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Alzheimer's: Are Feeding Tubes a Good Alternative for Dementia Sufferers

Posted Feb 11 2010 5:53am

Medical evidence has long suggested that feeding tubes do not improve survival or overall outcomes in patients with dementiaa terminal illness that affect a patient's mind and eventually the ability to eat......
By Bob DeMarco

If you are an Alzheimer's caregiver you might face this decision -- whether or not to insert a feeding tube into you loved one when it is not likely to change the outcome. The end of life outcome.

I notice when I ask questions like thismany caregivers respond by saying what they want. Is this the correct or best approach to answering this question?

Shouldn't the personthe Alzheimer's suffererbe the one making this decision?

Have you discussed this issue with your loved one in advance? Have you discussed this issue with family members?

I did discuss this issue with my mother long ago. SoI have a clear understanding of "what she wants". What she wants us to do.

If a person suffering from Alzheimer's lives long enoughit is highly likely that they will need a feeding tube to continue to live. They will forget how to eat. Orthey will be unable to swallow. To use the reflex that allows them to swallow.

Have you considered in advance what you would do? Do you have the necessary legal documentation in place? Orare you going to let someone else make the decision for you. The hospital?
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