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 Slow Medicine 

Is quantity of life more important than quality of life?
Poll ended at Thu Feb 11, 2010 4:56 pm
yes 17%  17%  [ 2 ]
no 83%  83%  [ 10 ]
Total votes : 12

 Slow Medicine 
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3436
Location: Vermont
Post Slow Medicine
Here is the link to get to Dartmouth's Center for Shared Decision Making:
http://www.dhmc.org/shared_decision_making.cfm

They may be able to help some of us struggling with what to do/not do about health care for our LO. I have just written to them asking for help about my dad and some of his meds and other issues.

"Slow Medicine is not a plan for getting ready to die. It is a plan for caring, and for living well, in the time that an elder has left." Dr. Dennis McCullough

Hope you find it helpful.


Wed Jan 27, 2010 4:56 pm
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
Posts: 3213
Location: WA
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Although I voted 'no' in the above poll, I would add that it's virtually impossible to judge the quality of someone else's life. But those of us who are empowered to make medical decisions for our LO must try do just that. My criterion is: Would this intervention improve my LO's life or just prolong it? If the treatment, medication or surgery would only keep them alive longer but would in no way enhance their well being, I say don't do it. Especially if it's likely to cause adverse effects.


Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:11 pm
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 4:28 pm
Posts: 770
Location: LA
Post Length of life
I, too, would fret over harming Mr B. or causing a life threatening incident until my [wise] daughter said to me, "Mother there is nothing you can do or give to Daddy in your effort to make his life more bearable that can harm him more that this disease is already doing. We need to help him tolerate life as much as we can". I used "slow medicine" and will always be thankful to my doctor for making it available to me/us as needed.

Dorthea

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"See this lady she's 85 but she's nice", This is the way my husband, Mr B., introduced me in 2006 to the people only he knew. Death due to pneumonia. Lewy Body Dementia diagnosed post mortem at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville Florida.


Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:23 pm
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Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:27 pm
Posts: 146
Location: Fl.
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I do agree, I talked to her neurologist yesterday about slow medicine. She is on some meds that just do not make sense. I mean Cholesterol, and even her parkinson's meds. They are not helping her tremors at all. He said cut them in half for about 2 \weeks and if you do not see any difference just stop them. She is at such a totally delusional state now. Her neurologist said all we can do is just try to make her comftorble and calm as we can. She was her totally delusions state when he saw her. That is how she has been now. I want her not to be scared, by her hallucinations, they truly scare her. I just want her to at peace. Just truly at peace!
Tammy

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I Can Do All Things Through Christ Which Strengthens Me! Phil. 4:13


Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:21 am
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
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There's a good Library of Congress video of a talk Dr. Dennis McCullough gave in November:
http://www.loc.gov/today/cyberlc/featur ... p?rec=4792


Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:33 am
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Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:27 pm
Posts: 146
Location: Fl.
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thanks robin,

We just got a new IMac and it is a lot different then a PC. I can't run the video. I will look it back up as soon as I learn how. lol
Tammy

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I Can Do All Things Through Christ Which Strengthens Me! Phil. 4:13


Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:46 am
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Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 11:11 pm
Posts: 117
Location: Tucson AZ
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Okay all, don't laugh, but what is "slow medicine"? Thanks.
Lori


Thu Jan 28, 2010 1:18 am
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
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See: http://community.lbda.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=7018


Last edited by robin on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:19 am, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Jan 28, 2010 2:03 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3436
Location: Vermont
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Hi Lori and others interested in finding out about Slow Medicine - I'd suggest that you check out my original post on this topic (the first posting) and the links that Robin sent you. I have a phone conference tomorrow with someone from Dartmouth and will be happy to share our discussion. Best, Lynn


Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:13 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3436
Location: Vermont
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I just watched the Slow Medicine video and learned a lot. The first 5 min. are kind of slow, but it is worth watching through to the end, where he gives some really good tips about taking your LO to the doctor, having at least one dr. as an advocate for your LO, etc. Thanks again Robin for posting this. Lynn


Thu Jan 28, 2010 12:49 pm
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 4:28 pm
Posts: 770
Location: LA
Post Slow Medicine
Lori, and all. Who's laughing? I am so glad you asked. I did not realize I was working to care for my husband within the frame work of a new movement sweeping the country. I just knew that Mr B. would know when his time was up and I would help him be comfortable to the end while wanting to "heal him" with every breath I took.

