On February 10th, my brother and I had to take our mom to the emergency room at Morristown Medical Center. She was quite ill, vomiting, diarrhea, etc. She was admitted that night. She had CT scans, x-rays, and blood work done. She was diagnosed with Diverticulitis and a urinary tract infection. She was there receiving antibiotics via IV for two weeks.
They then sent her to a rehab place for physical therapy, but after just one night there, her hemoglobin levels dropped to 6.1 (normal levels are around 12). She had more x-rays and CT scans done.
They finally found that she has a fistula (an abnormal joining of two hollow organs) between her bladder and intestine. A young patient could have surgery done, but my mom is eighty-six, had a heart attack and stent put in three months ago, is on blood thinners, has Scleraderma and a mild case of Lupus, and other factors, so the odds of surviving such a major surgery are slim to none.
They would have had to cut her from below the breast bone, all the way down to the pelvic bone, removed the inflammed part of the intestine, sealed the bladder, and looped the rest of the intestine around for a colostomy bag. If she had made it through surgery, she would have been in an ICU unit on a ventilator for at least three to five days.
My mom declined to have any surgery, so on Friday, March 1st, they brought her home for hospice care. I have been her caretaker for twenty-four years now. When my dad passed away in 1995, my family looked to me to take care of her. I have done that.
She wants to pass in her own home, I am doing that for her. The hospice nurse said we’re looking at a one to two week time frame.
Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers. We just want her to pass peacefully and comfortably as possible.