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5 days ago, said...

what if a person says that ,When he closes his eyes he sees people he knows and people he has meet walking around talking,but when he opens his eyes their gone.


10 days ago, said...

What about when their eyes start to alwaysvtoll back in their head? Is it just no muscle control


17 days ago, said...

Very informative article for any common person. We live in South India. My mother-in-law is now 93 years old. she talks to the persons in the room who are not visible to us. She at times narrates the happenings when she is sitting and talking to us casually, in a dramatic way. Her legs/knees are swollen. Even though her intake is reduced a little , she takes solid food on her own, as she used to do earlier. She is handicapped and bedridden for nearly a decade. I am the only person fully taking care of her every day and night for the past sixteen years. She is totally bed ridden now for the past six months. Pl. pray for her healthy recovery or for peaceful death.


23 days ago, said...

I never knew there were steps until I noticed my Husband was talking to some one that wasn't visible to me in the hospital room. He was so convincing, it was spooky. My mom went through all the signs like I expected her to. She passes away in peace alone in the nursing home. No more pain, crying and no more dying Thank God. Though it hurts me to see her go I am relieved.


about 1 month ago, said...

My mom seems to barley be breathing I so just want to pick her up and hug her


about 1 month ago, said...

how long da a person live with pancreas cancer after chemo and raditation his been done


about 1 month ago, said...

It is really true. I have seen my grandfather undergo this process before he passed away. No appetite,difficult to drink,blurred speech and etc. One fine morning, he left us for good.


about 1 month ago, said...

I know my life will end very soon God. I pray that when and if you take me soon I go to heaven and have a new life. Please keep my family calm and safe as this is happening. Amen


about 1 month ago, said...

My mom got a cervical cancer she not eating and her feet is sore and leaking water she always sleeping it is the sign of death


about 1 month ago, said...

what does it mean when someone is like a sleep but a wake with like a foogy look in there eye but they snap out of it ???


about 1 month ago, said...

My dad is dying. Sleeping most of the day not eating. I know he is trying to hang on until siblings get here. He is not my worry. My mom is. Healthy (ish) but she doesn't do alone well. But she us also not a person who will go out and be social. I can spend a little more time with her but I do work and have my own responsibilities. I am the only local relative.


about 1 month ago, said...

Katherine, I am a medical social worker working with an in home health care agency, I do work in California, However it should be the same that your part d should cover your drugs, MD visits etc. Your state should have a home health agency also, you will need a doctors referral to home health. They would have social workers to help you as you are homebound and home health is covered 100% by medicare. Good luck


2 months ago, said...

This was exactly how it happened in my Grandmother's case... Although I still find it hard to believe but I can notice it in Gramps as well now... Looks like he's dying... Its really sad to think about your beloved dying sort of, I mean the feeling hurts... I think I've just got to make him happy and keep hoping it doesn't happen too soon... All the same Thanks for this! ...


2 months ago, said...

My mother is 86, according to what I have read now she is dying. She is not eating and take in very little water or maybe 100ml of soup. She Urinate about 3 times a day and it is a rusty colour. She had bowel movement (splash0 yellow a week ago and today she had a splash again (a lot) but a brownish coulour. Is this also a sign of near death. She asked me earlier today what are we going to do with her furniture and clothing, although she has no furniture as she is staying with me. She also wanted to go visit someone with us. And she talks a lot about people in her room that I cannot see.


2 months ago, said...

10 for 10. Race to my 40th


2 months ago, said...

Katherine, Perhaps there is an ombudsman in your city who can help you sort out your insurance issues. Or a service agency specializing in social workers who can hook you up with appropriate services. You might find help through your local hospital. They usually can refer you to such agencies. I assume since you get Medicare that you are a senior. Try to find a senior service agency in your area. I wish you all the luck. Don't give up. Keep trying until you find someone to help you.


3 months ago, said...

I have Multiple Sclerosis The relasping kind, I can no longer walk ( not even with a walker). I have a power chair I use always.. My feet and lower legs are very swollen, at times feel as thou they could burst. I had Molina Health Care of Springfield, Illinois. They called me the other week to tell me I no longer had their insurance. Dropped me without any prior notice. Its been 3 weeks now without insurane. I am out of my medications Including my Glatopa injections, Cyclobenzaprine, Baclofen, Oxycodone Acetaminophen, Buproion.. I Feel my body spireling down very quickly. The full body cramping and I think sezeres. Also pain.. I am terified, I cant even see my doctors because I do not have health insurance to pay them..I only collect Social Security $1000. per month ( This last month only $895.00 due to medicaid?, because of the new health insurance laws.?.)( my rent is $700. per month and then utilities, I barely scrap by. Acually I fall short every month) I recieved a letter from Department of Health & Human Services. Its states I qualify for " Extra Help paying Medicare prescription drug coverage costs " Says I qualify November 1, 2015-at least until December 31, 2016. My showed this letter to my pharmicy and they are Not ecepting this letter as proff of insurance that will pay for my drug costs. Ive ask Molina Health Care to please mail me an application for thier Molina Duel Program ( Molina with Medicaid and Medicare ).. I spoke with them on November 6th, 2015. It is now November 20th, 2015 and I have Not recieved it yet.... I already qualify for Medicaid and Medicare, but I cant find anyone to help me... I dont know what to do anymore. I currently have " Care Link " thats comes to my home and cooks and cleans and shops for me. But they cant help me with my Health Insurance issues. Without my medications I will soon not be able to get out of bed anymore. I am trying very hard not to give up...Im afraid that day is comming soon. I have no family to help me, its just me and my little dog. Please can anyone give me some advise. Thank You; Katharine Colton Springfield, Illinois. 62704


3 months ago, said...

Hi,I am a 20 year old girl...Doctors are in the process of finding out what's wrong with my heart,the treatment they gave me makes me more sick and makes my heart beat very very fast.another thing is my trache is sore,if it shuts,would I die?


3 months ago, said...

Thank you for this. My grandmother is dying from cancer (perhaps other things too, she is 93 after all). I'm on the other side of the country but my mother is there and tells me what is happening. The nurse said she thinks my grandmother won't wake up again, as she has been mostly sleeping and can only handle liquidated food. I was looking for some information to give me an idea of how much time she might have exactly. This helps. I am hoping she doesn't die today though as it is my son's 3rd birthday and don't want it to also be the anniversary of my grandmother's death. But what will be will be. I've never had anyone close to me die, apart from a teacher in the 7th grade in a car crash, but that felt different and was a long time ago now. I am glad I managed to get some flowers sent to her a few days ago and she even saw them several times during the day when she was awake. It was my goodbye to her.


3 months ago, said...

whew I thought I was dying.I cant stop coughing.


3 months ago, said...

this was very informative


3 months ago, said...

My mother at age 47 died of cancer. At the at of 24 this was my first experience with my immediate family that I witnessed the process of dying. We sat for days with her and watched her struggle. My siblings and I ranged in age of 26-17. I distinctively remember we left the room for the nurse to change her bedding with the help of a close friend. I stopped a few feet from door of my mother room, turned and the nurse said, "I'm sorry, your mom is gone." I could only say, "I know". I was with my 96 yr old Grandmother, which I took care of, when she passed. Earlier in the day when I arrived at Long Term Care, she was lying in bed and as I walked to her she grabbed my and kept repeating, "I love you and you love me". I knew then she appreciated everything I had done for her. After family left and it was quiet, my youngest brother and I sat and watched her breathing shallow. True to my Grandmother's toughness, after the nurse said "she's gone", she took one final breath. We laughed as it was the defiant nature of my Grandmother. I also had the privilege to be with my dad's mother when she passed. After witnessing two other passings, I was able to alert other family members to be by her bedside. This grandma went as peacefully as she lived. I truly believe there is a reason we watch them struggle, it is as if to say it's ok to leave because we do not want them to suffer any longer. I hold those moments very close and am honored to have been with both of my grandmother's when they passed.


3 months ago, said...

Thanks so much for this information ..


4 months ago, said...

Help me I have 9/10 of these signs, I'm only 12, I'm dying, I haven't eaten for 18 hours and I'm not hungry at all and never hungry ever


4 months ago, said...

Tiredinutah, my mother also preferred candy and cold thing such as ice, peppermint gum, tick-tacks to healthy food. Candy constipates, so if you can keep it in small amounts, that is best. Try bite-size portions of healthy foods - we found deli ham on crackers worked better than sandwiches or pieces of meat. Sliders might work, especially if your loved one liked White Castle as a kid. Don't have enough detail to know what you have tried but your loved one may be having trouble distinguishing day from night, so do all those things you normally would do in the day - open blinds to let in light, vacuum, etc. Music or white noise can help people sleep if restless. Talk to your doctor, call on family/friends for assistance - you need some sleep. Can you sleep when he does, similar to a mother with a baby?


4 months ago, said...

Tigertmom44 - if you are in US, ask your social worker for help. Each hospital has assigned social worker to help transition out patients.


4 months ago, said...

I have come to realize in my 30 plus years of nursing working with mostly Alzheimer's and dementia pt that quality of life is more important than quantity. Unfortunately the disease will continue to progress and the pt's condition will worsen. Hospice is my advice for any with Alzheimer's or dementia when the time is right. Enjoy the time you have with your love ones but make decisions that allow them to leave this world peacefully and with dignity. Unfortunately they will leave as we all must but allow they to retain their dignity. My prayers are with you all.


4 months ago, said...

My daddy is currently in hospital andhas been for 45 days. He has dementia and has behavior issues at times. No nursing home will take him b/c of that. Now hospital says we need to gind a place for him. He may eat 3-6 spoonful of food a day, he sometimes forgets how to swollow. He does not know who we are. He asks for his mom or sisters. Totally hate this.


4 months ago, said...

86 y.o. with CHF sleeps all day and walks all night,also,eats everything sugar,but hates meat.what should I do?! Iam at witsend.


4 months ago, said...

thank you, I have a mum, but she has a few symptome, she has time yet I feel


4 months ago, said...

I tearfully thank you for this posting. I have never been a primary caretaker of a dying loved one before. This has helped me tremendously in dealing with this very difficult process. Clinging to Jesus knowing he is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think. Blessings to you.


4 months ago, said...

Get ur grandfather help, do whats best.. When sick ppl make bad choices so u need too.. Besides if he dies, u may be held responsible for not getting help.. Save both of u.. Call for help!


4 months ago, said...

My husband which was 20 passed away in june2015 from terminal colon cancer.... His blood pressure did drop.... His hands and arms were so cold but he spiked a fever a few hours before I woke up to him being soaked I changed out his sheets and gave him new pillows and a blanket.... He was so weak so little and out of it... I knew something was gonna happen soon but not that soon.... I told him that when mom woke up I'd have her help me wash him of course he didn't respond but id still talk to him.... Well i gave him his IV meds changed out his linen then layed on our floor watching him he was moving his legs back and forth back and forth.... I watched him for over 2 hours I didn't want him to try to get up and fall he'd done that in the past...... But he seemed rested again so I fell asleep a hour later I woke up to give him his next meds and he was gone..... I don't understand it I hate myself for falling asleep when I went to sleep he was facing the wall but when I woke up he was facing me almost looked like he was reaching in my direction it really messed me up I shouldn't of fell asleep


4 months ago, said...

My grandfather cant get off the floor and he's not eating much and he can't talk very well he doesn't want to see a doctor and he doesn't know who i am any more just last week he was just fine and now he is so sick he cant even go to the bathroom.He is 70yrs old.


4 months ago, said...

I'm watching my little brother of 36yr old die from small bowel cancer. They told us 6 weeks ago that he had two weeks left. Now they say he has a strong heart. Nobody really knows. He has been showing all the signs. He cries occasionally saying he's scared and not ready to die. He doesn't want to leave his 1 and 3 yr old daughters. So painful to hear him say these things.


4 months ago, said...

My mom passed 9/18 it appeared to be abdominal pain but, immediately resulted into cardiac. There were gradual signs that could easily be ignored because she was an upbeat person. Sleeping patterns changed, behavior slightly, and conversation changed advising possible departure. Such as I dont think im going to be here long, letters, and more I love you! Sudden and so heartbreaking! I really was somewhat clueless because, death is unexpected! Now the hard part is the pain and acceptance. Bless you all!


4 months ago, said...

My dad passed away on sunday 4th october. He was in a hospice and had been fighting prostate cancer with secondry bone . Near the end he allmost gave up eating, as a family we didnt understand it and thought he was not eating on purpose , i later found out cancer affects the body in so many different ways , the body is finely tuned and cancer causes massive disturbances and prevents normal things from happening especially metabolism. It caused arguments and wasnt easy so try to be supportive with your loved one and dont think they are trying to starve themselves. By the time he was admitted his food intake was so small and five days before the end he stopped eating all together . The only thing he ate was an ocassional ice lolly which helped with the dry mouth. Make sure you ask the carers about anything you dont understand no matter how small because it really helps . Be strong.


4 months ago, said...

My mom is in her last days and maybe hours of life. She is having frequent outbursts that concern falling. Do you know what this means and how I can calm her?


4 months ago, said...

Amey, make peace with your dad if possible because he will be your ONLY living parent. You're going to have to have to make some type of arrangements so that your mom will know that her baby girl will be taken care of and you'll be ok


4 months ago, said...

My dad died July 2013 mom took him off Dyalysis and he lives 5 months on hospice my daughter and I did everything we could for him we both are home health nurses.now my aunts dying tonight .my mom is with her right now we just left a hour ago..I take care of end stage patients it still blows my mind how horrific death comes.and I don't see how some nurse knows how it feels to die..I know my daddy suffered miserably and now my Aunt. I love god I believe Jesus is my one and only savior but how can he let them suffer?


4 months ago, said...

im so sorry :(


4 months ago, said...

My Father is in the last days of his life. He has not eaten or had anything to drink in 3 days. He is heavily sedated and showing all of the signs of departing this life. We cannot communicate with him, although he shed a tear through half-opened eyes just yesterday, as he saw his Grandson. He cannot speak, although I believe that he wants to, but the medications are too strong and he needs them for excruciating pain from his illness. I have never lost anyone in my life. My Dad is 86. My sister and I are the only ones in our family and we are both having a very difficult time and the grief comes in waves. I miss him so much already. My heart is broken forever. Can someone tell me how to cope with this better? I am drowning in sadness.


4 months ago, said...

My 82 year old Sister is dying. I just talked to her in her hospital room. Her family has gathered. What pain they are all going through. We both watched my brother go through the most horrible death from cancer. As he was dying my sister who had to leave the room told the nurse that we are kinder to our animals by putting them down. Had I been there I would have pulled the plug on him. I told my Doctor last week that his pills and insulin are keeping me from Heaven. I welcome the thought of passing from this warped planet to be with my passed friends and family and my best friend Father God and Jesus. I am 78 in poor health and hopeful that no one will try to keep me from passing. : )


4 months ago, said...

Sarah, my Mom also talked to others that had passed, adn her sister that still lived in Idaho. I would be in another room, and think she was calling me, but I would walk in and she would be out of it. One time she calle dout she had to go, and I thought she needed the bathroom, but she said she needed to go to Point Loma. My Dad is interred there. She also wanted to talk to God, but she meant the Pastor of her church. She passed away about a week and a half later.


4 months ago, said...

If she's smiling and comfortable, leave her be.


4 months ago, said...

If she's smiling and comfortable, leave her be.


4 months ago, said...

My great aunt was sleeping constantly. She has stopped eating, drinking and urinating. She is in the active stage of dying. Now all the sudden she keeps waking and looking at the ceiling and smiling. I think she is ready to go to Jesus. Do I try to give her something to sleep or just let this waking happen?


4 months ago, said...

Yes, thank you very helpful.


4 months ago, said...

Thank you so much for this information. I have not been through this process and I am taking care of my great aunt who today has shown many of these signs. I am bless to gave found your site. Thank you!


4 months ago, said...

To Sarah - My father-in-law kept seeing people in his room - I could not see anyone.


5 months ago, said...

My sis in law is passing right now and she has been calling others that passed years ago and some old friends. The hardest part for me is watching my brother and family go through this. Trying to calm the others down is hard but they too are in their stages of grief and lost. I know as the main care giver I am stuffing my emotions and they will eventually surface. But, for now I am here.


5 months ago, said...

Hi my name is Sarah and I'm currently taking care of my grandmother who is on hospice did anybody experience there loved one talking to the other loved ones who have already passed and freaking out on stuff that's not there?


5 months ago, said...

Watched my mom die in 2003 and she pretty much had all of the symptoms. When she actually passed she looked like she wanted to speak but couldn't. Still miss that lady.


5 months ago, said...

Hi, I watched my dad die 6th sept, my thoughts with you. So lovely that you have been able to read the bible and sing hymns.
 It's so hard however it happens.
 Peace to you both
 Debbie x


5 months ago, said...

I am sitting here watching my 83- year old father die of lung cancer. He is heavily sedated. He has had, or is having all of these signs. His breathing is very labored. He no longer recognizes anyone, nor does he have any awareness of his surroundings. He is at peace, and so am I. Although I am sad to see my father so near death, I have told him it's okay for him to go. I've been reading the Bible to him, and singing hymns to him. This truly is the most difficult thing my father has had to do, and I am incredibly blessed to be with him.


5 months ago, said...

My mother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung and brain cancer in July and had 2 tumors removed from her brain. Her condition has worsened dramatically in the past month. Loss of appetite Her ability to hold her bowels comes and goes Requires more pain management 'break through' aka 2mg of morphine. She's on an intense dosage. Requires more sleep, drifts in and out. A pungent smell that is very apparent in the room and we've been told it's her rotting from the inside out from the cancer/rotting flesh. At times she just stare's at me with no expression. Hard time breathing, rapid, coughing up phlegm and other particles. Skin is pale gray and clamy. Urine is dark. Breathing patterns have changed and loud gurgling and wheezing. Today she was talking and it was very clear and she slept well and just wanted to talk. She woke up from her 5hr nap saying she felt like she was getting better. I gave her a warm bubble bath and massaged her body and she was very happy and aware. I know she will pass soon but I'm so thankful to be able to share this time with her.


5 months ago, said...

Anything that say they don't get any gives Young


5 months ago, said...

Rudy C., In re about being informed about ear lobes dropping, you can copy and paste to your address bar to find information on the the following link if you would like to do so. 
 http://allnurses.com/geriatric-nurses-ltc/ear-changes-in-279832.html
 Also, my sincere sympathy for the loss of your loved one.


5 months ago, said...

Legs very badly swelling very bad. New growth In lungs they are doing surgery in 2 more Days ( but the the dr had a meet to tell them he will not make It). Is this to give the family more time with him


5 months ago, said...

My dad just passed on 9/4/15. I held his hand and told him I loved him. He died at home,yet I have peace. I was with him. He died of cancer and yet when I said my goodbyes. he had a tear in his eye. I know he heard me, I know he knew how much he meant to me. We were not that close and death is so final, I will miss my Dad. The last thing I said is, bye Dad, I have to go...I will see you later. He died 3 hours later.


5 months ago, said...

I watched my mom die from cancer this way i know my mom was in pain even tho the nurses said she was not this has to be the worst way to die


5 months ago, said...

My father passed away one month ago. A week and a half before that, he stopped speaking and didn't have control over his bladder. He was admitted in hospital to undergo a CT scan. He was in there for a week and his health became worst. He stopped drinking and eating and his eyes were closed permanently till the day he passed away. The nurse said the entire night he was groaning ( I don't know if he was in alot of pain) . During the moment he stopped breathing a substance was flowing out of his mouth. I wish that we never admitted him in hospital because until that time the CT scan wasn't performed and his condition deteriorated. Also when he was groaning in pain nothing was done to relieve his pain. It kills me inside to think of the pain my father went through.


5 months ago, said...

My father has battled dementia for 18 years and is currently at the end of life. He is not eating, drinking, or speaking anymore. He is 78 years old and this is my first time losing a parent. I travel hour and half everyday to seey father to let him know I am with him, that we love him so much. I was able to speak with my father a week prior before he stopped communicating. I love you's were exchanged, he would look at me and cry, and I would cry. I told him we will be ok. Thanked him for being s good father and grandfather, he is aware of is ralkg to him. In that moment whiley father was crying I realized we were not the only ones grieving. I am sure my father will pass soon this week. One thing I know is that he knows and can feel how'd he he is loved and always will be loved.


6 months ago, said...

My mother died almost 2 years ago of lung cancer and this was pretty spot on. Thankfully she was completely focused and alert right up until she lost consciousness for the last time. The strength she showed in the last days was amazing. The hospice we were working with left us a similar guide as to what to expect in the last hours and it was a great help in knowing what to look for and how to respond.


6 months ago, said...

I'm at a loss right now to figure my mom's condition out. She is 94 and I'm told she is dying of old age. She does have dementia but has always known me and had been able to say words and enjoy her surroundings. Mom has home care and while I went to get a new bp cuff something happened to her. When I walked in her jaw was making loud scrapping noises and all she could do is make loud crying type noises. The scariest part is how dead her eye's looked as if she was gone. I took her to the ER where all I got was a lecture about how my mom was gone and she should be on hospice but she hadn't been like this. There are no signs of a stroke and the xrays taken from visiting physicians haven't been read yet although it doesn't matter there's nothing they would do for her. My mom has been in bed lying there day and night, not speaking at all with eye's almost closed. A nurse came out today to talk about hospice and there were tears coming from her eye's so I know she heard us as mom would be afraid to know she was dying. Her eye's don't look as dead as they used to but it's like she's still there but trapped. Has anyone seen this before as I am at a loss as to what happened to my mom.


6 months ago, said...

I've always heard that birds circling the house were a sign in death, is this true?


6 months ago, said...

Ok this doesn't explain that someone is dying but I kinda get the prosece


6 months ago, said...

I don't know if this has anything to do with close to dying, but My relatives body has been all numb, in pain, she has trouble processing thoughts, blurry visions on and off, problem moving sometimes, she's always tired, and doesn't seem to want to to eat at all or she's really thirsty. Her throat seems to be on fire and so is her body as well. She has a headache 24/7. The doctors have put her on 10 medications. It hasn't been helping her, but only making her worse. shes 18.


7 months ago, said...

I normally do not post on sites, but I am not getting any answers from any medical professionals so I figured I would give it a try here... My Mother-in-law (MIL) is currently residing in the ICU at our local hospital. She was admitted because back in May it was determined that she had Vasculitus which was attacking her Kidneys and dialysis was started 3x a week for 4 hour sessions. Given Prednizone which attacked her stomach and on 7/7 they performed emergency surgery to repair a perforated ulcer. She has now been in ICU for almost 20 days. So many things are going wrong (in my opinion) but I am just the DIL and my "voice" does not really matter. She has absests on her hands, legs, back.. they are telling us they are NOT bed sores... but sores caused by moisture.. (never heard of this) also, a few fingers and toes are turning dark purple/black. This can not be good. She barely eats anything (asked for food last night, i think to be polite and appear to want to try to eat.. family is coming down on her) She has some blue/purple/black fingers and toes.. her skin is extremely thin. Yesterday was a good day.. she was more alert than ever and this is actually alarming too .. should I call family? Should I all the out of towners if they want to spend time with her before she were to pass? Am I reading too much on the internet? UGHHHHH


7 months ago, said...

My grandpa fell into a coma 2 months ago in the nursing home. On a Sunday night he was rushed to the hospital because he had a low pulse. Monday morning doctors wanted to speak to the family. They told us he wasnt going to make it, especially because he has kidney failure. They just didnt tell us how advance it.Thats its better to end his life. I know that was a best choice at the moment, but were keeping him on medicine meanwhile my uncle from out of state showed up. a priest came, gave my grandpa peace. After the priest finished the machines were going crazy, we were losing my grandpa. He had no pulse they rushed us out, because they were going to do the blue code(shocks& compressions) but by the time they were going to his pace makers shocked his heart. so the blue code wasnt performed. Out of all these symtomps my grandpa has six of them. He started to lose physical movement before falling into a coma. Now theres changes in the urine, he stopped talking before falling into a coma, currently theres swelling in the feet, hands, and face, and he also has mottles veins. with all these symtomps hes on a respirator and feeding tube.. I know my grandpa wants to rest, but his sons are being ignorant and selfish. Any advices?


7 months ago, said...

My Grandfather had all these symptoms when he was dying of Cancer!!!! But now he is at peace!!!! :(


7 months ago, said...

Hello Jerby,
 I am sorry to hear of your mother's passing. Thank you for offering your insight and support to others. Given your clearly helpful spirit, please consider sharing your caregiving insights with others in our community through our online support groups on of which focuses on COPD, End of Life, Caring for Parent as well as other topics. Caring.com online support groups can be found here:
 http://www.caring.com/support-groups


7 months ago, said...

My mom passed away last May 13, 2015. We stayed at hospital for one and half month. A COPD case which, I have no idea of her last days... until now I miss her because I have not read this before... for those who have COPD patient Im available to listen and share experience too.


7 months ago, said...

My Grandfather is going through a lot of this right now. He's bed ridden due to congestive heart failure in April. He hasn't eaten in almost a week, drinks a little, and mostly sleeps. He has seem past loved ones and friends who've been dead for years, including my grandma who passed suddenly last year. How long do you think we have left with him?


7 months ago, said...

Ronheste, I am sorry for your loss. Your dad made it to Fathers Day and my mother made it to Mothers Day. 11 years later and I still miss her. Life is more fragile than we think it is and I think we are surprised at the little thread that seems to make a difference.


7 months ago, said...

My dad passed away Tuesday June 23rd . On Father's Day he and I had bbq it was an awesome visit. He died while in the hospital. He was on life support for 5 days and then pulled out and was removed from support. Thought everything was going well drove two hours to visit him two days out of the week. Near the end of his life this is what I recall. When he would eat or drink he would appear to have a burning in his chest which only lasted for about 5-7 seconds and only 1-2 times. He didn't like the oxygen being placed in his nose and often pulled it out. He would fall asleep within seconds but if you said something he would ask what did you say. He asked about his personal property when I advised him I had it he was relieved. He often asked if I needed any money and didn't like for me to say NO I didn't. His left arm was swollen. He continued to have an appetite but would eat slower but not less. He was very nice and said nice comments and said he worried about me. He said he hated the hospital and their food. (But he ate it haha) I will agree he was cold to the touch from the time he was on life support and the 3 weeks following after he came out of his coma up until death. He never lost his memory and or knowledge even after he was without oxygen for 20-30 minutes and medical staff and Dr stated he would be brAin dead. Don't give up... Talk to them ask them important questions .... Trust me I think of stuff daily I should have asked.. I trust he knew his time was near due to some statements he made but he didn't know the day he would pass. Finally, he did loose interest in conversations about others. The one thing I can tell you is fact after doing research and looking at my only family ... I found that women will live to see an important date such as graduation of a grandchild or a birthday etc., men will not... my grandad died on Father's Day for example. It's a fact not just in the U.S. But the world. Hope this helps someone


7 months ago, said...

This article has helped me understand how my mama is feeling and responding. My mama has small cell lung cancer and has been in Hospice for 4 weeks now. I will be so lost without my Mama/best friend. How do people go on without their Mama?????


8 months ago, said...

My husband died fron lung cancer, at his death he was very thin and frail and extremely weak. How and why does someone in this condition find the strength to fight violently to get out of the bed. My husband fought like this minutes before he died.


8 months ago, said...

My adopted grandma just passed three days ago and all these signs are so very true, she passed from stage four cancer that had gone undetected for five years, from the beginning the week to the end she had passed and all these symptoms happened within that week..... As I had read this article about three weeks ago because my biological grandma was diagnosed hospice but had 3 months to go and I'm just preparing myself so I never really thought about noticing these symptoms just yet because my grandma is still walking and conscious although yes her body is already deteriorating but slowly her body oils are not producing so her skin is so dry and peeling and she is not eating as much anymore..... Although how do you learn how to let go or not just that but how do you keep on living with the fact you knowing there going to go and all but your afraid of that your not doing enough for them or that you going to hurt them more.... This of hospice is making it harder for me, lost one of my best friends and going to lose my last and only best friend. What to do feel so lost..... Any advise please......


8 months ago, said...

My mom is in the hospital right now. She hasn't eaten in days. Her kidneys have shut down and she's getting a blood transfusion right now. She's still talking, but she's on so much pain medication that I'm not sure if she's confused because of that or just confused in general. She's only 63 :'(


8 months ago, said...

I cant tell you just how much this helped my siblings and i through mums final days. Every single sympton was how it was up until the cold hands. Toes and then the mottled soles. Once these appeared mum lasted 40mins. Mum had requested to stay at home and we promised her wish would be granted. The care we got was appauling and only 3 days before her own G.p offered to give her steroids to try increase her appertite which was nil by mouth and had been for months. Which when the doctor mentioned the steroids at this stage we could not believe it!: ( mum must have weighed 5 stone at this time. Her breathing had become very congested the sunday before she died we were having to try and get her to cough in order to try and relieve some of the congestion from her chest. Tissue after tissue we done this however she was now moaning out in pain. This was so upsetting. After calling out a locum doctor at 1am we were told mum had pnumonia and needed hospitalising. We refused this sparing mum laying in casualty for hours with no cushioning on her bones and having needles pokied in to her. We pleaded for introvenis pain relief instead as mum was unable to swallow the painkillers the doctor intended to leave her. She ordered another doctor to call out to administer this. However 3 hrs later the doctor turned up and did not have the equipment to set this up as he was told mum just had a chest infection


8 months ago, said...

Such a great article. Wish I had known about this awesome website two months ago as my family and I would have known then that our dad was in the last stages of his life. My dad was admitted with difficulty breathing. Four days later he was going to be discharged but since his breathing was still difficult he was moved to ICU for closer monitoring. Dad had a history of CHF with an ejection factor of 25-30, leaky heart valves, and kidneys not functioning properly so was on bumex. Doctors decided to do dialysis, even though his kidneys didn't warrant it, to relieve fluid from his lungs. He died an hour after his first dialysis treatment. He was alert until a couple minutes before his respiration went from one breath at 73% and next breath was 0%. Just like that he was gone. Doctors couldn't tell the exact cause of death because it happened so suddenly and called it cardiac arrest. Looking back, he had a lot of the last stages listed - loss of appetite, threw up a lot, slept a lot, was always cold, edema in his lower extremities, difficulty breathing, less urine output, and high heart rate. But because he was so alert and so positive we saw past all of the physical ailments and thought it was just another hospital stay. Had we seen this website and the comments, we would have told him how much he was loved, that he was our hero, and what a blessing he was to everyone who knew him. Not that he didn't know already... but perhaps for our sense of closure. :(. So, enjoy your loved ones and don't miss the opportunity to express your love. Tomorrow may be too late. Only God knows when.. not the doctors, not the monitors. Grief is unbearable.


8 months ago, said...

Thank you your sight gave me all I needed to now to help my dads passing so peaceful my he rip angel .he only got 9 weeks from start to finish cancer is worse than hell x


9 months ago, said...

My grandfather has had these symptoms for a very long time, He's 90 and has held on for so long, sadly he hasn't passed urine for two days which doesn't sound good, I hope I can be there for my mother and my grand mother when he passes. I've not had a conversation with him for years, I hate parkinson's disease. But he knows I love him, I tell him whenever I see him. This article has helped me understand that his very close to going home and makes me understand that I need to prepare to be there Very soon. thank you


9 months ago, said...

I'm 9 out of 10. 90% home.


9 months ago, said...

Thank you for this informative article. This really helped me as I just watched my mother go through much of this the last 4-6 weeks. She died yesterday morning. I'd love to share this article with the nursing home where my mom was being cared for in the way of printing it out and having it laminated to help guide others. Is this permissible?


9 months ago, said...

Thanks for this informative article. This helped me as I just watched my mother go through just about all of this the last month. She died yesterday morning. I'd love to share this article at the nursing home so others have a guide to read as they too go through this. Is that permissible?


9 months ago, said...

Thank You! Your articles are always informative and helpful. I appreciate you!


9 months ago, said...

Well I have all the symptoms I guess it's time


9 months ago, said...

Thank you


9 months ago, said...

All you people assuming that you or your loved ones are nearing death however most of these symptoms are also associated with depression, anxiety and stress. Please don't self diagnose. They may not be dying. See a doctor.


9 months ago, said...

My mom has not eaten in 21 days. How long can a person survive with no food.? She is still coherent and talks quite a bit.


10 months ago, said...

My father passed away last year and I'm my mother's caregiver. Major changes have occurred in the past few months, i.e. lost 6 lbs., barely eating lunch, drinking very little, urinating only a couple times a day, withdraw from leaving the house, mini strokes... The doctor said she's not ready for hospice yet. This article helped me compare Mom's present status to the dying process, as well as what to look for while to continues on this journey. Thank you


10 months ago, said...

Very helpful


10 months ago, said...

thank you so much for this information i just wanted to see if my friend was dying THANK YOU!


10 months ago, said...

I am reading this information to help me through the difficult time as my Mother is passing. Thank you so much for the information.


10 months ago, said...

Since I've been pregnant I feel death all around me as I cry tears thinking my life gone end soon!


10 months ago, said...

I WAS WITH MY HUSBAND NEAR DEATH..HE WAS QUIET ALL THE TIME AND THEN HE SUDDENLY TURNED TO ME SAYING "TELL MY WIFE TO TAKE ME HOME" I TOLD HIM THAT I WAS HIS WIFE AND THAT HE WERE AT HOME WITH ME AND I SAID TO HIM "WHERE ARE YOU NOW?" HE SAID " I DON'T KNOW". IT SEEMS LIKE HE WAS IN OTHER PLACE AT THE TIME.


10 months ago, said...

RudyC, I also Googled the Internet hoping for an explanation of what it means to have the ears drop. Someone said it was from dehydration, the ear lobes become saggy and curl backward. I also found this which is kind of interesting. I hope people won't start to self-diagnose. 
 http://www.death-and-dying.org/signs-of-death.htm/


10 months ago, said...

My husband is doing peritoneal dialysis and I sometimes wonder if his dying is near. Wether it is or not, I plan to be here fr him thru it all. I am a believer in life...so I will fight for his life and for him. I hope to be his kidney donor as well. I will always love him and cherish every moment we will have together. I get scared at times when he breathes funny. But put of all of the signs of impending death, he only has this....so I think positively and know that he will be ok. Chins up all.....it will be ok. If not?, I am here to yell or scream at. I am here.


10 months ago, said...

Can't find any mention of ears dropping. My mom passed away this week and luckily a friend mentioned that once her ears dropped, she would probably pass away within 24 hours. I rushed to her bedside after my sister mentioned the hospice nurse mentioning the ears had dropped and was able to be with her when she passed just hours later. had never heard of this before and can find nothing on the internet, but have heard it is taught in medical school. Just curious as it saved us from missing out.


10 months ago, said...

Very helpful. This article helped me change my thought process from let's heal her (no way, really, with quality of lifein tact) to let's help her die with dignity.


11 months ago, said...

I read your article and it pains me to say that nearly all this symptoms apply to my father, he's 65 years old. When i was 13 i lost my mom to cancer and since then the thought of loosing my father is cripling me on a daily basis, I'm 22 years old now! Everyday i'm sort of expecting my brother calling me telling me my dad passed away!


11 months ago, said...

Thank you for the refresher on end of life symptoms. The topic, how to respond and notes formatting was helpful as all symptoms may not occur.


11 months ago, said...

Hello,please help me my grand mother is not responding she is not eating anything she is not able to speak her legs and hands are bended. What to do? Are these the symptoms of something critical?


11 months ago, said...

One thing more to the person whose mother has stage 4 and thinks her body is starting to shutdown. Hospice will come to your home and think of things to make her more comfortable. They can also dispense pain medication. I urge you to contact them through your hospital. They washed my mother's hair for her with waterless shampoo and that was something we hadn't thought about that she really appreciated.


11 months ago, said...

To the person whose mother has stage 4 cancer: I regret not talking with my mother about her fears. I know she must have felt lonely going down one road while everyone else was was just going on with their lives. On the one hand, while she didn't want to talk with me, I know she expressed some fear to my father who was pretty stressed out already. What you can do for her is to hold her often and spend one-on-one time with her and know that she is working through this on her own timetable (we are all inexperienced in dying). In a quiet moment, you can ask her if she is scared. She may or may not want to talk about it with you. Ask her pastor to visit with her. Read from her Bible or a favorite author if she's too tired to do more than listen. Listen to music together. Just giving her time is everything.


11 months ago, said...

Hi my mom's cancer has returned after 7 years (stage 4 cervical cancer). She has had a brain tumor and sugary, hip replacement from the chemo/radiation in the past and now she has decided she does not want any "treatment" this time around. She has solidified her faith and is at peace with the end. Lately she has been very weak, tired, in a lot of pain. My siblings go on living our lives raising our kids and treat her like we always have, talk about dinner, our families, our days, etc. I feel like we all know the end is near, but no one talks about it. I think she is getting scared with how her body is starting to signal the end to her. I don't know what to do, or say. She never wants to bother anyone so the issue is always downplayed. Please let me know if you have any suggestions.


11 months ago, said...

omg this helped me out so much i found out that i was getting close to death and saved myself thanks ;)


11 months ago, said...

My mother is at the beginning of transitioning from hypoxia. She is well taken care of in assisted living. If she also has dementia, do you believe she might understand me when I talk to her. She was definitely able to talk to me yesterday. I just want her to know I'm here.


11 months ago, said...

EdTeach, You complain no one is willing to talk about end of life, but you are unwilling to talk about it with your father. I would want to know if I was dying. Perhaps you should ask the doctors to talk to your father, with you there, to get the answers you want.


11 months ago, said...

Agree with English Girl. It is terribly expensive for you and them to keep your father in the hospital when his needs can be better served in a rehab facility. The system works pretty well and Medicare often dictates the next step based on whether the patient is improving or plateauing. The people in rehab facilities (nursing homes) are very good at their jobs. It has been my experience that the doctors will suggest hospice if they think your father is dying and the people in hospice will tell you when to prepare. Hospice care can be in the nursing home or at home. These folks are gentle and considerate. Doctors are typically too busy.


11 months ago, said...

