26th May2011

Prolonging life

by Dutchcloggie

For months and months, JD has been on a high dose of steroids. These steroids reduce the swelling of healthy brain tissue around the tumour. The healthy brain gets irritated by the tumour and swells up, causing more pressure inside JD’s head.

Keeping the swelling down obviously reduces the chance of headaches. It also reduces the chance of the swelling putting pressure on vital parts of the brain, thereby preserving brain function as much as possible.

Ironically, the same steroids that made her life bearable are now making her death hard. Without the steroids, the pressure in the brain would be greater, thus more vital functions would be affected, possibly resulting in a quicker, more peaceful death.

So this morning the doctor and I agreed they were now probably prolonging JD’s life and thus doing more harm than good. So the dose has now been drastically reduced. If this results in severe headaches etc, we can simply increase the pain relief. Perhaps by letting nature run its course, we can limit JD’s suffering.

2 Responses to “Prolonging life”

  • >Good call, but tough.

  • >Actually, it was surprisingly easy. Since the doctor walked me through all the other choices last week, and effectively closed the book on everything that went before, the choices have been easier. I am no longer taking EVERYTHING in to account when deciding things. The previous chapter is finished, I am comfortable with all decisions I took then, so the new chapter can just take things as they are at that moment, unburdened by doubts on previous choices I might still be rehashing.

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