Hi, it’s Patrik Hutzel from intensivecarehotline.com with another quick tip for families in intensive care.
Currently, we are working with a client who has their 67-year old father on continuous BiPAP in intensive care, alternating with high flow nasal prongs. And the client has been diagnosed with end-stage COPD and the intensive care team says, he might be able to live on the BiPAP for a little bit longer. But they’re saying that the best way forward is to look at palliative care options and to look at end-of-life care options without actually asking the client, what would they want?
So what they haven’t discussed as well is, for example, they haven’t discussed a tracheostomy as an option. They haven’t discussed BiPAP at home as an option with Intensive Care at Home. They haven’t discussed tracheostomy and then again, Intensive Care at Home as an option.
So, today I want to shed more light on options for a client besides palliative care and end-of-life care because that’s what intensive care units generally speaking do. They’re always very quick at pulling the plug, so to speak, to be quite blunt. They are very quick at talking about palliative care and end-of-life care options without looking at how can we prolong life that’s with an acceptable quality of life for the client and for their family. And that’s what I want to shed light on today.
The other sort of factor for this particular client is he had a stroke in the past. He has recovered from that stroke, but he certainly does have a fairly long pre-medical history. Certainly doesn’t help the whole situation, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that end-of-life care is the only option and that it needs to happen in intensive care.
So if a BiPAP is ongoing, for example, that can be done at home, high flow nasal prongs can be done at home. Please check out Intensive Care at Home for more information. You can find more information about Intensive Care at Home at intensivecareathome.com. Another option might be to intubate this patient and then perform a tracheostomy and then have either ongoing or intermittent ventilation via tracheostomy. And then again, either looking at weaning or looking at taking this gentleman home with Intensive Care at Home. And again, have a look at intensivecareathome.com for more information there.
So that is my quick tip for today. It also goes to show that what I always say, the biggest challenge for families in intensive care is that they simply don’t know what they don’t know. They don’t know what to look for. They don’t know what questions to ask. They don’t know their rights and they don’t know how to manage doctors and nurses in intensive care.
And another thing that is always evident and has always been evident for me when I worked in intensive care for over 20 years, it’s clear that the intensive care team is only telling you half of the story, unless you know what to ask for, unless you know what to look for, unless you have professional consulting and advocacy by your side, which we provide here at intensivecarehotline.com, you’ll be fighting a losing battle.
So if you have a loved one in intensive care, go to intensivecarehotline.com. Call us on one of the numbers on the top of our website, or simply send me an email to [email protected].
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This is Patrik Hutzel from intensivecarehotline.com and I will talk to you in a few days.