EdTeach, The doctors may not be able to talk to you about your Father's condition due to HIPPA privacy laws. If your mother is his major caregiver, she may give permission to the doctors (in writing and notarized) to pass information along to you and your siblings. You might want to get him placed in a nursing facility. If there is no chance of improvement, those hospital beds are desperately needed (at least they are in my area) and would be better used by those who will improve under a doctors care. My grandfather went to a nursing home three times (returning home twice after rehab). He died at the ripe old age of 100 years and 5 months. His mind was sharp to the end. His last roommate grieved when he passed (a young man who broke his leg skiing) because "he told the best stories".


11 months ago, said...

My father is 75yo. He has had kidney failure for several months that was brought on by liver failure. He is dying slowly. He is in hospital as I type and they want to discharge him for rehab. I have to fight today to delay that discharge. We have not talked about end of life, I have let him live a delusion that this is all a bump in the road to recovery. I don't think that he has long but the Doctors will not tell us anything about end of life. America is a place where no one talks about end of life. He has went from being able to take care of himself mostly to not being able to take care of himself any longer. He is developing bed sores, and went from being able to sit up in bed at hospital to I am not sure he can any longer in just the past week. I can tell the doctors just want to kick the can to a different place. Its a disgusting system we have here in the land of make believe.


11 months ago, said...

I think the cause of death on the certificate is probably selected by the medical professional from a couple of different generalized categories. They did not reflect the actual reason my relatives died, just the fact their hearts stopped beating.


11 months ago, said...

Forgot my earlier comment since I had to change my password. Sharing a short note - When your love one is passing, please try to be there if you can. We received several copies of the death certificate with 2 different causes of death. If you were there, then you would know.


12 months ago, said...

None of us are guaranteed tomorrow and love survives even after death.


12 months ago, said...

My father passed away last week. All of these signs are correct. I can't sleep at night wondering if he was thirsty :'/ or if he heard my mother stressed in the phone telling me she couldn't get him to open his eyes or wake him...when they gave him a wet cloth to suck in his lips moved but he never woke up..he wrote my mother a note saying "come over here so I can see you." She did. He closed his eyes and he never opened the again. Coughing started October..he was told chronic bronchitis, then next month COPD in November...he dealt with it...thought they were right. I was with him Jan. 10th, his bday....He was diagnosed jan 26th...blood work feb 9th...biopsy feb 13th and gone feb 16th! So fast


12 months ago, said...

My father had a stroke ten weeks ago his prognosis was 4 to 6 months on tuesday I went in at 11 told him I was going into the discharge meeting trying to get him home,an hour half later I was told he had passed,how come no one picked up on his imminent death -I would have been with him, I am devastated 92 years and I missed the last moments of his death,who is to blame!


12 months ago, said...

My mother in law was taken in hospital to undergo an operation to remove a tumour from her bowel. When she was opened up the tumour was larger than thought, they removed her ovaries and large bowel but have left cancer in her stomach and lower bowel as they couldn't get it all. She is a frail 86 year old lady. Since the op she has deteriorated and her kidneys aren't functiioning. She has given up eating, drinking and is sleeping all the time. She has a deep cough and is sleeping with her mouth open. She doesn't recognise us anymore and has been asking us to let her go. She was reaching out yesterday. Her body is swelling up. They are still treating her with medications, but she's getting worse. She asked my husband yesterday to take her out for the day and told him today she needs to sort the insurance out, this is all said in mumbling and in an unconscious state. Any ideas? Is she dying?


12 months ago, said...

My mom went in the hospital 2 years ago come this April too have her to amputated because she's a diabetic and she got her toe infected 3 days after that she developed pneumonia and she coded they brought her back but she remained in a coma for 3 months they didn't think she was going to wake up so they came too me and my dad and said they think we should pull the plug because she's never going too wake up.well it was hard for us too make that decision so we asked them too give us about a week too think about it.a week went by and still she hasn't waking so we decide too pull it the day after my mom and dad's 38th anniversary. so 2 days before we was going too take her off life support we got a call she was awesome and it looks like she will be fine just got to do alot of rehab.so a week after she woke up she left the hospital too go too a rehab too start her rehabilitation. And she was doing so good for a year now this July just passed she cored again they brought her back but after that she slowly been going down hill we got a call from the nursing home were she was doing rehab they said she isn't going too get any better she is slowly deteriorating she just layer there she don't even know we are there she is on the vent but that's all that is keeping her alive so it's just like we are waiting until she dies because there is nothing else that can be done.all this from having a toe amputated it just blows my mind it hurts so bad seeing my mom suffer the way she is!


12 months ago, said...

My mom has alchemists she doesn't know me know a year ago she did but now she dosenst. I'm a cna I worked with thEm I never dreamed she would become a victim.i live in texas.ishe lives in assisted living in mo.she has two sisters an brother lives in the town I call her my aunt shows her pictures of me I feel so heart broke I'm a Christian and my faith keeps me with hope she's 83 I hate living so far I love my mom so much I guess I lost her in mind long ago .


12 months ago, said...

All of the article. As many will tell you, our heart aches for the patient, their family and friends. We caregivers feel that there must be something more we should/could be doing to increase the comfort level of all. Prayer seems to give solice for most.
 
 Again, thank you.
 
 Your effort in well appreciated. Thank you.
 
 
 
 
 
 


12 months ago, said...

I tell people that in a nutshell, people die from the outside---in, 
 and from the feet to the head.
 
 I liked your article. People need to read this before a loved one dies. It gives you a "road map" to what you will see and experience.


about 1 year ago, said...

Anonymous, my mother also wanted cool things - ice, tick-tacs, etc. Later when I read the hospice information after she died, they referred to her body's changing energy and that she no longer needed to eat to maintain her body. I attribute it to that.


about 1 year ago, said...

Anonymous, whatever stage your Mom is at, comfort-comfort-comfort all the way until the end. I held my Mom through her passing and it was the best thing I could have done for us both. Give her love and peace of mind. Be with her as much as possible and let her know you are there. Rest


about 1 year ago, said...

My group says your wrong , its not laboured breathing its cheyne stokes


about 1 year ago, said...

My mom fell about two years ago, sustained a traumatic brain injury and had brain surgery. I have been with her ever since. There are signs that we may be nearing the end of her life. Any brief words of wisdom for the situation?


about 1 year ago, said...

Its a doub....,the gravity is related to our blood circulation,pressure,heart beat...etc,thats y ,i asking u...if we artificially made any changes in gravitational force,can we extend the time of death of a human body???????


about 1 year ago, said...

We were told my dad had lung cancer on the 22nd of Oct 2014 he had 3 weeks of radiotherapy & went downhill....from the 5th Dec 2014 he was in hospital not eating, weak, hardly talking, eyes were glazed.....9th dec he started calling out for his mum & nana who are deceased & looking at the corner of the room. We even felt someone was in the room! his fingers started going blue...he took his last breath 11th dec 2014, the day my world crumbled...I cant cope with the pain I miss my dad so so much!!!!


about 1 year ago, said...

My aunt is in her forties and is dying from colon cancer. She is pretty much out of it constantly, she doesn't respond or acknowledge us at all. She woke up last night for around an hour and was completely coherent and asking us if she was dying and telling us she didn't wanna be awake if she was dying. I learned that this was her "rallying" and that it's not going to be much longer now. She has been unresponsive since then so now it's the great "waiting game".


about 1 year ago, said...

My dad is an invalid. He has refused anything to eat but he will dri k something cool and popsicles. He has lost control of his kidneys he constantly has to b changed.


about 1 year ago, said...

my great grandma is about die... my grandma said she smiled up at the sky and weakly waved. What does that mean?


about 1 year ago, said...

All of it.


about 1 year ago, said...

Arlen, this site is to help us as caregivers recognize the signs of dying in loved ones with terminal conditions, realize this is a transitional time for them, and share ideas in how we can be there for them. For some, it is our first close encounter with the dying process and we don't know what to expect. We think we aren't doing enough, but we don't control the process and time stands still for the one who is passing. This is hard on you as her parent, but just being there for your daughter, letting her handle it as she needs to, will help.


about 1 year ago, said...

My adult daughter (55) is dying of several cancers and was looking for more info to help her this terrible time. She is being cared for by a loved one and Hospice to keep her out of pain. Perhaps there is another site that is more for my circumstances.


about 1 year ago, said...

My mom is 82 she was never hospitalize all her life until around Thanksgiving. She was throwing up black coffee grains looking stuff. It was old blood. One month later she was back in the hospital with the same problem. They done a lot of testing upper and lower GI procedures. They found nothing but diverticulitis. She had lost a lot of weight stop drinking coffee which she always loved barely eats. I think my Mom is dying. She has no sprit. She can't get up due to arthritis which has her whole body stiff as a board. I wish I just knew if it's close to the end.


about 1 year ago, said...

My little brother has been fighting brain cancer for 16 years. He is at his last hours. We know this because we went through this with my daddy 12 years ago. Every step is right on. God is with him as is my dad. He talks to my dad just like my dad would talk to his mother.


about 1 year ago, said...

My mom was hungry all the time, even after a large meal. She'd lost the sense to tell when she was full and if food was in front of her, she would eat until she got sick. Your dad seems to be going in the opposite direction. Be sure to give him reasonable portions of healthy food since he's not looking out for himself.
 
 As for below's comment, small groups of company are best. Music the patient liked when they were younger can be played in lieu of conversation even. Physical contact is very important, but if they were never touchy-feely, don't expect them to start being so now. If they are in a nursing home, ask the nurses how they are doing and what food limitations they may have. The nurses may not be able to give out patient info due to HIPPA laws, but it will improve the care of the patient because they know someone is watching them and pays attention to the patient's level of care and will report short comings. The squeaky wheel gets the oil...


about 1 year ago, said...

My dad has no appetite until food is put in front of him and someone is eating with him. Then he has a terrific appetite. He doesn't get hungry on his own.


about 1 year ago, said...

I agree with English Girl when she says, "Don't bury them 'till they are dead". For PattiLynn, it's a tremendous shock to lose your longtime spouse, especially when they made most of the decisions. It is not surprising that your mom doesn't have an appetite. If relatives want to see her "before she dies", they should not wait but also should not descend in a large group on a person who is already confused. One-on-one, short visits are best, in which your mom can recall pleasant memories. Set expectations, as she may not remember they came. Embrace your mom and hold her close, while you can. Physical contact can be very reassuring.


about 1 year ago, said...

To caregiver whose male relatives are not seeing the signs of impending death... My friend's great grandmother was on "death's door" for 20 years. She lived to be 108 years old. Your male relatives may be correct that he may pull around. My grandfather was 92 when pneumonia tried to take him from us. We fought and he revived, living to the age of 100 (and 5 months). Don't bury them till they're dead.


about 1 year ago, said...

My daddy passed away after fighting Multiple Myloma for 12 years when Dr's only gave him 2-3 years. We had hospice in his last 12 hours and they were wonderful. About 3 years before daddy passed we had noticed that my mom was showing signs of damentia or Ahlztiemers. But dad was against us having mom check out. It worked out for them dad was the mind and mom was the body. After dad passed away my sister and I had mom checked out and she has server dementia. Now i feel we are getting close to the end. We have kept her home with 24 hour a day care. We have been trying to figure out how close to the end she may be. She's not eating much or drinking much. She doesn't have much control over her bladder and bowels and she's always talking to my grandparents and her cousins and last Sunday told me my brother that's been gone for over a year came to see her. She also reaches out for things that aren't there. My sister and i decided that it was time to get a hospital bed cause she's not walking well and the ladies that care for her through out the week and my sister stays on Saturday and Saturday night and i stay Sunday and Sunday night the hospital bed makes it easier to get her up and down she only weighs about 80 pound but since she doesn't remember how to bend hher knees it's dead weight on us. I really just want an idea on how to know when her time is getting close so my kids that live in Indiana and my nieces and nephew lives in Oklahoma and they want to see her before she passes. And even though I feel she will be better off when she passes. It still hurts so bad. Any help would be appreciated.


about 1 year ago, said...

My grandfather just passed away almost exactly a week ago. He was 85 years old. [I am 19]. Just about every single thing on this list happened to him. We were fortunate enough to have him in hospice for his final day. I will always be thankful for those wonderful people.


about 1 year ago, said...

My father in law has melanoma and Dr's have not given time line. Has 8 tumors and doing chemo. Has lost all appetite, sleeps most of the days, little interaction and now started slurring speech and confused now today. Dr's do not think it's the chemo drugs or meds. Today I walked in room and eyes glassy and looked right through me....first time this has happened. Could he be in this stage? So hard...only 62 and was such a strong man!!


about 1 year ago, said...

When my husband dies at age 42, he just went to sleep amd never woke up. His urine output decreased. He was so peaceful. This occurred August 19' 2002. To this day I see his face and I miss him so very much. He was my ROCK. I still and always will live him.


about 1 year ago, said...

It is so difficult for everyone who is dealing with the death of our love one. My Dad at the age of 79 passed away on Christmas Eve 2014, it was my brothers 55 birthday. He was showing a lot of signs but we really didn't want to believe what was going on. In July 2014 the doctor told him he had lung cancer and only had 3 weeks to live.. Well my Dad lived 5 months. God is the only one that know when it's your time. I'm grieving and looking for signs that he is ok but I haven't gotten any yet!! I was and always will be Daddy's lil girl even at the age of 50. God Bless you all in your losses!


about 1 year ago, said...

To Lost in Atlanta, if you want to approach the subject with the men in the family, give them this article. Print it out if they can't get on the computer, but there are worthwhile comments attached. When you are the primary caregiver, you see more things than those sitting on the sidelines and you are generally more aware of the reality of the situation.


about 1 year ago, said...

To Lost in Atlanta "the male family members that refuse to see the signs":
 My uninformed hunch is that they may have a lot of unfinished relationship business, or need his presence to support the family structure or the family legend (The tales a family tells about itself). Very possibly they don't want to face this.
 Sometimes a direct "Why do you want to keep him living when he's in pain and doesn't enjoy going on?" can break through; sometimes a lot of pus bursts out.
 All best wishes for your continuing love and for your friend.


about 1 year ago, said...

Good information, thank you for sharing! !


about 1 year ago, said...

My mum passed away 3wks ago, after 3 yrs off dementia/Alzimers, plus rectum cancer. Even though they tell you the signs of end of life, you still don't believe its happening when it does. In some cases it happens so fast as it did with me. Its until later when you read the signs its gone, its too late..end of life has so many different signs with every individual. Its so hard to see and think when your with the person you are caring for and love.xx


about 1 year ago, said...

I am a caregiver of a wonderful man, I have been taking care of him for 5 years now. He is 97 and broke his hip 2 months ago and he has most of the signs. My problem is not him dying he has had a great life its the male family members that refuse to see the signs. They continue to try and force feed him or think next week he'll be up running a marathon. How could approach this subject gently with them so they understand and stop making him COMPLETELY miserable......Thanks in advance Lost in Atlanta


about 1 year ago, said...

The entire article was very helpful. Thank you so much. I appreciate the information.


about 1 year ago, said...

Kjo, I think you are looking for the word Lethargic: meaning abnormal drowsiness, the quality or state of being lazy, sluggish, or indifferent.
 Hope this helps.


about 1 year ago, said...

My Father, who just passed away, 12/30/14, showed most of these symptoms. My advice to anyone is to surround your loved one with close family, have there pain managed, caress a arm or hand and let nature take its course. They have there own schedule at this point, and making them comfortable will make you feel comfortable. Don't be afraid to ask for pain management medication for them if necessary. And talking and shareing with others does help, it helped my Mom and Me. Bless you all, and bless your loved ones.


about 1 year ago, said...

What is the meaning of lathargite I probably spell that wrong. Sorry hopefully you can understand my question


about 1 year ago, said...

"No one can predict the moment of death," is a very true statement. I can attest to this. For the past 3 years, my 94 year old father-in-law was consistently in and out the hospital and rehab center dealing with various chronic illnesses. My older sister who is a caregiver informed me that he was dying because he portrayed the various symptoms. I did not believe this because he would improve and life would go on as usual. On December 10, 2014, the good Lord finally called him home and now he is at peace. This is my very first experience in dealing with anyone going through the final days. He displayed all the above symptoms within a week. The doctor let us know that he only had 2 days to live - he passed on the 4th day. May he RIP.


about 1 year ago, said...

Sleep is the best pain-killer.


about 1 year ago, said...

It was very descriptive and gave a lot of information. My husband is going into stage 7 Alzheimer's at age 62. We have stopped medical treatment except for behavioral meds. I think that he is dying, as he is sleeping almost 24 hours a day, and this article helped me to know what to expect.


about 1 year ago, said...

My grandma is 54 she can't get out of bed she has not been eating any food and every time she does eat she can't hold It down! We tried to get her a doctors appointment but the we're earthier full or closed and she has been coughing and gagging she has lost ten pounds since Sunday and I am just really scared but I hope lord will take care of her when she's gone :'-(


about 1 year ago, said...

My dad Is dying cancer he at the point were he will not wake up now how much longer has he got


about 1 year ago, said...

To the person who said "My boyfriend's grandfather is 82, he went to the hospital yesterday for pneumonia. He doesnt know where he's at, he thinks he's at home and he's thinking the blankets are his pants! He shows all of these signs ": Take heart! My grandfather was 92 when he was in the hospital with pneumonia showing all these signs. It can be the effect of the medications he's on. Please talk to the doctors and nurses about his prognosis. My grandfather recovered and live to be 100 yrs, 5 mnths and 23 days! Age does not mean demise is near. The nurses said it was our constant visits and conversation that kept him with us after the 17 hours trapped in a bath tub and the pneumonia that either caused it or resulted from it... The doctors were never sure which came first, the illness or the weakness... that caused him to be unable to get out of the tub. He survived the second bout with pneumonia at 100 and was recovering at the nursing home when he suddenly passed away. Cause of death? Old age (not clots, relapse, heart attack).


about 1 year ago, said...

Thank you to the person who commented: "Foot Note: do not make the person's dying process about you by dramatizing wanting empathy from others "poor you". " 
 
 I see it all too often. It's more about the drama for the speaker, than for the person who is actually dying. Please, they know they are dying. They want normalcy, not commiseration on the fact they are dying. This goes the same for people who have chronic illnesses. They want understanding of their condition, not a pity party. (If my sister tries to give me another pity party for my out of control allergies, I might bean her with a pillow!) My doctors have assured me that it isn't cancer, pneumonia, respiratory anything, but allergies. Still she says, OH POOR BABY! (Thwap! There goes the imaginary pillow!) Just imagine how tiring that gets when you multiply that by thirty, when you know you're dying! Talk about fun things, or flowers, or bring in activities you can do together (tossing around helium balloons that have lost most of their lift works wonders!). If they want to talk about death, do that too, but leave off the pity party. Be positive in the face of death. Ask them about charities they'd like you to support, what songs they'd like for their funeral, how they want their body disposed of (if they have not already decided). Bring them photos from a nature hike. Let them live for as long as they can till they die.


about 1 year ago, said...

I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Even though we are grieving, be with family and friends. Prayers and Hugs. Mom died June 20. Feels like yesterday. Its going to be hard without her on Christmas.


about 1 year ago, said...

Knowing the symptoms to look for and what to expect.


about 1 year ago, said...

I think the article does a good job of telling you what to expect and certainly all the comments here provide examples of what other people have gone through. 


about 1 year ago, said...

I would like to know what to expect, while being by my Daddy's bedside. The hospice nurses will not say... which may be a good thing, maybe:(


about 1 year ago, said...

i came 600 miles to be w my mom in law. she is definetly in the final stage. being here is so hard..yet such good medicine for my husband and me. my siblings in law have accepted my help & i am so happy to b able to provide some respite for them. they have all been faithful w their care for her. over a period of several hrs today i plan to give her a little massage and polish her nails. she has always cared about that stuff. i am going to take my bible & read. and sit beside her and bring up good memories.


about 1 year ago, said...

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about 1 year ago, said...

My mom is 93 and exhibiting all of these signs except she is not yet talking to unseen people. It is hard to watch this process but knowing what is going on is very helpful. She is not in pain and actually no longer suffering. Her suffering was her confusion in that her mind was alert but her body wouldn't cooperate. In 3 weeks she went from the alert mind to total confusion but no longer suffering. It's like she isn't aware that the body is dying. She was recently moved to a nursing home and she is being properly cared for, kept clean and kept comfortable and that was my main focus in determining her care. I tried to care for her at home and just wasn't able to handle it.


about 1 year ago, said...

Foot Note: do not make the person's dying process about you by dramatizing wanting empathy from others "poor you". The main focus is to keep the person comfortable as possible, human touch is soothing and reassuring. Spend quality time and come to terms thus assisting with the grieving process as those commenting. This too will provide some comfort to all who have witnessed part of life... I like to see it as a transition and depending on each belief. ♡


about 1 year ago, said...

I visited my 89 year old neighbor in hospice care this evening. She had very deep and labored breathing, almost like a snore. It alarmed me at first but after I hugged and kissed her and let her know I was there, I felt better. Her son mentioned a booklet the nurse gave him about end signs and her feet. Now that ive read this, I realize there have been numerous signs for weeks. Im so glad I got to see her one more time and say goodbye.


about 1 year ago, said...

My grandmother passed away 3 months ago and the day before she died she started to these big blisters on her body and her mouth and feet and fingers turned a grayish color.... She was 94 and I miss her every second of the day


about 1 year ago, said...

My boyfriends grandfather is 82, he went to the hospital yesterday for pneumonia. He doesnt know where he's at, he thinks he's at home and he's thinking the blankets are his pants! He shows all of these signs :(


about 1 year ago, said...

"if there is a lot of phlegm, suctioning can increase it's quantity" sounds like an urban legend to me. If there is copious secretions, suction them out. It's basic airway management.


about 1 year ago, said...

My father has really deteriorated lately. His mouth seems to be set open in this odd, perpetual smile. He seems to look right through us. He doesn't know his limitations. He's very weak, but seems to think he can do it all. I worry about him because his wife doesn't seem to want to accept it and pushes him to "get better". But it does not look like he will be getting better to me. To me it looks like he is the walking dead (sorry, but that is the only way to describe it). =(


about 1 year ago, said...

Thank you so much, this really helps ME understand the dying process and what my mother is really going through. Everything has been dead on point, this helped me tremendously. So glad I could be there for her as she's completing her journey.


about 1 year ago, said...

So true can say thanks.


about 1 year ago, said...

Blessings to you all for strength and comfort as you go through this journey with your loved one. I lost my Mom Jan 28, 2014 and was so greatful to be there through the end, holding and kissing her and telling her "it's okay" as she slipped away. A bitter sweet moment we were blessed to have. Our Hospice nurse graciously gave me a book "Final Gifts" by Maggie Callahan and Patricia Kelley. It is "understanding the special awareness, needs and communications of the dying". I was not focused enough at the time to read it as I eas so emotionally and physically drained to concentrate on it at the time, but the book gives a lot of insite on the "signs" of the experience that can be helpful to understand the odd things you might experience. I would recommend to every caregiver, no matter what stage, to read it. Probably best in the early stage which will help prepare you for what is ahead. I am just sitting down today to read as I feel I am finally at the beginning of my healing path, 10 months later. I am ready to sit and read and reflect knowing this will help my healing process. I hope this is helpful to you. Posting with heartfelt blessings to you all. I know this time is very stressful, draining and the sadest of all. Praying for you this provides you with some tools to help you along the way. "Final Gifts", truly gifts you might not have been aware of without the read. God bless you all with peace through your journey.


about 1 year ago, said...

I was reading about blue feet this morning on a medical site and saw that it can be the result of a B12 deficiency and sedentary lifestyle. Dementia and fatigue can also be a result of B12 deficiency. This is an answer to the woman with the 92 year old mother-in-law.


about 1 year ago, said...

I'm sure a person's pulse gets weaker as they die, along with the other symptoms mentioned. Of course, a weak pulse in an otherwise healthy person would be cause for a trip to the emergency room.


about 1 year ago, said...

would a weak pulse be one of the signs as well?


about 1 year ago, said...

Excellent list. I've been with both my mother in law and my dad at the end. It was an honor to be there when they were born to eternal life. Both displayed many of these conditions listed.


about 1 year ago, said...

This helps understand my grandmother is on hospice and is dying can't eat move or talk.. mumbles and it seems she knows we are there seems like she is stuck and so are my emotions. .. Praying for her to go home


about 1 year ago, said...

Thanks..am sure you are right!!!


over 1 year ago, said...

I hope, when it is my time to go, there is someone who cares about me nearby, not necessarily waiting for me to take my last breath, as I hate to be rushed. But just available in case I need reassurance. I think music would be lovely, as it requires nothing from me. Conversation would be hard as I will be unfocused. The hospice women were good to my mother, anticipating things we didn't think of, like washing her hair with waterless shampoo. They also took us aside and warned us she was slipping away, while the doctors really didn't. It's natural to deny it. Later you realize the symptoms were there. God bless the caretakers.


over 1 year ago, said...

This question is for a nurse or doctor to answer. My dad is 81 years old with dimentia and diabetes. The nurse where he is said it does look like my dad is in the last stages of his life, we asked her why he would spasm or jerk every so often and she said it shows his systems are shutting down, is this correct?


over 1 year ago, said...

Thank you to everyone who reminded families that MUSIC is one of the last things they forget! My mother had lost the ability to speak, yet she could still sing along to the old church songs. Play music that you know they sing and listen to. My prayers go out to all who are in the process still. My mom passed almost three years ago after 13 years of dementia.


over 1 year ago, said...

My great grandmother is 107year old, and is currently going threw the dying process its like I can just see her slipping away even the way she is laying there the way she breath. And i saw her yesterday to say my goodbye, the hospice comes 3 times a day to make sure she is comfortable. and I didnt like the hospice because of all the things i have heard about them but, i have to say the ladies that come to take care of my great grandmother are great women. And currently my family is sitting bed side waiting for her to take her last breathe. Its pure agony because i wonder how she is feeling but she cant talk, she also has dementia. So its hard to get a answer or even a response from her I guess this is the natural dying process.. I know her days are numbered by hours but i just hope she knows i love her and it will be peaceful. And i will see her again next life time..


over 1 year ago, said...

My Dad passed away 2 Weeks ago, it was the saddest day of my life. He had stage 4 cancer and had been on hospice care for a month. All the dying symptoms we're written on their booklet but I only read it once, I couldn't accept that he only had a few months to live. All the symptoms happened but till he's last day he would nodd yes when been ask if he was hungry. I never liked hospice care, some of the nurses would just sit and play with their phone, I think they gave him to many medications when truly not needed. My Dad is now resting and one day ill see him again.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mother-in-law is 92 years old and is in failing health. I work in the healthcare industry and I see some signs (I think) of the ending of life. She has the sleeping all the time, tiredness, hearing and seeing things that are not true, low urination, very little liquids are consumed, does not want to take showers or sponge baths, some hostility, a blank stare at times, loss of memory and the legs and ankles turning blue. If this is the ending of her life, how can I get my husband to believe that she is dying and does not know what she is doing at times?


over 1 year ago, said...

Anonymous caregiver, I am sorry for your loss. I am a nurse, and in my experience dying abruptly after a long life is the best way to go. I am assuming your aunt was elderly as she was in an aged care facility, so it is unlikely that anything could have been done to prolong her life in a meaningful way. If she had gone into hospital they may have been able to treat some of her symptoms, but probably just would have delayed the inevitable. Remember that death is not something that is preventable- it will happen to all of us. The best we can hope for is a peaceful death after a long and fulfilled life.


over 1 year ago, said...

Clearcell, I'm not sure of you're belief system, but soon all your pain and suffering will be over. You should ask Hospice about where you stand, although I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't answer you. If your blood pressure goes down, and you develop high fever.......you may be on your way to a better place. I don't want to speak for all, but I'm sure we all have you in are prayers right now.


over 1 year ago, said...

Clearcell: im so very sorry for your condition . I wish I could take it all away! I want you to know that God is the Great Physician. ..he alone can raise you from your illness. He loves you very much. - I wish I were there :-\ God speed, friend ♡


over 1 year ago, said...

include exceptions such as for stroke victims and other diseases which alter
 all of these indicators


over 1 year ago, said...

I've been on hospice for 2 weeks. I don't know where I stand. The tumor in my left leg is the size of 2 football's and the cancer is all over internally. I can breath fine but if I cough up phelm it's more blood than phelm. I do sleep a lot like 20+ hours a day but I put that on my change of pain meds. Hospice put me on 40mg of methadone twice a day and ocycodone 30 mg IR 1 every 3 hours IF I NEED IT. I've been fighting painful tumors and surgeries for over 5 years now so my opiat/opioid tolerance is pretty high. I can't eat much and my pee is really dark.


over 1 year ago, said...

How do I prepare my ten year old without scaring him?


over 1 year ago, said...

Definitely yes on the music!
 My husband loved classical music, and I played it during his last week at home. 
 (Thanks for that reminder!)


over 1 year ago, said...

Many have noted that seeming unresponsive people hear. Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Vivaldi, Bach have been spirit-supporting companions in my life. Has anyone considered music as part of the dying person's environment?


over 1 year ago, said...

Death is as natural as birth, but we shield ourselves from it so it becomes a great mystery and we fear the unknown. We put our dying loved ones in a hospital and when they are gone, we give them over to someone to prepare them for a funeral or cremation. One thing you don't realize at 17 (usually) is that dying is release from pain and overwhelming fatigue. Our bodies do wear out.


over 1 year ago, said...

I'm seeing my Mom's picture on my bedside table. She looks so happy, she was always a calm, happy person. Even in her bed near the end she'd smile as people would come in. Part of why I had hard time believing she was going. She asked for my out of state brother and he came. But right before, Hospice gave us some medicine to give her, and she went comatose. So she wasn't able to talk to my brother. He was her baby. I feel so bad about that. I think of her every single day. I'm trying to come to terms with things, I think it will take a long time, but I'm trying.


over 1 year ago, said...

Typically, there are no courses on death, so we are unprepared for it. Talk to someone about your anxiety. Do you know why you are anxious ?


over 1 year ago, said...

My husband was at home on hospice the last week of his life. 
 He ate a few spoonfuls of yogurt one day. A popsicle the next day. Three slices of a banana the next day. 
 He had no appetite at all. The last two days he ate nothing. He would take sips of juice and water. I used the little green sponges on a stick soaked in ice water to wipe his mouth.
 At the end of life the patient doesn't need food.


over 1 year ago, said...

My Mom slowly lost her appetite as she got closer. I told her I would not force her to eat if she didn't want to. I was able to give her her meds the last two days with some applesauce but that was it. I also gave her water through the straw. I was lucky in she went pretty quick at that time.


over 1 year ago, said...

Rawfoodelectric, I can only assume your father is in intensive care and you are consulting with his doctors. I would think they have him on IV since he is having trouble swallowing and your decision pertains to that life support. I will tell you this - my father had a minor stroke which left him with full Aphasia and difficulty walking/feeding himself. He was in the hospital 5 days and another week in a rehab facility before his speech kicked in. It was a month in rehab, another 3 months of outpatient rehab, and a year later was almost 100% recovered with minor walking/balance and memory issues.


over 1 year ago, said...

@rawfood, i hope u can live with that decision. ask yourself,do u really want to set him or yourself free from pain and suffering? @ sheila,you were told that you have copd and not like you only have an hour to live. This article is about preparing and setting our expectations. I hope that you two realize that death is a natural process. We cannot control it or even decide about it.


over 1 year ago, said...

My very active dad (75 yrs old) just had a massive stroke last Friday (Oct 3) the left side of his brain is damaged and his right side is paralyzed. He cannot speak and has some Aphasia along with trouble swallowing. My father is a proud man and we believe he would not want to live in this condition so decided to withdraw food and water so he could die. Is this a common way of dealing with a situation like this or are we inhumane?


over 1 year ago, said...

People generally in the end of life cycle, those who are not eating or drinking, typically are not suffering the pangs of hunger and thirst the way a healthy person would. As the body shuts down, so does awareness. The body is actually able to lessen pain on its own and can even go into a state of near-euphoria. It takes a great deal of energy to digest, energy that those near their passing state simply do not have. I'm not saying that no one is ever thirsty or experiencing dry mouth (Xerostomia) when they're almost ready to pass on, but there have been studies that show that many simply no longer care to eat or drink. Comfort care is likely much more important. Swab the lips with a damp cloth, apply lip balm, etc.


over 1 year ago, said...

As a nurse I saw the dying suffer from thirst. Family can sit with dying person and use a straw to draw water up from a glass and carefully drop it onto her lips, tongue. It will give some relief from the misery of dehydration at the end....they won't chok on water given in this way. Do it as long as they are living and remember, most likely, they hear whatever you say!


over 1 year ago, said...

Ladyofhair said her mother was "Now talking of food but not wanting anything,,,". I agree with not forcing food on a person or forcing your anxiety about them not eating, but if her mother was indicating an interest in food plus nausea, I was giving a suggestion.


over 1 year ago, said...

It is very sad, but we owe it to our loved ones to let them go without trying to prolong their lives. It's my belief that if they were able to get better, they would get better. Do leave them in peace if they don't want or can't take even their favorite comfort foods.


over 1 year ago, said...

We all have some kind of regrets, part of being human. At the time, you didn't know. We were begging my Mom to eat, and yes, somewhat forcing her to eat also. My Mom loved to eat, so we didn't understand. She always told us though, " if I ever stop eating, you know I'm really sick."


over 1 year ago, said...

the hallmark sign of a dying patient is the loss of desire to eat. ive seen it with my mom and dad. so i dont count their days as quality but as a blessing. i regret forcing my mom to eat. i even slap her to force her mouth open but she would spit it on my face. so please you guys should let them be.


over 1 year ago, said...

Ladyofhair, you know that hospice will come to your home, you don't have to put your mother in a home? For those of us who had not experienced death and didn't know what to do to make our loved one more comfortable, hospice was helpful with their knowledge and experience. They work under the direction of your doctor, so if your loved one isn't comfortable, you probably still have to advocate for him/her with your doctor. I'm guessing each person and situation are unique in their response to treatments. As an aside, dry toast with jelly was the only thing I could eat when I was nauseous and it acted as a gateway to be able to keep other food down.


over 1 year ago, said...

Im 36 and My mother is 54. Im greatfully taking care of her in My home .. I tried our Hospice House here in Sarasota but it was A Nightmare.. and shes is showing visible signs of all these symptoms.. She stopped eating around 9 days ago.. Now talking of food but not wanting anything,,, I know not to force her to eat because if she even trys she vomits. This down spiral process is only been 7 weeks and Its the most difficult thing to see.. I just want to take her pain away.. She will act alert when the Hospice Nurse c


over 1 year ago, said...

my bf has bowel cancer and now has kidney failure, I'm at the hospice with him now, he isn't expected to last long at all, his breathing is becoming irregular too. he's only 26 and I'm 28, I have no idea how I'm going to cope when he goes


over 1 year ago, said...

I agree with you on sleep. It's just that when I had to change Mom, she was in a lot of pain. Hospice initially gave my Mom Methadone, and she went comatose when she was alert before. I'm sure there are other pain Meds. Because of this, I would not use Hospice again.


over 1 year ago, said...

Sleep is probably the best pain-killer. I wish a medical professional would respond on this site to the use of Morphine. They gave it to my mother for anxiety to help her sleep. I always wondered if it had any effect on her heart.


over 1 year ago, said...

missdean47, The most to be worried about is the pain. Call the Doctor and get something for pain. The have Morphine, or other meds that you just squirt in his mouth as I'm sure he can't eat or swallow very much. My Mother died in pain and I so much regret that. The Doctor told me that just lying in bed all day will cause pain; of course she couldn't get up. The medicine is very strong and will "knock him out", but at least he wont be in pain. Prayers for you, you sister and brother-in-law.


over 1 year ago, said...

My broth n law has stage 4 lung and is constantly in pain and sleeps all day. This worries my sis. I told her let him sleep if comfortable. He's eating very little. Is there anything we can do to help his transition easier.


over 1 year ago, said...

Thank you for your article. I just lost my Dad 2 weeks ago, Tuesday. He had alhimeezrs; however, that was not the immediate cause of his death. He had surgery several days prior to his death, his DNR was revoked for the surgery (a severe bleeding ulcer), placed on breathing and feeding tubes after, for 8 days until his wife agreed to reinstate his DNR. He passed away several hours later. I knew it was his time to die. My grieving process is compounded by the way he spent his last several days, as well as his last several months...I am grateful I was able to be there for my father, hold his hand, sing to him, massage his feet, pray with him. Now I am in the healing process for myself. Learning more, serving others, forgiveness, letting go, caring for myself, "getting back into the game" as Dad would say....I know these are all steps....yet even with this knowledge. ...losing someone you love so completely. ...watching them suffer so profoundly....this is no easy journey. ..I am grateful for kindness, prayer, and the knowledge my father no longer suffers. He is now with God. Thank you for those who read this.


over 1 year ago, said...

my dad had diabetis and my mom took care of him for 3 months of being bed ridden, he died. soon as he died mom became disoriented. it was 2004 when she became sickly, everyone thought she would soon follow my dad. but she was brought to the hospital for ascites, later she underwent TAHBSO then finished her chemotheraphy. I noticed she is having alzheimers disease . ive seen it all and today, her pupils no longer reacts with light, shes got pressure ulcers, no longer eating, bowel is missed for 15 days. I resigned from my work and took care of her. I am 32 years old and I cry everyday seeing her like that and i dont have resources to do anything about it.Death is near i think.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hi English Girl & others, Thanks for your comments about the article, "10 Signs Death is Near". If you'd like to have an ongoing conversation about dying/end-of-life and dementia, please do join or start the conversations in our online support groups. If you have comments about this article, or care to add any insights specific to the article, please do add a comment -- but for ongoing dialogue, please do join us in the support groups. Thanks!


over 1 year ago, said...

