Caree not eating.

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My husband, who had a stroke 2 1/2 years ago, is now bedridden with a perineal abscess which burst in July and is being treated every day by the district nurses. He is in a lot of pain with this and is finding it very painful to walk. He was left with a left side weekness after his stroke with no use of his left arm and a very weak left leg. He used to manage to walk with the aid of a stick although quite wobbly and had to have someone with him in case he fell. The abscess seemed to have healed over about three weeks ago and the nurses stopped coming in.

Unfortunately the abscess burst again last week and the nurses are now back in each day to dress it. He had only started to have some interest in food again when he took ill again and now I can't get him to eat. The last few days he has only had one small bowl of porridge in which I put his medication as he has difficulty swallowing. He is starting to look quite gaunt in his face and sleeps all day and night. He also has an infection in his penis due to the catheter which is also extremely painful. When he is in pain like this, he just doesn't want to eat. As a result of him being bedridden since July, he is now unable to stand for more than a few minutes before he has to sit down. His carers bedbath him each morning and freshen him up at night. He also has numerous urine infections.

When he had an abscess in the same place about 4 years ago, he was rushed into hospital for an emergency operation to clean it out as it had become septic. It took six months for it to heal as he is diabetic and had in fact only been healed up completely for three months when he went on to have a stroke. This time the hospital say they will not operate on him as his chances of surviving the anaesthetic are very poor. I am taking this one day at a time as I cannot see any end to it. Instead of going forward one step at a time, we are now back where we started lastJuly.
Irene, that sounds awful. What does the GP say? It sounds like you should be having a "full and frank" discussion with him!
To me, it's unacceptable for anyone to be left in severe pain in this day and age. Can the GP not prescribe patches if your husband can't swallow easily?
The infections aren't going to clear up by themselves, if he can't swallow tablets he should be given liquid medication.
Might be worth talking to the pharmacy about what they suggest. My GP gave me some tablet pain killers which upset my stomach terribly, the solution was time release capsules which I could tolerate much better.
Also think about asking the GP to arrange an NHS Continuing Healthcare Assessment. How much outside help are you both getting?
Irene
How dreadful for you both.
Sending you hugs. (((())))
He is on co-codamol four times a day, although I struggle to get that amount down him as he sleeps so much. He has two carers in morning and evening but if I need help during the day usually if he has soiled himself, then I can phone the mobile emergency carers who usually come within about fifteen minutes and will change him and the bedding if necessary. I have now started buying adult disposible nappy type pads which do help contain everything and stoop the bedding being ruined. I did ask his district nurse if she could get me some but it fell on deaf ears. I do get supplied with pads from the nhs but apparently they dont't supply the nappy type. She then had the cheek to ask why I had bought them and her face was a picture when I said that I had asked her for them but she had never got back to me. They like to think that they always known best.

His Social worker is arranging for us to get a grant to replace our patio doors which have a large threshhold lip with ones which are flush to the floor. As his mobility is so bad now, this would allow me to get him into his wheelchair in the bedroom and be able to push him straight outside. It probably won't happen for the next few months but at least they have started the paperwork.
Irene, I'm so sorry to read this.

When my mum had difficulty swallowing co-codamol I arranged for effervescent tablets instead. Makes a rather bitter drink but she could swallow it quickly.

Just a thought....
My mum has been spending most of her time in bed since April with uti and bedsore. She had be en given fortisip shakes and Aymes powder to make into a shake. The district nurse commented on her loss of weight and arranged for a community dietician to visit.

I had been mixing up an egg in with mum's wheatabix and milk and powdered custard. He recommended adding powdered semi skimmed milk to her soups, drinks etc to boost protein intake and using plenty of butter/olive oil, and having multiple small meals/snacks as opposed to 3 'big' meals. (Mum doesn't eat big portions.)

I not suggesting mum's diet is right for your husband but a dietician might have some pointers to offer you. I prepared a list of soups, stews plus their ingredients I'd prepared for mum for the dietician to review when he visited.
I don't know if this is a possibility, but when my husband went into end stage cancer, he was put on a syringe driver. This was a permament sub-cutaneous (ie, not into a vein, under the flesh) drip in his arm, but it fed back only to a vial in a little box (about four inches square I seem to recall), that lay under his pillow (the vial was topped up from time to time by the district nurse). Although he was bedbound, syringe drivers can be mobile, eg, on a lap or whatever in a wheelchair.

The idea is to give a low but continuous 'feed' of a drug.

You could ask the nurse/GP if one would be suitable for your husband, and then avoid the ordeal of oral meds???

Definitely ask about the patches, which do the same thing, absorb straight into the skin.