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ESLD Palliative Care? How long until:(?

Hello Everyone.

I'm writing because my father, my best friend, has fought the fight of Hep C and Cirrhosis long and hard, but just a few days ago he expressed his wishes to us. He has chosen to end the fight. As hard as it was to except at first, eventually you need to stop being selfish of wanting to keep them, and as much as it hurts, you need to understand and respect their wishes. My father is and was a great man. Contracted Hep C about 30 years ago, was a heavy alcoholic then, but stopped drinking cold 25 years ago because of me, his only child. He found out he had Hep C very late, and that is what sadly did this to a kind and good hearted man.

I'm sorry, but It kills me sometimes to know my father rectified his wrongs so long ago to take the right path, and yet he had to go through this. But back to my question. (Focus)

So, 2 nights after his request, they gave him 1mg of morphine and he has now been in, what seems to be a deep sleep (2 days later). He is now in palliative care in our local hospital and everything is very peaceful. Nurses, spiritual visitors, aids, including the environment. I am very happy so far that this is the path he chose.

My question is, on 1mg of morphine every 4-5 hours, and nothing else, how long can we expect?

My father and I were and are still very close (I am here in the hospital bunking with him now). We lived on the same property and i basically cared for him for the last 8 years. I just know him, and I just feel in my heart though they say he isnt in pain, he would have wanted it fast. He seems peaceful, and I personally am in no rush. But something in this process, which they say can be slow, is making me feel uneasy thinking as him (Does this^ make any sense to anyone?? Ugh, I'm so confused..) I have have been told he may still hear us, and I maintain my conversation and touch with him, but in that sense I'm just worried his mind is still going too. As it was at times very 'all over the place' before all of this. They are also giving a anti anxiety Adivan, but still..  I heard a morphine drip may be more stronger and at the same time, I just feel weird asking for more or, idk...feeling like making this decision. But my father and me had many one on one talks, crying and him saying goodbye that he wants to go these nights before. Again, I am at peace and he is right now with this decision.
So If anyone has any experience with this situation, doctors, nurses, family members, I'd REALLY appreciate what your knowledge or thoughts are on this question of mine. --- How long will this be? Is there a process route with more or less of something that may make things faster? They (the nurses) sometimes ask me what i want to do? For example, "Take oxygen away", "more Morphine". Idk, this is just hard for ME to make that call. Honestly, I just don't want to see my father deteriorate before me and my mothers eyes when I know he didn't wish for that and I don't want him to exist here in the physical longer than he would have wished also. Just don't know what to expect or say in here.
Thank you so much for listening and any insight.
Peace to all of you
-S
2 Responses
3149845 tn?1506627771
Hi, and really sorry what your now experiencing as is a terrible thing to loose a loved one esp in situations like this. We here are not medical doctors so cannot answer his life expectancy. Again our hearts go out to you.
1696489 tn?1370821974
Hello, Suffer.  I want so badly to just give you a big, strong hug right now!  I was there in the nursing home when my Nana passed.  She, too, had willed a 'do not resuscitate' order.  So, all the nurses did was keep her as comfortable as possible without any medical help, other than ativan to keep her calm.  She wasn't bedridden for very long (maybe a month).  Then the day came when they 'called all family in' - Nana was beginning to fade.  Six of us came to her bedside, and stayed, all night and into the next morning.  We swapped funny stories about her and spoke to her in soft voices, touching her head, kissing her cheeks, holding her hands, and I even went to the garden and picked a few flower-blooms to put on her pillow where she could smell them.  None of us even gave a thought to whether she even knew we were there, WE felt good to be there, with her, to show her dignity and respect and love in her last hours.  I have no idea what it was about Nana that told us the nurses had done right to call us in... we all felt it hours before she passed, that she would leave very soon.  We read the Bible to her, and we prayed over her, and that morning, there was a tension, a feeling of 'it is time'.  And we gathered close, letting her know that it was okay to go now, that her work here was done, and her angels were waiting for her.  And then, like the whisper of a sparrows breath, she left us.  We didn't have to be told.  All hell broke loose in that room, with everyone screaming and crying.  We were joined by seven nurses - one for each of us, plus one to ease Nana's body out of her curled up position to lay her flat.  I tried to help my mom, who was nearly uncontrollable in her grief.  She kept trying to get into bed with Nana - to be close to her one more time, and finally i just let her go.  Mom laid her head on Nana's chest for a brief snuggle, heard no heartbeat, and just cried 'Mommy?'  IT was HARD, but we managed to gather her up and turn our focus to her, then each other as the tsunami of death washed by.  My whole point in telling you this is that NO ONE can tell you what is right.  You feel it in your gut.  You know him best, and you know what he would say.  SAY HIS WORDS, and that will be right.  Hugs and blessings - Blu
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