Death is Near is appropriate for dementia patients. They just take a lot longer to die. I would much rather help someone get through the long drawn out process of dying bit by bit without the pain of knowing their loved one was scalded, or burned themselves on the stove or fell down the stairs because of physical weakness. Dementia is a death sentence to which there is no reprieve. From the second they receive the diagnosis it is only a waiting game. I simply wish to help them to avoid the regrets that many suffer when their loved one finally reaches the end because they didn't know how to help them pass peacefully. The worst was the family whose mother wandered outside in the night (she couldn't figure out how to open the door to get back in) and they found her frozen body in the morning. Would that I had personally known them (instead of hearing about it later) and could have suggested the bells on the door to them. It would have saved them the guilt and pain that "they killed mom" because they didn't wake up this one time. Death is Near for a dementia patient in every little accident that could occur because they are no longer in their right mind. They fall down stairs, they burn themselves, they wander into traffic, they get lost, they wander off into busy parking lots, they get infections that go septic because of hygiene issues. They don't sleep because of night terrors and that worsens the condition. Lose of jewelry meant my mother would be digging in dirty trash cans or trying to sneak out at night to see if she lost her ring on the lawn.
 Letting people around you know that they are dealing with a dementia patient means that they can deal with her behavior without calling the police and having her shot because she can't follow the police man's simple instructions. (Remember that mental patient in the news lately?) All of the information I gave is so dementia patients can die with dignity rather than by misadventure. I hope this explains to the people who think my advice belongs on another forum.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hello All, Thank you for your comments. The focus of this article is recognizing the signs of death. If you would like to discuss other end-of-life topics and your caregiving journey, please connect with other caregivers and have conversations in our online support groups: http://www.caring.com/support-groups. Also, for all comments you post anywhere on Caring.com, please abide our site terms of use, community code of conduct, and privacy policy: http://www.caring.com/about/terms One key guideline to keep in mind: Differences of opinion are welcome, as long as they're presented respectfully. Personal attacks are never allowed. If your comment doesn't fit within the site terms and guidelines, it will be removed. Please contact our team if you have any questions of concerns (use the blue Feedback tab, "contact us" link at the bottom of Caring.com pages, or email moderators AT Caring.com). Thank you.


over 1 year ago, said...

I think there is a support site for dementia.


over 1 year ago, said...

Thank you for the very useful information, English Girl. Nothing like getting suggestions from one who has been through it. Sometimes forum entries get crossed up just like Facebook postings. 


over 1 year ago, said...

This article is called "10 Signs Death is Near". Isn't there a separate forum for dementia and Alzheimer questions?
 This forum is for people dealing with the end of life stages, not losing jewelry, getting a pedicure or shopping at Dress Barn.


over 1 year ago, said...

Just want to say, English Girl, you are a blessing.


over 1 year ago, said...

14. Oh yes, remember, regular exercise keeps the patient able to move when you need them to do so. Early on I would walk up and down stairs with my mom, much later I learned to lead her around the house holding both her hands. The doctors were amazed how healthy she was considering her mental health. She didn't use a wheelchair until a couple months before she died. Getting them in the habit of having their hand held in traffic and being used to being led makes them not struggle in the middle of the street when a car is rushing towards you. I wish I'd learned this earlier as my mom was almost hit because the idiot driving couldn't understand why she was just standing in the street in the crosswalk or why I was waving him to stop! People aren't aware of the dangers of dementia patients trying to pull away or getting lost in thought... 
 15. Also found the ladies at Dress Barn were helpful in watching my mother when I was paying for her purchases so she didn't wander off while my back was turned. Let waiters and store clerks know in advance that they are dealing with dementia patients. Ask waiter to bring bill with the food and be ready to box it up if dementia patient has meltdown. Extra napkins are helpful too. Waiters are very cooperative if they know what they are dealing with.


over 1 year ago, said...

Unfortunately, very few of the support groups for people facing long term illnesses are well advertised and most people don't have time to go to them while trying to keep their loved one alive and out of pain. Pity we don't have a system to match up those who have been there, done that, with people who are newly entering the world of slow or painful deaths of loved ones... I give advice freely when I learn of someone in need of that knowledge in my neighborhood and community. 
 Here's a few things useful to people dealing with dementia patients...
 1. They will at some point, lose the ability to recognize their reflections and will claim people are watching them. Cover mirrors and close drapes. Shadows may be misinterpreted as well.
 2. Sippy cups, straws and sponges on sticks are excellent for keeping patients hydrated when they have trouble drinking out of cups . Dehydration can exacerbate poor mental functions.
 3. A small ring of jingle bells on their door can wake you when they start wandering at night. It makes noise that is not terrifying to the patient.
 4. A hook and eye set into the screen door at eye level that my mother installed to keep us children from wandering out at night when we were children (sleep walkers...) served to keep her in when she wandered at night. I would hear her rattling the door and come get her.
 5. Strained baby food or food run through the blender on puree with some extra water is an excellent food source when they start having problems chewing their food. Water down Ensure or PowerAde. The sugar content can cause phlegm.
 6. When they can no longer swallow pills properly and start chewing them, contact the doctor about getting liquid or chewable medicines so they don't get toxic levels on medicines that are time release.
 7. Before their memory gets too bad, get them in the habit of bathing with assistance. It will save scaldings and non-bathing. 
 8. Make sure their clothing is traded out every night. Infections and bed sores from dirty clothes is one less problem to deal with.
 9. Remember... If they didn't see it, it didn't happen. Get their clean clothes out before they go to bed and remove their dirty clothes when they aren't looking. They will fight you if you try to take their dirty clothes sometimes.
 10. If you find them tearing apart their jewelry cases, small clear plastic bags can be purchased to put the jewelry sets together so they can't be easily lost. If they do this on a daily basis, you may have to tie the jewelry box shut. I recently found my mother's ruby ring hidden behind a three foot deep pile of boxes next to my father's dresser. It disappeared 1 1/2 yrs before mom died. We thought she lost it in the trash can as she would often dig through them to see if anything was being thrown away (this includes dirty tissues). Check all trash cans for lost jewelry before emptying them. I found several jewelry pieces in the trash and thought the ring was one I'd missed.
 11. Foot hygiene is important. Invest in pedicures. But be sure to let them know at the salon that they are going to be dealing with a dementia patient. Many salons have experienced personnel who do work at nursing homes and you can sometimes get referrals from the nursing homes.
 12. Advance hygiene problems as a "I got you a special treat, we're both getting pedicures" or "I noticed you haven't been able to get in and out of the tub safely, so I'm going to sit by the door and you can call me when you need help", rather than.. "you stink, take a bath and wash your feet!"
 13. Dementia patients feel temperatures of water differently than when they were healthy. My mom used to put her hands in scalding water when she was young, but tepid water felt scalding when dementia set in. Turn up the heat in the house an hour before the bath. Put in bath chair and handheld shower head. Makes bathing so much easier. 
 If anyone has any other questions, contact me through hug or prayer. I check once a week.


over 1 year ago, said...

Anonymous, it's hard to give up your independence to take care of someone else, especially for a significant chunk of your life, but people do it every day. That's what family is. But there is no point in looking backward. Whatever you did before that you loved, there must be some version of it still available. If you need to update your training, go back to school. This time of your life is when many of us are looking for something different anyway so you should have plenty of company. How long it takes to re-establish connections and friendships is up to you.


over 1 year ago, said...

Trrndy, Lots of people are afraid to deal with death. It is very sad to me when someone doesn't have one other person who cares that they are dying enough to spend time with them. After all, we are all going to have to go through it. But we don't have to do it alone. I hope the woman you help has made provisions for someone to take care of her beloved cat when she is gone. And you deserve a gold star for getting involved.


over 1 year ago, said...

Scard, you didn't say if your father was in hospice. A nurse can tell you if your father's breathing/heart function is normal for his situation. If you are in the USA, you can take Family Leave to be with your father. It's the law. I had planned to submit mine to HR the morning my mother died and wished I had submitted it two weeks earlier because I could have been with her more when she needed it. The doctor has to sign the form. I kept putting it off because I didn't realize the end was so close. Human life is quite fragile.


over 1 year ago, said...

I still want to say yes, but I don't want to tell you wrong. I have only seen the breathing stop.


over 1 year ago, said...

No he is short of breath then his heart stops then start again


over 1 year ago, said...

How enlightening. I am going to grief counseling now, but it probably would have been helpful to have beforehand also. Even though we read and hear about the signs of death, I think little are prepared for it. I feel traumatized.


over 1 year ago, said...

When I read the many heartwrenching comments about how lost and alone and helpless survivors feel after their mother or father is no longer with them, it makes me wonder if part of caring for a dying person should include the care-giver or the survivor setting aside time and energy preparing themselves for the inevitable separation. It's not as if we are being disloyal to the dying person (though it can very much feel that way) by preparing ourselves spiritually and emotionally for their inevitable departure and our having to go on living without them. And if you truly don't know how you would live without your Mum or Dad, you should get help in strengthening yourself as soon as you can.


over 1 year ago, said...

Scard, If you mean that he has a normal breathing pattern, then stops for a bit, and starts up again; yes this is normal at end of life.


over 1 year ago, said...

My father is dying slowly and I have to work. I have a lady that goes to my house to take care of him while I am working. It is hard to be here and not with him. His breathing is just starting to become irregular. It seems like his heart stops then starts up again. Is this normal at the end of life?


over 1 year ago, said...

I was 50 when I gave up a the.job I loved to full fill a promise to keep my mother out lf a home after seeing what happen.to my grandmother.But after.a nine year battel shes gone and.am.lost how much.longer before I can.find myself'again?


over 1 year ago, said...

A old lady next door to me is dying . Here family do nothing not sit with he now. Just cooked her sausge and mash. She sat with her belovid cat wizerd deepenly sadend that the British nhs failed her


over 1 year ago, said...

No April that is not normal, if she is on hospice contact the nurse for instructions, make sure the head of her bed remains high and turn her on her side so she doesn't aspirate. If you have a suction machine , she can be suction.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mom is close to dying. Me and my family wants to know if it's natural to have green fluid or foamy stuff coming out of her mouth?


over 1 year ago, said...

Dpil, sounds to me like your mother is experiencing some dementia, which could come from the shock of her fall or from a stroke which could have caused the fall. I wouldn't think an infected elbow / antibiotics would cause death but people can die from complications of a fall. Is the doctor doing everything possible to address her pain? Sleep can be a pain reliever. I would find out what they are doing to encourage her appetite at the assisted living place. She should be getting some stimulation - visitors, moving around a bit. If left alone immobile, we will all die.


over 1 year ago, said...

My Father is in the hospital today. Nothing too serious, although he is 87. As I was leaving the hospital, I was thinking that I was going to tell her how my Dad was doing. Then I remembered she passed, and sadness came upon me. I miss her so much.


over 1 year ago, said...

How long can the dying process take? My mother , who is 94, had a fall, hurt her elbow, it became infected, she was placed on antibiotics, is off them now, but the area around elbow is red and it pains her. This happened about 3 weeks ago. She sleeps all day and eats very little. She can still communicate with you but does have times of nonsensical talking. She remembers visitors but not what day it is. She is in assisted living. Can this go on for months/ years? I know it's difficult to say, but any words of wisdom would be appreciated.


over 1 year ago, said...

Confused, you are in a much better position than I to know about medical procedures. Doctors claim they can manage pain, so I don't know why your mother's doctor didn't. They aren't infallible and when you are really sick, you are often too weak to be your own advocate, so she was fortunate to have you. My uncle died three weeks after he was diagnosed with bone cancer. Another friend died in two months after diagnosis of lung cancer and undergoing lots of treatment. My cat died a week after diagnosis of an incredibly fast moving throat cancer, but the dog lived fairly well for over a year. I think the unpredictability of it leaves you in shock. I am very sorry for your loss. It sounds like you have a lot to deal with. I hope you have friends and maybe a support group to help out.


over 1 year ago, said...

My dad passed at 3:45 am. He took one last breath and did not exhale. Me and my siblings around him , god be with you dad. I will never forget this chapter in my life.i love you.


over 1 year ago, said...

I am so Confused and I am a nurse. My mom went to the ER and they sent her home with chronic pain. She declined over the next week to incontenence and weeping. I told her to go by ambulance to be taken seriously. She called me at work and put the Dr. On and I was told they were sending her home again with chronic pain. I said no you are not and I am on the way there and xyz tests need to be done. Before I could wrap up my pt. load the Dr. Called back and my mother had c-6 compound fracture with multiple myeloma. I had her transferred to another hospital for an MRI- she had cancer all over- I had one week of my mother acting out and two on powerful drugs as I started hospice so she would be comfortable. She was in major pain and in 21 day's of diagnosis she was gone! Why did this happen so abruptly and quickly? I have gotten numerous conflicting stories and I Am grappling with this. She is the only family I and my trach/ feeding tube/wheelchair bound child had. I am lost!!!


over 1 year ago, said...

Sounds like your father is winding down. They describe the symptoms you describe in this article - the labored breathing and brownish urine. They say: The stopped breathing or loud rattle can be alarming to listeners, but the dying person is unaware of this changed breathing; focus on overall comfort. Positions that may help: the head slightly elevated with a pillow, sitting up well-supported, or the head or lying body tilted to the side slightly. Moisten the mouth with a wet cloth and moisturize with lip balm or petroleum jelly. 
 
 If there's a lot of phlegm, allow it to drain naturally from the mouth, since suctioning it out can increase its quantity. A vaporizer in the room might help. Some people are given oxygen for comfort. Be a calm, physical presence, stroking the arm or speaking softly.
 
 Being born and dying are scary but natural transitions we all go through. If he is not in pain and has you there to help him through it, he is OK.


over 1 year ago, said...

Do not worry about your spelling, we understand. Also understand what you are going through. Whether your father is conscious or not, talk to him, he can hear you. My prayers go out to you and your father.


over 1 year ago, said...

My spelling is just like my emotions, in a whirlspin.


over 1 year ago, said...

My father is in home hospice, his breathing is like a fish out a fishbowl. On morphine and ativan. No longer eats..bowel movements have stopped and cathider is tea color urine. He is pale and mouth is dry. Any words of encourgement is apppreciated


over 1 year ago, said...

I would like more information please.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mom has terminal ill cancer over the last month ive noticed a big decline in her health. These past few days my mom has gotten where she cant get up without help. Ivr noticed her sleeping more she on strong pain patch. My mom is sick every nite today i noticed the bottom of her frtt was a dark purlish nd blue how much more time you think she has


over 1 year ago, said...

Everyone always say our loved one "Is in a better place". I don't really find that comforting as it is meant to be. I ask, how do we really know that ? I keep trying to call to my Mom to let me know she is ok. If I really knew that, I'd feel somewhat better. I'm not religious in the traditional sense; I have been a spiritual person. I find myself asking a lot of questions. I miss her so much. 
 


over 1 year ago, said...

I have a question. My moms doc told us a little over a month ago that she only had less than a month left. She seems to be getting better?! She is a terminal cancer patient....lung that spread to brain. Is it possible she is getting better???


over 1 year ago, said...

I'm surprised a doctor would tell you that because everyone is different and doctors are often wrong. The best thing we can do is slow down and leave time to the person who is dying. After all, you only die once.


over 1 year ago, said...

How long a person stays on their death bed is entirely up to them. My friend's great grandmother spent 13 years dying. Same friend's father died overnight. Both were on death bed, but some take longer than others. Just pray that they go easily.


over 1 year ago, said...

I'm so confused. Almost a week ago, the doctor told us mom would not live through the night, is this normal, we are all falling apart here? How long can someone who is dying keep living?


over 1 year ago, said...

I have seen pain and suffering in people I love, just not my parents. I lost a brother in law to pancreatic cancer, and a very close friend to a bad lymphoma. I also worked in a nursing home years ago, and watched people go there too. Its never easy to lose anything we love, humans and animals. It just helps knowing they go to a better place, and that we will be with them later.


over 1 year ago, said...

I'm so glad your parent did not suffer, and went quick and peaceful. That doesn't take the pain you feel in losing them. Those whom had to watch suffering and pain......well, it's been traumatic for me.


over 1 year ago, said...

To Jane and married forever, and the rest on here who have gone through this, its been two years since I lost my parents, and yet I remember how they both looked forward to going. Dad was just finished with living, and Mom was ready to join him and the rest of her family a few months later. Fortunately, neither of them suffered much, and the end was both quick and peaceful for them. Yes its very hard for us to say goodbye, but I and most people believe they are in a better place, free of pain and suffering. I still miss both of them, but time is healing the hurt. Take care and remember all of the good memories!


over 1 year ago, said...

Married Forever, Thank you so much for your insightful post. I needed to read it today. 
 My husband passed away 6 weeks ago. This morning I was wondering if he's happy in heaven. As much as I'm grieving and heartbroken, I'm hoping he's healthy and happy.


over 1 year ago, said...

I was a care-taker for many of my family members. The hardest part was seeing them suffer and me being helpless as they suffered. But at least I was there for them --as tremendously heart-breaking as it was-- as it was mostly emotionally exhausting and draining for me. Having severe pain and/or severe discomfort, death became a blessing for them. But for me, it became a life of grieving, coping and re-adjusting, although with continued emptiness........................ However, I take comfort in believing that they are with God in His Heavenly Kingdom of joy, bliss, and Love. No more pain, suffering, stress, or problems that the world presents, which are SO really insignificant. ..........................And I TRULY believe that if we knew what they are enjoying -out of our unselfish love for them- we would be SO happy for them, that we actually would not want them to come back. And I also take comfort in believing / hoping that I will be with them again for all eternity. Although grief seems endless, life goes by "in a blink of the eye" compared to eternity.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mom passed away last year in october. She was 63. I still remember each and every second of that unfortunate moment. I am lucky that i was there with her. I hugged her some 5minutes before her death..and i dint know then , that i was hugging her for the last time. I dint know that she was going away from me. Becoz she was in good health. I still believe that she is here with me. Mom i miss u so much.


over 1 year ago, said...

Not involved yet. I live in a Convalescent Hospital. This was more out of curiosity than anything else. I'm 62 today and plan on being around a bit longer. Thank-you.


over 1 year ago, said...

Lost my mom to cancer two years ago on July 31. She was 65 years old - we were very close. I am having a lot of trouble dealing with her passing. Counseling is only offering little help. Tried seeking help from my pastor who was always close to us. It still is extremely difficult as I was very active in my church and now don't want any parts of faith. Does anyone have suggestions? Thanks for listening, John, 36


over 1 year ago, said...

I do have something good to say, that others may not understand or believe. Shortly after my Mom died, my father gave me her wedding/engagement ring, plus some other rings she loved so much. One, we took off of her as she was dying, as her hands were swelling. I hated that part. Anyway, I put her wedding ring on my little finger; it fit perfect. Ever since that day, my nails started growing. Yes, I could say I did it on purpose because the ring was so pretty. However, my nails are now strong. Until now, I was never able to do this. My Dad gave me 15.00 she had in her purse. I didn't want to take it. He insisted. I said to myself, I'm never going to spend it. Well, something "clicked". I used the 15.00 to get a manicure !!!


over 1 year ago, said...

One thing I have started and because loved ones are spread across country so to say good bye I set up face time to each and everyone my grandson the oldest and grandmas only grandson was first( also on his drive to medical school in North Carolina) when she heard his voice the response was great she even manage a smile! I would recommend this process!! Skip in Utah


over 1 year ago, said...

I understand your pain. My mother passed away when she was just 50 years old. That was many years ago. The years have eased the pain but oh how well I remember those first few months without her. Ask The Lord Jesus to help you through the pain. I promise He will. He says "come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest... Also, I suggest you talk about your feelings with someone who you love and trust. I did not do this and it was much more difficult on me than it needed to be. Be at peace, your mom would want that. Blessings to you dear.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mother went to the hospital on july 11 passed way at 60 years old july 16 seen her the Day before she seemed fine here it is august and her death certificate still says unnown it still Seems unreal its so painful miss and love her so much


over 1 year ago, said...

Thank you for your kind words. I cant look at any pictures yet, without breaking down.....but in time, I will.


over 1 year ago, said...

I keep a handful of happy photos in the nightstand so I can remember my mother the way I want to. Only you and God know what you did for your mother - how you were there when she needed you and helped her through. It takes awhile to get through the grieving process. A good friend who will let you talk and cry helps. Take as much time as you need and one day, you will get back to the things you like to do.


over 1 year ago, said...

Mom passed on 6/20/14. I'm having such a hard time dealing with it. I have crying spells 5 or 6 times a day. She was at home, on Hospice, but I'm the one who took care of her until the end, turned her, changed her, gave her medicine. She died in pain. I can't seem to get these thoughts out of my mind. Her tired sickly look, her moaning when we turned her, her opening one eye.(I don't know why only one eye) I'm not sleeping well. I'm not doing things I liked to do, because she is the one who influenced me to enjoy music, and reading. I can't do it. I have a doctor, I will tell her; but I just wanted to get this off my chest. Bless all of you.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hello, I know what you are going thru. My mother just fell and is in rehab for breaking her hip. She has had dementia and cancer for several years. I have seen my mother deteriorate for a long tome and wished God would pick his flower many times. I have been reminded that her passing is in Gods good time and not mine or hers. That keeps me humble and puts a new light on it for me. It is out of my hands and in His. It still doesn't make it any easier.


over 1 year ago, said...

My dad is on hospice and dying a horrible and painful death. Hospice keeps increasing his meds but does not control the pain. His feet are rotten and legs are swollen. He now has sepsis and is hanging on. He is confused and combative. He refuses to go to a hospital and wants to dye at home. He is suffering and I do not understand why he is still here. Last night he developed a cough. Just when I think it is time for him to go, he wakes up and is demanding. Everyone is exhausted. Prayers to all of you who lost a loved one. I wish my dad would just go in peace. This has been going on for over a month.


over 1 year ago, said...

Mom died about 3 weeks ago. I cry every day. She was on Hospice. I feel very guilty and angry because I don't know why she died. She had Rheumatoid Arthritis, but one doesn't die from that. She did stop eating, and the Home Health Nurse said she was dying. They said she would need a feeding tube, (which I know she wouldn't like), and "probably" they couldn't rehab her to walk again. (she went downhill to bedridden). My thoughts are, what if she could have been rehabbed ? I feel guilty that I didn't give her a chance first. Also, she died in a lot of pain, despite being of Hospice. I hope I can come to terms with this; or the guilt and pain will last forever I'm afraid.


over 1 year ago, said...

My dad passed away last night and I feel so conflicted. I am sad about his sudden death, but also relieved due to things that happened in my childhood that I have never been able to forgive him for. I feel like a terrible person.


over 1 year ago, said...

To the end, sometimes as the end if life gets closer there will be a spurt energy that can last hours to days where the person will want to get out of bed, eat, and visit with family.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mom seemed to be having most of the signs of "end of life" accoring to hospice nurse. Then suddenly is awake, talking, eating a little, watching tv! This is the second day. What is this about?


over 1 year ago, said...

Take all the time you need. Let everything take care of itself while you pause. Do you have someone to lean on?


over 1 year ago, said...

My dear husband passed away early this morning in his sleep. My heart went with him.


over 1 year ago, said...

Many of the accounts here suggest that when a beloved person is slow to die we survivors may perhaps begin to wean ourselves from emotional dependency on that person, rather than hang on and defer the end. IMHO, we cannot benefit that person by extending their lives -- what is their quality of life, barely conscious or in pain in a hospital bed? -- but we can comfort them and do what we can to help make them physically comfortable in whatever time remains to them in this world.


over 1 year ago, said...

PS Lynda, I am financial guardian for my Aunt in Florida but she has a healthcare guardian in the city where she lives who can make better decisions more quickly.


over 1 year ago, said...

Lynda, your client is lucky to have you advocating for her. I have a friend who is in a similar position as yours. She does companion care for several clients, some with dementia, some with relatives in other states. I asked her for thoughts/opinions regarding your dilemma and she said, "She needs to get someone else to legally take over for medical and financial care if possible. I am not sure if a state ombudsman is the way to go. It would help to know where this is taking place." Is this helpful?


over 1 year ago, said...

My dilemma is I have taken care of a lady with Alzheimer's for about 8 1/2 years. Her step- daughter lives in another state and has guardianship over her and pays her bills. The lady with AD was wealthy at one point, but I don't know about now. I know she receives a pension as her late husband was in the Navy. Her step-daughter did not do much until it really became apparent that she could no longer stay in her home. I worked for an agency that provided CNA;s for doing home care for seniors. I became like a daughter to her as she had no one else. She did have a neighbor that tried to help but she became very overwhelmed and called my agency. I am an honest caring dependable CNA and never took advantage of this lady and never would. She came to depend on me for everything. When her sewer backed up into her house, my company would do nothing, when she had spoiled food in the fridge, I cleaned it out as my company would not do anything, even calling the daughter. When the roof was caving in and the house was no longer safe, I finally was able to contact the daughter thru the neighbor and we were able to get her moved to a facility. At least this lady would be getting her meds and food on a regular basis and she would be safe. She would constantly lose things, money, keys, dentures, glasses, the cat, medicines, and other things she said were "stolen": I didn't have any training on Alzheimer's so I bought all the books, talked to doctors and looked for anything I could find regarding this damn disease. The daughter wanted me to continue to see her and paid me a monthly salary. I was responsible for getting her out for outings, as well to doctors appointments and dentist appointments to make sure her stepmom's life was a good one. This lady is a dear soul and the step daughter has seen her once in approximately 7 years, After about 4 years in that facility, the facility said they had to move her as she was "wandering. I honestly did not believe that she was as she would not leave her cat. Sill the facility decided to place her in another facility where it was strictly an Alzheimer's facility. Here, I was to keep seeing her as her Alzheimer's was still not too bad, to where she still enjoyed getting out and doing things like shopping and eating and going for ice cream. She had a nice apartment and there were days when she didn't like the place and wanted to get out. Her behavior began to change and the facility requested that her doctor prescribe some meds to calm her down especially when she was "sundowning" and becoming agitated. It continued to become worse, and the facility was becoming more and more hostile to me, even though I was there to see the step mom of this daughter.( the daughter is a lawyer in a different state) I went to see her one afternoon and she hadn't come down for dinner. No one checked on her, so I went to find her. She was in her apartment with the lights off and was in bed moaning in pain, I tried to check on her when she became very combative and I ran for the front desk to tell them to get me an ambulance! The nurse and the director starting discussing who would be the cheapest service they could use to get her to the hospital. I was furious!! Finally we got to the hospital, where it was determined that she had a major hear attack. I stayed with her in the hospital and kept the step daughter informed. The hospital had no idea of how to handle an Alzheimer's patient and one who was verbally and physically combative. She seemed to know who I was and would calm down for me. She stopped eating, drinking and became very agitated when ever they tried to do any type of care. I pleaded, begged, and screamed at doctors and nurses when they did things she would go wild at and didn't understand. She tried to get up and couldn't remember how. She tried to put a foley catheter out and screamed obscenities at everyone, not to mention, hitting clawing, kicking and what ever else she could do. The step-daughter had a DNR on her mother which I agreed with. This went on for weeks. She was on oxygen but kept taking that off. There was several times where she was so close to respiratory arrest and there was nothing I could do. Finally, they were going to send her back to the assisted living because the people from the assisted living said she could. I disagreed with them and so did the ambulance people that was suppose to transport her back to the assisted living. "It was against their better judgement that she not be put back in that place and refused to take her there. She ended up in a rehab place that had "skilled" nursing, (In this case and LPN with CNA;s with an occasional nurse on call. 
 My lady looked like every breath could be her last! She stopped eating, drinking but still would become very physical and combative when anyone tried to do care. I saw her regular doctor and he said she should be in hospice as she continued the downward spiral. I talked to the facility and they said she would not meet their requirements and would not allow a hospice nurse in to see her. This continued for two weeks, where she had totally quit eating, and drinking and stopped wearing her oxygen. She was losing weight at a rapid rate. They said she had a UTI and needed antibiotics and would give them to her by IV. I kept asking for a hospice nurse but they said she was not going to meet their requirements and they would not allow a hospice nurse in to elvaluate her. I had finally had enough and told them, I wanted a hospice nurse to tell me that she wouldn't quailify! I had set up a visit from a hospice nurse to visit later that day. There she was in a recliner chair hooked up to a bag of d5w (normal saline with dextrose) which was against protocol for a DNR patient according to the hospice nurse. The fluids came off and she got the rest of the fluids with a normal saline drip, But everyday she continued to decline to where she was in that state where she was talking to imaginary people and talking to her parents,(deceased) and to others that had been deceased for a long time. 
 They finally put her on another floor, because of her medicare ran out? Was what I was told and hospice took over in the facility. This became a time where every day, you would see every breath as her last. How this lady could survive this was really astounding to the staff and everyone else. I was the only person to continue to visit and try to get her to eat or drink something. I would bring up her cat to visit until the nurse told me that it would get her so upset that she would try walking to find the cat. She has had so many falls trying to walk, and now the facility is trying to make her walk, so they can tire her out, they want me to bring her up shoes. 
 Now the step daughter said that she doesn't know me anymore and that I should wean myself off from her and limit my time with her from 15 to 20 minutes a month. Apparently, I am at a loss as to what to do. The stepdaughter wants to move her back to the assisted living place where she can not take care of herself and I really disagree with that. Now, she seems like she is rebounding and the step daughter is upset because this woman is not dead. Now, she is gaining weight and eating and drinking. She is still having falls and very odd behavior and hospice a re-certified her for about another 90 days. I have been an advocate for this lady and others in similar circumstances and am at a loss of how to handle this. Suggestions would be welcome.


over 1 year ago, said...

I'm like super tired for like a 3 days now my eyes burn cause of it and i have been so paranoid and I don't know what's going on I have been getting sleep good and everything


over 1 year ago, said...

I don't know why but it seems like a lot of people pass away around the holidays. I think it's different for everyone. The doctors insist they can manage pain, so James you may have to advocate strongly for your brother to insist he get what he needs. Sometimes you can enroll in hospice care even if you aren't at a hospice location. Jane4204, my prayers are with you and your husband.


over 1 year ago, said...

My husband came home from the hospital on 7/2/14 on hospice. He has congestive heart failure and kidney failure. He hasn't eaten since 7/2/14. He's only had sips of juice and water the last four days.
 
 Yesterday the hospice nurse switched his medications to liquids to make it easier for him to swallow.
 He sleeps constantly, but he will say a word or two if I ask him a question. When his eyes are open he stares at the ceiling. The nurse said he's in transition now.
 
 He is catheritized, and the small amount of urine he produces is very dark.
 His feet and arms are swollen. His elbows have been seeping for a month, so it's very difficult to keep the bed dry.
 Prior to this, he was an inpatient for 89 days, in a hospital and then a rehab center. Every doctor gave me a different prognosis, anywhere from a few days to six months, which just proves the doctors don't know!
 
 He's been bedridden for two weeks now. I just sit and watch him breathe. We celebrated our 34th wedding anniversary last month. 
 Congestive heart failure is a long, slow, terrible way to die.
 All I can do is pray that he's at peace.
 
 


over 1 year ago, said...

My brother Russ is fighting to survive with Lung , Lymphnodes , Brain cancer. I drove up to Pittsburgh from Florida almost 3 weeks ago and have been with with him since my arrival. He sleeps most of the time and shows signs of pain often. He had been in Forbes Hospice for 2 months however close to 2 weeks after I arrived they transferred him to a nursing home where they do not provide as close care to him as the Hospice had. Their reason for moving him was that his medical would no longer cover him to be at Forbes Hospice. I do not believe what was done was correct.


over 1 year ago, said...

When my Grandmother died three months ago, the first thing she did when diagnosed with Sarcoma, was come up with these weird cravings. This lasted for 4 months and in her last couple weeks she ate absolutely nothing. Whenever I went to visit her she was always asleep. That is all she did. Sleep. At certain moments the medicine she was on made her loopy and her first couple days in hospice after the tumor ruptured she was very energetic. But then slept more and more. The pain in her legs got so bad that she couldnt walk, also due to the size of the tumor. When in hospice, she was always in bed. The first couple days, she went outside and sat in the garden outside her room. But that changed in the last couple days. When diagnosed, the lack of oxygen definitely confused her. She kept talking about the most random things and forgetting who was who. Since she had the sarcome, she never breathed the same. She skipped breaths, had shallow ones, had spurs of very fast breathing and spurs of extremely slow breathing. On her last day, I couldnt be there, so a family member put her phone up to the ear and I could hear her fade away with each breath and then eventually there were none at all. To begin with, my Grandmother was never a very social person, but she always talked to me, my cousins, my father, my mother, my uncle, my aunt, my other grandmother, my brother, and the brother who was always there for her. She would tell us everything. We were her inner circle. The last time I talked to her, we had a pretty good conversation and she just got bored. It was heartbreaking. When she was put in hospice, my Grandmother had a catheder put in. She couldnt control anything. The last hug my Grandmother gave me was one with swollen hands. When she was sleeping I always held her hand and talked. I know she could still hear me. But she never responded by talking. But I was talking to her and holding her swollen hand and she squeezed my hand as if she sensed something, but, her finger tips were ice cold and I flinched and I scared her. It was a very strange sensation And the last hug I gave her, she was unconcious, but her hands wrapped around my waist and she gave me a weak hug, but her hands were rough and dry and felt like ash. And her gown was extremely see through, the tumor was purple and the veins on her legs were somewhat popped out. It was a chilling mental picture.


over 1 year ago, said...

For the young lady who's father has COPD: I do not know where you live but I am in Houston, Texas and have had my mother evaluated for the Lung Volume Reduction Coils. Please look it up as it is for people with severe emphysema. I have spoken with a man who had it done. For 5 years he was unable to shower and the day after the procedure on ONE lung he was able to shower by himself. They will only do one of and once healed do the other. Tim Connolly is the first to do the procedure in Texas but it is being studied in all major medical centers. If you pursue the procedure be certain it is the COILS... There are other similar studies of long volume reduction going on but without much success and somtimes making things worse. Look it up, study it as best you can, and show your father. Best wishes and God Bless.


over 1 year ago, said...

Stay encouraged~


over 1 year ago, said...

I want to thank all of prayed for my Dad. He has lost his battle of lung liver and brain cancer on Friday, June 13, 2014. I am Ok. My dad is no longer suffering and is resting in paradise with God.
 
 -Chanel


over 1 year ago, said...

COPD is emphysema and/or chronic bronchitis. It is treatable but each stage involves more effort to breathe and do the simple things. It isn't necessarily a death sentence. Please read: http://www.healthline.com/health/copd/end-stage-copd I'm assuming he has some medicine/tools to help him breathe. Sleeping would probably be a relief. Hallucinations and confusion can come with the end of life but also for different reasons. 
 http://www.hospicefoundation.org/deathsigns


over 1 year ago, said...

My daddy has COPD and he has been in the hospital 4 times this year and just over the past week he has told me that he is not going to be here much longer and for the past 3 days all he has done is sleep and he is getting a little confused and seeing things that are not there do you think a person knows when the end is coming


over 1 year ago, said...

My daddy is really sick he had COPD and he keeps telling me that he isn't going to be here much longer and for the past 3 days all he has done is sleep do you think a person knows when the end is near ??


over 1 year ago, said...

Well I sometimes wonder if life can get any worse and then it does.
 mum had a fall yest and broke her hip and was flown to melb for an opp and now i dont know if she will pull through


over 1 year ago, said...

Shouldnt blood pressure and heart rate drop and become weak, and oxygen level low when close to death? Why would it improve when doctor predicted death 3 days ago and vital signs improve


over 1 year ago, said...

Dear 14, just because you have the symptoms, doesn't mean you have it. Go get a check up, don't play doctor with yourself. I have chest pains (which most would associate with a heart attack) but it's actually due to severe allergies. Only have them when I'm having an allergy attack and the doctors have checked it out. There could be a different underlying cause.


over 1 year ago, said...

Thanks for that advise sickmyself hospice is involved atm but im not sure if there is very much that they can do to help her. i made contact with her doctor yest and she asked me if mum has all her afairs in order which is something that she has NEVER said b4. 
 Sometimes she seems normal and sometimes she doesnt. Im just in a way wishing that things would move faster. This prob sounds REAL NASTY but she is in sooooo much pain that I wish it would stop so that she can be free from it all. I HATE seing my mum in this much pain that I can not do a simple thing to help her. 
 Thanks again. Sorry for the winge.


over 1 year ago, said...

Kiwiklyie Please call in Hospice.  She needs to be bathed.  They will help you mote than you can imagine!  ((HUGS)) for you  , for Mom.... they are tremendous support, have knowledge of every little detail and are the most loving and compassionate people in the medical industry.  Don't do this alone.  And yes, respect her wishes to stay home.  The hospital setting is very UPSETTING.  She will get through her journey so much better with the peace and comfort of her own home and atmosphere. Please keep us updated....


over 1 year ago, said...

I went through this with my father whom passed away
 due to Alzheimer, as well as being with other family members and
 friends, So I do know the signs of dying What I have a problem with is how dose anyone really know that the dying person dose not suffer from all the phlegm I could not stand when this part comes and my dad was the worst of all it sounded like he was drowning and hospice told me he was not in any discomfort from it but I still kelp cleaning it out with long q tips because I just knew he was in stress from it ,So how do they know that the dying person is not in distress ???? Thank you for having this site it is very helpful


over 1 year ago, said...

Good info. for people to have. In traditional joint families such things were well know and also seen many times. However, now in modern life syles we need to be told.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hi I am after some advice.. My mum has quite a few problems but over the past few days things have gotten weird she is very hard to wake and she is doing things that do not seem right to me. She doesnt want to go to the hospital so I am trying to respect what she want. Her skin has started to have a funny sort of smell and it isnt a nice smell. She is saying that I have said things that I infact havnt said. I am not sure if it is nearly at the end for her but something is telling me that its not right. I dont know what to do.


over 1 year ago, said...

My grandmother fell and broke her right arm and hip in Aug of 2002. After a few days in the hospital the dr pulled us aside and said they couldnt do anymore for her. They then sent her to a rehab facility(nursing home). My mother refused to leave her alone. During this time my boyfriend and i fixed up the back room of our house for when she was released. We brought her home and hospice came daily to help with her bathing etc. Everybody stayed close to the house. My children came to her bedside several times a day. She was blind and deaf but she knew who was there. Then she faded. Not quickly. She just became quiet and slept. On the night she died, everyone had been there all day. She had briefly opened her eyes and was speaking to her mother and her sister. But now she was deep in sleep again. I was sitting with her. My mother was doing the dishes. I leaned over and told her, "i love you. Please dont leave me". Because she was such a big part of who i was as a woman, mother and person. In the moment it was selfish and i am ashamed. But right after i said that she sat straight up and looked directly at me. Her eyes were clear and the look told me," im sorry, but i have to go". It scared me so badly then but as ive dealt with that moment i felt so happy that she had chosen me to have that final moment with.


over 1 year ago, said...

