Hi, it’s Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVECAREHOTLINE.COM , where we instantly improve the lives of Families of critically ill Patients in Intensive Care, so that you can have PEACE OF MIND, real power, real control and so that you can influence decision making fast, even if you’re not a doctor or a nurse in Intensive Care!
This is another episode of “YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED” and in last week’s episode I answered another question from our readers and the question last week from one of our readers was
You can check out the answer to last week’s question by clicking on the link here.
In this week’s episode of “YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED” I want to answer another question from one of our readers and the question this week is
MY BROTHER HAS BEEN IN ICU FOR 21 WEEKS WITH TRACHEOSTOMY AND IS STILL VENTILATED! WHAT DO WE NEED TO DO?
Claire, from Sydney Australia writes
My brother has been in ICU for 21 weeks following septicaemia following open heart surgery.
He is 49 years old and has never been to hospital before. The whole time he has been fed through an NG tube, he has a Tracheostomy, he has being kept on a ventilator overnight and he has had 14 surgeries.
He was doing quite well but after removal of the Tracheostomy for a short time (and failure after an hypoxic event) he has required re-intubation.
My brother is, understandably depressed, anxious and has almost lost the desire to fight.
We are trying to motivate him. We have put together posters with inspirational quotes and family photos with messages of love.
Do you have any suggestions of what else we can do. It is heartbreaking to see him so low. We understand why. Would love to hear any suggestions/ideas?
Thank you, Claire, Sydney, Australia
thank you for your question. I am very sorry to hear about the ordeal that your brother and your Family are going through.
Let’s look at the positives first. Your brother has never been hospitalized and is quite young at the age of 49. The other positive is that he has a supportive family who is looking for options and is seeking out for help and you are encouraging him. Keep doing that as a starting point.
It’s almost unbelievable that he has had 14 surgeries within 21 weeks. Now, let’s look at the negatives and the things that very likely stand in the way of your brother’s recovery.
It’s a massive dilemma for every long-term Patient in ICU and their Families to have no or very little Quality of Life, which is leading to depression. The depression often leads to the ventilator dependency and vice versa. It’s a massive challenge and it’s a vicious cycle. On top of that there is the lack of privacy and the lack of dignity in Intensive Care and other people are running the show.
- FOLLOW THIS PROVEN SYSTEM TO AVOID THE 3 MOST DANGEROUS MISTAKES YOU ARE MAKING BUT YOU ARE UNAWARE OF, IF YOUR LOVED ONE REQUIRES LONG-TERM VENTILATION WITH TRACHEOSTOMY IN INTENSIVE CARE!
You have already touched on what you and your Family need to continue doing, such as motivating and inspiring your brother and the family photos. Other practical steps would be to look at continuity of care such as
– having regular and experienced nursing staff looking after him(some units have a tendency to let their junior staff or agency staff look after their long-term Patients, as the more experienced staff tend to look after more acutely unwell Patients)
– making sure he is getting natural daylight such as having visits outside as soon as his condition allows
– can your brother get a quiet room with natural daylight or is he exposed in the middle of a busy unit with no natural daylight?
– making sure that the medical staff are on top of things, again some units have the tendency to almost neglect their long-term Patients, because the staff are getting frustrated as well
– ask the medical/nursing staff whether your loved one might be better off with antidepressants in the interim. Antidepressants are not a long term solution though
– no matter how difficult the situation, stay positive, your brother will feel the positive vibes coming from your family
- THE 7 ANSWERS TO THE 7 MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS IF YOUR LOVED ONE REQUIRES ONGOING MECHANICAL VENTILATION WITH TRACHEOSTOMY IN INTENSIVE CARE!
– the longer your loved one stays in ICU the higher the risk of him catching an infection, therefore a side room with no exposure to other Patients and therefore bugs, might be an advantage as well
As far as his Tracheostomy goes, again it’s nothing unusual in Intensive Care to see Patients having failed attempts to wean them off the ventilator and the Tracheostomy for the reasons that I mentioned.
- FOLLOW THIS PROVEN 6 STEP PROCESS, ON HOW TO BE POWERFUL, IN CONTROL, INFLUENTIAL AND HAVE PEACE OF MIND, IF YOUR LOVED ONE IS A LONG-TERM PATIENT IN INTENSIVE CARE OR IS FACING TREATMENT LIMITATIONS IN INTENSIVE CARE!
- THE 5 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW IF THE MEDICAL TEAM IN INTENSIVE CARE WANTS TO “LIMIT TREATMENT”, WANTS TO “WITHDRAW TREATMENT” OR “WITHDRAW LIFE SUPPORT” OR WANTS TO ISSUE A “DNR” (DO NOT RESUSCITATE) OR AN “NFR” (NOT FOR RESUSCITATION) ORDER FOR YOUR CRITICALLY ILL LOVED ONE!
Especially since you live in Australia, you might also consider external specialized services such as INTENSIVE CARE AT HOME. Those services are available in countries such as Germany, USA and Australia who focus on weaning long-term ventilated Patients in the home as a genuine alternative to a long-term stay in Intensive Care, generally with a focus on Quality of Life for Patients and their Families. You can find more information at http://intensivecareathome.com.au
I hope that helps Claire!
Wishing you and your family the very best!
Send your questions to [email protected] !
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In your FREE report you’ll also discover
- How to ask the doctors and the nurses the right questions
- Discover the many competing interests in Intensive Care and how your critically ill loved one’s treatment may depend on those competing interests
- How to eliminate fear, frustration, stress, struggle and vulnerability even if your loved one is dying
- 5 mind blowing tips& strategies helping you to get on the right path to PEACE OF MIND, control, power and influence in your situation
- You’ll get real world examples that you can easily adapt to your and your critically ill loved one’s situation
- How to stop being intimidated by the Intensive Care team and how you will be seen as equals
- You’ll get crucial ‘behind the scenes’ insight so that you know and understand what is really happening in Intensive Care
- How you need to manage doctors and nurses in Intensive Care(it’s not what you think)
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This is Patrik Hutzel from INTENSIVECAREHOTLINE.COM and I’ll see you again next week with another update!