Is this the death rattle?

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Is this the death rattle?

by Cheryl_Z on Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:00 AM

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My father is in late stage IV GBM.  Hospice is now involved.  One of the aids said she recognized his breathing as the death rattle.  (Which I know means that death is soon.)  I thought his breathing was different, but he is conscious, eating and talks when awake which is less than 10% of the the time.  They have put on a patch for congestion and ordered a 2nd drug-generic for musinex.

How do you tell the difference between death rattle and congestion?

...And once it is the death rattle, how long will he have left?

This difficult, as I am 2 hours away with 3 kids.  I was there Friday, Sunday and will go tomorrow-Tuesday.  I'd spend everyday if I knew.

RE: Is this the death rattle?

by Chiroman95 on Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:00 AM

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So sorry about your dad. I lost my dear father this past Wednesday and I was home with him when it happened. The hospice nurse can tell you what is what. There will be a time when your dad will actually stop breathing for a period as mucg as 30 to 40 seconds and then all of the sudden he will start breathing again. This is called apnea and that means that the end is near.You live pretty far so make sure you ask the nurse to let you know when changes occur. It goes pretty fast, my father started having that stuff on his throat as well for which he got the same patch and after 5-6 hours he passed on. Good luck.

 

Joe

RE: Is this the death rattle?

by Kristennyc on Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:00 AM

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I hate to say it, but I think you should get there as soon as you can.
My father had the "death rattle", and it was a matter of a couple of
days. I am so sorry.

RE: Is this the death rattle?

by Cheryl_Z on Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:00 AM

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On 12/3/2007 Chiroman95 wrote:

So sorry about your dad. I lost my dear father this past Wednesday and I was home with him when it happened. The hospice nurse can tell you what is what. There will be a time when your dad will actually stop breathing for a period as mucg as 30 to 40 seconds and then all of the sudden he will start breathing again. This is called apnea and that means that the end is near.You live pretty far so make sure you ask the nurse to let you know when changes occur. It goes pretty fast, my father started having that stuff on his throat as well for which he got the same patch and after 5-6 hours he passed on. Good luck.

 

Joe


 

Joe, I am so sorry for your loss.  How are you?  Please write back if you need to talk or write about your dad.  This has to be the worst week for you. 

We received better news today.  He is responding to the medicine for congestion and the doctor does not feel that this is the death rattle.  Never-the-less, I did drop everything and went on Sunday and will make another trip tomorrow morning (Tues), Christmas presents in hand.  I know we don't have a lot of time, so I'm trying to get there as many days a week as I can. (It's 2 hours by car and I juggle 2 jobs and 3 kids)

Joe, You are in my thoughts and prayers.  Are you through with the funeral and all of that or not yet?  Take care and please feel free to write if you need to vent.  Thank you for the information.   Cheryl 

RE: Is this the death rattle?

by Cheryl_Z on Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:00 AM

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Thank you.  I am making more frequent trips.  They changed the diag. as the congestion is responding to med.s, but time is far too short.
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