My Mom is experiencing all symptoms except the coolness of the fingers and toes,the mottled veins and swelling of feet and ankles. She's suffered breast cancer where she was in remission but it returned full force to the brain and bones. Doctors gave her 2 weeks to 2 months in November 2013, and it's now June 2014. In God's time. I'm thankful, and thank YOU for this information.


over 1 year ago, said...

I hope I die painlessly and when I am supposed to (like preferrably in old age if I can help it). I'm only 30 now and I don't intend to pass anytime soon, but it's still good to know.... Thank you for this.


over 1 year ago, said...

Scary but good to know!


over 1 year ago, said...

I appreciate your article. It help me mentally, due to finding my dad deceased in his apartment. I now realize the symptoms that wasn't .knowledgeable to me at the time. I have accepted my dad was ready to go home to be with the lord so I don't greive. Every meal and beverage I prepared for him that weekend, was still sitting on his kitchen table as I left it and in the refrigerator. All my dad input in his system was a bottle of water and cranberry juice to flush and cleans his system. If you're an islandler you probably would understand that part more so. again thaks.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mother is suffering from rend stage renal cancer and Alzheimer's. She has developed a problem with the big toe on one of her feet. The toe nail is extremely thick, and basically looks rotten. It is very painful and the pain extends up to her hip whether I touch it or not. Could she possibly have developed some type of gangrene? If I had to guess, I would say the thickness of that toenail is a half inch at the highest point. No one seems to be concerned about it since she has other more pressing issues. I am at peace with the fact that she will die soon from the cancer, but I do not want her to suffer! At this point, I believe that toe will cause her to die before the cancer will especially if it has developed an infection.


over 1 year ago, said...

that's weird I stopped eating for no good reason but though it would because I weigh to much


over 1 year ago, said...

Thank you for this article. It's been a year since I loss my Mom and everything that was mentioned was so very true. It tore me up seeing her like that. I thank God I and my brother were there until the end. She knew we were and it wasn't until the last day when she stopped responding to us. I'm crying just talking about it. Thank you so much.


over 1 year ago, said...

I noticed someone was giving their loved one "Ensure". Be sure to give them plenty of water afterwards or phlegm will build up in their throat. Water with a bit of Lemon Juice helps clear the throat.


over 1 year ago, said...

Barring access to those wonderful green sponges for giving water, a soft bristled old worn out toothbrush with matted bristles will act as a water delivery device. It gives sufficient water to moisten the mouth without choking the patient. That's what I used before hospice was called in. Watered down baby food can be given when they forget how to chew.


over 1 year ago, said...

CHANELH my prayers are with you. It must be difficult not to be there in person but your calling everyday is really good for him. Is he alert? Any possibility to skype? Maybe just to see one another would help minimize the distance.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hello everyone! First I would like to say God bless the author of this article as it has been very informative. I pray that everyone who is suffering the loss of a loved one be comforted and know that GOD is preparing them for paradise. I too, am loosing my dad right now as I type this message. He is dying of Lung, liver and brain cancer. What makes it difficult for me is not being able to get to Louisiana to see him. I call everyday so he can hear my voice as well as my son's voice. I pray with and for him so that he can know that its ok to let go.


over 1 year ago, said...

thank you so much to Paula Spencer Scott, for this article. it is very helpful to me in understanding this "end of life stage." many blessings....


over 1 year ago, said...

Hospice provided us with the green oral swabs and a gel oral cleanse with added moisturuser. Be sure to keep mouth lip area clean with a were washcloth and vasaline as it gets terribly dry. I am so sorry you are going thru this. Remember - comfort is key... It is the hardest yet most honorable thing we can do for our loved one. Big hugs to you from Florida!


over 1 year ago, said...

I had of giving Mom ice and the nurse suggested not for reasons of aspirating and/it a choking spell which would have been horrible for her!


over 1 year ago, said...

Ice could even be trouble. I would recommend the oral care with those green foam sticks. Frequent cleansing of the mouth will keep it moist.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hospice thought of things we didn't. I glad they were there. Has anyone suggested ice for people having difficulty swallowing water?


over 1 year ago, said...

Gosh, I hope all of you out there are getting help through Hospice. I had them on board 6 months with me. Could NOT have done it without them!


over 1 year ago, said...

To Anonymous, possibly the end is nearing. Having difficulty swallowing is not good. She could aspirate. You might be advised to withhold. And yes, it is heartbreaking to watch a decline which seems like forever. Whether it be a result of the medicine or lack of, the truth is, it is going to happen, sooner or later. My thoughts, as difficult as it was to let my Mom go, I needed to allow the process and ask myself why would we want to prolong her suffering. Mom's last intake was Wednesday or Thursday the end of January and last awake Jan 23 (was heavily mediated). She passed 1230 am the following Tuesday. Mom's suffering has ended. Mine unfortunately is still very present. I need to go to bereavement counseling. I thought I would handle her loss better than what I am. Have been abnormally dysfunctional, tired, depressed, etc. Filled with an overwhelming sense of grief. I think it is different when you are a caregiver and have the loss. Mom was my life over the last 4 years and that didn't stop when she passed. My everyday thoughts are of her. I've lost my sense of being and desperately need help getting out of my own head.


over 1 year ago, said...

hospice took my mom off namenda a month ago and she has declined to the point of no food intake and difficulty swallowing. We can get some boost and a few ounces of water in her most days. Some family members feel removing the namenda has caused this rapid decline. I don't know how to respond. Also am wondering how long can she live on limited fluids. It is heartbreaking to watch her struggle to swallow. She holds her hand to her mouth and pretends to drink often-her urine output is tea colored and very low amount. Defintely end stage alzheimers, but is her inablility to swallow common and is it signaling to us that the end may be near?


over 1 year ago, said...

To the three women who left messages in the last 10 days, bless you for being there for your mom. You have given her the greatest gift - your time. To Ihavethegreatestmom, 56 is much too young to die. I hope you have family to lean on, especially an older woman. To help1969, if you mother is on morphine and sleeping all the time, I would leave her where she is and try to find a place to stay nearby so you can spend some time with her. She is transitioning. To anonymous, I would insist on answers from the doctor and look into home hospice. They have good ideas for keeping her comfortable, timing, etc. To entice her to eat, keep foods simple, small portions, easy to eat. God bless you all.


over 1 year ago, said...

My mother has cancer of unknown primary that spread to her lymph nodes on her neck. I brought her to live with me. For the past two weeks she really has no interest in food. She will drink a boost but takes all day to drink it. She is 77 when I moved her here she has 80 pounds I got her up to 100 now she is 77 pounds. I asked the doctor her prognosis he would not answer me.


over 1 year ago, said...

and I thought depression was all I had wrong with me.....lol


over 1 year ago, said...

Hi my mother is iam told dying any day.she is with her boyfriends home on hospices. I want to bring her to our place they want her with him he is on hospices to .shes on moriphjne and othrs all she does is sleep .should i move her or let her sray 50 miles away .I might not be there when she goes. Different nurses say different things yes she may go. Others sau not now what should i do k


over 1 year ago, said...

Right here with my momma know listening to her labored breathing, pray for and my family, shes leaving us to soon, 56 and dying of breast cancer spread.


over 1 year ago, said...

to dovechick: 3. Increased physical weakness
 A decline in food intake and lack of energy leads to less energy, even for activities like lifting one's head or shifting in bed. The person may even have difficulty sipping from a straw.
 How to respond: Focus on keeping the person comfortable.


over 1 year ago, said...

it was helpful for being prepared for what may happen, which would help one to remain calm and to respond appropriately.


over 1 year ago, said...

For those of you still caregiving, cherish the moments. Although it seems never ending and exhausting, you will wish for more time when it's over. Take care of yourself along the way with proper rest and nutrition and quality time, even just holding hands, when you can. I miss my Mom terribly and wish I had just one more day with her.


over 1 year ago, said...

Thanks Rosa, I did work that out but I can't see number 3... the next page starts with number 4. I know it is trivial maybe in view of what other people are posting, but I am interested. My mother in law (age 89) died recently and my mother is 92 and may die soon. It helps to be prepared for all our sakes.


over 1 year ago, said...

Hello,
 If you are looking to continue the article beyond step two, look above the statement "Was this article helpful?" and you will see the page numbers. To continue reading the article click on "Next Page". Hope that helps.


over 1 year ago, said...

Sad face, I'm guessing your mother has passed and you are dealing with it. For those who are helping a loved one "day and night" for such a long period as a month or more, you need to get help for yourself. You need breaks such as exercise and fresh air to remain effective and remind yourself about living, as you will need to go on. 
 
 ivebeenthruit, you sound depressed. Go to a doctor and get yourself checked out. Then eat heathy, exercise and find something that engages you and gives you a reason to live.


over 1 year ago, said...

I can't find number 3.


over 1 year ago, said...

Sometimes being a compassionate caregiver it is hard to see the dying of your patient, like asking for something wet their mouth, holding your hand instead of their family members, so hard to accept!!! ;(


over 1 year ago, said...

Dying patient always ask either water, ice cream, water Mellon, as they felt the drying effect just because their tongue can't produce saliva to moisture their esuphagus,


almost 2 years ago, said...

I held my mommy's hand and hugged her and then she was gone.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Editing my comment - Assurance wipes non irritating and refreshing......


almost 2 years ago, said...

My Mom could not make it to the bathroom anymore. At that point we opted for a catheter. It made it so much easier on her. Also less skin breakdown and irritation. BMs, roll on side with a chuck and paper towels to catch. Remove easily and wash up with a little soapy water and cleansing cloths. Walmart has the best cloths - Assurance. They are in the adult diaper section. Large, irritating and presenting.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Anonymous caregiver.....is he involved in hospice


almost 2 years ago, said...

For the one whose grandma can't make it to the bathroom in time, use the Depends (adult diapers...) when it is most a problem (night time or day...). You will have to change them, but it will contain the spillage so you won't have to change clothes or clean couches or carpets. My grandfather used them for the last two years of his life and made him much more confident and less anxious of "accidents".


almost 2 years ago, said...

really purposefull as regards human growth and development lectures


almost 2 years ago, said...

I am not afraid of death. Ii is more of the hardship, grief, in separating from the ones we love! The loss of an infant, child, teen, young adult, or the beauty of wisdom past from the seniors to the next of kin. It is comforting to know we all must do this. It stands to reason that we should all do it in the most loving and dignified way. It shouldn't matter if your the one leaving, or left behind...be courageous for one another, lots of love, forgiveness, and don't forget we are spiritual beings. Preparation is needed for the soul too! I've witness my mother passing from leukemia; by her side saying goodbye, praying out loud for her... Like freeing a bird, when she took her last breath! (We leave our body, and enter our third stage of life) May we all be blessed in finding beauty or joy, despite how tragic loss of life is...hope, faith, and sensing a loved one after they are gone is beautiful.


almost 2 years ago, said...

To ivebebthruit - - Sweetheart, you don't wait until it's too late... you know what to do but I'll say it anyway, GO TO THE DOCTOR!


almost 2 years ago, said...

i am 29 years old and i feel a lot of these symptoms and have not been to the doctor in over 3 years i am overweight and not really healthy at all. I keep thinkiong there other things like i have looked at symptoms for diabetes and heart failure kidney failure and i have at least 5 of all the symptoms of everything that i looked up and i am to scared to go to the doctors what do i do


almost 2 years ago, said...

i have herd the death rattle any body else


almost 2 years ago, said...

My mother is on her last stage it's been a month since she had solids. Now she's not taking any liquids. She's sleeping a lot. She knows I am her daughter and the other kids as well. There are times when she will say few words. I lover her and I am finding it hard. I am with her day and night


almost 2 years ago, said...

Wow. I saw these sign in my mom for a while. Wish I know thid


almost 2 years ago, said...

After my parent died, I found a pamphlet from hospice that I wish I had seen before detailing the process of dying in the last two weeks. Although you want your loved one to eat, they don't want/need to make physical energy as their body transitions. They move in/out of consciousness. Your concerns are not their concerns. They are aware of you. Use this time for physical contact and love.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Two comments:
 If a loved one is on oxygen at home, make sure they are getting enough. We didn't know her concentrator wasn't big enough until she went in the hospital.
 
 The best any of us can hope for is someone to help us through the process of dying - just being there and holding our hands. Blessed are the people who are there paying attention.


almost 2 years ago, said...

My grandmother is getting close to 80 and has multiple of these signs, im her emergency contact im only 20 and when i spoke to the rest of my family they all said shes not doing good with everything she has going on. Shes tired alot, even though shes on oxygen she still breathes heavy, the past couple weeks shes been weak and hasnt been making it to the bathroom in time. The thing that concerns me most is she seems to have just given up on life. Is there anything i can do to make this easier?


almost 2 years ago, said...

Very helpful. When a person is dying they are not interested in "perking up" or being asked "aren't you happy to see me"?. Attempts to engage them can leave the caregiver frustrated, anxious and even annoyed. My mother is 101 years old and wants to sleep a lot, her only release from the effort of "living". She can't see well enough to read, can't hear well enough to listen to music or the radio or tv, doesn't enjoy food and has a hard time even walking. I believe sleep is God's way of easing the path to eternity.


almost 2 years ago, said...

my husband is going from some of the signs listed above.its very TOUGH ..........but thanks for the information.


almost 2 years ago, said...

This is very helpful. Wish I would have known before my Dad's similar situation.


almost 2 years ago, said...

More detail


almost 2 years ago, said...

@holly89 Id give your fiancé my health in a heartbeat if I could. No lie. Sounds like someone who actually deserves to live. I'm so sorry you are going through this my prayers are with you both.. they say everything happens for a reason you both love each other and doing the best you can hang in there and take care of him and yourself don't forget that.. God bless you both.


almost 2 years ago, said...

I work at an assisted living facility and there is an 87 year old woman there now almost ready to go home. I am so heartbroken and angry because her family decided to let her spend her final days alone. The person that is dying can still hear you and they are aware even when they are in the "coma"! When we go in to check on her I talk to her and hold her hand and I'll put my hand on her head. When I hold her hand I can feel her try to squeeze my hand. She's still in there. I just can't believe there are people like that in this world, who are living their lives while their loved one is dying in a room all alone. What a joy this woman was. She had me and a few other CNAs laughing our butts off just three days ago. She was such a character and I will never forget her. Please send prayers her way, since there's no one there holding her hand and spending time with her in her final moments. Thank you.


almost 2 years ago, said...

My mom is 97,has late stage dementia,& all 10 signs listed above.I feel guilty that I loose my patience with her,your ten signs is definitely a help in understanding her needs & what to expect. Thank-You Andrea Brown


almost 2 years ago, said...

My mom is 88 and has many of these things on the list. She has lost her will to live, wont see a Dr, etc. She was coughing a lot this morning, and there was green in her tissue...is this normal?


almost 2 years ago, said...

Marshmello, Linda, how beautiful you are there for her and full the void of the family members absence. It truly is a gift to both of you! God bless you for loving her and yes, she loves you for it!!!!!!


almost 2 years ago, said...

I have a lady who has Alzheimers and is in the last stages before death. Reading your articles makes it alittle easier to know what I've been doing is right, Unfortunatly, the family doesn't want to be there, I have taken their place and will continue to do so until she passes. I've known this lady for 8 years and have been like family to her, when she recently told me "I love you", it made a huge difference for me, and I feel like more of a daughter to her, than the step daughters that are not here to share her last days. I understand the daughters feelings, but I stil want to be there for this lady. though the eight years, we have been together, she has laughed and had some wonderful times with me. I think, even with the Alzheimer's, laughter and fun will be something I always remember and was so glad I was able to share in her life. I will miss her but her journey will begin and her pain will end. This will truley be a blessing. Linda M


almost 2 years ago, said...

This phone changes words! I typed 'her' and it changed to jerk...... many times. Frustrating!!!


almost 2 years ago, said...

No offense to you Englishgirl. I was referring to my situation with my mother who was in complet fear and wouldn't talk about it. When I finally approached the subject it allowed us an opportunity to talk and for Mom to not feel like she was facing death alone in her own mind and thoughts. I was able to ask jerk what her wishes were etc. Mom did not like to talk about the "uncomfortable" subjects. Maybe she thought she was protecting me from being upset. Was just relating to my personal experience. We spoke once, then continued on with our regular tv programs, etc. Within a few days she shut down and prepared herself to leave us. Had I not approached her and given her my acceptance and allow Mom to express certain things she would only think about, it would have not been good for either of us.


almost 2 years ago, said...

When I said "don't talk about dying", I mean don't bring up the topic every five seconds. He is welcome to bring up the subject, but don't start the "my friend says you have a 20% chance of surviving" or "I don't know what I'm going to do when you are dead" sort of conversations. He knows he's sick and could die. If all you talk about is death, he can't live during the time he may have left. I have seen it done both ways. My aunt planned her own funeral and it was beautiful, but while she was dying, she also lived life to the fullest. My other aunt was sheltered from family and friends while she was dying and her decline was long and painful. They didn't allow her to be alive while she still was and all they talked about was her impending doom. I finally got to see her when it was obvious that death would occur in the next couple days. We talked about my flower garden and the furry little animals that eat it. She said I was the first person who didn't feel the need to commiserate with her about her impending death ("I'm so sorry you're dying" one of her friends gushed, she told me) and just treated her as a living human being. If he wants to talk, feel free to talk, but don't be the Purple Elephant in the room tromping on him. Don't pile personal fears onto him. He has enough weight to carry on his own. You can tell him you're scared too, but don't do it in a way where he will feel he's at fault (gauge whether you can do this or not - if you can't, it's better to be silent than to lay guilt upon him).


almost 2 years ago, said...

Holly, I am so sad for you. It is a difficult position for both of you to be in. Sounds like he is angry and withdrawing. Stay by him even if he pushes you away. It sounds like if he is scheduled to start chemo the doctors have hope. Certainly question them as to whether he is strong enough. I'm sure they will be frank with you. Englishgirl said not to talk about dying. I am not sure we should not talk about the purple elephant in the room. If he is actually on a decline, he needs to be free to express his thoughts. If he is showing signs of anger or fear isn't it best to be honest and talk things out? Bottling our thoughts up inside can be very unhealthy. My thoughts are to encourage strength is that is his will, but is a another realistic side if this situation where you both need to have peace. I had a talk with my Mom and am glad I did. Although looking back I don't think we said enough. Bwing honest can ease the tension. If he appears afraid, its okay to say you know, you're scared too. And then you can give him encouraging word if hope. But I think you have to talk about both sides of the coin. Have faith in the process either way. I know your heart is aching, and I am sorry you are both going through this. It is hard to deal with on both ends. Just show love and support. Please take care of yourself through this. ((Hugs)) Denise


almost 2 years ago, said...

Holly,
 Typo: DO NOT talk about how sick he is or that he might be dying...
 English Girl


almost 2 years ago, said...

Oh Holly! I'm so sorry! I will pray for your fiancé. Cancer is a very hard battle to win, even when the besieged is cooperating. Check with the doctors and see if you can switch out a drink with electrolytes instead of water. He may be feeling queasy which makes him not want to eat as well. Try gingerbread cookies. They helped the three times my sister went through chemo (ginger settles the stomach naturally and taste good too!). You are correct that loss of appetite is a sign that death may be near, but if he's willing to fight, stick with him and fight too! The reason he might be telling you to leave him is he's afraid that he is hurting you by seeing him this way. It could also be that you are being too needy when he has no energy to deal with it, but that doesn't sound like it's the case. Just being there, doing normal activities: reading, playing cards, crocheting or knitting or sewing (if this is normal for you) without even talking can be helpful. It lets him know that you are there when he needs you. Do talk about how sick he is or that he might die. He already knows that. Talk, instead, about normal life; who you saw that day, new babies, bring cute photos or comics that you think he'd enjoy. Let him know life is out there and it hasn't forgotten about him. Your friends may be afraid to talk to him, for fear of saying the wrong thing. Let them know you understand and if they have a message, you can pass it along and edit out anything that might bother him.
 As to what to say when he says he doesn't want to die: "I know, insert name here, I don't want you to either. Let's do what we can to fight this." You make no promises and tell no lies. Good luck! My prayers are with you both. 
 (From a family full of cancer patients - it's genetic?)


almost 2 years ago, said...

I'm terrified and my heart is breaking into millions of pieces my fiance was diagnosedd with stage 4 cancer a month ago and isnow Iin a nursing home. He has stopped eating and will only drink water I try to beg him to eat and he gets angry he has detached himself from me family and friends he just lays with his eyes closed and always tells me to leave this is killing me Inside but I stay by his side constantly he is supposed to start chemo in 2 weeks but I don't think he will be strong enough to make it through. I already feel like he has began the dying process from what I have read and what I see. I have never known what a broken heart feels like until now..knowing I can't do anything to stop this from happening and trying to find the words to comfort him when he holds my hand and tears run down his face and he tells me he doesn't want to die..what do you say to someone when they say this..


almost 2 years ago, said...

My mother in law is at the last stage of dementia,lost body control ,difficulty in swollowing,lost bowel,bladder contol how should v look after her as it is getting difficult I live in mumbai so no special help is available


almost 2 years ago, said...

Anonymous, did you mean "clicking"? My Mom had a pulsating tongue with a clicking sound. The nurse said she didn't know what it was......


almost 2 years ago, said...

Nothing at this time.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Reminder to all readers... When your loved one passes from a long term illness, don't feel guilty if you sleep through the night without waking or stop feeling anxious. It's because you know they are no longer suffering. Don't second guess your decisions, your gut instincts are usually the correct answer. There is nothing you could do better than what you did for them. Hugs to everyone standing on the cusp of such an event and to those who have lost a loved one, from one who has been there.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Two other signs that may be present right at the end are a pinched nose and a clucking sound. This happened to my husband just before he passed two years ago. The nurses at hospice said they had seen this before. Can't say enough good things about the staff at the hospice.


almost 2 years ago, said...

I totally agree with you, my Mum had a 'funny turn' on Saturday evening gone at the care home where she was and I saw her yesterday morning...all too quickly she has passed into the realm. Last night she passed and I miss her definitely. But thankfully I know she's no longer suffering...RIP Mum xx


almost 2 years ago, said...

my husband had an operation,got a hospital aquired infection and suffered for 5 months. he was in and out of the hospital 5 times 2 times home and then so bad he had to go to nursing homes. was in two different ones and was treated terrible i had to go every day to make sure he was being fed and turned and clean. i spent hours a day there as i still had to work.after his last hospital visit he was sent to hospice.there he was treated with dignity and compassion. it was so peaceful and he looked so content.always clean no smell like nursing homes.they even knew when to tell me to stay the night. i played hymns and held his hand and he passed a few hours later.i certainly recommend a hospice facility.


almost 2 years ago, said...

I am glad that people cannot be put down like animals, humanely or not. While I don't agree with extreme life extending processes (get a "do not resuscitate order"), I learned a great deal while watching my mother die, including the love my father had for my mother. I will forever compare his care for her to any potential mate. I fear euthanasia would make it much too easy for people to "get rid of grandma" because her healthcare costs are eating into their inheritance... (Don't believe it wouldn't happen. I worked at a bank where the children were haranguing grandma about getting out money to buy lunch at a restaurant. "You're wasting out inheritance!" they said in VERY LOUD voices. I walked over to them and quietly said "inheritance is what is leftover after your loved one is deceased. She still has time to spend everything so you don't get it." The president of the bank was standing there also and HE said "and I hope she does". With euthanasia, it is to easy to harass and abuse the elderly into asking for death, even when they are not ready to die, because they feel they have no choice. It's called a slippery slope for a reason.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Watching a loved one die is the hardest thing in a lifetime. Knowing there is nothing you personally can do to stop death is horrible. Them knowing they are dying is a horrible feeling. At least with animals they can be euthanized and those who are sick and dying can humanely be put down. I still wish people could make that decision!


almost 2 years ago, said...

good article


almost 2 years ago, said...

Hospice nurses are Angels on earth. They gave my sister, who died after a fall and who had alzheimers, a dignified death and took so much weight off our shoulders as we waited with her. My wish is that should I have to be sick for a while before death that I can be allowed to die in a hospice clinic. I don't want my family to deal with the body removal process. Everyone has their own thoughts and wishes; and whatever brings comfort is what each of us should do. Blessings, all.


almost 2 years ago, said...

My father's one wish was to never be sent to hospice. Between my mother, neighbor, brother-in-law and sisters, we had it under control. We weren't going to do the one thing he asked us not to do, though he already felt like a burden, though it is never a burden when you WANT to care for someone. The hospice folks were very nice, but we couldn't see doing it that way.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Don't deny yourself the help that hospice can give you. they're not just there when you go to the hospital; they can help you with catheters, chairs, bathing and sponges to clean and moisten your loved one's mouth. Please use hospice, I wish we had called them in sooner. Mom stayed home till the day before she died.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Hospice says most people wait till their loved ones leave the room before they die.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Having this in August of 2013 would've helped a lot. I lost my father to Stage 4 Colon cancer. I watched every step in this happen to him. I can tell you it was harder watching him die for 2 years than anything I have ever been through in my entire life.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Im loosing my uncle to cancer. He was placed on hospice care and the physical change hes done is drastic :( its real sad to see him suffering unable to have a good quality of life :(


almost 2 years ago, said...

My wife has Alzheimer's and death could be months or years away. The article was helpful in suggesting what to say and look for. Man, nothing about this is easy.


almost 2 years ago, said...

Wonderful...thank you very much..


almost 2 years ago, said...

Add one more: When death is near, generally a person's earlobes will 'flip' becoming concave. Some nurses know and have seen this occur.


almost 2 years ago, said...

I'm having a really hard time with thinking hospice is the right thing for anyone. This is so hard on our family


almost 2 years ago, said...

My mother is in her final stages of death as I write this. She has survived 31 days without food and 3 days without water. Today will be the day. Happy Valentine's Day mom, your gift is eternal salvation! The love I have for you has given me more strength than u will ever know. Forever at peace, your daughter ~ Trina Bess Krus


about 2 years ago, said...

my mother is at the end stages of death from Advanced Alzheimers issues. she has been off her feeding tube for 16 days now. NO feeding or IV I never thought she would last this long but she has always been strong willed and no heart issues. How long can a person continue to live without food or liquid?


about 2 years ago, said...

I am dealing with such a situation right now and this gives me some peace knowing what can be expected.


about 2 years ago, said...

Understanding the dying process is very helpful. It was very insightful to know why my dad is experiencing pain in his heels! Now-- I can stop making appointments for the foot specialist:(!


about 2 years ago, said...

Both my in laws and my own parents have passed away and reading this helped understand what we witnessed in their last days and can keep on hand to help our children when we reach that point. Being prepared and knowing what to expect can make this passage much easier.


about 2 years ago, said...

my mother is at hospice since last week from the nursing home. her feeding tube came out once again and the children opted not to put it back in but let nature take its course. my mother is 75 y/o with advance stage of alzheimers. she no longer talks,walks and is bed ridden. she has 6 children and four are local. we sit with her everyday watching and waiting. her jaw has dropped some,her right foot has dropped,and her urine is getting brownish and red looking with very little out put. we pray with her and talk to her but just wait. this is the hardest to just wait for death but we do it willingly and patiently. Cause we don't want her to be alone when it happens. the decision to stop the feeding tube was very hard and difficult for us to do but we loved her just that much!!


about 2 years ago, said...

Im really hoping someone out there can help me. My best friend is in the last stages of MS (Multiple sclerosis). She is bed ridden, has very little movement in her arms and hands although she can still half and half hold her drinking mug. Her bowels dont work at all and wears nappies, she has been like this over the last 2yrs. She was diagnosed 24yrs ago and has worsened to this point, she eats little and drinks fluids (500ml) a day and sometimes during the day. Shes recently started to mix her words up or sluurs wiith her voice occasionally dissapearing, her eyes jump drastically some days, her urine is dark brown. I am not familliar with this, I watch her go backward everyday and its heartbreaking, has anyone been through this same situation before, if so, please could you tell me how am I to prepare myself for the worst as its tearign me apart just to watch her become more helpless, how long does this carry on for, the worst is she has to take short breaths after every 3rd or 4th word.........pls help.


about 2 years ago, said...

Good for my knowledge to share with others


about 2 years ago, said...

I went through most of these processes with my husband when he died. I was unprepared for them, especially when he was talking to those who preceded him in death. It made me feel that he was prepared to see those he'd lost but wanted me to know he loved me even though he was leaving me. I told him I loved him and he said I love you too.


about 2 years ago, said...

My step-mother is in home hospice care. My father is her main caregiver. It's so hard on him. My brother lives an hour away, but I live four hours away. I have two teenagers and my husband and I farm in Wyoming. I had planned on leaving this morning but I can't find it in my heart to leave him alone as I go. It's a very sad situation. I don't know how long my step mother has. She has pulmonary hypertension, is completely need ridden, needs fed. She has a catheter and has terrible bed sores. A hospice nurse comes and changes and baths, but not daily. One person cannot do it alone.


about 2 years ago, said...

Very well written and very easy to understand


about 2 years ago, said...

I lost my 51 year old husband in January 2012 to Renal Cell Carcinoma. He suffered for three years. Surgeries, interluken 2 treatment, chemo, radiation, blood staph and Mursa, from an infection caused by the chemo port. I was by his side through each and every step and wouldn't change a moment of that time. He was my everything! I try to go forward and be happy, but I'm finding it so difficult. I will NEVER forget him, but want to be full of life once again. I wonder if this will ever happen. We were married 18 years and he was the love I never thought I would find. He was funny, loyal, strong and 100% committed to me.


about 2 years ago, said...

It's helpful to be reminded of the signs of the body shutting down. It lessons the panic to know what is the natural process.


about 2 years ago, said...

If a "good death" is as you have written both my parents were fortunate to leave this earth that way. Neither suffered from cancer or alzheimers. Both lived long, happy, financially secure lives. Both simply and quickly just shut down. In a small way, it was a relief to see them go peacefully and w/o pain.


about 2 years ago, said...

Fifteen years ago my Father was diagnosed with Alzheimer; ten years ago he passed away. Occasionally he would realize that something was wrong with him, but those episodes were quickly forgotten. My Mother took care of him for four of his final years but in his final year he occasionally became violent and had to go into a nursing home for my Mother's safety and health. She was completely exhausted from her role as primary care-giver. It was devastating and absolutely shocking to witness the decline of a brilliant, vibrant man. During my Dad's final year I was in China with my daughter looking at various universities. When my daughter and I left for China my Father still physically resembled the Dad and Papa we all loved. Upon our return the physical and further mental deterioration was devastating. My daughter wept for hours, she was inconsolable. When my Dad finally passed my grieving process was short because Dad had been 'gone' for nearly two years. That was the time I mourned his loss. Alzheimer's is one of God's sick jokes because it involves and destroys entire families, children and adults, for years.


about 2 years ago, said...

All of it. Mom died Feb 12, 2012 from dementia. She was 80 years old. Everything written here makes sense now. Wish I read it back then. My husband is now showing signs of Dementia too. He's 65 and I don't think I can handle going through this again with him. God must think I can handle it though. He also has a type of Parkinson's disease from working around chemicals. He was a maintenance and chemical cleanup for a well known company. I miss Mom with every day that passes but having to go through caring for my husband who was my rock, my love, my everything is scaring me to bits. I'll be sure to remember this article on signs of death. I hope it doesn't happen as fast as Mom died though.


about 2 years ago, said...

Thank you for all the excellent info, my sister at 87 passed away 4 months ago; she displayed all your fine tips but my Great Aunt at 104yrs passed on 1yr 6mos ago. She showed all the signs but in good spirit, she would say " I'm going home soon!" Yes, I've discovered your site late but the info is great; I say again thank you.


about 2 years ago, said...

very interesting.as a stroke survivor I now realize that the end is near!!


about 2 years ago, said...

Whats the signs of dying when the person didnt know that they were dying My mum died unexpectedly from a stroke, her body must have known not her mind, and she was acting normal up to when it happened, so whats the signs for them.


about 2 years ago, said...

OMG I'm going to die.


about 2 years ago, said...

My husband was diagnosed with cirrohsis of the liver, on Monday his Dr told him his liver is shutting down and he has approximately 6 weeks to live, he says very mean things and accuses me of things I haven't done, I don't understand it, I just want us to letting one another know what the other means, this article was helpful, my husband is already at the stage where he isolates and sleeps alot, he's not accepting what the Dr has said, preferring instead in putting his faith in God, which I agree with, but at the same time Im trying to prepare myself, Im a very sensitive person and have difficulty being mindful his angry outbursts aren't really about me, he's angry at the situation he's in, and angry at himself for not being more proactive about his health, and allowing fear from seeing a Dr., I love my husband, he is my best friend, and I don't want to lose him, but that's not my call, it's Gods, Im going to do my best to support my husband and do for him what he needs


about 2 years ago, said...

My sister has had uuncontrolled diabetes and has been sick for years. She spent a few weeks in a nursing facility for rehab after her last hospital stay. She was traumatized by this stay and is terrifiied that she will end up back there. Since she's been home, for 10 days she has refused all food and medications. She will take small sips of water. She has given up on life and has chosen to die. This is difficult for us to watch but we are respecting her wishes. She is 66. How long can she last like this?


about 2 years ago, said...

My wee mummy has had motor neurtons disease for 2 and a half years went into hospital 5 weeks ago and got a bad infection and has beem home nearly 3 weeks and has slept most of the day every day from she came home and now has another infection are hospice nurse has said she doesnt no if she will see Christmas it is so hard my mum is only 60 and im 29 my mum has lived wit me the last year I dnt no wat I will do when she goes I no it will b for the best cuz she wont suffer anymore but no one wants to lose there mummy she has alot of the signs so hoepfully she doesnt suffer for much longer xx


about 2 years ago, said...

My Mom died earlier this year. She had Alzheimer's and was in a NH because I could no longer take care of her. Unfortunately she fell last December and broke her hip which required surgery. Then she fell in January and broke her femur. It was downhill from there and there were several times where we thought she wouldn't live through the day but she would come around. Three days before her death she rallied and we actually were able to talk to her. She knew she was dying and I guess she was afraid to because she kept saying she was going to hell. I told her there was no such place. This was the last time I talked to her. Three days later I was in the room as she lay dying-I was the only one in the room when she passed. She also told my Dad during the time between the femur fracture and her death that she has seen her Dad and my Dad's parents. I have had two dreams about her that seemed so real. In the first one I had to tell her she was dead and she said she suspected it but wasn't sure. The second one she told me she was in heaven and then started to cry and said she missed me. I'm tearing up just thinking about it. I miss her and I hope she has found the happiness in her new life that she never had in this one.


about 2 years ago, said...

I've felt like most of these symptoms have become an everyday thing of my life. Although I'm not old at all, less than 20 to be exact, I'm curious as to how long will this process take before I die. I can barely move my hands sometimes, even during the scorching summer which would mean poor blood circulation. I'll see how long I'll last but live my days normally.


about 2 years ago, said...

My mother has been battling non-cancerous brain tumors for. three years. In March of this year she was given 3 months to a year to live. She continued to try treatments because my youngest brother was in the army and getting out in October. He has no been home for 3 weeks. She had told me that is what she was fighting for to see him home again. She has been unable to walk for several months now. She has in the past had difficulty speaking because of her anti-seizure medication. But for the past couple of weeks she has gotten worse and is going blind. My father is her care giver. If you can call what he does care. He has refused to listen when my siblings and I have told her she needs more help. I feel that she is reaching the end but he thinks she will get better and has had her medication changed again. He said he'll let us know what we need to know and we don't need to know everything. He is in charge and doesn't need to be micro managed by us. He is not meeting her needs in my opinion and has basically cut off communication between us and her. I don't know what to do. It breaks my heart that she is dying and not surrounded but love. I am so scared for her and wish I could get her out of there.


about 2 years ago, said...

Web sight was very helpful and helped with my grief. Thank you


about 2 years ago, said...

I wish i had read this a couple days before my grandmother past away because i would have liked to see her one more time. She was like my mother and i loved her more than anything. RIP grams


about 2 years ago, said...

Nothing. It took me back to June 2011 when my husband died in palliative care at Baptist East Hospital in Louisville, KY. Thank you for this article. Wish I had read it before he died.


about 2 years ago, said...

Do the dying become combative and paranoid at the very very end?


over 2 years ago, said...

Hi my mom is 86 and is in ears and has history of Chf and recently has had pneumonia twice since August 29 and went to a nursing home to get stronger and while there she had a small stroke and was completely paralyzed on her left side. She has regained use of her left side now but her memory was really affected. She has been back home with me for 2 weeks now they say she's been aspirating and that's why she's been getting pneumonia. Their not 100% sure that's what's causing it but during a cookie swallow her food was seen coming back up and they think maybe that could be why she had it. And it did return after she was back at the home for a couple days. We said no on a feeding tube. She had another chest X-ray today because I have a feeling it's back again she's on continuous breathing treatments and oxygen as needed. She has poor appetite and sleeps all the time and I'm wondering if her heart is getting weaker plus she does dialysis 3 times a week. She had an echo gram today so wondering what her ego will be. She has a lot of major health problems. Time will tell. She still walks around with a walker but lately she's not doing much moving around just sleeps


over 2 years ago, said...

@ Jeani1954 -I am so very sorry for what you are going through and feel your pain. My boyfriend is in his final days at this moment as well and my heart is breaking. His Mother is torn up but thankfully I have been able to help comfort her somewhat while taking care of her son during this horribly difficult time. Reading information such as this article has been helpful for me as well even though I just went through losing my dear Mother to cancer 1 year, 9 months ago and was her primary caretaker. A parent should never go through what you are going through and I know it is tearing you apart. (My family lost my brother unexpectedly in 2008 and my parents were never the same - my Dad is still living and is still grieving the loss of my brother on top of losing his wife, my Mom. They were married 57 years.) I pray for your comfort and for a peaceful, painless passing for your dear daughter. And you are absolutely right, all of us need to cherish each day and tell those close to us that we love them every chance we get as tomorrow is never guaranteed. I also pray for you and your family, that God will mend your heart and give you peace and comfort. God bless you and your dear daughter as well as your family.


over 2 years ago, said...

My beautiful 37 yr old daughter is in the final stages as I write this. I found this very informative, and answered some of the questions I have. My advice to many is to never take your loved ones for granted. You never know how long we will have them with us, or what the future will hold. My heart is breaking, I always heard that losing one of your children is the worst, and I can say now, that is so very true.


over 2 years ago, said...