After reading your question, I went to google [what would we do without it?] where I found a wealth of knowledge, pro and con, about "Slow Medicine". So far after what I have read, I still think I would allow exactly the treatment, or lack of, as given.

I believe many of our readers on this forum could benefit from the discussions. Thank you, Lynn, for posting this topic.

Dorthea

_________________
"See this lady she's 85 but she's nice", This is the way my husband, Mr B., introduced me in 2006 to the people only he knew. Death due to pneumonia. Lewy Body Dementia diagnosed post mortem at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville Florida.


Thu Jan 28, 2010 5:47 pm
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3436
Location: Vermont
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Hi Dorthea - if you haven't watched the video that Robin provided the link for, I highly recommend you do it. I think it runs about an hour and is really interesting. As I look back, my dad 88 years old, now with LBD, has been practicing slow medicine on himself - refused having PSA tests a few years ago, wouldn't have a colonoscopy or prostate biopsy, etc. Doesn't want any invasive tests or anything. I am so glad he made these kinds of choices for himself. His dr. said yesterday that prepping for a colonoscopy would probably kill him because he is so frail at this point. Lynn


Thu Jan 28, 2010 6:02 pm
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 4:28 pm
Posts: 770
Location: LA
Post The video
Lynn, I also am the [proud] owner of a MAC computer and I would need to subscribe to having something installed in order to view the video. Of course, I was offered the opt of 30 days free trial, which I considered, but after I receive the thirty days free trial, if it does not have cc, I would still not be able to take advantage of everything... so... I went to google but thanks for suggesting I watch.

Before Mr B. showed symptoms of dementia, he was examined for prostate cancer with the biopsy, etc. the report came back that he should have more testing... he and I did battle over the decision. I wanted to rush him to the urologist for the whole nine yards... find out what it was and zap it, whatever it required... Mr B. dug his heels in and refused. We finally decided if he could convince our PCP that he could go without more, I would back off. I put the two of them in the doctor's office and I went to the waiting room to let them come to a decision. Mr B. won. He never had more testing, neither was his prostate problematic. I stayed true to my word and never pushed him more... so the ground work was laid when it became necessary for me to make other decisions on his behalf.

Dorthea

_________________
"See this lady she's 85 but she's nice", This is the way my husband, Mr B., introduced me in 2006 to the people only he knew. Death due to pneumonia. Lewy Body Dementia diagnosed post mortem at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville Florida.


Thu Jan 28, 2010 6:26 pm
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 1:46 pm
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Location: WA
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More often than not, prostate cancer is not treated, anyway. It's usually a very slow growing cancer. For someone over 70 or who has a terminal illness of another kind, it's just plain silly to keep doing PSA testing, in my humble opinion.


Thu Jan 28, 2010 6:57 pm
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
Posts: 3436
Location: Vermont
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I agree that it is silly, especially someone over 80, as they say virtually all men in the US over 80 have some amount of prostate cancer. I suppose if someone were super healthy and the cancer required surgery, it may be different, but if so, they'd probably have known about it for a while anyway.
Dorthea - I'm glad you and your husband were able to discuss it and he made the decision to go the slow medicine route which he wanted. I think it is in Dr. McCullough's video he talks about a 90 year old woman who refused to have her leg amputated, after having had the other leg taken piece by piece, starting with a toe here, a toe there, part of her leg, etc. Why did they even suggest that she have all these multiple amputations at her age? I think more doctors are seeing that doing all this stuff to people at all ages and stages is not always a good thing....
Anyway, I hope you can use someone else's computer Dorthea (how about your local library?) and see the video sometime. His book "My Mother, Your Mother" sounds good too - I haven't read it yet but people in my support group really liked it.
Lynn


Thu Jan 28, 2010 8:27 pm
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