kicked out, for 6 hours in a stuffy waiting room without his oxygen which was running out of battery. I went back to take him a sandwich and didnít leave because I was furious he was still waiting.

    They finally got him to medical assessment and admitted and he started being examined straight away. They suspect pulmonary oedema caused by heart failure.

    I donít dare google heart failure but I know itís not good and Iím scared weíre going to lose him.

    Does anyone have any encouraging words or experiences of heart failure??


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    First of all I would like to say that I am sorry to hear about the ill health of your father. My father has heart disease and diabetes and although those conditions are well managed, it is quite stressful to know a loved one has a disease like that.

    Heart failure isn't always as severe as it sounds. It isn't a cardiac arrest; heart failure doesn't mean that the heart is going to stop beating. It just means that the heart is having a difficult time pumping the blood around the body properly.

    From the Internet (I did the Googling for you): "Heart failure does not mean your heart has stopped working. It just needs some support to help it work better."

    Although heart failure sounds scary, there are a number of treatments available. It is by no means a death sentence, and is a very common condition. Your dad might just need to be on some stronger medication, or have more GP check ups.

    I hope he recovers quickly, as I'm sure he will.

    Anxiouscow
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  3. #3
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    I would imagine that your dad would be put on diuretics to take some of the pressure off his heart. He will have increased urination but this is the intent.

    My mother-in-law has been in heart failure for 2 years but feels much better on a meds regime for HF.

  4. #4
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    My Nans brother was in heart failure for a very long time. It was well managed. I suspect this is common for people of that age because the heart has been pumping for a very long time. My best advice is to cross any bridges when required. He's being treated and I assume if he responds well to treatment he'll be as right as rain in no time.

    I have had lots of stress over family illnesses and in the end I stopped worrying about what could be and just learned to enjoy the moment.
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  5. #5
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    Thank you for your replies.

    At present my dad is still with us and is receiving treatment in hospital. We canít visit but I call him every day and we have a chat.

    He is receiving high doses of IV diuretics to try and reduce the swelling and he is on oxygen 24/7 to help his breathing. This has been halved since the other day so theyíre trying to wean him off needing so much and he seems to be doing okay.

    Drs are currently relatively pleased with how heís doing. He is very slowly responding to treatment.

    However, due to the uncertainty of his condition he has been placed into the amber pathway which I believe means he could go either way and they can only continue treating him and hope he improves. If not, sadly heíll be placed on end of life pathway.

    Iíve cried so many tears this week.


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  6. #6
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    It must be very hard for you, fizzymoon but he's making some improvement and you must cling on to that fact when you feel very low?

    All you can do is continue to chat to him and encourage him to keep his spirits up. He'll be really looking forward to your calls and it's so cruel that covid has had to restrict visitors.

    He's holding his own and the doctors will want to get him on the right level of meds to stabilise the HF which will take time.

    Don't give up hope? He's still here and responding to treatment which is very positive

  7. #7
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    My dad was discharged from hospital this week after 2.5 weeks receiving treatment.

    Weíre happy to have him home but unfortunately he has a terminal diagnosis and he will not be getting better and it is likely he has a matter of months left.

    I canít quite get my head around this and Iím not sure how to process it.


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  8. #8

    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    It is an almost impossible thing to process, I think. When my dad was diagnosed with his recurrent cancer, I knew as a radiotherapist roughly what the prognosis was. It scared me.

    However, I have no regrets from that time. I spent as much time with my dad as I could. Talking and laughing. He spent time with my kids. We went on a short holiday. It was a tough time but it was spent well and to the best I could do. That's my advice. Spend as much time as you can with your dad, enjoy today and try not to think too much about tomorrow.

  9. #9
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    I'm so very sorry to hear this, fizzymoon.

    I can't add to the advice given to you by ccake79 because it's what you should try to do if you can..So hard not to speculate about the future but make the present count and talk as much as you can to your dad. He's home and free of hospital restrictions. He'll be needing his family to be there for him.

  10. #10
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    Re: Worried about my dad - heart failure

    Quote Originally Posted by fizzymoon86 View Post
    My dad was discharged from hospital this week after 2.5 weeks receiving treatment.

    We’re happy to have him home but unfortunately he has a terminal diagnosis and he will not be getting better and it is likely he has a matter of months left.

    I can’t quite get my head around this and I’m not sure how to process it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I'm sorry to hear about your dad, I know how difficult a parent's terminal diagnosis is. How is your dad taking it?

    The way I'd look at it is this..

    Your dad's 75. It's a decent age that is. It's a full life. My dad died when he was 58 - not much older than I am now.

    One of the positives of a terminal diagnosis is that people get to tie up all those loose ends and more importantly, to say goodbye. We had time to say our goodbyes to my dad, and for him to say everything that he'd always meant to say but was too old 'blokey' to say them. This meant that he (and we) got closure. The same can't be said of my mum who died without warning and it took me a decade to get closure from her death..

    These last few months don't have to be sad for him, or you. I have many lovely memories of being with my dad in the months before he died. Special moments, and some hilarious ones too - like when he wanted to tick 'finding Spangles' off his bucket list...

    "Er, Spangles were discontinued in the 80s Dad?

    Even so, my father was undeterred and carried on with the Spangle hunt. He eventually gave up and settled for a pint of something alcoholic from his past and me promising to empty his piss bag for him..

    One of the oddest moments was a phone call I overheard to one of his mates (he'd not seen for years) and when the bloke asked him how he was, he said, 'Yeah, I'm not too bad kid - just got a touch of cancer'. He totally downgraded metastatic cancer to something like a cold? In contrast my mother was stopping random people in the street, Tesco, and everywhere, and informing them that she had cancer and that her ovaries were totally buggered (her words)

    There were lots of walks down memory lane for us all with my dad and we made the very best out of those last months with him, including his family going to a cricket match. There's a great picture of us all hanging off his wheelchair, and my old man looks frail, but happy.

    If your dad is well enough to cope with a trip out in a wheelchair or whatnot - ask him where he wants to go. A trip to the seaside for the day? A push around the park? Be guided by him, and if he's not well enough for that, just be there. Sit with him. Talk to him. Be strong for him. You can let it all out once you get back home..

    Everybody dies (obvs) but not everybody gets time like this. You can pack a lot into a few months, and that doesn't have to be doing things; it can mean talking and listening. Try to see these last months in terms of quality of time, rather than time itself?

    All the very best to you..
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