The doctor noted most of these symptoms 4 hours-4 Days before his death because of a stroke. Great Grandma already could see he was going to die but we hoped for the best. Thank You!


over 2 years ago, said...

The observable symptoms! So many feelings ran rampant when my dad was dying. The physical care required knowledge that I did not have. Though we knew Dad was dying, and we were doing our best to care for him, the medical professionals were reluctant to say "what comes next." The way this article was written not only gave observable symptoms, but explained the reason for each and then, blessedly, gave direction on how to respond. These things gave me information that I put to use to help calm my mom as well as best care for Dad. The article helped empower me at a time that I found I could not love my daddy back to health, and it gave me peace to love him through his dying. Thank you!


over 2 years ago, said...

As a medic that had responded to a code of an 84 yr old male, presenting with all ten...CHF with diabetic complications, I say kudos for accuracy. Resident staff stated Pt was atypically withdrawn, chilled and diaphoretic. He had been supine, but back was mottled despite fully clothed...


over 2 years ago, said...

Our Great Great Grandmother went home today to heaven, she was a 106 she said she was blessed to see all the changes in the world.She will be missed atleast we got say our good byes, My mother pasted away 3years ago in a tragic accident , this article help out a lot I didn't really know how to handle the grief for someone we had been taken care of ... thank you


over 2 years ago, said...

ALL OF IT


over 2 years ago, said...

My wonderful daddy is going through the last stages of heart failure and COPD and this site has given me much reassurance of what is happening to him. Thank you xx


over 2 years ago, said...

My dad was diagnosed with lung and brain cancer on the 3rd of Aug 2013 he passed away the 30th of September my dad reciveved no treatment while he was I'll my dad wrote everyone letters left a video wrote his own service we had nothing to do 4 of us looked after him at home he never mentioned dying just would say when I'm not here he prepared us all even in his video he didn't say goodbye he just said catch you all later. He told everyone he was a privileged man he had the time to talk and say what needed to be said to his family he would say you know some men walk out on to the street and are killed they don't get the chance to say what the need to say to there familys so he considered himeslef privilaged I just want to say I am so proud to have had my dad in my life he was so strong so brave I am in awe of him he has made his passing so easy for us I just wanted to share one mans story of cancer. Xx Linda


over 2 years ago, said...

all kind of information.


over 2 years ago, said...

My brother has ganegrene in both legs and Pvd. He is in a nursing home and Hospic care. I visited him last night and he was so gray and thin. He has stopped eating a few days ago . He was talking to me real strange. And said he was talking to dad who passed away 14 yrs ago. Last night he was wanting ice cold tomato juice. This man has never liked tomato juice let alone tomatoes. Is this normal for the dying process to want something they normally don't like??? Hospice gives my brother about 3 weeks left in my heart I think it will be sooner.


over 2 years ago, said...

Knowing that what I am seeing is the end of life and needs no extrodinary measures as per her wishes.


over 2 years ago, said...

Thanks for rating this article. What would have made it more helpful? all the info is accurate and useful; maybe some coping advise for the surviving relatives would be helpful, as well.


over 2 years ago, said...

my mother passed a week before christmas. and i still am very angry at my god for making her suffer liked she did for 4 hears.


over 2 years ago, said...

This has helped me allot. My husband just had a episode where his whole body is freezing like he had been lying out in the snow for hours. He couldn't talk to me and couldn't stop shaking. Everytime he gets up to walk he falls. He doesn't remember taking me to the store a month ago and couldn't remember that the next day. His doctor told me in May that I needed to face it he would be dead one morning. I guess the only question I have is when these symptoms start how long can they last till he will pass away. Could he go on like this for years. He has been like this for a month. Three days ago he started having problems not seeing and he thinks he has to scream so people can hear him. Thank you for explaining this.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mother is 93 with congestive heart failure. I have been caring for her for the past 3 years and she is fading at this time. We are seeing several of the above conditions and thank you for stating them in a way that helps me understand better just where we are. Letting go is very hard to do.


over 2 years ago, said...

My darling mum has lung cancer and i have been told she has two weeks , i am broken hearted i know it has to happen but why she is my world.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom is about sixty and she is going to be very early at nights.. I'm becoming paranoid that I may loose her suddenly, my father her husband died about 3-4 years ago suddenly.. Should I be worried or is everything ok.. She is in excellent health..


over 2 years ago, said...

She recovered almost fully though <last 3 months ago) without any paralysis or impediments you wold expect from someone having had a stroke... All of these episodes are preceded by a few days of agitated state where she chatters away whether or not someone is in the room and picks at her blankets and fidgets in bed. This time the agitated state started on Thursday, followed by semi comatose very deep Cheyne Stokes breathing on Saturday which lasted three days this time. on Wednesday she took a little rice pudding and apple juice and same on Thursday and again today. She appears to be sleepier than before and less connected but aside from a swollen bottom lip, we are back to what we were before. I have to admit that having prepared myself for the worse three times now, as she apparently had all the symptoms of someone in the final stages of dying, I am not sure what to expect ... Is she dying? I have cared for both my parents for 8 years now (father died 3 years ago of brain tumour) at home and feel rather lost as to what t expect... For those going through this, they will sympathise with how lonely this can be in the middle of the night... Has anyone been through this dying then recovery??


over 2 years ago, said...

I am a caregiver of a 88 year old woman she just recently got sent to the hospice house but has been under their Care since her leg was amputated 10 months ago.. She was sent to the so spice house because she became very confused Nd her body was very clammy and cold she was very wild slapping ppl and all. Now 2 weeks at the hospice house and she says she's ready to go home yesterday but today she is not responding her family is very rich and does not want to deal with this they are talking over top of her about who gets what of her belongings and talking about how inconvenient the timing is for her to die they want to freeze her body for a month so they can plan all of this out!!!! It's killing me listening to all. Of this so I politely said to them that she might be able to hear what they are saying so now the whole family is mad at me I wish I could get the family to read this article!!! Thanks for reading and thanks for the helpful article!!!!


over 2 years ago, said...

I have not only read the article several times but I have read all 1,213 comments and find them all comforting and reassuring. It is not surprising that over a four year period people have found the article helpful as they care for their loved ones. I hope the article stays up for many years because people will google signs of death as they care for their loved ones. Reading the article opened my eyes because I had no idea the signs I was seeing meant my loved one was that close to death. It helps family members to see there is nothing that can be done but to keep the loved one comfortable, comfort them and spend time with them and say goodbye. It is also reassuring to know that you are not alone and thousands of people are going through what you are going through every single day. It is a life changing experience to be a caregiver and know you have done everything you can to help your loved one as he or she is dying. Thank you for this site to come for reassurance and understanding.


over 2 years ago, said...

Best. Article. Ever. Thank you Paula!


over 2 years ago, said...

My Mother is in the process of dying she at least nine out of the ten sign Im fine with that I just dont want her to suffer


over 2 years ago, said...

Jacqueline sorry about your loss. On a good note you extended love and became a better more compassionate mature person. God doesn't choose our end/fate. Its all just a crap-shoot. Plain and simple bad things just happen randomly to people all over everywhere. It wasn't Gods plan but we who got ourselves out of sinc with God and his original plan. Unfortunately it sucks but all the answers are in the Bible. My mom is also dying of cancer now. Maybe a few days left. I'm not too sad because I feel I will see her soon enough. After all why did Jesus resurrect people 2000 years ago? I took my dads death hard but my moms strong faith has made this easier for me. Check out www.jw.org. I have enjoyed learning some comforting stuff. they study with you for free online or in person. Its cool. Sorry again about your mom especially you being so young- just not very fair. @Jackie25


over 2 years ago, said...

Hi my name is Jacqueline and I lost my mom on October 3, 2010 to lung cancer. I was her caregiver and at the time I was 22 years old with no real experience with dealing with death or how to care for someone that was dying. At the time I didn't understand the purpose behind why God chose this type of fate for my mother and I but now as time past I truly understand. I still have a hard time dealing with her absence but in the midst of it all I became a stronger more compassionate woman then before. I am here to extent my support and advocacy to any and everyone that is in dire need of it. I feel extremely compelled to share my experience, unconditional love and consideration with those who are struggling with dying, a relative that's dying or dealing with an obstacle in general. Life is too short not to be a shared blessing to others. The message I took away from my mother's untimely passing is to share my story with others and become a living testimony. To not allow her death to end her legacy but to let it began truly live on through me and my younger sibilings.


over 2 years ago, said...

my mother is 83+yrs, 95% of the article coincides with her present condition. besides, she had paralytic strokes on the left of her body. We pray for her farewell from this world. No can can change the cycle of life. Thank you so much for the article.


over 2 years ago, said...

Hi, I have terminal cancer and I'm scared and don't have many family or friends to talk with, I need to have a friend


over 2 years ago, said...

As a caregiver of my mother, father and father in law, I think the article was very helpful because it helps the caregiver to read body language of their loved ones. I think doctors and nurses should read this article because they tend to rely more on vitals and tests and not look at the patient whose body is telling them what is going on. My 82 year old father was complaining that his chest was hurting. I took him to the doctor and he said he had bronchitis and prescribed an antibiotic. My father said it felt like his heart was slowing down and beating faster. The doctor ignored him and said his heart was fine. I listened to the doctor instead of my father and he died that night of congestive heart failure. My 89 year old mother had chemo for bone cancer for eight years and went in and out of remission. She had home health care in the daytime but she insisted on living alone at night. Two months before she died she was showing signs of dying. She was sleeping most of the time, she had loss of appetite, her face was bloated and she lost interest in her TV programs and visiting with people. She fell in the night and broke her hip and had surgery. She was confused and got people mixed up. I knew she'd never get out of the hospital. Yet, the doctor and nurses brought in rehab specialists to do exercises that I couldn't even do in my 50s and I work out at the gym. She couldn't do it because she was too weak and her body was shutting down. She died a week after the surgery. My father in law died a year after a massive stroke at 94.. Rehab workers got him to walk, regain use of his right side and to talk again but he was dizzy from the stroke and having swallowing problems and died after three falls where he hit his head and suffered for a month. Although hospice was called in, doctors and nurses relied only on vitals taken by the nurse to determine death was imminent when we who read the article knew he was dying a month before.


over 2 years ago, said...

My Mother is in a nursing home and I came across this article yesterday and read it. Today the RN from the home called to let me know That Mother is no longer eating.I said no feeding tube as that's what Mom said early on. The phone call did not upset me or scare me as I had already read this article. Thank You for the helpful info .


over 2 years ago, said...

Pureshooter, I have read that Hospice usually takes patients that are expected to die within six months. That shows doctors cannot predict when someone is going to die. Did Hospice come in the home or did she go to a hospice facility?


over 2 years ago, said...

My 90 year old wife, with Alzheimers and a Living Will spent a total of 297 days in hospice care. Would this be considered unusual?


over 2 years ago, said...

Appx 1.5 yrs ago my wife of 16 yrs passed. We were sent to a hospice, &, I thank them everyday. It took 5 wks for things to happen During this time they did what they could to prepare me for this.At the same time they showed me what to do w/ my wife, At 1st I fell into a bottle, then I wound up in the hospital, So over 1/2 yr ago I quit drinking. I never needed any of the help But now I find myself getting depressed,


over 2 years ago, said...

I am grateful for this article and others I read because they helped me to understand that my 95 year old father in law was near death when we were helping take care of him for a month before he died a few days ago. He had every one of those symptoms from the day we arrived until he died and the hospice nurses and my 90 year old mother in law who was a registered nurse did not tell us what to expect. I was very disgusted with my mother in law and the hospice nurse's aide and nurse who refused to listen to my father in law and did whatever she asked them to do. My mother in law was in total denial. It was obvious to everyone who saw him that my father in law's body was shutting down and he was dying. Yet, my mother in law refused to give him morphine and force fed him pills and solid foods although he couldn't swallow and threw it up because she said as a nurse she knew he was not dying, that he was going to live another year or two, She said morphine was addictive and didn't relieve pain or help his breathing but zonked him out, that she lived with him for 70 years and knew him, that he just gurgled, coughed and threw up and pretended like he couldn't breath to get attention and got mad at me when I gave him ice chips, put a wet cool cloth on his head and gave him whatever he asked for. I wanted to strangle her but I knew she was trying to keep him alive at all costs because she didn't want to lose her husband. After he died, my mother in law said he would be alive today and walking fine if hospice had built up the muscles in his legs and hadn't pushed him to die by bringing in the hospital bed, wheel chair, then motorized lift and diapers. She kept asking for a rehab specialist to walk him and the nurse said all it would do was wear him out because he was too weak. He complained of being hot all the time but she took the air conditioner friends gave her out because she said it didn't do any good (we put it in our room because it was so hot we couldn't sleep without it) and made her dying husband wear sweats so he was covered if anyone visited and the room temperature was in the late 80s and 90s all the time. My mother in law told my husband's siblings who all lived out of state on the phone that he just had the flu and was not going to die. They listened to her instead of my husband when he told them his father was getting weaker every day and could die at any time. They were shocked when my husband called and said their dad died. They came for the funeral but not while he was alive. My father in law had a Living Will and told hospice from the beginning he was miserable and wanted to die. They put an oxygen tube in his nose which he repeatedly said he didn't want, forced him to eat and take medicine even though he threw it up because he couldn't swallow and dressed and shave him and forced him to go into his recliner when he begged to stay in bed. When I would protest, my mother in law would get angry at me saying I thought I knew more than her, a registered nurse. When he talked about being so miserable he wanted to die, the Hospice nurse's aide told him every day was a blessing and my mother in law told him to stop the silly talk. It wasn't until the last week when his blood pressure and temperature dropped and made it clear he was going to die any day, the Hospice nurse took off the oxygen at his insistence. My mother in law put the oxygen back on after hospice left but my husband unplugged the hose and she left it off. However, my mother in law and the nurse's aide still force fed him pills and food until the day before he died although he couldn't swallow and threw them up. When the nurse told us my mother in law wasn't giving him morphine six days after we got there and had watched him suffer, we were shocked. My husband convinced her to give him morphine at night but she refused to give it to him in the daytime and she gave him one fourth of the prescribed dose. My husband put a low dose of morphine in his chocolate milk and Mountain Dew without her knowledge every six hours and it helped his breathing and he didn't wake up all the time coughing and throwing up. He said his side, back, chest and knee hurt and he had trouble breathing. He twisted his knee trying to stand up. The morphine helped relieve the pain and he could breath easier. When I read Internet articles on the signs of dying about a week after we got there. I was shocked that he had them all from the day we got there to the day he died: gurgling, coughing, throwing up, loud chest rattle, sleeping all the time, refusing food, not being able to swallow, cold to the touch, swollen ankles, talking to dead relatives, asking what time it was often, talking about dying, etc. Yet, when I told the head nurse we knew he was dying, she said, "I can't decide if he is dying or just wants to die." I said, "No. I read on the Internet that people who are dying talk about death and he has all the symptoms of dying." She said, "He is declining but I don't see him dying within the next 24 hours or 48 hours because his lungs are clear and his blood pressure is normal." Then she flitted out the door. Two weeks before he died, she informed us that his lumnngs were full of fluid his blood pressure was soaring then dropping and all we could do now was keep him comfortable. We only saw her twice after that. Our hospice company was no different than any other home health company except that their patients are all dying. They employed two RNs, two LPNs and two CNAs to take care of 50 patients in several small towns in a 60 mile radius. They were closed at 5 pm every day and on weekends but someone was on call. It took six hours to get a nurse to come out on an emergency. Medicare and the insurance company paid them. There were no volunteers. The nurse's aide came twice a week the first two weeks, three times a week the third week and every morning the last five days. She was there half a an hour or less. The nurse came once or twice a week to take his temperature and listen to his heart. My mother in law and we could have done all that but the doctor would not prescribe morphine without hospice in charge. If we could have gotten rid of my mother in law and hospice, we would have listened to my father in law and taken off the oxygen, not given him any solid foods, given him liquids when he could swallow them, ice chips when he couldn't, morphine as the doctor prescribed to help him breath and relieve his pain, get him up when he wanted and let him lie in bed when he wanted. My mother lay flat on her back for weeks when she had every bone in her back broken from cancer and she never got bed sores.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom died 13 years ago. At the end me an my sister held her in our arms. I told my sister to talk to her just in case she could hear us whispering in each ear how much we loved her and all. At one point a tear rolled down her cheek and I thought maybe she did hear us but until I read this article I always wondered. Now I am very comforted finding out we did the right thing. Thank you.


over 2 years ago, said...

if i could have seen this 5yrs ago.i would have know when my daughter sat up in bed to talk,that shortly after that she would leave us.the nurse gave her a shot so she would go back to sleep,after that her guardian angels took her home.


over 2 years ago, said...

This article is very helpfule i am caregiver and guy who i am assisting is clo se. To dye and every point happined already.IT IS SAD THAT I CANNOT CHANGE ANYTHING FOR BETTER BUT I GUESS EVERYBODYS TIME WILL COME .I pray for him everyday GOD BLESS everybody who entered this path and the one who witness it


over 2 years ago, said...

mom my is 76 and in a nurseing home she had a stroke in almost a yr ago.. and now she is kind of slowing dowing on her eatting and he drinking. she's on dielasses and as i look at her day by day,, she has lost alot of weight,, and i really don't no what to do? lost and convece..s


over 2 years ago, said...

very helpful


over 2 years ago, said...

You know my dad is expected to pass at anytime now , im grief stricken. The article and most of the comments have been very compassionate and helpful, but them you have these two miserable smart mouths that throw their arrogance in the mix! I pray God have mercy on your selfish bitter souls!! *SMH! Some people have no conscience


over 2 years ago, said...

I have lost both parents and the one thing I can not understand is why we put a loved pet to sleep, but we force our suffering family members to live. I know it has to be an individual choice, but the laws that exist are totally unrealistic. we need more rights for the dying and their families as well as for those in pain who have illnesses with no treatment available that will give recovery to some form of acceptable life. I feel the only reason we do not have better euthanasia laws is the greed of the people who make the laws and those who control them. They make lots of money from the people who are suffering with untreatable illnesses and therefore will never allow reasonable euthanasia.


over 2 years ago, said...

My dad is 90, he has maxillary cancer, they gave him 6 months to live, that was over 2 years ago, he's such a fighter although he is so poorly now. I'm his carer and this whole thing is so draining. He developed a "mass" on his neck about a month ago, it's bigger than a fist now, they wanted him to have more radiotherapy! I said no as it would kill him. He won't have anyone in to help him which makes it so hard for me. I just want to know when?


over 2 years ago, said...

My precious and beloved mother died 19 years ago and exhibited all these signs. I wish I had known them. Although I was fairly calm on the outside, I was dying on the inside because I didn't know that these were the signs and I should just accept them. I left work one day and spent it at my mother's bedside. She spoke one word all day long and the word was "What?" I sang to her, told her old family stories, brought her up to date on my brothers and their families, talked about work and was just plain slly. I considered going back to work at noon since she was unresponsive (and I was in a new job) but decided I was where I wanted to be and belonged. The next day when my brother arrived, he said one of the first things she said was, "Patty was her all day yesterday just loving me and loving me." And I though she was totally unaware and in her own world. Not so. Stay with your loved ones and give them all the love you can. Even if you don't get the affirmation I got, you can be sure your loved one heard you and appreciated your time and love. Except when her breathing was very labored, I never felt she was suffering but just letting go. Had I seen this article I would have known that was normal as well. I miss her every day but know that God opened up his arms wide for her as he does all His children.


over 2 years ago, said...

It is all about suffering - both life & death. God could have designed a more compassionate, transcendent human experience. I think he did it this way to enlist devotees. I think God should have to run for office every so often.


over 2 years ago, said...

My dear friend's husband entered hospice one week before he died, after being diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, given 3 months to live. He died in less than 2 mos. His last week of life was in Hospice Care, their booklet explained all the signs of impending death and it was absolutely accurate. We, their friends, all took time being with the both of them. On his last day, the Nurse said he most likely would die that day, even though he had all the signs, we were not certain of her statement but by 2:00 p.m. he did pass away, surrounded by so much love. He had literally ceased to put out any urine, had not eaten or drank anything for 8 days. The Hospice personnel said they never saw so many peoeple visit any patient. Once we saw the mottled skin on his feet, we did know his time was near although his breathing was strong and steady right up to the last 2 or 3 minutes. Your article is spot-on accurate, thank you for this. As I said, the booklet in the patient's room gave all these signs of impending death and every one was true, right to the end.


over 2 years ago, said...

<3


over 2 years ago, said...

a lot of this, if applied to my relative would be wrong. 'Rallying' is something which is happening regularly.. and will - I suspect - continue for some time yet.. probably the elderly person will see me out.. at the rate we are going.


over 2 years ago, said...

Hey, only the Man upstairs knows whwn we are going to die. Just live your life and don't worry about something you don't have control over. We all will die some day, just don't worry about it. You can see that everyday where a baby passes, a child passes, a teenager passes, a twenty something passes, midle age, etc... Just live life to the fullest, and just make sure you aren't doing something that will cause you to loose your soul... for that is the only thing that will get you into Gods Heavenly Kingdom... period. I am not saying you should stop everything, just be aware that we all must make an attempt to be good. We are all born in original sin because of what happened in the Garden of Eden . Go out and have fun, live life to the fullest extent, just behave yourself because you never know whwn your number is up .


over 2 years ago, said...

interesting reflections when mom passed away, people should read to understand,saw it in veitnam


over 2 years ago, said...

I have done the death watch with my father, my mother, my sister and my brother. These ten points are spot on. My mom and didn't rally near the end because of the morphine, but my brother did. So did my sister. My brother opened his eyes and asked me to make sure his grandchildren had a good Christmas. He died a couple hours later with loved ones near, holding his hands and stroking his face so he would know we were there. He just seemed to settle, and he was gone. Thank you for these points. I have sent them to my dear friend whose sister is terminal.


over 2 years ago, said...

I can't think of anything; the article is clear, direct, and contains helpful suggestions.


over 2 years ago, said...

I AM 60 YRS OLD AND HAVE BEEN IN AND OUT OF THE HOSPITAL 6 TIMES IN 3 YRS. I WAS RECENTLY HOSPITALIZED TWICE IN 3 WEEKS AND EXPERIENCED 9 OF THESE 10 CONDITIONS. I WAS SO CLOSE IT IS NOW VERY SCAREY. PLEASE PAY ATTENTION TO FRIENDS AND RELATIVES.


over 2 years ago, said...

I've noticed that the most foretelling sign of immediate death is that person looks good. The day before my dad died, he was talking and looked good. Happened with several other relatives as well as people who I only knew.


over 2 years ago, said...

Interesting. My dad died 2 days ago. It seemed he kept slipping into a diabetic coma. My mom said he was really confused before he slipped into his last coma. At least now I know that he knew what was happening to him.


over 2 years ago, said...

The article was helpful because it confirmed the information I gleaned from our clinical staff members when I was a hospice administrator. The subject of end of life care is one that would be helpful to most people in the U. S. because we have an aging population and more and more people will be in a position to benefit from this information.


over 2 years ago, said...

I lost my mother in 2007 after she suffered for 10 years from "mini strokes". Unfortunately, she was a cigarette smoker and the strokes would occur during, or after she smoked causing her to fall to the ground. She never passed out but was unable to get up without help. Having a life alert on her saved her many times before I could get to her and pick her up. Soon after they started, my father had a surgeon remove a portion of her brain because she had a blood clot,, instead of draining it. Sadly, neither her or I, were told she would never speak again. Of her 5 children I was the closest but she was cared for by 2 woman who stayed at her home and were not certified care takers or nurses. I was devastated watching how they neglected her needs, and I could not take care of her which my father, who lived separately on his own, ordered. He insisted she was to be woken up at 8am daily, not knowing if she had enough rest and put in a Lazy Boy Recliner in front of the TV until dinner. For 6 months she was able to walk with assistance, but without having physical therapy, she eventually became dependent on a wheel chair. She was able to feed herself from age from age 69 to 71, then sadly the care takers would feed large portions of meat, potatoes & vegetables into her mouth making it difficult for her to swallow, almost forcing it in as she tried to turn her head, before they fed her another serving. She did not have any back teeth to chew the food so she was forced to swallow it whole. When she could no longer stand to bathe or use the toilet, and wore adult diapers, they would wash her off very roughly with heavy bath towels leaving her undressed on the bed in the air-conditioning, and no cover, while they found something to dress her in. Many times when I was there I would put a sheet over her and ask the care takers to do so. I could see the pain of embarrassment in her eyes as she looked at me. We always had telepathy, and I knew she wanted me to help her, but my father wouldn't allow any of her children. It was as though he was causing her to suffer for his own guilt of not being a faithful husband for 50 years. She had cataract surgery at age 65, and needed eye drops daily to keep her eyes from drying and becoming red. When I realized from the caretakers notes, they did not put drops in her eyes, it explained why they were so red and dry. She could barely blink they were so dry, or cry when she had many painful falls. The caretakers would see her eyes red, and say she is tired from not sleeping the night before. My siblings and I no longer were close after her surgery when she became an invalid. I, for one, was against it because I knew she did not want to suffer. She did not have a will, and always told me she would never want to live if she was unable to care for herself. She was a very private person when it came to her body and a modest woman. Having strangers touch her or clean her was her worse nightmare. But my father used her as a guinea pig, allowing them to first force feed her, then when her esophagus was destroyed he ordered a food pouch inserted in her side to feed her through a tube. This was decided while she was temporarily in a nursing facility, and had been without any liquids or food for several days. I later learned of a product called Biotene, which comes in a gel for Chronic Dry Mouth, which I now have, and she should have been given. As she lay in the nursing center, I traveled 3 hours to see her. My younger brother, an Attorney, was in her room speaking to the nurse about the food pouch procedure. His wife selfishly continued to sleep in the other chair, rather than offer it to us, and go home to take a nap. My husband and I had traveled 3 hours to visit her and when we entered the room I immediately noticed a frightened look on her face. I asked my brother and the nurse to step in the hall to continue their discussion and my brother said, "Mom can't hear anything", I told him, she's not deaf and the nurse did the right thing and stepped out of the room with my brother following. My father and 2 brothers, both Attorneys, also had the caretakers use a bladder apparatus, to empty her kidneys since they had shut down. That lasted about 3 weeks and the last time they did it, the night caretaker called me to say she was moaning and she may have ruptured her bladder. My mom had to be in excruciating pain to be able to moan loud enough for the woman to hear her across the house. I told her to call my older brother first then call 911 and last, my father. It was about midnight as the care taker rode with my mom to the hospital. She was kind enough to call me first and let me speak to her. I could barely speak, as I could hear her moans. As the phone was at her ear I told her everything was going to be ok. I knew she would be without pain soon enough as I said how much my daughter and I loved her, and how thankful I was for all she did for us. I continued to tell her my name so she was aware it was me, and not my 2 other sisters. When she arrived at the hospital the caretaker told me my father stood against the wall away from her. My oldest brother was extremely distraught, and 8 years later he still can't discuss it. My younger brother and his wife were also there along with the caretaker. They put my Mom in a private area in the emergency room where she passed away at 5am, and they allowed the caretaker to go in and close her eyes. I was happy she was the last person my mother saw. She never wanted to hurt her and always did what she was told, even though she didn't agree. She said my mom held her hand in the ambulance and never took her eyes off of her when she was speaking to me on the phone. At 5am, I'll never forget lying in bed when I felt someone holding me from behind, I knew it was my Mom and I was happy she was free of pain. It's been 8 years and I will never get over grieving her passing. I believe she is with me always and with that I find comfort. Please have your loved ones create an Advanced Directive with instructions how they want to go in peace. Do not let them suffer like my mother did and lose their dignity, which is something none of us would ever want.


over 2 years ago, said...

ususally when the ole heart stops it is a good sign of the grimm reaper sticking one in the azz!


over 2 years ago, said...

Continue to provide good information like this and try to include comments, feedback from readers about their experiences relating to dying parents, friends, etc.


over 2 years ago, said...

I thought it was very well presented and made me realize that at 68 and having Parkinson's I need to do much more than I am doing if I want to continue living. It is up to me to keep myself as healthy as I can. Thankjs for the warning signs, of which I have a few.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom had a massive brain hemorrhage that left her in a coma. We brought her home to die. Very hard. In the days before she passed, the hospice nurse ( Bless her ) explained that Mom's feet turning almost backwards and her ear lobes folding under were physical signs that the end was near. Mom passed a few days later on Aug. 1, 2000. Yes, Mom " woke up " for a few hours. A time we treasure to this day. Has anyone else noticed these things ( ankles and ears ) happening?


over 2 years ago, said...

Here at the hospital since yesterday with my Mom. Not quite sure what is happening to her but after reading this it is giving me the awareness I need to provide her with calm and comforting reaction to her changes. This article listed several things I am seeing which has enlightened me answering that "what is happening" question. It's in God's hands. I just want her to be at peace, then I'll be okay. She needs to know that. Watching her anxiety, her decline is so hard. I get in the let's fix this mode..... there is no fix. Just an end. I pray it is short and peaceful. God bless you all! It is so very hard to accept but so much harder to see their struggle. Whatever your will Lord


over 2 years ago, said...

My dad has all of these. He's in hospice now. He is a fighter and will likely persist for a few more weeks. We love him, but wish he had a less painful death. Seeing suffering of this degree for so long forces the question, "if there is a God, why does he let this happen, does he even care?" I'm starting to realize he doesn't give a ****.


over 2 years ago, said...

I have all of those symptoms. Holy carp. I'm only 46.


over 2 years ago, said...

God bless your grandmother...101? Wow!!


over 2 years ago, said...

My grandmother passed away at age 101, and those were the exact signs she had during the passing process. Thanks for a great article.


over 2 years ago, said...

It's so scary that I have at least two of them.


over 2 years ago, said...

Mood swings are so difficult to understand. Mom switches between threats or slapping my face so hard, yelling that she hates me, and calling my sister over to yank up my flowers. No one else sees these mood swings, but i live with Mom. She says she wants me to move ; but i can't - emotionally nor financially. She's giving things to others, but no 'keepsakes' to me, or is giving those she made me/gave me years ago, away to sisters/nieces. And prays to "Get this girl out of my sight". Her eyes burn with angry fire. i love my Mom... but gosh, it hurts! She's had 4 or 5 strokes, and i'm responsible for her meds, transportation, etc... To where do i turn _ i seem to pray all the time for guidance and understanding. Thanks for the article. Very insightful! Blessings ~


over 2 years ago, said...

My mother died of cancer in 20011. She was told by the surgeons that they "got all" of the tumor after a surgery but then they found that it had merely hidden behind the pancreas. She was reopened about 11 months after the original surgery and was told that it had spread too far for further interventions. I was able to spend some time with her after she got released from the hospital and the family (including me) thought she was doing O.K. However, she over-did her activity and then developed an infection. I got her to the hospital just-in-time. She didn't want to go to the local community hospital because they weren't familiar with her nor were they equipped to handle her symptoms. I drove her to Baylor University Hospital in Dallas instead and got her there just in time because she had slipped into shock. The next day, I flew back to Nevada because work wanted me to orient a new nurse. I then got a call from Texas that my mom was in a coma and at home so I had to rebook a flight to Texas. I got to her house at about 3 a.m. and hospice was already there helping her make the transition. I started to talk and she stirred and mumbled. Hospice was amazed as this was the first reaction they saw from her in about two days. The hospice nurses were at her side day & night. The night nurse was leaning on my mom's arm and we [my step-dad & I] thught she was sleeping on the job. However, she was stroking my mom's arm and telling her it was O.K. to go. My mom passed away peacefully at 2:30 A.M. April 27th and (coincidentally) my dad died exactly two months later. I recognized many of the stages of dying discussed in this article and I have seen them many times before as I've taken care of dying patients on hospital floors.


over 2 years ago, said...

We had hospice care with my brother in law but not with my mother nor with my father. My mother died suddenly which is the way to go but my father lingered after a brain stem stroke, it was called, and I think it would have been easier had he been given hospice care instead of keeping him in the hospital without meals, water, anything until he was gone. He had a stroke but he was conscious, not responding, but breathing on his own for 3 days without food, water or nursing care except for them to check periodically to see if he was still breathing. I was there, I witnessed it and hospice is by far the most caring way to go if a person can't die suddenly like my mother. A massive heart attack, dead in a few minutes.


over 2 years ago, said...

Excellent


over 2 years ago, said...

hospice is wonderful. I have had several relatives under there care. If you get someone who is not kind and caring call and ask for some one else. 99% of them are wonderful. This and other articles from hospice do an excellent job of preparing you for what is happening, I don't know how i would have made it without them. We must remember when a person is at the last of their live do we have the right to keep oushing them to stay alive for our benifit. Shouldn't we make them as comfortable as possible and shower them with love and let them know we will be ok if they leave us.


over 2 years ago, said...

Then I think I must be close to death. I go through all of this.


over 2 years ago, said...

And, the 11th Sign That Death Is Near... You stop breathing...


over 2 years ago, said...

Im hoping this is helpful for most, but find that these.. well most are signs of depression. Ya know; when your number is up, its up. Bye! See ya on the flip side. Dont get too worked up. Ive lost several friends, and a parent and other family members. Look at it this way, at least they are in a WAY BETTER PLACE than here!!!!


over 2 years ago, said...

I am so happy I have found this sight. I have read a lot of the comments and I think all of you are just so wonderful in the way you have treated your loved ones in the end. I am in my 60s now and starting to lose close friends. It's increasingly hard for me to handle, as it reminds me how the days are shorter for me now. I find myself a little afraid now too. I will include some stories of what I went through in the near future and how I handled the death experiences of loved ones. Thank you all for being so kind to your family.


over 2 years ago, said...

I cared for my terminal sister,along with Hospice,for over a year.My sis looked forward to the Hospice nurses coming.They were very good to her,and always took time to visit with her about things, besides her illness,and she loved them.Thank you, Bismarck Hospice.You are wonderful!


over 2 years ago, said...

I have Hospice to be utterly devoid of emotion, compassion and would never allow them near a loved one of mine.


over 2 years ago, said...

My sister in law had a brain tumor which was operated on although they could not get it all. About a month or so later she had a real bad seizure was put in the hospital. She woke up after about 2 days and didn't seem to have any after effects. Her husband and he daughter wanted her to go to hospice. The other siblings wanted her to see a different brain specialist. Needless to say she went to hospice where all they did was shoot her full of medicine. They did not want the family to wake her, feed her or try to get her up. My husband was most upset at the treatment and attitude of the hospice facility. I told him they send people there to die not get treated with respect. When she would wake up and ask for food they would feed her but the hospice people did not like that at all.


over 2 years ago, said...

Thank you for this. When ovarian cancer took my beloved sister in March 2011, she was comatose for three days prior to drawing her last breath. Her daughter, my daughter and I stayed by her side that entire time. All of us, wanting to be most gentle and loving towards my sister followed your guidelines instinctively. We held her hand, moistened her lips, repeatedly told her how much we loved her, and tried to make her as comfortable as possible. We did not leave her side the entire time. As sad as it was, I wouldn't have been anywhere else for those three days. The hospice nurse had come by and was with us helping to change her bed. We apologized to her for having to disturb her and she passed. She was surrounded by family and love. Thank you for confirming that we did the right things for my sister.


over 2 years ago, said...

I always check stuff like this to make sure im not in there somewhere.


over 2 years ago, said...

Like a preacher said.... medical science loses 100% of its patients... There has been a lot of advancements though... but ultimately... you need to be aware, and prepared... Jesus (yes, the God of Moses and Abraham) can help you with that.


over 2 years ago, said...

I sent this two of my friends that have parents in their ninties. I also felt by reading this that the death process is not that scary. I say that is very reassuring. I am getting up there myself. As they say, it is one last surprise.


over 2 years ago, said...

Excelent, thanks


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom passed on last year, she only had a few of these stages, the day before she died she was fine, alert and very happy. The next day she was dead. I have felt so guilty because I did not expect her death and I feel I should of known. This helped me to realize her death was not my fault.


over 2 years ago, said...

Sending this to my daughter, for her information, when I am heading out.


over 2 years ago, said...

I lived thses steps with my Mother, Aunt and Grandmother why they wore at the end of life. The article answered alot of questions I didn't undterstand at the time of their passing.


over 2 years ago, said...

My father is last stage cancer patient kidney has stopped proper working due chemotherapy 6 th cycle. He is showing all the signs. I know wat will happen next. How i will sustain widout papa. Seriously its a hard time for me. Cant see him in pain which he is feeling. No option no hope left. He has stopped to speak,eat nd closed his eyes. God help him. I dnt knw where people goes after dying. How much was affection was wid us wid d person. One thing more b close nd love ur patient.


over 2 years ago, said...

Be as close to your family as you can while you can. From personal experience that list is very close, spooky


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom died a year ago. I was with her for the last night and witnessed many of these. It is very difficult, especially (for me) the conversations with deceased relatives. God bless all of you going through this.


over 2 years ago, said...

it was a very interesting and resourceful.


over 2 years ago, said...

I just lost my husband of 20 years. I have been in the medical field for 30+ years and have seen my share of death, but nothing prepares you for the death of a loved one. If anything you continue to second guess all of the medical decisions being made. You just have to be there for them, comfort them and love them. Praying helped more then anything and I don't know how I would have gotten through it without our Lord and Savior, I still grieve continuously, I don't know if I will ever get over this grief. All I know is he is no longer in pain and is resting in peace.


over 2 years ago, said...

my fiancé is currently dying with all the symptoms described above I have witnessed death this way before of loved ones I am so sad with this death watch for the strongest man I have ever known He was working two months ago and was only diagnosed with multiple malignant tumors 2 wks


over 2 years ago, said...

There is no such device as a respirator. Respiration occurs in the plant kingdom. Patients are placed on a ventilator to breathe for, or assist the patient breathe.


over 2 years ago, said...

WARNING: #5 gives advise to moisturize lips with lip balm or Petroleum jelly. It states some people are given oxygen for comfort. NEVER use OXYGEN and PETROLEUM JELLY together. Many RN's do not know this...


over 2 years ago, said...

I have been present at the passing of three very close relatives - knowing what is coming does not make it easier, but it does help to know what their body is going through. My father just passed away in January, with his entire family by his side, after a 6-month downward spiral started by a relatively minor fall at home. That led to hospitalization, pneumonia, infection, surgery, more infection, and finally, after his system was completely overwhelmed by antibiotic-resistant infections, he passed away quietly and peacefully after we visited him and asked him if he wanted to continue fighting, or if he wanted us to ask the doctors to stop all treatment. (Bear in mind, by this time, he had absolutely no kidney function, was on dialysis 4 hours per day 6 days per week, and had not voluntarily eaten or drank anything for almost 2 weeks.) He kept saying, "I don't know what to do...I don't know what to do...". Just a few hours later, we were called back to the hospital, as he was unresponsive and had lapsed into end-stage breathing. We were grateful for that last conversation, and it comforted us to know that we had given him the "permission" he seemed to need to let go.


over 2 years ago, said...

This makes me so sad. I don't want to loose my mom. I am not ready for this. She is and always has been, such a wonderful person. Memories aren't what I want right now, I just want her, to be with me always. :(


over 2 years ago, said...

My Dad is fighting for his life and the hardest part is when will the battle end. He has no life right now only little breaths. I am sitting there waiting but waiting for what. He was diagnosed 2 1/2 years ago with a terminal illness told he had 6 months to live if he did not receive a liver transplant and here he is 2 1/2 years later. He fell a few times but bounced back, He fell on Sunday and it has been down hill ever since. We thought he would not make it this weekend but yesterday and today he ate more than he ever has in the last weeks. I read the signs of death and it has helped me. Last Wednesday and Thursday I was alone with him and it was like his mind was dumping every story that he ever told. It was crazy it was one story after the next no special order and then he would stop at the end of each story close his eyes for a few minutes and just when I thought he went to sleep it was like someone wind him back up again and started telling another story. Now I know why he was doing that. He only mumbles now and it is hard to understand him but one thing he does say is he is afraid and I reassure him it is okay. It is okay someone will be waiting for him with open arms. My sister and I are respecting my fathers wish to stay home and not in a nursing home. We do have a hospice nurse and aide plus two care givers, her and I to take care of him. I had to just fire one of the care givers because she caused more stressed and drama. Beware of the care giver that does things on her own like getting prescriptions behind your back when told not too, telling my dad hide his medication, and then giving him medication when told not too. I hate when people think they know better and in fact she only made it worst cause he was over medicated taking medications that he should have stopped last year. It was a mess and her answer to me was I thought I was doing the right thing. She had him so brainwashed he was begging me not to let her go. When he does asks for her I will tell him she is not working today. I can't imagine what he is going through cause I no at the end of the day it is mentally draining. I just keep saying I can't do this but somehow I do. We are both finding peace and comfort in two very different ways.


over 2 years ago, said...

I know of nothing that would have made it more helpful. Have never been present when someone was close to death.


over 2 years ago, said...

"Ten Signs Death is Near" is an informative article that describes and explains what to expect when a human body is near the end of life. This article is a must read for all non-professional caregivers, such as a family member caring for a terminally ill relative. In addition to describing in easyily understood language what to expect when a patient is near death, the author and Senior Editor of this website suggests a course of action to take or to not take once a condition has been identified. I have no affiliation with "caring.com" nor do I know the writer of this article, Paula Spencer Scott. The article is well written and takes 5 minutes or less to read. My one suggestion is to make the title less morbid.


over 2 years ago, said...

My father passed away in May he was a wonderful father and had never been sick. After being diagnosed with bone marrow cancer he lived another 20 months. He was a Kaiser patient and when they felt they could not convince us to pull the plug they released him to a skilled nursing center and they were very abusive. As soon as we could we took my father home and lovingly cared for him for the next 17 months. At the end we had hospice and it was great. They came when ever we called within a hour. They were very patient with us because we were very protective with my Dad. My Mom and Dad were married 64 years and she would rarely leave his side. Some of these hospital and skilled nursing center are terrible places they don't care for the patients it really is a shame that they would treat another human being so badly.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mother was told by her physician in the hospital that she required hospice care. She was sent directly to a nursing home - and was denied the option of having in-home care because she "couldn't afford it". My mother's one wish was to be in her home as she left this world. I hate the memory of her being so sad and uncomfortable, pleading to go home. I don't know whose fault that was - the physician's or hospice's -but I sincerely hope the person responsible for that decision dies a horrible death in full of those who must carry that memory for the rest of their lives.


over 2 years ago, said...

coming from a family of RN nurses (sis,mom,g.mom) one sign that was not mentioned that I have witnessed many times is the ears, when the sheyne stroke breathing starts pay attention to the persons ears. as the time draws near the end the ears will begin to lay flat against the head this is due to slowed circulation of blood through the body, in the cases that I have seen myself once the ears have layed flat the end has always been within 12 hrs.


over 2 years ago, said...

My father died in 2007. You could meet him for the first time, and within 2 minutes he would be telling you about his days in the Army. He never talked about what was currently going on, didn't follow anything current, politics, baseball, etc, everything was " when I ..." He was living in the past, and it was all down hill.yi


over 2 years ago, said...

To the person that just left a note. Sorry about your experience with hospice aids.That is not the proper way to help either your mother or her family. I would make sure nothing else is missing and let their boss know (the company) Dont have that aid come back at all.As a hospice nurse at times pain medice is needed.The speed of the changes differ.At times surgerycan bring health issues to the front, with out warning. No good aid would spill meds.Soills happen but rarely.Not with such a powerfull med. Make sure of the doses too .A aid can make a dose to much if tired or in a hurry. Good luck.But please know not every hospice aid or nurse is like what you have expericned.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom is currently dying- gosh it hurts to say that. She was such an active lady- until a year ago she still roller-bladed! She does have dementia- perhaps Alzheimer's, but never really diagnosed. She is 77 yrs. old. Currently living in Fla. Right before Christmas 2012 she had to have a bowel resection- they took out a small section that had telescoped and twisted. No sign of cancer. By Easter they found a very aggressive form of Bile Duct cancer, no real long term treatment, due to the advanced stage (they never saw it 3 months previously) and her dementia. So, my brother and wife have cared for her and ran their business. Recently, Hospice has been there- Mom was still up, walking, sort of eating and using the bathroom, except at night- Depends saved the day! (actually, the night!) Suddenly, she no longer can get up, sleeps all day, a tumor has developed on her abdomen, and now (yesterday) quit any food or water. She sure rushed through the stages of death. I wonder if hospice is helping her along? We don't want her to be doped on Morphine unless absolutely necessary. Hospice, on the other hand, seems to want to get it over with so they can go to the next dying person. My beef with Hospice? Mom's wedding rings had to be removed due to hand swelling- Suddenly they disappeared! When my brother confronted the hospice aid, suddenly the ring reappeared. The morphine was disappearing at a rate faster than Mom was being dosed with. When asked, she (hospice nurse, not the aid) said the bottle had "spilled". It was an oral dose- mighty strange, considering that Mom was fairly coherent one day and a total babbling infant the next. I guess one just has to pay attention when strangers are in the home! They may be good at helping patients, but they also help themselves.


over 2 years ago, said...

After reading many comments here, I have to add something. Hospice is not a place, it is simply defined as care for a terminal patient. Hospice care can be in a dedicated facility, but it can also be in-home care as well. My father had lung cancer and he had a nurse come to visit him once or twice a week, depending on his condition at the time. His regular medications were delivered to the house, he was given an oxygen concentrator, free of charge, with regular oxygen delivered and setup by the hospice provider. It's total and complete, free care in-home. Please do not be afraid to get hospice care simply because you think you have to put the terminal individual into a facility to get it because that is not the case.


over 2 years ago, said...

People fear dying, so they try to avoid it at any and all costs, which include, albeit with good intentions, trying to force the dying person to eat, be more active, speak more, talk AT them too much and, just in general, force the person not to die. Dying is a natural process and evolution of our lives. Make it as joyous and pleasant an experience for the dying person as you can. Don't cry, don't lament, don't get angry, at least in their presence. Allow the person to feel good and safe and comfortable with their journey.


over 2 years ago, said...

No changes are necessary. Any more information would make it unnecessarily painful.


over 2 years ago, said...

I rarely comment on any sites I visit....but this one hit me as sooo important I had to add my little bit. Mom had a massive stroke the day after new years this year. Nothing could be done, but we had to wait for her body to catch up with the death of her brain. It took 3 days. For those 3 days my brother and I sat with her...in a wonderful Hospice faciity. The people there were amazing. They spoke to her so calmly as they gave her meds for pain, changed her ostomies (she had two), repositioned her. They introduced themselves each and every time they touched her. I was in awe of their compassion. We stayed from 8AM to 10PM each day and the only reason we felt we could go home for some much needed sleep was because the people caring for her were so wonderful. They had a full kitchen for families with muffins and cookies, coffee and tea all free to families. Mom passed at 3AM so we were not there. Originally I felt very guilty that she died alone, until her sister told me " you know your mom...don't you think it's possible she waited until you were both home with your families so she wouldn't make it any harder than it had to be?" Watching a parent die is so tough....loving hospice people can make it easier. I cannot say enough about the compassionate people I encountered.


over 2 years ago, said...

This is quite interesting because I'm now living with my mother who is now 89 and I'm starting to see dramatic changes in my mother. This is quite helpful because it never occurred to me that I should make myself more knowledgeable of what's ahead in the not so distant future for I will be the one person that she is going to rely upon to see to it that her personal needs will be met,.. Thank you!


over 2 years ago, said...

My Mother passed away a few years ago and she went through all of these steps. I bought favoriate foods to encourage her to eat. She loved shrimp so I went to the store and bought 1 very large shrimp and fixed it for her. She took a small bite, I think for me, and then refused the rest. My sister and I had never been involved before in taking care of a dying person and were thinking that we were not doing enough. Hospice was there to help anytime and guide us and they gave us some of the information. They were great. Someone was always there and family was encourged to be there and help us. Grandkids were a great help and helping us to turn her and talk to her. She was very pleased that she was the center of attention (long story) so when she passed she was at peace. We now have 2 more people, one at 92 and the other much younger from lung problems (that is the hardest), but we have some of information needed. So, more information on how to talk to elderly people. How to talk to elderly or sick people. I still think I could have done more, perhaps because I encourged her to have the cancer surgery but without it she would have had a much longer time to suffer but she would have had longer to live. Anyway, your aticle was much appricriated and I will share it with my uncle's caregiver.


over 2 years ago, said...

Very informative.Thanks.


over 2 years ago, said...

Hello, Caring.com is an informational website only, and does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please speak with a licensed medical professional offline to receive expert guidance in treating the health symptoms you or your loved one is experiencing.


over 2 years ago, said...

I am very honored to say hospice is a wonderful place that honors loved ones My mother-in-law was put into hospice several years ago because she had stomach cancer which is hard to diagnose. And she was there for almost 2 months. When the end came I promised her I would be there for her last day with us. And god bless you I was. And they took care of the arrangements to have her transferred to the funeral home. So much easier than the family having to do it all. I bless them always for their support and the support for families with young ones. They do not just treat the patient. But the patients family as well. Hospice is a wonderful place for either the patient and family in the home or in the care facility. God bless the folks in the hospice house.


over 2 years ago, said...

hes 25. hes not overweight. he doesnt see a physician and where are the symptoms i could look up on the internet for him.


over 2 years ago, said...

Sarna, How old is your friend? What has his health been? Does he have any diagnosed conditions - not just symptoms that you report. Does he see a physician? What's going on in his life that would stress and depress him? Does he eat reasonably well and is he overweight? You, or he, could look up his symptoms on the internet, but all of them could mean so many different things that he needs to be looked at by someone who is skilled in taking a medical history and experienced in understanding and treating illnesses.


over 2 years ago, said...

my friend said hes been noticing neckakes everysingle day. also hes been feeling depressed and agitated and stressed. he also feels shortness of breath during half sleep. also hes been getting pale day by day. when he drinks caffeine he feels shortness of breath. also he heard satan talking to him at night. hes a satanists. he also has a little congestion in his neck. he also mentioned once that his toe felt numb his right toe. he also noticed when he wakes up in the morning orange yellowish spots on his skin. his face looks white almost like paper. then he noticed red knuckles on his hands the first time he woke up. and each time he drinks something not too much but normal, he uses the bathroom to urine 5 or 6 times a day. wat could that mean? any answers please?


over 2 years ago, said...

My mother has been in Hospice Facility for a month now and I was just wandering what signs to look for. Some days she says nothing and other days she talks and laughs, this is very confusing to me even though I have been her live in Caregiver for over 2yrs now.


over 2 years ago, said...

I have come back to this site to read additional comments. I am sorry that for some of you out there having a poor experience with hospice. Hospice is for pallative care only, it is my understanding it is appropriate for patients that have 6 month of less to live and for those that they are just nearing the end of their lives. Everyone wants an answer as to why doctors cannot cure everything. I responded 19 hrs ago about my experience with death and dying. My mother wanted to stay in her home to die, and I wanted to grant her that wish. My mother did not want hospice because in her mind, it meant you were going to die. Well her onocologist had asked her many times if she was ready, I told her doctor to NEVER refer to them as hospice. He then called it a visiting nurse and for some reason my little sister talked her into getting hospice. I do not object to hospice at all. There was just nothing that could be done medically for my mother, she was going to die, it was just a matter of time. Selfishly I wanted my mother for one more minute, one more hour and more days. But at the end I didn't want her to suffer. Hospice came every time I called them, when hospice arrived on the day of my mother's death, she told me it could be minutes, hours or days until my mom passed away. It was literally from the time she left until the time she got out of the driveway, I called her and she quickly returned. No one ever wants to give up on their loved ones. We always pray for a cure. Hospice doesn't kill your loved one, they are going to die. They are their to make their journey as comfortable as possible so their transition to after life is peaceful. I can't say enough good about hospice. If I had my choice I would like to go to bed and just not wake up, but we don't get that choice, we come into the world alone and we leave alone. It all depends on what your beliefs are. I cling to the hope that I will be reunited with my loved ones, or to have atleast made a difference in the lives of the people that I love.


over 2 years ago, said...

very helpful and heart-warming information. My mum is 73 and has alzheimers, but for the past week is totally bedridden, and asleep 24/7. virtually unable to eat & drink now, dribbles and has a lot of saliva dribbling. Unable to open eyes. Nurse informed body is shutting down, just pray my mum passes away peacefully in her sleep x heartbreaking seeing my mum like this. All the symptoms listed here are exactly how my mum is so thankyou very much, extremely helpful x


over 2 years ago, said...

Dear God, give me the wisdom to know what to do..... I read these letters, and it frightens me, today I was cleaning the filters to the watering system that waters our lawn, and I went down to far, and couldn't get up...I was out in the far back of our yard, I calle on my cell phone 4 times to My precious lady, who was in thehouse, and she wouldn't answer the phone, (she never does anyway) but I told her in voice mail, that she could hear 3 times to bring out a steel chair to help be get up, I was in gravel, and the oly thing I had to try to get up was a woven wire fence, I tried until I was exhausted, and finally called 911, just as they got there she came back with the chair, but I couldn't get up, even with it, but they come back and got me up...I am a quad, and the caregiver of my wife3 who has the late stages of pick's disease, (Alzheimer's family) it is front od the brain instead of the back like Alzheimer's, but is terminal..... so,now I have to make the decision of putting her in anrsing home or having hospice come to the house, we signed up for that about two weeks ago, but the post's I read here, is making me think, if I can keep her here, or put her in a nursing home, which I DO NOT want to do...GOD....I HATE THIS DISEASE


over 2 years ago, said...

My Mother fell and cracked her pelvis about 6 weeks ago, she is 76 years old. She was hospitalized and we then moved her to the rehab center in a local nursing home. She stopped eating and dropped 12 pounds in 19 days. She was diagonised with advanced stage Alzheimer's and anorexic. She begged my Fathet and her husband of 57 years to bring her home which he did. In one week she went from in home health to in home hospice on morophine. We just spent two weeks with both my aging parents. Mom experienced horrific terminal restlessness and dilisuions. We could not keep her in her bed not her clothing on her. The panic in her dreams were frightening at best. We called in a priest for last rights 6 days ago and after two very terrifying all nighters with her we convinced my Father to put her in respute care. Medicare will pay for 5 days, this is day 5 and the nurses did not expect her to be alive today. She is lingering and now we are praying for her passing for her and for us.


over 2 years ago, said...

I was witness to both of my parents dying and holding each of their hands when they took their last breath. Everything you mentioned in this article is right on to what I saw. Both had very high emotional days prior to their passing. My mother had lung cancer and was in a great deal of pain, she paced the floor for two days prior. When I kissed my mom goodnight I sure didn't know it would be my last kiss, if I had I would have held on a little longer. My dad suffered from emphysema and alzheimers. He became my little boy at the end o fhis life. I felt honored and privileged to be there for both of them in their final days, I think both of my parents waited for me to be by their side, many years prior my husband at age 40 passed away from a heart attack playing basketball and I always anguised over the fact that I wasn't there to hold his hand and comfort him and tell him how much he was loved. It seems I have lost every person I have ever loved. As a society we don't discuss death, as my mom told me "what if I am not afraid to die but I just don't want to leave my girls". She and my dad were my true heroes in life, and I was blessed to have a wonderful husband for 18 1/2 years and he has given me two wonderful sons and 4 grandsons now. Maybe education of death and dying should be a required course in school, better yet, families need to come forward and be of service to their parents at the end of their lives. My father was in a care facitilty but I went everyday to see him after work, I can attest to the fact that too many people leave their so called loved ones and just don't bother with them. Be thankful to what you have been given and be there for your loved ones in the end.


over 2 years ago, said...

Linda I looked this up so I could help my sister. Her 82 year old husband had been ill and she was told by the doctor to take him home and to get her affairs in order. He has since gone through the first 3 steps, no food and water ant sleeps all day. But as I was reading all ten steps I realized that was everything I went through 8 years ago when I sat by my dad's bedside and watched him die for a week. I wish I would have known this then because I would have had a better understanding of the death process. I believe everyone should know this information so thank you for the publication . I pray that my sister can handle it as her husband travels down this road of death. Thank you


over 2 years ago, said...

Thank you for this very detailed and helpful information. I did witness someone dying and didn't even realize it. But now that I know the signs, I am amazed at how accurate you are.


over 2 years ago, said...

nothing, I watch my dad go though the dying process.


over 2 years ago, said...

The hospice nurse has predicted our father will not live out this weekend which is in the next 3 days 07/04/13 thru 07/07/13. He has been very ill and is 89 years old. We lost our mother on 06/27/2013 and they were married for 58 years and deeply i love. Is the hospice nurse right about Dad 's death by the end of the weekend ????? Thank You In advance for your comments.


over 2 years ago, said...

wow 10 for 10 and I'm still breathing, god must want me around for suffering , been that/this way a decade or so now , and tomorrow doesn't look any better


over 2 years ago, said...

All of it is helpful. I have never seen an article like this before. Thank you for the how to respond for all 10.


over 2 years ago, said...

yes, it was.... but I hated reading it.... I HATE THIS DISEASE!!! it's info that probably is helpful, but I don't want it to be helpful, because with each thing my precious lady gets closer to death that I knew was coming for years now.... Dear God......intervene, please in Jesus precious name I pray Amen


over 2 years ago, said...

Ive experienced about six of the ten maybe a bit more. dam im scared


over 2 years ago, said...

I was just diagnosed with congestive heart failure about a week ago. At the same time when my doc did blood work he saw that i was rapidly dropping red blood cells for some unknown reason. Ive begun all the tests as they do not know the cause. im forty two and normal weight with no health isssues then this. i simply swelled up twentyone pounds of fluid in a few days and thats why i went to see him. Im sick to my stomach and fall asleep everywhere. I simply cant pass away now. ive got three daughters who need me desperately and my youngest has a 13 mo old son who lives with us as well. Im deeply attached with him and he with i. I pray every second that this isnt true. Im not ready to leave these girls and grandbaby with out my help and there all teens still. with learning disablilties except the youngest whose the mom. Yet she is invovled with a very volatile boyfriend to my grandson that i feel i have to watch over. What can i do to prolong my life untill i can leave my home to them and they can manage it? Whats my best bet?


over 2 years ago, said...

I wish I had seen this before my Father passed away. Fortunately, he went rather peacefully, and I apparently did the right things based upon this story. I wish this information could be taught to everyone, perhaps in HS, when kids can handle this type of information.


over 2 years ago, said...

At a certain point I would rather just get a shot and just let me go to sleep peacefully. I would rather not have loved ones anguish my final moments of life over any amount of time.


over 2 years ago, said...

My wife passed inJan.1999 from COPD.smoked for 60 yrs. She went through these symtoms. Young people need to peruse this article. Thanks for presenting it !!


over 2 years ago, said...

I could have used this article in the early part of 2000 and two months in 2001. My mom passed in Feb of 2001 @ 11:45am. I loved my mom so much and I didn't really realize it till after she went to be with the Lord. I was her last born and the only boy, so, she really spoiled me. For all the things she did for me, I was so unappreciated of these things and she never complained about that. My mom is the only person who loved me or knew me that gave me unconditional love. Mom spent the last two years of her life in a nursing home and I knew she hated being there. From the time mom enter the nursing home, she had an unhappy and sad look in her eyes. She knew this was her final move, her final place that she would live and her life was close to the end. Ok, I have to stop now, I'm getting nervous and a panic attach is not far away. Note to Mom,,,,,,,,,I love and miss you so, so, much, Your son, Steve


over 2 years ago, said...

in 2011 my mother had a stage 4 brain tumor, she was 69 and at that point in great health; it was a 52 day journey I went from the moment she entered ER and I never left her side. By the time they found it she did not have a lot of options they did a probing/biopsy and followed up with 10 long days of radiation (in the hospital) with the weekends off. The first two weekends’ I went home to my husband to wash my cloths and my aunt stayed over the weekend. However, after that point I was like a woman with a newborn I could not bare to leave her. She walked into the ER they wheeled her into a seconded floor room and from that moment on her brain shut off her ability to use her right-side.


over 2 years ago, said...

Since putting my Mum in a nursing home three weeks ago for the rest of her duration, she's gradually going downhill. Losing a bit more weight albeit a 1kg, her brain is now at a stage where she can't express herself to say a thing. And although I'm bracing myself to have that phone call from the matron I'm totally dreading it, and I'll up being a total 'water bucket'!


over 2 years ago, said...

i think it was very helpful my mother-in-law is very ill at 90 years old I am not sure if she is dieing or just ageing.


over 2 years ago, said...

I appreciate this article. I've never attended a dying person but I'm getting to the age now where that will probably start happening.


over 2 years ago, said...

'The future's uncertain and the end is always near.'


over 2 years ago, said...

Now I know why my mother's lips were noticeably purple toward the end of her life. Don't know how this page could be improved. Hard subject to tackle.


over 2 years ago, said...

My great grandfather was in hospital for a month, we did not have chance to visit him as hospital was closed due to the flu epidemic (stupid is that it was his 89th birthday in this period). He did not feel very well the most of the time, but after few days they said he was talkative and ate properly. I thought so that he wanted to say bye to us and this article assured me in that... he died three days later, 2 hours after my birth day... I miss him so much, but I know he suffered a lot in the last months, so this was only way to get rid of the pain :'(


over 2 years ago, said...

Just having some ideas of what to expect


over 2 years ago, said...

wow, I just relived my father dying in my arms... what a sad, sad moment.


over 2 years ago, said...

Now I am Scared, I have 7 out of 10 of these signs, should I be lying down?? All My cats had these signs before they passed.


over 2 years ago, said...

Well I guess I'm dying.


over 2 years ago, said...

To Wolff 65 do not be so hard on yourself. My family lives in Columbus, OH except for my sister who lives in La Grange, IL. My sister had just got back home from Columbus when I had to tell her dad's cancer had spread to his bones and brain that he had 12-48 hours to live. I picked her up from the airport dropped her off at the nursing home and went to pick my son up at work. I was gone about 20 minutes just to find my sister outside and I knew dad was gone, she told me he passed about five minutes after I had left. I felt oh so guilty for not being there until I put it in this perspective. I was with dad from the the start of his illness and I did get to say my goodbye to him so he was just waiting for my sister and probably knew I would totally lose it if I did see him die considering some of my reactions to other deaths. For some reason this has helped me.


over 2 years ago, said...

Thank you for all the information. I saw almost all of these signs when my father was dying.


over 2 years ago, said...

I must be dead


over 2 years ago, said...

Reminded me of my Dad. May his soul rest in peace


over 2 years ago, said...

these are highly accurate. i have witnessed all of them :-(


over 2 years ago, said...

have love ones dying


over 2 years ago, said...

had never heard of these signs of death.


over 2 years ago, said...

I am sitting with my motther in law who is on hospice right now and noticed a change in her breathing. I googled it and came to this and it explains everything that has been happening. Thank you so much!


over 2 years ago, said...

As an 11 year hospice team member, here is another little known sign you might look for. Look for creasing in the earlobes, you may find the lobes turn in toward the head almost 90 degrees in life's final days. This unexplained phenomena is not a sure sign of approaching death but it often holds true. Hopefully hospice has been called before that point so client and family can utilize the entire spectrum of services Hospice has to offer.


over 2 years ago, said...

It was extremely helpful. I am a professional caregiver, and I believe that this knowledge will be very helpful to me in aiding the client and reassuring/preparing the client's family during this process. The only thing that I can say would be an improvement would be a more printable layout.


over 2 years ago, said...

thank you for helping me understand what I didn't at the time. puts some of that guilt we all have into an easier place. my loss was a year ago and so many questions go over and over. I understand a lot more now, and I thank you. keep these articles posted.


over 2 years ago, said...

I wished someone could have told me and family this when my mom was in the hospital, the signs where there a few days and the nursing staff nor doctors said anything to us. when she started moving and opening her eyes I thought she was getting better they also mislead us into thinking that hospice had a rehab facility and that it didn't mean her situation was terminal. It was a lot harder to deal with her dying because we where kept in the dark but re assured she was going to be ok. because her vitals were good and all the tests came back negative.


over 2 years ago, said...

Right after my mom turned 91yo, she started experiencing the symptoms. Right now she's in a life support (tube feeding) , otherwise she could hv left us months ago. I've to talk to some friends who cares for their elderly parents and I've noticed that pattern is the exactly the same.


over 2 years ago, said...

Knowing what to look for.


over 2 years ago, said...

Earlier today, a member of our community posted a sad and disturbing comment on this page that has now been removed. We have taken action to assist this individual in seeking help offline as soon as possible. Thank you to those who shared supportive comments. However, due to the sensitive and private nature of this matter, we removed all related posts.


over 2 years ago, said...

Also, it is true, and I think some folks have said below...don't hover over them, or 'be sure that you're there when they die', because most folks wait until no one is there, then do the deed (choose to release and pass away, duhh)


over 2 years ago, said...

A couple of these steps can be left out, or skipped, but for the most part, this is what happens. I cared for a great-grandmother, a grandmother, and now my dad is going through these same stages. All three died (or will pass away) from different causes. Posting this so that people know it's not just one situation, these are THE steps of the deed. Very accurate, thanks for this, although a little too late for me to find.


over 2 years ago, said...

These can be symptoms of any critical illness and not just impending death. I am sure the medical community has ways of determining when it MAY Be near but the symptoms described are similar to Leukemia patients undergoing treatment.


over 2 years ago, said...

wolf65 Don't be too hard on yourself. You did more for your mother than many people would. She passed while you were away because it was her time. She likely did not want to pass with you near. People will hang on for loved ones to visit, or to be told it's okay to go...and many will hang on til their loved ones aren't near so they can pass quietly and not upset that loved one.


over 2 years ago, said...

I was taking care of my mother who had a stoke that left her with dementia, at 82, she had always been active and lively and loved life. When she had the stroke they told us to put her in a care home, that she would never recover. I refused because I promised her years before I would never do that, she had a fear of rest homes because her own mother died in one, and was not taken care of properly. So I took her to my home. For a while she appeard almost normal, but her condition worsened, but I didn't want to admit it, then she started getting combative unlike my mother, she just wasn't that way. As she got worse it got much harder to take care of her, so I finally had no choice I had to put her in a home. I stil hate myself for doing that, she died three weeks after I put her there, with all the same symptoms in this aricle, not eating, sleeping and not knowing where she was. I still feel she died because I put her in that place. I stayed there all day with her, I left to go eat, and she died while I was gone for just a short time. I never got over the fact I wasn't there, and never will.


over 2 years ago, said...

my Dad fell down the stairs onto a cement slab and hit his head, he has a subdural hematoma which could have been drilled , but he shook his head no when we asked him. I doubt he would have refused if he thought or understood how bad it was going to get. He is in pain in spite of the morphine because of pressure on the brain and my mother poa will not consider asking for a small burr hole to relieve him and I am unable to over ride her even though I know it would help. Hospice thinks that their drugs do the trick but they don't and my Dad is still aware and is able to nod yes to the fact that he is still in pain after his medication. I feel he could be either saved or at least made comfortable. I am the only nurse in the family but for the reason that he may not be fully restored they are letting him go and in an inhumane way.


over 2 years ago, said...

i don know why but past this few days i keep on sleeping and its very hard for me to wake up . And every single time my mom wakes me up for breakfast i feel so lazy and tired to wake up and i don have any appetite at all /.


over 2 years ago, said...

If you have friend who don't know the signs. Please share this with them. I found out from recent experience. That when a friend knows what is happening to their spouse,they can deal much easier.


over 2 years ago, said...

yes thank you so much!


over 2 years ago, said...

We just lost my grandfather this afternoon ( 06.09.13) and this website was pretty accurate. It was one of the things that helped me even before he left us. The last two times I'd seen him I knew he would be with God soon. He couldn't eat anything (which is no good because of his diabetes), he lost weight, he sometimes didn't know who was in the room. He was very tired and exhausted but it was hard for him to be comfortable because his tail bone had been broke for over a year. I'm just glad that he is at peace and no longer suffering.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom is still with me I'm not sure about the time she will last, But I see the signs and I'm worried I hvae no Idea, fo what to do she won't go to a Dr. and a home is the last thing she wan't She does sleep most of the time and eats very little, Last night she didn't eat any dinner and I cut up some apples for her before I went to bed. I always hope and pry I am doing the right thing My stepfather died 4 years ago and she was unable to care for her self, She refussed to go to a home cried and said she wanted to stay with me so I moved her in and I left my job to stay at home with her and I'v been working with her all this time. I wonder everyday if I'm going to find her after she passes in the night. I won't know what to do. Bless her heart I can't put her in a home I think she will be better here at my home even tho they can do more but whats to do? She is 91 years old now and if she passes here I guess thats OK, she wants it that way I do everything I can to keep her going only I do wish she would go to see a DR. But won't. At 91 she can do anything she want to. That in cludes Smoking.


over 2 years ago, said...

Things I see everyday and I di worry about. The prosess of the end I know it's close and I really don't know what to look for trying to keep her healthy and moving but most of that has stoped. I can't get her to do anything so I guess thats all normal and I shouldn't push her to do things. Right?


over 2 years ago, said...

My dad passed away 3/12/13. He had advanced dementia. In the end, they say his heart gave out. I miss him so much and am actively grieving. I did not get to be with him when he passed nor did I get to see him for a couple of years before he passed. I want to be with my daddy.


over 2 years ago, said...

There should of been an estimated time for all that takes place. Like the heart rate, pulse


over 2 years ago, said...

I have a good question if someone as stage 4 brain cancer in the last two months what is a person thinking mentally. He had tumors bad


over 2 years ago, said...

In response to the question - does your pet know when it's your time to die or when someone dies? - I would say yes. I had a dog which not only howled before my dad became ill and passed - he howled after my day passed. My dog passed not long after. I guess pets can tell and they go through mourning too. I have also heard that a red bird (canary) will come to your window too before someone in the family dies which is a sign of death. Sometimes a family member can sense death in the family also.


over 2 years ago, said...

I've enjoyed the information about death, learned new information. Thanks


over 2 years ago, said...

very informative. Have noticed sometimes dying person knows- and they ask to see people to say goodbye...advise and awareness of this scenario as well.


over 2 years ago, said...

Sounds should be included in this.


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom is currently going through the dying process. I've been reading different information about the dying process. This article was very helpful and consistent with others I've read. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and information.


over 2 years ago, said...

what the hell? did dr Kevorkian help with this article?


over 2 years ago, said...

My mom has bladder cancer and colostomy from colon cancer many years ago. For last week no urine has come from bladder, all fluid is coming from colostomy site. Any ideas?


over 2 years ago, said...

May be A Stupid QUESTION, BUT DO ANIMALS KNOW WHEN ITS TIME FOR THE TIME WHEN THER CAREGIVER ??????


over 2 years ago, said...

I think this article was a very straight forward and an easy read. Thank you.


over 2 years ago, said...

I am going through end of life with a very dear friend of mine who is 92. He didn't eat breakfast or lunch and is sleeping all the time. Hospice is wonderful. They are going to be there for us. I keep thinking I am ready, then I go up to the nursing home to see him and when I leave, I have to sit in the car and cry. Everyday is different. Yesterday he talked and talked and talked. Today he is quiet and falls asleep. I think he is in the final stages of dying. The hospice nurse told me that he is at peace with dying and he will go faster then most. He is going through the stages of the dying process, but taking them in an accelerated pace.


over 2 years ago, said...

I like the dispassionate, calm tone of voice. Neither too sentimental or too clinical. I also like the "how to respond" sections which are brief and to the point


over 2 years ago, said...

All of these signs are here but death is not. Praying for a pain free and peaceful passing for my beloved father soon.


over 2 years ago, said...

thirteen years ago my brother, sister, Mother and I were with my Dad when he took his last breathe. Just for you to know, my Dad always thought of himself as a comedian. When the time came, my Mother blurted out that my Dad was not always so easy to live with, where upon, my sister stamped her foot and yelled "now you tell him?" We all burst out in laughter, my Father would have loved this, the laughter of his family around him.


over 2 years ago, said...

I remembered seeing these signs with my precious daddy at his passing. Praising God he had a peaceful death.


over 2 years ago, said...

I was w/ my dad his last day- he died just after I left 4 home. He was TOTALLY alert & aware the WHOLE time. A few times he said things that were off the wall, but he knew he was dying & kept asking me "How long is this gonna take, Shel? Isnt there some way 2 speed this up?". Hearing & seeing my father in such distress- but unable 2 do s**t 4 him- broke my heart. Ive NEVER in life felt so helpless :"( My point is: my dad got that 'death rattle', but was VERY aware of & TERRIFIED by how it interfered w/ his breathing. He felt like he was choking, but was 2 weak 2 cough it up- no matter how many times we adjusted him or his bed. He even made us go buy decongestant/ expectorant cough syrup. But he never took it- fearful it'd make more phlegm or he'd choke on the syrup. My dad begged us 2 get him up & put him on all 4s so he could get the phlegm out. His wife's son's GF was the only one trained 2 give shots, so she gave him a dose of Morphine. He said it didnt TOUCH his pain, tho he had signs you get taking an opiate- clammy skin, pupil & speech changes. It wasnt til an awesome Hospice nurse came & gave him a much-needed double dose of morphine that he was finally able 2 relax & fall asleep. By the way, those 2 doses were THE ONLY 2 he EVER got in A YEAR & A HALF being terminally ill (prostate/bone cancer, diabetes & who-knows-what-else we HIS family were never told about), yet it was in the fridge the WHOLE time! Why, you ask? Well, this abusive, neglectful woman (whose kids even admit is a religious fanatic/ child+spousal abuser/ bully/ mentally ill psycho-b**ch & are all petrified of her) OUTRIGHT REFUSED 2 give him any, saying only Murderers give pain meds!!?? She let my dad get so dehydrated & malnourished that, had her daughter not come 2 check on him & forced him 2 go 2 the Dr. he'dve died within hours, according 2 hospital staff. is a pure DEMON & terrorized my dad throughout their 20yr marriage, but especially during his illness, after he became bedridden & totally dependent on her 4 ALL his needs. My family & I all TRULY BELIEVE she killed my father. He was definitely denied nourishment, physically neglected, refused access 2 proper medical care (& possibly poisoned). My dad's family traditionally gathers around & regularly visits one who's ill. But my dad's wife denied his own sisters & daughter visitation, claiming "They had their time w/ him while they were growing up. It's over now." "They need 2 just leave me alone & quit pestering me. Ive got enough problems trying 2 take care of your father, w/o all of THEM sticking their noses in, trying 2 see whats going on in here." "They better not even try coming 2 MY house 2 see him again. Why cant they just let him die already?!" I was absolutely flabbergasted & appalled! offended, disgusted This woman who claims 2 be a born-again Christian... this mean, nasty, rude, disrespectful, selfish, coldhearted, paranoid, mentally unstable, verbally/emotionally/physically abusive, antisocial, judgmental, self-serving, miserable woman... is, in truth, the VERY LEAST Christ-like person Ive ever known. She oozes evil


over 2 years ago, said...

My husband of 40 plus years passed away with Dignity. He did not live with Dignity as for the last six months of his life, he was totally inaware of where he was, was incontinent, had Diabetes (that I kept in check with daily shots,pills, etc.) and many other conditions. The last four months of his life he was in and out of the Hospital and they told me to put him in a home. I did for three days. Then I said, God, you gave me my husband for better or for worse, so I took him home to be with me and I am so Thankful I did. Hospice came into play. They were here for me and for him, although his Irish Blood would not them do for him what he thought I should do. I did it because he would have done it for me. He passed away after four days in Hospice, although they did bring him home for one last time the second day to say GoodBye. I did not realize it at the time that that was happening. We kissed him Goodbye, told him it was okay to go and not to worry about us. With that, he closed his beautiful Green Eyes and went to sleep. Sure I miss him, but know that he is in a much better place than here and going through tests that prove nothing but making money for the Drs. and putting him in an uncomfortable situation over and over. To those who have lost your loved ones, You did not lose, you gave them a chance to "Fly to a Better Place". Take care of yourselfs, that is what your loved ones want. Be at peace.


over 2 years ago, said...

My dad is my world and he is dying beside me. I am an adult and I have to constantly remind myself to not scream out in hysterics. I am surrounded by friends but somehow feel lonelier than I have ever felt and I'm not sure how much longer I can suppress the overwhelming sadness that feels hot in my chest. How do I survive the death of the one person that I adore and trust?


almost 3 years ago, said...

We brought my mother(82) home with Hospice 6 weeks ago. The doctors didn't expect her to live 2 weeks and she's still here. She drinks maybe 6 oz of juice a day and hasn't had more than a few bites of soup or ice cream in the whole 6 weeks. She can't weigh 60lbs - was around 80lbs when we brought her home. Mother has displayed all of these signs at one point or another in the last few weeks. This whole process is SO hard for her and us. If I only knew the "why" answers.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My dad passed away 8 days ago :( he had been in hospital for 4 weeks with COPD he couldnt do anything for himself without getting breathless, i would visit him every day, i saw changes in my dad he would cry alot wouldnt want us to leave, all he wanted to do was to come home to be with mum. He got his wish on the 29th may to be home with mum but sadly died early hrs of the morning. The pain i am feeling right now is terrible, guilt that i couldnt be with him at the end, i cry all the time :( i dont know what to do


almost 3 years ago, said...

Good to know.


almost 3 years ago, said...

as a help care provider I have seen death in many stages from family members and from the patients I use to work with in the hospital. This article was helpful because it explained in detail the signs of death approaching and how to deal with it. In death not only is the dying one going through changes, the love ones they leave behind are also going through changes. So as a health care provider its very important that you give your support to the grieving family members making sure that you do not over step your bounds but letting them know that you are here for them.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Although I came from a relatively large family, deaths occurred when I was not present. Then my sister was struck with breast cancer and died. I was completely unprepared for the process. This article is right on. Resisting the notion that she might die I didn't seek advice. I came from a very restrained family that didn't talk about events like this. This site is wonderful. I hope people use it a lot. My sister exhibited every one of the above symptoms of impending death. I didn't realize that the death process can actually start months or weeks ahead of actual death. The doctors were curt to us family, but the nurses were great, and even arranged for a spare room across the hall to be a gathering place for "time outs". The nurses calmly took charge of my sisters physical and emotional needs, truly, but had I known more I would have been much more helpful. When my sister actually died, I was there, along with her son, age 21, who was leaning his head on her arm and holding her hand. When her breathing became ragged, I went out to tell the nurse and she was able to calm my sister's breathing. Although my sister wasn't suffering because of it, I did that for her son's sake. So young. When my sister died, an hour later, I slipped out of the darkened room to tell the nurse, leaving them alone for a few minutes. When my mother came back to the hospital a few minutes later, she too needed a few minutes alone with my mom. I cried on the nurse's shoulder and she comforted me. It was an awful experience, being so ignorant of the death process, and just winging it. Nine months later, alone 2500 miles away, my mother, then 84, died of a massive stroke at night. She was found the next morning by a neighbor. With the help of an airline employee friend I was put on a plane in minutes. As I couldn't stop the tears, an worried about my fellow passengers being upset, I alerted the stewardesses about the situation, and those all around helped me by telling me their stories. My children gathered around both my sister and my mom. As a group we agreed that the ventilator should be turned off for my mother and she actually died 5 hours later. The stroke had left her brain dead, but her body was functioning still when she was found. I felt that my children, in their 20's at the time, should be familiar with death situations, and since, it did help them a number of times since. Part of being a parent. We all have a part to play, when someone dies, in creating a helpful, loving, patient, and forgiving atmosphere for our loved ones. In these life events, sometimes people act oddly, inappropriately, or angrily. Practicing forgiveness in these times and welcoming help will also make this process fold into our history successfully. But still, knowledge, as in this article, is a very helpful guide. I'm glad I found this site, even though my loss was now long ago.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Even in all such desperate cicrcumstances also, homeopathy can help. So Have homeopathic consultation too


almost 3 years ago, said...

my friend has copd and has to be hospitalized ever 6 to 8 weeks Im so worried does this mean she is at the end stages? she can not move around at all with out getting short of breath. what does this mean? please be honest!


almost 3 years ago, said...

I hope you let people know to expect their color to change to an ashen blue and their jaw muscles loosen. Drives me crazy that the movie directors have pink colored dead persons with their mouths shut tight. Retired RN. Love your advice and want my children to know what to expect and not to be afraid on that Glorious Day I ll meet my Redeemer! Amen!


almost 3 years ago, said...

It's me again I guess I should have said my mother was surrounded by other family members and loved ones. She just did not want me there to watch her die for whatever reason


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother died 1 1/2 years ago. She had cancer in her bone marrow. I went to the doctor with her and to my dismay the doctor told me she had 1 to 2 months left. At this point did not know she had cancer much less that she was dying of it. Fortunately I was with her everyday for the last month of her life. Hospice has a books what to expect when someone you love os dying. I read it a lot and I think it helped me to expect the unexpected.I stayed home the day she passed only because she told me to go home several times the day before. She did not want to leave me but did not want me to watch her die either. She was not alone when she passed. It was painless and very quick. I thank God hospice was there. They are wonderful people.i hope this helps you.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother is 56 years old. She has COPD, Cirosis of the liver (may not br spelled right), lung disease, a stint in her heart. The symptoms shes having are sleepiness all the time, she will pass out in front of people, she thinks people are there when they're not, her legs and feet are black. She has been in the hospital for her breathing a few times. She was told to always wear her oxygen to sleep, keep her legs up, do her breathing treatments. Shes not doing any of this. She can no longer take her own meds. She still smokes, she does not wear her oxygen, and she refuses to go to the hospital. My mom also has diabetes. Sometimes she does'nt know what the day is. Does anyone know how long my mom has to live. Her bday is tomorrow, and my grandmother does'nt think she'll live to see another bday. Just like to have some idea of how much time she has left. Thank you.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I just think I am watching my husband dye..he hasn't really ate anything..for 10 days...very smelly, has bowl movements? all of his major organs, lungs pancrase, liver & kidneys are damaged .. refuses anything to help him eat or drink....sleep all most all the time, but his vitals are are actually pretty good..just waiting.


almost 3 years ago, said...

for those of you who feel guilty that you are not there when they pass away - several deaths in my family have shown that they have the ability to choose many times and they wait till you are not there to go


almost 3 years ago, said...

I sit here watching my frail father finally sleeping. He is so restless usually and anxious to "change venue". To where, we're never sure. What a fighter he is. My family was blessed with, what we call an awakening, an added 2 wonderful med-free months with my father after he was given 2 weeks max to live in a hospice facility he was sent to on the same day we rushed him to the emergency room for a high fever. It was also the same day that we were told his lung cancer had spread and was not treatable. What a day. But we insisted to get him home and off meds because until that day, he was never in pain. He had lost much weight and hadn't had an appetite for 2 months since he first came down with pneumonia. After 24 hours off of all meds, he came out of his pharmaceutical stupor and was truly reborn. He had such a vigor to live out the rest of his days happily. He wanted to put the FUN in funeral and live Life Ever Laughter. He asked that we begin a memoir book and he so aptly named it " A-Wake by the shore". (He moved 25 years ago near to our family's favorite place on the Eastern shore) And he got his appetite back, put on weight and even started walking again. He has been bombarded with loved ones ever since. We were so blessed, for 2 months. Sadly, the fevers started and then the pain. So we started with all the meds. When I get sad, I must remind myself that I can still hug him. It's not too late. And believe me I do. I'm one of the caregivers and I went through a few weeks of wanting to get away from it. He was so needy and often irritated with everything and everyone. But now I don't want to leave his side for fear of never seeing him again. He's been so wonderful through it all. Organizing his own funeral and the DVD of his life that we're making to show at his service. He still wants control, gotta love him. And we'll be using his memoir book at his funeral for the guests to sign and continue to add to it. There will be a huge void when he finally leaves us. He's a wonderful man and judging by all the care and concern shown him, many people feel the same. I send my praise to all the caregivers and my love to all who have suffered the loss of their loved ones.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My dad died 10 years ago of liver cancer. I am now a full-time caregiver to my 95 year-old mother who has dementia and heart failure. Sometimes, I feel that I am carrying this burden alone, but after reading all of these messages for the first time, I realize that I am not. All of you are giving me emotional support in ways you do not realize. It's knowing there are other daughters, sisters, sons, out there who are also facing these challenges with their loved ones. Thank you so much.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother is on lifesupport, and no longer wants to go back to the hospital for care. She is now on stand by for hospice. She also has a bleeding ulcer and can't have surgery. Only daughter 4 brothers. What signs should u look for.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My 81 year old mother has stage 4 lung cancer.It has spread to her bones and liver. The Dr's gave her 2 months to live and it's now been a little over 3. She suffers every day but is still fighting .She is showing most the signs above for the past week,Today she lost control of her bowels for the first time ever. I feel I cannot endure another day of watching her suffer. How long can someone fight off imminent death? It's so hard to watch her suffer day after day.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I watched my grandmother go through the dying process and felt helpless. I feel this is extremely beneficial to anybody assisting a dying person. If only I had come across this sooner.


almost 3 years ago, said...

If I had a printer.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My Dad passed away last week. I have had very mixed emotions all this week. My Dad lived1 and a half hours away from me. Every Saturday morning I went to see him in assisted living( I did this for six years) My Dad was in the hospital for a week when I was to see him April 6th.All he wanted was to go back to his assisted living home. The Dr. was talking about a feeding tube for my Dad. I said NO ! I did manage to get him back to his assisted living home, and I was planning to go see him the next morning . unfortunately he passed away that night. I feel very guilty that I wasn't there, and I do believe had I been there he might still be living. I think maybe I could have convinced him to stay. Does this sound really stupid ? By the was my Dad was 87.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Most of these happen to me on a daily basis & I'm 24. The title of this should be changed to "Signs you're dying or need a vacation"


almost 3 years ago, said...

I lost my dear, dear sister in 2007. She was only 57 years old. She was such a great sister and woman! Born with Cerebral Palsy and deaf, she created a beautiful life for herself--went to the deaf college in Washington DC, and married a deaf man. She was a published poet. No matter what her disability was, she overcame all and loved life to the max. This article was so helpful to me in recognizing my sister's dying. We lost her in only 2 months, after she was diagnosed with brain cancer on her brain stem. No surgery possible. She became ill at my brother's house in Michigan at Christmas time. My brother took her to the doctor and she was diagnosed. The process of death describes my sister's experiences. She was in a nursing home (hospice care) and just went downhill all the way. I was able to visit her, and she knew i was there. I fed her lunch. She could see me, and spoke a little. That was in January. She passed away on February 11, after a coma of several days. I wish I had known about this article then. Thank you so much for this! I pray for all my fellow human beings that Gos will ease your suffering.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mom pass away on 25 March.. 2 hours before she died I said out loud to her that I wish she will open her eyes before she leaves us. Amazingly before she took the last breath she did so. My sister and I whom had both said that to her had our wish granted. She is really at peace during the last moment as almost everybody who came and visited said that she looked like she is just taking a nap.


almost 3 years ago, said...

You described my husband's final hours before death. Last year, I wewnt through the same thing but I didn't die. Now I wonder why?


almost 3 years ago, said...

my father died of skin cancer. the last moment while in a comma I spoke to him and let him know that he was a good father and we all loved him and wouldn't of wanted another father, ever. he heard me because my dad NEVER cried but a tear rolled down his cheek as I said this and I looked at my mom and she too saw that he heard and he took one last breath and that was it. Be careful what you say when they are in a comma cause they hear.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am so glad that I came across this article several weeks ago, just in time to recognize that my 87-yo mother was in fact in the dying process. It cleared up so many things for me. She had almost every one of these signs. The hardest one for me was her change in personality and detachment. Mom passed away this evening 1/2 hr after I left her--I'd been with her for six hrs straight and I believe she was waiting for me to leave.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had this list 3 years ago... it is very accurate for what we experienced with my mother.. and the nurses at the nursing home had no idea???? Those people should be trained on this stuff.!


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother had COPD so some of thee symptoms/signs were inter-related. Stil, the only few I actually saw were the bluing and cold in the hands. Her breathing was actually calmer and easier than it had been in years. While she was relatively aware, I can't say alert exactly, about an hour or so before she passed (she had a sip of water), she may have slipped into sleep just minutes before she died.


almost 3 years ago, said...

It took our aunt about 2 weeks to go from ambulatory party goer to the end. Most of this article pertains to her last two weeks. Amazing insights.


almost 3 years ago, said...

hi there my mum been suffering with cancer of the unknown for 19monthes now she just recently started been ill again she no energy and has a shringe driver in thro her been sick all time yesterday she had to have a catherter put in because she asnt passed urine in 3 days she sleeping most time she still trying to drink and eat altho she does find it hard swallowing most time nurses cme in evry day and tell mum to drink a lot she trying to but she carnt drink much


almost 3 years ago, said...

I find this article helpful as has confirmed what I was already thinking and dont feel paranoid or angry at the medical staff - my mom has deteriorated tremendously in the last 18 months to the point that she has been bed ridden since xmas. She forgets how to drink through a straw, she talks in a whisper so quiet can hardly hear her. At times gets very aggitated and hallucinates all sorts. So when me and my father was asked certain questions by medical staff (doctor) re our wishes for further treatment knew after reading this article our decisions although tormenting was the right one.


almost 3 years ago, said...

This is an INCREDIBLE article. I have been AT the death of my parents, myvstep mom, several aunts, a friend, my precious uncle and my only child. Open your eyes, forget "you" and totally serve the one you love. This article shows you How to procede w/ that


almost 3 years ago, said...

Hi anonymous, Yep, it's depressing. This isnt a comic strip or a jokes page. It's life, it's real and some of us are taking care of dying parents or spouses. We have to be informed and we need someone to listen and to lean on. Life is tough from start to finish. You have to be strong and committed to doing what you have to do, whether you can handle it or not. I guess thats why caregiving isnt for everyone. It isnt something I would want to do forever either. I'm doing it because Dad is... my DAD...and I do love him.


almost 3 years ago, said...

How extremely depressing......I wish I'd never read this--


almost 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for clear and specific information, understandable to the non-technically oriented family member. This is potentially helpful to the person standing by who may interpret certain signs to mean that not enough of the right thing is being done. It should bring relief and understanding that what is being observed is natural and to be accepted.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for your help. My daddy is dying at home and this is a good guide for us even though hospice is here. Not knowing or understanding is scary but knowledge of the process is not only helpful but comforting.


almost 3 years ago, said...

A list of caregiver and companies that come in to help the patient and the caregiver, I'm warn out and exhuseted and looking for company that will take Triccare Insurance and/or Federal govement retired postmaster and retired from the army as well. That will take his Medicare and insurance and not take his small amount of money that he has. Help please Thankyou for the information very helpful!!! \


almost 3 years ago, said...

PS This is a very good web page and I forgot to thank you for your good work


almost 3 years ago, said...

Great keep up the great work


almost 3 years ago, said...

Interesting article about people who actually ARE close to death, BUT do not let Hospice someone before his or her time. Hospice has its own agenda so you have to remember THEY are not the boss, YOU are, and don't let them speed things along before they would happen naturally. One hospice person stood next to the bed of my SLEEPING (not in a coma) mother and asked me loudly if I had filled out the autopsy request. If the patient has an injury, she or he will be given a pain killer which will cause drowsiness. If the patient has a urinary tract infection, she or he will be given an antibiotic which will suppress the appetite. The patient will sleep so much that she or he won't be awake enough to eat or drink water and will then become dehydrated. Then the mucus will get thick. One facility will tell you thick mucus means the body is dehydrated and can be fixed by HYDRATING the patient (with IV) to thin it out. The other facility will tell you that thick mucus means the body has too much water and can be fixed by DEHYDRATING the patient (using a scopolamine patch). Hospice cannot have it both ways. In our town Hospice refuses to hydrate the patient at home, but WILL, however, be happy to administer a scopolamine patch to dry up the already dehydrated patient. Check the web, where you will read that scopolamine is not harmless. Within hours of the patch being put on our patient, she never spoke again. AGAIN: Don't let Hospice take over. You are the boss, not Hospice. We shouldn't fear death, but we shouldn't push a person out either.


almost 3 years ago, said...

ty


almost 3 years ago, said...

Had Hospice for my Mom and the signs near death are very true.. Great article. My my exit be quick, graceful,


almost 3 years ago, said...

thought I received a placebo instead of my regular prescription of vicodin blood pressure has GONE FROM 120/80 TO 157/98 ASKED THE DOCTORS OFFICE AND THE PHARMACY-- Said it was tolerance but , I haven had a full script of vicodins since sept, when doctor needed all medical records or no meds-- could that change have thrown my sysyem off after 2 -3 years of use--- Thanks, Bruce 720-366-6313


almost 3 years ago, said...

I was caregiver for my Type I diabetic son full-time for the last 3 years of his life. He had signed a DNR a year before he died.They had said his kidney function was down to 10% and sent us to the nephrologist to get started on dialysis. The nephrologist said "let's get 1 more blood test and a chest x-ray, and come back in 2 weeks." We did the tests and waited. One Saturday night he called me to his room because he "wasn't feeling right." I put him on oxygen, but he refused to let me take him to the ER. There was a NASCAR race the next day he didn't want to miss, & he was concerned that he'd still be in the ER (w/o a TV) when the race started. I kept him company the rest of the night. He took off the o2 around noon Sunday & said he was feeling better. Late that afternoon he had a strong desire for some Taco Bell, so I went to get it. I was gone maybe 30 minutes, & when I walked into his room with the food, he appeared to be sleeping peacefully. I shook his foot & said "wake up sleepyhead, dinner's here," but something felt wrong. I dropped the food & rushed to the head of the bed. He wasn't breathing, but was still warm. Momentarily forgetting his DNR, I tried CPR, but was unable to get any air in or out. I even called 911 before I remembered the DNR. He was 34 & had been diabetic since age 9. Because he looked like he was sleeping peacefully when I walked in, without the usual signs of trouble, like he'd been reaching for his cell to call me, or hugging a bottle of OJ, or having his glucose meter out, etc., I took some comfort that he had apparently died gently in his sleep. After reading this article, it sounds as if he had probably slipped into one of those brief comas before breathing his last, with the kidney toxins circulating. The doctor ruled it kidney failure and cardiopulmonary arrest due to cardiomyopathy/nephropathy from the diabetes. It was still 3 more days until the nephrologist had wanted to start dialysis....


almost 3 years ago, said...

This is a great article.


almost 3 years ago, said...

So this made me feel so much better thanks!


almost 3 years ago, said...

I should have told you my step dad died of alltimers even though I was miles away I called daily ,he would talk about going home( meaning his childhood home) I would listen and ask questions. Just before he died it was like he was normal he ask why is god making me suffer like this, he went to the bathroom came back an passed. The Oak Ridge Boys sing a song SAVING GRACE anyone caring for a person with alltimers should listen to it it says it all . My prayers are with the care takers and their families but don't just drop them off at a home an think they will be fine , go visit an often if all you do is sit . As for the funeral director I knew when my dad died I woke up could not breath chocking it was so bad I had to throw up it was 3:15 a.m.. With my friend my chest felt like a truck was on it I called his wife he was just rush to the hospital he had a stroke, with my father in law the night before me and my husband where holding hands I woke up cause my hand was ice cold, his brother called the next day saying he had passed, with my brother in law driving in a car to be with him , where I was sitting my husband had to turn on the heat I told him his brother was gone 3 min later his other brother called with news. An with my step dad I saw him in his Blues in a casket he was gone 4 days later, to this day at 3:15 a.m. I wake up an can not sleep my dad has been gone 6 years. ..... All I can say is go and be with them it's not for you it's for them in some small way I believe they can feel you there with them if their brain can not remember who you are,their body can in some small way,the heart dose not for get remember that. My GOD bless you all .


almost 3 years ago, said...

I had dreams of my step-dad funeral, and I also knew when my father and father-in-law,and brother in law passed as well as a dear friend. I have heard my name be called out plane as day , Growing up I saw my Grandfather he died before I was born he was not a shadow he was as solid as we are today , As one dies one is born and I do believe that in some way down the family line one is born with habits of the one that passed just so you never forget them .My grandson has his Great Grandfather smile and is just as much a handful as he was at the age of 83 when he passed. It's all right to let them know you will be just fine if you are caring for a parent let them know they did a wonderful job, I think last thoughts are on their children and family an how will they get bye without me.Let Grandchildren spend as much time as they can with the person make it a special day and take pictures , as long as the person is up to it. you think he was reincarnation


almost 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for the informative overview. Death is as much a part of life as birth, and yet still taboo for some to consider before they are forced into dealing with it. I believe you were very clear about variance from one person to the next. Yes, we are all individuals; so we differ in death just as we do in birth and living.


almost 3 years ago, said...

After reading several of the comments below I have to share. Some of you mentioned your loved one hearing heavenly music. I have heard it. After my Mom passed I was devestated. I cried often and daily. 4 days after she died I began to hear the music. In my car, at work, at home. Not constant but off and on. it was nothing Ive ever heard on earth. It was heavenly, calm, soothing, soft, serene. Different songs too, each with it's own set of instruments which I can not describe. I heard a harp one night as well. Only the harp. This went on for several months. Each time I was about to fall apart I was comforted in this way. I also want to remark on the "knowing" that someone is about to pass. I have lost 4 relatives and several elderly friends in recent years. With the exception of my mother, I knew the moment I saw them how long it would be before they passed. Within a couple hours, tonight, in 2 days...I have been correct each time. I dont know why I know. My children have learned to believe me when I tell them a relative or friend will be gone within a certain period of time. They dont hesitate to go see that person. With my Aunt, she wasnt ill enough to die. She wasnt in great health, but last time I saw her she was fine. I hadnt heard from her in weeks. One night I dreamed I was at my grandmother's house, upstairs in my Aunts teenage room. I saw her old bed and dresser. Her closet door was standing open. The bed had been stripped and on the mattress sat boxes which had been taped shut. In the dream I knew her belongings were in those boxes. A week later I was called by my uncle that she had died sitting in her recliner in front of the tv. She just closed her eyes and passed away. This one I didnt know about other than the warning dream. It isnt the first time I have experienced these dreams. I feel it is God's way of preparing me.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am a licnsed funeral director in NYS., I was a past member of the Foundation of Thanatology at Columbia Presby. Hosp. in NYC. I don't agree that these 10 steps have to happen at all.....most of them will occure within 2-3 minutes of deeath.....no one, and I mean NO ONE knows when a person will die, they can't even come close until the last 3 minutes or so.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had this information from my Father's Hospice Team as when all these signs started happening I was calling the Hospice Nurse asking her "Is this normal? Should we call the Hospice Doctor? Etc..." and it caused me much anxiety that now after reading this excellent article....I did not have to go through if I had this information. I could have spent much less time calling the Hospice Nurse and waiting for her calls....and instead stayed next to my Father's bed, loving him, talking to him of all the many ways I was so grateful for his love and support throughout my life, reading comforting and hope filled Bible passages, holding his hand, wiping his lips with a moist towel, giving him ice chips....loving him until God called him Home to Heaven. God bless you for writing and publishing this article. I hope and pray Hospice Groups will call you to use your article for families and loved ones. It would bring so much peace and love to everyone involved.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I have a story to tell, its quite long so please bear with me. I hope others will feel a sense of relief by hearing what I say. Please also note I realise that lots of people will be skeptical. I am too. My darling mother finally lost her battle with breast cancer on 13/12/2012. She was diagnosed in september 2009 and mum, being my mum , had the attitude of an absolute fighter - to quote " Well I do not planning on dying for at least another 20 years !!!!' She was 58 when she had her diagnosis. I honestly thought she would beat it too. She battled like a trooper, and come halloween last year , she had the devastating news cancer had struck again ( in the other breast that she had begged health professionals to remove at the time of her first masectomy, but they refused !) Mum lived for 6 weeks. She had fantastic care at St Lukes Hospice, who helped her with everything. Watching her pass away slowly was horrific. I had no idea what to expect watching a person die. We helped her as best we would but the nurses were amazing. I was only 29 years old and every day was draining. Its a cliche, but my mum was definately my best friend. We would go every day, and give her as much love as we possibly could. In the end she could not speak but we kept talking and she responded with nods. She knew we were there. Anyway.. the night she passed, my dad left the hospice in complete despair. They had been together since they were 16 years old. He got home after a long middle of the night drive. The second he walked in the back door at home, the bottom of the cooker went 'bang' and flew off into the middle of the kitchen. He then heard the most beautiful music he has heard in his life. Like an external noise , on a radio. He walked from room to room and it was everywhere, even in the garden. He describes it as the most beautiful sound he's heard in his life. It changed from an angelic choir singing, to chanting and then to wedding bells. The last time he heard it was the day of mums funeral in the car home. and nothing since!


almost 3 years ago, said...

When my precious dad was very close to passing but still able to hear me I said to him," Dad, nothing can separate people who love each other". He was not a religious man but the expression on his face was of pure bliss. I send blessings to all. Ylehne, Kent, England.


almost 3 years ago, said...

On Feb. 16th my mother announced to her loved ones that she was going to die soon. She took to her bed and slept most of the weekend. On Monday I had her transported to the ER about 70 miles from her home. They just took blood and told me that her kidney function was slightly abnormal. By Tuesday, her family doctor had signed off on Hospice care. They were really helpful. They got her a hospital bed and an air mattress. They also ordered the Hospice Medicine kit with morphine and other meds to help in the end. My son and grandson came to visit on the 23rd. Mom stayed alert all day, but about 30 minutes after he left, she slipped into a semi-coma state. She would respond to my voice but by 11:00 p.m. she quit responding to anything. I played acapella hymns (she was Church of Christ) all through the morning hours. At about 5:25 a.m. I stood beside her bed and said, "Mom, you need to let your soul go to God. This earthly body is just making you a prisoner to pain." About 5 minutes later, she rose slightly off the bed and turned to look at me and laid her head down. She look so peaceful! I am glad that I had that week to care for my mother even though it was very difficult. I had to assist her to the bathroom because she refused to use the bedside comode. Mom was a very independent person. She died her way and on her own terms. How much more could anyone ask for their final days? I delivered the eulogy as a last act of love for my mother. I told jokes and humorous stories about her through the years. People laughed and cried! Losing a parent is absolutely the most difficult thing that I have ever done. I had gone through the experience with my Dad in 1981 but I was younger and now I am much wiser with age. I know that dying with dignity and on your own terms rather than being kept alive with machines or medications is the way to go. My faith is stronger for having gone through this experience. Mom was prepared to go and had no fears. She told me that she was a bit apprehensive because she knew that she was going to heaven but she didn't know how that was going to happen. I told her that she always said that things were in God's hands. Thank you, Mom, for teaching me how to live, but also for teaching me how to die!


almost 3 years ago, said...

Knowing how to respond to the natural steps of the end of life will help me . Thank you for posting these signs.


almost 3 years ago, said...

my mom is 86 and is under palliative care. last february to the week of thanksgiving of last year she was under hospice care. as for me i have m.s. and now facing a strong possibility of having lung cancer. my mom is in the chicago area and i am in the bay area. i've been doing part time here and part time there. think my chicago trips are over at least for now anyway. need to take care of me. haven't told mom yet. i'm still doing ct scans and blood work. will know the outcome soon. if i am to go before mom then and only then will i tell her. as of now feel that time is on my side.


almost 3 years ago, said...

The article was difficult to read because it summarized so well the process of dying. Dying is part of the life cycle. I know this but it is hard to read about the steps and think that this may occur soon to my loved one. I don't deny it happening but this makes it very real.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I like the way the article brings all the signs of death with dignity into full understanding. As we are witnessing my fathers passing this article is like a road map, covering all the stops along the way to his next life.


almost 3 years ago, said...

more info. did not seem complete


almost 3 years ago, said...

This year will be the 10th anniversary of my Dad's passing and Mom passed nine months later. He told me a year prior he was tired and would not see the end of the following year. Six months later he was diagnosed with Altzeimers and with several malignancies associated with asbestos. One week five months later, he became completely lucid and at the end of that week, he announced he was hearing heavenly music and that "they" were in the room waiting for him. No one could convince him to eat. Finally, the man who had been peeing in closets and front lawns the last 5 months got up, walked to the adjoining bathroom, sat on the closed toilet seat, and died looking at my Mom who hadn't yet grasped what was happening. Had I been told he had suddenly regained his senses earlier and that the two of them had been cuddling after 50+ years sleeping in separate bedrooms, I'd kknown the end was near and been there. Mom called the morning she went into a coma to tell me to come. That evening when I got there, she was in and out. A cousin leaned over to tell her I had come; she opened her eyes, greeted me and was comatose. I stayed there the next four days and nights watching over her, singing to her, telling stories and stroking her face. The fifth morning, my cousin left the hospital to chamge clothes and II dosed off with my head on the bed. She wasn't hooked up to any monitors and the only sound in the room was her breathing which rattled and was getting slower and slower. That's what I fell asleep to but suddenly I awoke with my heart pounding. The room was completely silent til I said Mom? Then she took heartstopping (mine) breath, let it out forcefully and was gone. Everyone had been amazed how long her passing took but her hospice nurse kept telling us she was waiting for something. I had early on whispered to her it was okay to go and had contnued to let her know this. But we had not been alone together for more than a few minutes til that last morning when cousin went home. And that was what the hospice nurse thought Mom was waiting for... Just the two of us. With her passing went the last person who remembered my childhood, our favorite places and meals.


almost 3 years ago, said...

When it printed out, the type was so large it took at least five pages. I realize that many people who print it need large type,but perhaps for thos of us that don't, there could be a choice of font sizes. Thank you.


almost 3 years ago, said...

All signs present here.Life has been a pleasure.Can someone please close the Blinds a little bit, that brite light from the Hallway is..... I just pooped


almost 3 years ago, said...

My father passed away almost three years ago. In the final week he told us, "I don't know how to do this (die)". As he progressed through the stages, he got to a point of not responding, but when I wetted his lips and tongue and put drops in his eyes (he stopped blinking in the final 6 hours) he seemed to manage the slightest twitch in his face as if saying, "thank you" for the relief from a dry mouth and eyes. Finally after 2 hours of gradually changing breathing, I leaned in to his ear and told him that everything was okay...all the financial matters were taken care of and that Mom was in good hands. I told him it was okay to let go and to just walk to Jesus." Within a minute he took 4 short but pronounced breaths and then no more. I told him we all loved him and watched the pulse in an artery in his neck slow with the final beats of his heart as he passed into eternity. Do talk to your loved one right up to the end. Moisten their lips, tongue and eyes regularly. Hold their hand and tell them everything has been taken care of and they can let go. Sometimes it's that last firm reassurance that things are settled that allows them to go.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My Mom died Feb. 24. About 5 minutes before she died, I told her that she could release her spirit from her body. She proped herself up on her elbows and gazed at the corner of the room as if she was looking at something. She then turned and looked at me and laid down. She had such a peaceful look on her face. It took me a second or two to realize that she was dead. I was wondering if anyone else has ever had the experience of someone raising up in bed after being seemingly comatose just before dying. I was told that my Grandmother did the same thing.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Hold the person's hand(s) and whisper close to an ear that he or she is not alone and you are here, while also saying:"I'm with you."


almost 3 years ago, said...

simple information which helps loved ones to be informed and comforted


almost 3 years ago, said...

I understand that this article relates to people that have terminal diseases not for a healthy person. I wish I had this site available when I was dealing with my 78 year old father and my 41 year old sister, both with terminal Cancer. It wouldn't change the outcome but surely with make us go thru it with more wisdom and probably making them feel more confortable. We can't think about ourselves, our sorrow, just please them and provide anything they want when is possible. Don't forget that the patient suffers double, his own pain and seen the loved one suffer. Thanks for sharing with us this article.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Lost my mom in June of 2012- She was in a hospice center. There is something about watching someone die that never leaves you. Now, I am 38 yo and parinoid about every symptom or illness that I get... has this ever happened to anyone else?


almost 3 years ago, said...

This may sound strange but I am able to tell when a person will die soon by a particular aroma I can smell on them, I don't know what it is or why I am able to smell it, but I detected the smell on 5 people that died within a week of me smelling it. My husband didn't believe it until the last 3 times it happened and I told him I smelled that aroma on people that weren't ill or hospitalized and then they died.


almost 3 years ago, said...

This was all so true with my Dad when he passed 5 years ago now. For two days he kept repeating, "Are you ready? Let's go!" We assume now that he was talking with his sister. She had had a stroke after learning of my Dad's pending death, and he seemed to be waiting for her to go with him. She passed away within hours of my Dad. Very sad for all of us, but we took heart in knowing they didn't go "alone."


almost 3 years ago, said...

Great article. After 50 years as a Rn I found many nurses very uncomfortable with the natural dying process even thought they wittnessed death from trauma and other sudden deaths.This should be mandatory training for all nursing home staff and CNA;s Thanks Mary Q


almost 3 years ago, said...

Tips on realizing that the person who is dying does NOT need to be begged not to die or to be otherwise harassed like that.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am 69 yrs old and realize that the end of life is nearer rather than farther; I would agree that knowing the symptoms of approaching end of life, while disquieting, are somewhat helpful in planing for tomorrow. Nobody can escape the "Grim Reaper" but with articles like Yours, We can be better prepared to meet Him with dignity and grace.


almost 3 years ago, said...

This is a description of how my late husband died from cancer. I wish this information would have been available to me then as I was his caregiver. Many of these signs were those that I thought I could change. Thank you for this information now as many people can benefit from it.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Some people seem to be very confused as to the purpose of this article. It is not meant to describe every form of dying. People can and do drop dead suddenly, usually from a massive heart attack or stroke. This was not meant to make people afraid that they are going to die if they are unusually fatigued, for example. I found it very informative for anyone who is taking care of a terminally ill person who is dying a natural death, meaning they are not on machines to prolong their life. My mother died from Alzheimer's and the signs she exhibited were almost exactly as described in this article. The hospice folks who were attending to my mother and our family had shared this information with us ahead of time and it helped me to know what to expect and how to respond. Thank you for sharing this information.


almost 3 years ago, said...

thank you for the time and energy you all put into these articles. I wish I had had this information years and years ago....prior to the internet. I feel bad that I did not know how to handle my mom's slow death 25 years ago. I feel guilty and hope she now realizes how much I loved her and still do. I hope she is with me in spirit, and pray for her forgiveness. The same goes for my brother, my husband, my dad. Everyone died within a 5 yr period and only now am I learning how to deal with their deaths. It took so long to raise the kids myself without family. I lived in the shadow of death for so long. 25 years have passes and now I am getting the help I needed then, through you. Thank you. Kathleen


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mate had none of the "signs" listed and he dropped dead at 62. I am not sure who this article is designed for. However, since my mate died I am having several of the indications listed.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Strangely, my friend passed away suddenly without showing any of the signs described in your article. She was probably more tired than usual the afternoon I came to visit her at her caretaker's home; but, this did not alarm us. After I left, the caretaker called to inform me my friend had walked to the table for her evening meal, sat down and prepared to eat. The caretaker turned away to get a dish, heard a noise, turned back to find my friend collapsed in her chair, no apparent signs of stress or pain but definitely no longer breathing, no pulse. My friend, at age 98, had dementia but no physical illness, was generally responsive, weak but still somewhat mobile and able to walk short distances with assistance. This sudden turn of events has been very puzzling and distressing. As a professional who has worked with patients for many years, the caretaker had never witnessed anything like this.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Interestingly enough I've 7-8 of these symptoms but don't send flowers a certificate to Starbucks would be welcome. A combination of reasons causes my issues, all of which are easily treatable.


almost 3 years ago, said...

11. Reading stupid four-page articles like this to the end. They may not make you dead, but they will make you wish you were dead. Caring.com is now added to my blocked list.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Common sense, haven't you realized people come to these forums not just for information but to share and/ or encourage.... I didn't fear my father's death, the unfortunate part of death, any psychologist or one with common sense must realize A wife of 70 years will never hear her husband whistling, singing or smiling at her again. She will never hear another corny joke. The 50 year old daughter hopes she remembers the wise guidance daddy taught and wonders if he couldnt have bern spared a few more hours, having time to share just one more story to teach a lesson, which of course the grandchildren will hear in the next generation. Your post was a little snobby from this side. My apologies if you did not intend to sound rude....


almost 3 years ago, said...

had conversation,s with my 2 daughter,s so they,ll know when its my time to go,just told Creator seen me tired so he,s takin me home :-)


almost 3 years ago, said...

The recent comments are greatly appreciated. The anticipation of death puts a strain on the family. My father-in-law was supposed to have died last year but he didn't. He showed all the signs listed. My mother passed during the time he was in the hospital on his death bed. She was not as sick as he was. My youngest brother and cousin did pass last year and they had been living with cancer, congestive heart, PSP and Alzheimer for past 20+ years. My youngest sister was diagnosed with colorectal cancer 10 years ago and we were told she only had six months to live and she's a survivor doing exactly what she wants - traveling, etc. Some of my friends and acquaintances died last year within 6 months or less time frame and not ill that long. I truly believe now when it's your time to die "“ it's your time "“ nothing can stop it.


almost 3 years ago, said...

A lot of this is common sense to any one educated in psychology and/or medicine. It is unfortunate that people fear death.


almost 3 years ago, said...

The timeliness of this article took me sort of by surprise. I think it is helpful to be aware of the signs of death not only in ourselves but also in others around us.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Concise, clear and informative. Extremely helpful.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I just watch to see if the kids have a casket from Costco dropped off in the garage!!


almost 3 years ago, said...

I thought it was an excellant article. It explained alot of the process I'm seeing in my mother with dementia. Thank you


almost 3 years ago, said...

my ma died 20th dec. 2012...she had been diagnosed in mid july with stage 4 pancreatic cancer . i was to sasy the least shicked cause back in 2009 she had esopogeal cancer and underwent major surgery .. she never felt good after that and she had ovarian cancer back in 1983,, and the doctors gave her 6 months to live ... well she lived till 2012. but then in 2004she had breast cacer then beat that easily ... 4 cancers in in almost 30 years of all that suffering ... so when cancer reared its ugly nature once again i dident know that it would wipe her off the map that quickly . i was shocked and the 3 days leading up to her death i saw her slipping fast and still held out hope she would make it also.. i had walked in the day before she died into the kitchen where she was sitting i took one look at her and broke down into a very horrible crying jag and she was sitting there witnessing me crying over her impending death and with her body she flung herself over to 2 ft. away wher i was sitting across from her chair an put her face against mine and was trying to kiss my face ... the next day i went to her house and i walked in and heard a strange gurggling sound coming from her room . i walked into the room where upon i saw her body flailing around and she was throwing up the very fluids the nurse had forced her to drink 2 hours previous to her dying . she was gurgling very loudly and her eyes were rolledback in her head. i started to freak out into hysterics and ran out of the room. i then came back 3 minets later and they had her on her side. and she was gasping for her last breaths . and i then told her that me and father are here and we love you and that my sister is coming . ithen went with my dad cause at this point he couldent drive well he has dimentia and parkinsons .. so i went with him to the court house to get his accident papers .. and that was almost 1 and a half hours after we left the house , we recived a call, ma had just died .... and when i went back to thehouse she was in the bed and the covers were over her and i lifted them to see my ma with her eyes wide open and her mouth agape .. it was so horrible to witness this ... i was a wreck and still havent recovered from all this . my dad is now much worse and hes in a facility and almost died , and then they thought he had cancer ,, so everything has really gone strait to hell since ma died !!! its been very difficult for me to get back on my feet as im in the stages of a nervous break down cause of everything thats happened.... i have no family that really cares im really all alone dealing with everything ... no one cares anymore ... thats why im reall,y a wreck . and imfighting this all the time . i trying to move through it but it still has me in its grip... i feel like im all alone and im hoping time will ease my pain .......


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother died in December after years of suffering with COPD and lung cancer. Hospice came to her house to give her some help, then when she had a crisis she ended up in their facility. I live three hundred miles away and could not be with her as much as some other family members, but from the experience with the hospice care I gathered that in some ways it is all business. Some nurses were kind and caring but some were blunt, threatening and abrasive. When she was obviously failing they said she was stable though she hadn't eaten or drunk anything for several days. They threatened to pack her off to a nursing home. She passed away three days later. I wish she could have gotten home to be with the little cat she adored.


almost 3 years ago, said...

total eugenics article. This is to prepare millenials and baby boomers to turn off the hospital equipment so 'they can hire 8 teachers' as Bill Gates says. So you see these signs in your granny or in a severely sick person? -switch off the equipment, not worth fighting, yeah? WRONG! This article teaches how to give up. Half of it has to do with moral strength. I am by no means denying that everybody's time will come or I'm not saying that these signs are wrong, they're not. I just think this article is written in a sedating, mind numbing manner to accept everything and not fight back to the last.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Don't just read these symptoms and think you are dying. It could be a severe urinary tract infection or other treatable issue. Several years ago I had many of the symptoms listed. I went to hospital #1 and they said, "You have very late stage congestive heart failure, you need to go home and be prepared to die." I left with a stack of around 20 scripts to be filled and went to hospital #2. They said, "Did hospital #1 do any testing such as treadmill or echocardiagram? I said, "NO." Because I didn't have insurance, they put me in the university medical school indigent program. I got the treadmill, echo cg, and an ICT. The operator of the treadmill heart stress test kept saying, "Are you sure you don't feel chest pain?" "I replied, no, I do this kind of walking all the time." She kept increasing the speed and upping the tilt. She kept it up for 18 minutes and said, "You should be feeling some severe chest pain by now." I replied, "No, I feel like I can go on just fine." She finally stopped the treadmill at 30 minutes of maximum tilt and almost a dead run. She said, "People with congestive heart failure can't do more than 5 to 10 minutes." That made me feel better already. Then finally my new doc called me in and gave me the news. He said, "You have a really bad kidney infection. We need to get you started on IV. The good news is you do NOT have congestive heart failure."


almost 3 years ago, said...

This is exactly what I experienced when my Dad died of cancer a few years back. In his last 10 hours, he would take a deep breath and not breathe for 35 seconds, then later the death rattles and then in the final few hours, his breathing became quiet, shallow and then I stepped out for a quick break to get some food, and he slipped away. That was the hardest part (except for the death rattles), because I promised to be with him in the end so he wouldn't be alone. I felt like I broke a promise, but after beating myself up for leaving him selfishly for food, I realized through others that I gave my dad the most loving ending and that he may have wanted to go when I was out of the room for my sake. Love lives on even past the last breath. Well done article.


almost 3 years ago, said...

As this day gets closer (having some of these symptoms) I don't want others to fuss over me... as they did when I got out of the hospital from the stroke a few yrs ago. I must say the lite stroking of the arm was ok... but talking like I'm a baby or so fragil I would brake... was terrible and not realistic. It wouldn't be very good to be too blunt when that may not happen either... but just casual conversation of something interesting would be a great lead into a hopefully heavenly grace through acceptance of Jesus Christ my lord. .


almost 3 years ago, said...

I need a liver transplanf and I know if I don't I will die. I want to pay right now for funral stuff He wants noting to do with it. he aalso is a care giver for his 75 yo father I told him what are you waiting for we are a going to died I have met peace with god whatever happens. just tring to help my husband care for me. am I wrong?


almost 3 years ago, said...

My father-in-law passed away three years ago from cancer, and he exhibited almost every one of these symptoms the last time I was with him. He didn't want to eat or drink, he only wanted ice chips, he didn't show much interest or awareness in the room or who was in it, and he could no longer speak or get up. It was very sad; I was closer to him than to my own father, and he was only 55 years old and looked twenty years younger. He was always being mistaken for my (now ex) husband's brother, and was so youthful and active and seemingly healthy... Suddenly there was weight loss and problems using the restroom, and a trip to the doctor turned up stage IV colorectal cancer with metastases to the liver and stomach. His liver was 90% destroyed before he ever knew it was happening. 4 months later he was dead, more than 100 pounds lighter than he started. It's horrible that it can be over like that, so quickly. Don't take your loved ones for granted; don't take your life for granted. You don't know how long you'll have either one.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My husband has just about quit eating anything, especially solids, only wants coke, OJ, water & milk, ice cream & pudding. I have encourged him to eat, but he says he can't. Refuses to go to the DR. Also, wants to sleep all the time. The Dr. has run every test he can, but can't find anything wrong. Fourteen yrs. ago he had a stroke and recently was told he has Parkinsons, so I think he has just given up, he also says he's ready to go to Heaven. He says he is in pain, but won't take anything for the pain.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Very informative in dealing with concrete issues.


almost 3 years ago, said...

your arrticle freaks me out


almost 3 years ago, said...

My husband died 2 years ago. I was with him at home when it happened. I know and witnessed all of these signs leading up to his death. His lose of appetite, swelling, fluid build up and change in his color especially his eye es. I just wanted to know if I did the right thing. Georgiann C., Greenville, Ms.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am currently a caregiver in a home healthcare setting. I believe that these signs and symptoms are definitely accurate in providing some sort of sensibility when one may be close to death. I also believe that these signs are important for anyone, age appropriate, to read and understand. The signs and advice on how to respond to such ailments is definitely helpful and could provide support to caregivers or loved ones, especially those that have not had any experience with coping/dealing with the death of someone around them!


almost 3 years ago, said...

I knew my Mom was on her final journey when she proceeded to follow the mentioned steps and become "comatose" for the last 24 hours. Amazingly, right prior to her departure, as I was holding her and telling her it was OK to let go, she opened her eyes and stared at me for a minute or so and then passed. It was at that moment that I knew she was aware of what had been happening the entire time. I thank the dear Lord that I was there. Yes, it's good to know all these steps but ultimately we cannot outrun our destiny. It makes us more aware of what to watch for in death but what of what to watch for in life? Why don't we treat each other better, more tenderly, less selfishly? I feel honored that I was permitted to be with her at her death and to have been metaphorically slapped in my face with the realization that I should have told her I loved her more often than I did, that I should have taken her to that stupid junk store she liked, I should have taken her out walking more often-but there was never time, I was busy, I had to be here, there, and everywhere. We had a great relationship, she was my best friend, and my mentor. Her final lesson to me was open your heart, stop being so critcial, re-evaluate your life, as you never know what is going to get you or when. Have no regrets about things you should have said and didn't-tell your family you love them every day. Have no regrets about things you've said when you should have kept your big mouth shut, but didn't, because you were angry, frustrated or tired. Yes it's good to know the stages of dying but more than anything, it's actually more important, in my humble opinion, that we know and work at the stages of living. Mom, I miss you, your loving and adoring daughter


almost 3 years ago, said...

My daughter-in-law told me that when her beloved Grandmother was dying of cancer, she knew death was near because she totally refused food. Why? Guess the dying body does not want nourshiment as it's closing down, getting ready to die. Also, if I may add this: the Death Rattle - I was always told once you hear that horrid rattle the death of that person is near. Not so. My grandmother had that Rattle, really loud I might add; however she totally recovered and lived on for at least 5 more years. Blessings to All!! Yer Pal Always, Thee Ox


almost 3 years ago, said...

yes helpful, but as a nurse It was things I knew. my only problem is When my husband expired at the very end , he said something to me, that because of the 0/ mask I couldn't understand and wish I knew what it was.. I held his hand all night every once in awhile he would pull it away and would turn him, and would take the hand again. He was comfortable. Took him to the hospital for last 24 hours, as needed help to turn him, and the hospital was close where other members of the family could come and go to see him and talk to him. He knew they. were there although he didn't answer them. But would look at them at times. I just wish I knew what his last wards were as even though he seemed alert voice was just whisper soft and mask couldn't make them out. . Held his hand kissed him and told him I love you.He closed his eyes and went to sleep. He was starting to have problem breathing and had the nurse give him a injection of MS., Which I knew would shorten his time a little, but it also made it easier for him.He was able to breath easier and no suffering. Choice do you let a person suffer to be able to breath, to keep them a few minutes longer or make it easier for them .


almost 3 years ago, said...

My father died at home. The VNA left us a list of what to expect. It really did help. On his good day he asked for his children and grandchildren and we spent the day laughing and joking. We were sad when the day was over but we were overjoyed to see him happy and animated that one last time. We all gathered once again when his breathing became like a fish out of water, we said our good byes and told him we loved him, a few hours later he let him self go and his pain was over. A death is always such a sad occasion but when you know what to expect it gives you time to prepare yourselves.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mom had every single one of these signs. I have to wonder why the facility where she was staying didn't put two and two together.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I read this article and I have to say that it is pretty acurate as to the dying process. M got married 25 years ago, and in that time took care of my mother-in-law,39 year old sister-in-lawe and last year my husband. All passing away, my husband last April I was by his side. Yes, it is definately heart wrenching to see a loved on pass away. I have yet to really deal with this. I had lost my mother who was 56.I was at the age 16 and dad, 58 10 years laeter so on and so forth. There is no solution to feeling better but the fact that they loved life and we are here to see that that comtinues for them as well as us. I am now done with my caregiving days as my husbands death less than a year ago kinda did me in. Caregivers, I give my hat off to you. Peace and love abound to all.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mom is 92, her health has drastically declined in the past year - alzheimers, severe macular degeneration, arthritis, etc.. She was always very strong and healthy, so it is very hard to watch and accept that she is so dependent and needy now. We have a very small family (both my mom and dad were only children) i have only one sibling who lives on opposite coast, so I am it. I use to feel guilty too, but have learned and accepted that my life is 40 years away from being my moms age, and I deserve to enjoy it, like she did. She had a great life, I believe that what is happening to her mentally is natures way of helping her ti deal with the inevitable. I appreciate this honest article, U was not sure what to expect at the end and am grateful to be somewhat prepared. Death is part of Ife, we should ALL be so fortunate to live long lives. So, please, dont feel guilty and take care if yourself too, you deserve it.


almost 3 years ago, said...

It would be helpful to have something to ask the dying person, as ... I think that this would be good in a kit to help teenagers think of what is going on, as with their grandparents. I've been a school counselor for eight years and appreciate a guide to grieving in group counseling/guidance. I wonder if someone should be with the mate of a dying person, as when we see our mate/ex passing away, naturally; it must hurt to much to stand it, alone. Thanks for your help. Paul Wiest, Ed.D. 4601 East Skyline Drive, Apartment 615 Tucson, Arizona 85718 Cell phone (520)609-1299


almost 3 years ago, said...

my father passed in December, it was mostly peaceful, and Loved ones were by his side, which was lovely. One thing I have never experienced before with a dying person but happened with my dad was all his sheets were absolutely soaked about an hour before he passed. In between, all these other things you've mentioned happened, but I really want to know why that happened, like total perspiration of all his pores?


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother is in the process of dying,CHF, we where told she would last one to two weeks, I think it will take longer. I am greatfull that she is in our home so I can tend to her. My personal time is very limited as my husband is also in need of extra assist do to dementia. The internet has been a great help to me and the stories and comments on this site is very helpful. thank you for being there for us


almost 3 years ago, said...

My dad died in October 2011. I was with him at a comfort care place in a hospital. My Dad was 94. My Mom has become less with it. She is in a nursing home now. She does have Hospice services too. I feel guilty I had to place her. Mom is 90 with heart problems, Macular Degen., and Dementia. It is hard to watch her decline. I feel bad & don't know how to stay content in my situation.


almost 3 years ago, said...

My mother in law is almost 83 and has been in the hospital then a rehab center then back to the hospital and now a nursing home for now. She wont eat very much, cant do very much but lay in bed and cry out for help. Are these the symptoms that this article talks about?


almost 3 years ago, said...

u will learn a lot if u can read, this site is very interesting about death, sad we all r going that way, sooner or later, there is no getting around it, when death comes knocking, there no running or hideing or waiting until i ready we dont know the time or date,


almost 3 years ago, said...

I have found his article bo be most interesting and the material very helpful. I had already lost my Father in 2000 so I was somewhat prepared when it was my Mom's time (but you are really never prepared to lose someone you love). Mom was almost 90 years of age, and she was ready to go becoming distant and she willfully started to eat less and less and drink less. This went on for the longest time. Weeks turned into months and nothing anyone could do as she had a medical directive requesting no feeding tube. I watched as she slept and slept and became weaker and weaker losing vast amounts of body weight until the day came when she could not swallow at all, even if she wanted to. Our family kept a death watch for four days and nights. Mom was given morpine for pain and awoke at short intervals, but she could not speak or move. On the fourth night she finally stopped breathing and I was so relieved for her to be out of her body. I miss her so badly though and the world is such a colder place without her.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Very intresting article. Richard F. Draime


almost 3 years ago, said...

Hospice people/nurses are a gift from God. Thank you each and every one for what you do. Believe me when I say you are GREATLY appreciated.


almost 3 years ago, said...

ME BEING AN ALCOHOLIC FOR OVER 20 YRS CAN ACTUALLY SAY THE BEST THING IN MY BOOK IS JESUS CHRIST, AND THE GOOD BOOK, THE BIBLE, I JUST NEEDED THAT EVERYONE JUST MIGHT TRY TO LOOK UP TO GOD, THE ANSWER IS RIGHT THERE, AMEN.


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am a nurse and this article is very accurate. I have seen this in my professional & personal life.


almost 3 years ago, said...

everything that has been written oin this issue has happened to me. as I watched my mother pass,it took six day for her to let go butyou hit every one on the nose.the last sense to go is the hearing so it is important to talk to them.she stoped eating and talking,mind you my mom was never at a loss for words right up to the discoloring of her feet and legs.It was the longest six days of my life but would not trade it for the world.being there when she moved onwas not only nurtureing but asls gave me some reasurance that she did'nt have to face it alone.I was happy tobe by her side


almost 3 years ago, said...

i am not the caregiver, i am the lucky one. I've felt different now for about oh i dont know,....not important really.


almost 3 years ago, said...

thank you, i thought it was my imagination a while ago 10 out of 10,......not much else to say,that seems to cover it all.


almost 3 years ago, said...

This topic is eerie to me. My son was born in 1962 and my husband gave a beautiful Forget Me Not plant. In 2002 I was shopping in a local department store that had a small Forget me Not plant at the check stand. One plant. I asked about it and the clerk said it was for sale. I purchased it and that was about 8:30 pm. The next day, Sunday, at approximately 1am my son was murdered. I didn't find out until 4pm that afternoon. You are showing a Forget Me Not plant with this topic. Wow!


almost 3 years ago, said...

I am a hospice volunteer who sits the actively dying. I watch their breathing and for mottling of the skin. I do stay longer if the breathing is showing me that it is near their transition to a new journey. It is an honor to be in the their prescence during this natural process. I have received on my face book page a saying about nurses who get "no respect". About patients spitting up, messing their beds, and their relatives being unappreciative. Please leave me out of this attitude. The people in hospice are aware that a patient does vomit, pee, and mess the bed. Family are involved solely in what is going on with their loved ones. If you hate what you do, leave the profession and do something more suited to your needs. Your attitude does come through loud and clear, so it is upsetting to the patient and family members.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Seem likeGod is super busy this week...took mom Saturday morning. And took one her brothers this morning...I think she seem the struggle he was goin thru and asked God to bring him home..even high above the clouds mom stjill taking of family...I tell ya amazing


almost 3 years ago, said...

well time is going on, mum not eating or drinking now and is not responding to anyone, the doctor who is caring for her has put on a pain relief patch so we hope she is in no pain, she seems peaceful now, just waiting, we talk to her about all sorts of things, mostly the past when we were kids, you know happier times, and tell her we love her. we will never know if she can hear us, it helps us though, :)


almost 3 years ago, said...

Well this was veey helpful to me..my mom made her transition today& this info made it easy former....hard part is not over but


almost 3 years ago, said...

its excellent material. since November I experienced the death of a brother, grandchild, sister and stepsister. Wish I had this information then, nevertheless glad to get it. It is very helpful.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Watching a love one leave you has got to be the HARDEST thing in life..sitting by moms beside she says " hey y'all we weren't suppose to meet like this"....followed by " I'm ready to go home"... mind you she is home..she has been in and out all-day..I'm on break of losing it...my family knowwhats goin on bit not understanding..she really not eating ordrinking but they trying to force any input on this.....


almost 3 years ago, said...

I wish I been told this process about 17 years ago. Especially the things that would have increased her comfort level. I took care of my mother at home the last 3 weeks of her life. It was a privilege to care for her.


about 3 years ago, said...

Several years ago, I was very ill, near death..it was so easy, warm and comfortable. I felt a comfort of family and prayer. Then I rallied, God changed his mind, I guess..but now am not afraid of the process in any way. Being a retired nurse, I have seen many people 'cross-over'..for some it is so easy and peaceful, some fight to the last breathe. I think it has to do with the kind of life they've led up to that point. My health is such that at any time, I could 'go the last mile'..but it is okay. Being so close to dying before, I've found out that I've nothing to fear. I am a religious person, not overly so, but I do look forward to a beautiful eternity.


about 3 years ago, said...

i just wanted to know what to expect, my mother has dementia, since friday she has been in bed, in a care home, and has been drifting in and out of consiousness, she is still being fed and given fluids at this time,but seems to be "asleep" while eating, she has no infection or high temperature to explain the way she is at the moment, so i was guessing she could be near the end of her life, i am not sad, i am realistic and almost relieved that at this moment she seems peaceful and comfortable, it doesnt feel like i am losing her, she was lost to us a long time ago, thankyou.


about 3 years ago, said...

I am going to live for ever so far so good


about 3 years ago, said...

Another sign is the earlobes lay back.


about 3 years ago, said...

i find the info really helpful. however, i just want to ask, can there be a huge improvement in the stages. my mom was realy realy badie. could not phone, watch t.v. cried for her father(deceased 20 years ago) now she phones watches t.v. which we are so grateful for. she is very depressed now and cries alto and also complains about sore feet (burning ) sore back, shich when she was bad didn't even register. would love to know how this is possible,could it be from better diet.


about 3 years ago, said...

My Mom passed away on 1/26/13, almost exactly 3 hours after we left the hospice facility. Before she passed she kept asking if we were going to fall, if everyone was going to be okay and if everyone had a place to stay. Once we answered affirmatively to all of her questions, she said, "Okay, bye." Starting abouit 2 weeks before, it was obvious that she was communicating with the other side-she was faintly saying something about our Dad, who died in 1975. When we asked her what he way saying, she replied, "He said he is lokking forward to it."


about 3 years ago, said...

I have end stage emphysema and have wondered about what dying will be like. I asked my doctor and he said I'd probably develop pneumonia and be pretty much 'out of it.' The information here, being so much more in-depth has reassured me that all will be well. As I live alone and my insurance will only cover two weeks of hospice care (how am I to know at what point to start using my two weeks?--and isn't that ludicrous?) I may very die at home, but I have a few wonderful friends who will make the end as easy as possible. I am not afraid of dying. But I have been concerned about what the 'runup' to it might be like. Thank you for this information.


about 3 years ago, said...

Greetings well my mom stage4 Lc. Appetite is light fluid intake is well though...here past couple of days I noticed her picking at balnkets. Or in her own world. Does anybody have input on this..Dr.already told us its nothing else they can do. Hospice feels keeling her high is best but she dontlike that at all.she sleeps when on meds but is active when not tho...


about 3 years ago, said...

This is a very informative article. I wish I had known about the subject when my husband was dying. But I am a bit confused over the time length of this process. My husband, in the last year of life, gradually lost interest in food, and would finally eat only pudding. He also lost interest in previous activities that he found pleasurable. This was also a gradual process. My relatives told me he was going to die soon because they saw a change around his eyes. The skin around his eyes became reddened, and sunk in. He also developed dark circles under his eyes. Another development was very curious to me. He had had white hair since a heart attack at age 50. But as he got more and more ill, his hair started to turn black again. I'm wondering if anybody else has noticed this? Thank you so much for this article.


about 3 years ago, said...

my name is carol my husbands brother lives with us he has cirrohis of the liver among other things but now he mat 1x day its been 6-8 months since he got into the tub he never leaves his room except to go to bathroom i am concerned about him not taking a bath or eating enough and him just staying in his room mostly sleeping he has had numerous appointment at the v,a, clinic but never has been since october we called 911 and they said they could not take him anywhere they said his mind is good but it isnt ever he gets confused where his pepsis r kept doenst remember that his truck is in my husbands name tag and insurance i took the key i was afrraid he might drive the truck off he can hardly walk he is so weak imy husband will not say anything to him afraid he will just get mad or upset he doesnt have anywhere to go i know if he dies here the coroner will come an autopsy will need to b done and they may charge my husband he was in vietnam and has never had any treatment for that i feel he would do anything to die i go to drs appointments on a weekly basis or he might just walk off anything what can i do


about 3 years ago, said...

The print "PRINT BUTTON'" is at the bottom of the very left margin of each page of this website. Click on the little image of a printer and it will open your printer dialogue box and then click on the print button in that box. Two clicks and you are finished with a printed copy of this article minus the comments and ads. Just a note for future reference. Any website, blog email where there is something that has been written, intended as informational entertainment will have a print option somewhere near it. Always look for a tiny word,"print" or the tiny image or icon of a printer. Websites thrive on their articles being printed easily and handed around. I just printed mine and it was 2 pages long and pretty much only the article printed so I would not have to edit anything to pass it along. Thanks. Also, always remember when reading on the internet that comments that are ill intended to get a reaction most always aere the only ones that cannot spell and know little to no grammar. Sort of what you would expect of a 2nd grader that had learning difficulties and felt stupid and took it out on the normal people that can spell.


about 3 years ago, said...

detail of end of life sooner. maybe mounths


about 3 years ago, said...

I'm already seeing some of these signs in my husband. I pray for strength and Hope I can handle the rest of the time we have together.


about 3 years ago, said...

It is said that in Norway,if a person is very sick they open a window at night,so if they die their soul will go to heaven. I love it!


about 3 years ago, said...

About an hour before my dad passed,he told me he saw relatives that had already passed at the foot of the bed,as if they had come to help him pass over. How beautiful is that? I hate myself for not paying attention to my dad and asking him questions about this!


about 3 years ago, said...

If I had known this information 2 years ago, I could have been more compassionate in caring for my aunt. Now I know I was seeing the natural dying process take place in her -- at the time I had no clue. No one told me what was happening even when the caregivers told me it was time to talk to hospice. I would have stayed with her longer if I'd only known and not have left her care totally to the nursing home staff. Thanks for this information.


about 3 years ago, said...

I think that this is a well written piece on the dying process...thank you for sharing this.


about 3 years ago, said...

I remember watching a friend go through these steps. She was younger but cancer was making her body give out. She followed these steps in the exact order as they are written here up until she hit step 7 then, for some reason unknown to any of us or ever herself, the true realization hit her that she was dying. Oh that fire we knew her for came back with a vengeance then. She started arguing with the nurses, forced food and fluids down even though it hurt to and she'd puke them right back up only to force more down. Started forcing herself to move, the nurses found her stubborn rear on the floor three times because she decided she wanted to go take a shower in the bathroom (her room had a nice restroom setup with a shower) without any help. This girl everyone thought was dieing pretty much decided to flip off death itself. Now, 4 years later, she's still fighting with cancer but her condition has improved so much and doctors think she's going to beat it. It was still hard and scary seeing a friend going through those stages, I never even realized before that those signs were a common progression leading to death.


about 3 years ago, said...

This article explained each step correctly as I watched my mother die from this. She was in Stage 4 when found. Strangely enough I also realized that as her care taker I had done the steps you suggested concerning how to take care of needs, and didn't even know, it came from my heart. All makes sense now. Thank you


about 3 years ago, said...

Very informative as my mum was in the last stages of pancreatic cancer and died just this week. For about 24 hours before she died she had secretions building up inside her which made her breathing very noisy and what appeared to be painful. This got so bad I saw bubbles coming up from her throat before she died. She was on morphine and was breathing through her mouth and not able to acknowledge us but people should be advised that this may happen and how much pain it makes YOU feel on behalf of your parent or person that is ill. The hospice nurse assured us mum couldn't feel it but it seemed like she would drown because of the fluid build up. Terrible terrible part of dying. Just want folks to be prepared because I wasn't prepared for the severity of it and it may just happen to your loved one.


about 3 years ago, said...

your comment about not being able to swallow-it's a cue and now let nature take its course rather than fighting a losing battle.


about 3 years ago, said...

It was all explained very well


about 3 years ago, said...

The article is useful but would be even moreso if the website had a "Print" button to allow me to print it in one continuous narrative without all the superfluous surrounding distractions and to use less paper and ink.


about 3 years ago, said...

As a combat medic with 2 tours in Vietnam 68/69, 71/72, I saw my share of death. They all stick with you after nearly 40+ years. The faces, sounds, and that final moment. No training prepared one for this experience at the age of 20. The duty I hated the most was the dying room at the 67th Evac. hosp. in Quinon & Pleiku, were you stayed with young dying soldiers who were beyond help and you felt so helpless. At first you felt anger than despair, than numb after awhile. Even though I saw death my first tour, it was patch and evac and move on. The second tour was awful knowing the final end of life thousands of miles from home for those guys. I will say your article held true for the wounded beyond saving. With all the wars in the past 10 years and probably more to come, I wish young medical corpsman .could be trained for this before being subjected to this lasting memories of the natural dying process. Thank you for the article. Our Son-in-laws Father passed away last night and they experienced this process with no prior knowledge or what to expect.


about 3 years ago, said...

this will be helpful for those who are the caregivers to parents and grandparents . I pray it makes it a little easier for them


about 3 years ago, said...

I don't care what anyone says, nothing is expected when witnessing someone dying and nothing can prepare you for the pain of losing a loved one. My father died about 2 years ago from pancreatic cancer. He was diagnosed in May and died by August. He went into hospice on a Wednesday which we did not find out until Saturday. before my mother had arrived there he had died. I think my mother is closer to death than what she tells me because she doesn't want me upset, which will I'm sure will just devestate me. She I know has suffered a lot of pain and discomfort. My only wish is that she forgives me for being such a shitty son and all of the pain I have caused her, I also hope that soon after she dies that I will die a quick and sudden death , as she is the only true and best friend that has loved me unconditionly my whole life. I love you mom and am truly sorry for everything I have done wrong. Love your son, Rob in .colorado


about 3 years ago, said...

I am a RN hospice nurse. This article is right on. I wished everyone would read this and be able to apply it to themselves or their loved ones if and when they are in this situation. A career as a hospice nurse is so fulfilling. To care for people that are dying, and helping the families through this difficult time is so rewarding and gratifying to know that you as a nurse have helped your patient to be at home and have come to terms with living his/her last days in their own home and with hospice dying a good death.


about 3 years ago, said...

1. You're reading this article.


about 3 years ago, said...

I don't know how this showed up on my screen but I've been through these exact symptoms with my parents, partners and friends. But be Warned! Hospice isn't the best option.The caregivers from hospice services are mininmally educated and barely paid. The didn't even bother to consult my mothers own MD of 40 years to let him know she was on hospice care and what long term medications should she be on (answer was NONE) but drugs kept arriving daily from some unseen doctor. I fired them and hired one of their nurses as a full time caregiver and we were all much happier. Mom passed quietly taking minimal morphine and nothing else and was very comfortable.


about 3 years ago, said...

I am waiting on the phone call. My Grandfather was diagnosed with Alzheimer's 3 years ago and has been in a nursing home since. He has been an amazing Grandfather, husband, father, uncle, cousin, brother and WW2 VET. He raised me and as I watch him slowly leave us I can't help but cry my eyes out knowing that one amazing person can have such an impact on my life and that once he passes he will be in a much better place and won't be confused or in pain anymore.


about 3 years ago, said...

R.I.P My sister and only sister had died 1-29-2010 she was the oldes. Lost my cousin/sista 3-25-2010 car crash. My husbands 1st nephew 4-20-2010 sids. My mom died 9-18-2012 she had colon cancer and more. She did'nt feel like eating any more.


about 3 years ago, said...

does the body still process waste (as in the bowel) even though a person is no longer eating?


about 3 years ago, said...

A print version would be nice instead of scrolling from page to page.


about 3 years ago, said...

I am glad i found this site to help me heal from the lost i have just suffered in my father passing on December 20th, 2012. I also lost my mother on Jamuary1, 2004, she was sixty two years of age. She became sick at the age of 55 years of age. I have been reading some og the comments and experiences people have lived. We all are going to loose our parents at some point and it is heart breaking. Most of the symptoms listed in this article we will witness and in some cases all symptoms will apply. I am not sure why some people write certain things on a site such as this one that have nothing to do with this issue. I do not understand such conduct and i hope i never do, it is heartless. I thank the editors of this site for helping people during their journey of providing care for their parents and also helping us find understanding while we heal after such a loss.I have now witnessed the deathof both my parents and i know how important it is that we have skills to aid in the grieving anf healing of such life events. Thank You to Caring.comm


about 3 years ago, said...

guess death is coming 4 me LOL ..


about 3 years ago, said...

I've learned a few more thing's about my C.O.P.D. and Cronic Bronchitis. I was told I was born with Cronic Bronchitis. I have just learned over the years to just live with it. There is nothing I can really do about it. The Doctor just put me on Augmentin. ButI also have ulcer's which don't like the Augmentin. I could go on and on with all the thing's that I have wrong with me but...I've said enough or to much. Thank You so much for your information. It has helped me alot.


about 3 years ago, said...

I saw this process happening to a loved one and am surprised at how accurately you describe the symptoms that I remember totally. A few tears were shed remembering but am glad all care was given by the hospice personnel.


about 3 years ago, said...

I guess this applies to certain animals too. My cat of 15 1/2 yrs. passed last year in Feb.2012. Odd, very similar simptems. He had a little seizure, which I thought he was stretching and passed away. I thought it was just another cold.


about 3 years ago, said...

i was there the day my loving mama went to heaven i sang her song to her 2 times i wiped her tears we called all the family member to tell her by i talked her throu it we keep a pic of her sister right in her eye sight and toled mama tack you sister hand and walk to the light it is ok we will be ok you go rest your work is down here and i thank you so much for being my mama i love you so much she pased and my old sister screamed and cryed out and mama came back for 15 or 20 mints so i had to talk mama in to leting go one more time i did not want to do it but she was in so much pain so i did what was best for my mama 3-17-1930 /12-20-2012 9:20 pm rip tell we meet in heaven i loveyou mama xoxoxoxo may god let you came to my dreams pl i am ready to see you pl come to me mama i miss you so pl i love you grace


about 3 years ago, said...

I watched my mother-in-law die years ago and can vaguelly recall seeing her go through some of these signs. She came home from Africa for a 3rd time to die at her sister's home surrounded by friends and family. She was looking and sounding alert and alive her first few days, but then started slowly slipping away, displaying some of the 10 symptoms above. My mom-in-law passed quietly in the night at her sister's home while I slept in another bed in the room with her. Now it seems that my 83 year old mom is displaying some of those 10 symptoms above and I'm wondering if she is moving to that transition stage, too.


about 3 years ago, said...

that's bull crap none of you's have never die.


about 3 years ago, said...

Hi everyone, Thanks for your comments about your experiences with and knowledge about the signs of death! We appreciate your participation. We also ask that when you see comments on Caring.com that you believe violate our site terms of use, community code of conduct, or otherwise raise concerns, please contact our Help Desk using the blue "feedback" tab (right edge of page), or via the "Contact Us" link at the bottom of Caring.com pages. We've now removed some of the recent comments on this article that didn't meet our site guidelines and weren't related to this article. We also removed associated comments that referenced other posts no longer available in the comments section. In addition to getting in touch via our Help Desk, you can also contact moderators AT Caring.com if you have any questions about the community discussion areas on Caring.com. Thanks!


about 3 years ago, said...

This article is just what the Father knew I needed as I am a caregiver for parents age 92 and 88. Dad a retired bass player and D Day vet, Mom on a walker and mildly affected from a head injury.I am honored to provide a safe place for them and through the grace of God He has given me the tools to make that happen. While they are not as ill as most of those elderly I still rest through the day when they take their naps because I get pretty fatigued with my own minor health issues. My heart breaks for those that we care for that have suffering, pain as well as depression! God bless you caregivers for what you do to make our parents more comfortable as they near home!


about 3 years ago, said...

My grandmother may be passing. im hopin not but im worried. im scared to death. i lost her daughter (my mom) a while back (5 years ago) to cancer. im scared. what do i do.


about 3 years ago, said...

this article was presented in a way as to help those of us who are about to lose a loved one. it was concise and caring. thank you for this invaluable information.


about 3 years ago, said...

Um, everyone one of these except #8 and #10 are signs of diabetes. I know, I've experienced them all for the past 10 years, and I'm not dead yet!


about 3 years ago, said...

I just checked the mirror; good by all...


about 3 years ago, said...

I have had to be with several people when they died so I am aware of some of these signs. You helped me learn some others that I did not know to watch for. I also work with the elderly so this has been very helpful. Thank you for sharing.


about 3 years ago, said...

My first wife died of colon cancer in 1993. I got married again three years ago and my current wife is dying of an incurable lung disease. Neither one of these ladies had a choice with what happened to them--only that their illnesses have been long and painful. I was able to grieve my first wife's approaching death and we were able to say our 'good byes' and 'I love you' and my grieving was pretty much over when she let go and passed from this life. Most of the signs were there though I didn't recognize them then. My second wife has, at the most, two more years and her lungs will be gone. Her life is her grandchildren and she spends as much time as she can with them. She's not going without a fight--though it may be a very short one. It is very hard to grieve with people who are very busy living life and trying to get the most out of it before the end comes so I may be forced to sit on the sideline just waiting for things to end and grieve afterwards. Some of the signs are there for my second wife, but whenever her children or grandchildren are in need, she perks up and dashes out the door to be with them. She'll come home later, crash and be in bed for 24 hours without moving. A little cough oncer in a while is the only assurance I have that she is still with us. As she comes closer to death I wonder if the signs will be distinct enough for me to recognize or whether things will happen so fast--one moment she's here the next moment she's gone. Death is so final and so sudden and so unpredicatable. There is really very little we can do to prepare for it, and the constant vigilance that it is coming is both painful and exhausting. I want to be ready but not present when it happens. That will make it both surprising and easier for me to deal with her death. At the same time she is dying from this lung disease, my father is getting closer to death with dementia. He's 94 and we can see the changes in him almost everyday. At the same time my first mother-in-law is dying of heart and kidney failure. The Scripture in Romans chapter 8, is my only comfort: "...Death cannot separate us from the love of God..." This is where I get my comfort in these difficult times.


about 3 years ago, said...

Is fine as is.


about 3 years ago, said...

My pastor is nearly 81 years old. She has experienced 9 of these signs for nearly two months. She refused to go to the hospital. We finally convinced her to go. Her appetite is back; the fluid build up is gone. She is strengthening her arms and legs through therapy. She is communicating again. She is sleeping less during the day. Her mental sharpness is back. Her breathing has improved drastically. Her skin color has returned to a beautiful tan. It took much prayer, but she now wants to live, whereas before it didn't matter. Jesus lifted her because our love wouldn't let her go. I hope this encourages someone else in how to turn this death pattern around. God bless!


about 3 years ago, said...

I UNDERSTAND WHAT DEATH IS WHEN I WATCH MY MOM GOING THREW THOSE SAMETHING AS FOR IS NOT EATING SLEEP ALL DAY OR NOT DRINKING ANY FLUID I WAS HER CAREGIVING UNTIL SHE PASS IN NOV 3, 2012


about 3 years ago, said...

Being sent to hospice isnt 100% garenteed that you will go on to die. I took care of a patient who had hospice with her. The hospice lady sat their by the bed... thats what hospice do.. set there. Take vitals. Reposition. But set there and just watch the time go by. I still took care of this lady even though hospice was there. The lady was given 1 week to live. My co-workers and I interviened, and helped this lady. We got her to eat again, get up, use the bathroom, interact with other people. This lady was supposed to "die" in one week. She went home 3 months later... all you need is caring people who want to help.. it can and has been done.. I am one of those people who love taking care of people. I refuse to let anyone die if there can be something done to help them bounce back. Once a person feels depressed, and knows there going to die, and they feel like a burden to others, than the depression is what really kills them. They give up. They feel like no one cares. But we do..


about 3 years ago, said...

Thank you. My sister just died Jan. 2013 and all of the above, except for the mottled veins, were part of her dying process.


about 3 years ago, said...

When my wife died, she had some of these symptoms, but she died from a disease. For all of you cat and dog owners, everything from 1 to 7 may be true if your pet is dying from old age and not from an illness. We had 3 cats die from old age, they were 19-20 years old. Loss of appetite was the first sign which was the only thing for the first week, and then they died within a couple of weeks after that as their body organs shut down. Cats sleep all the time so we didn't know if that was any different. Physical weakness became evident when she (the first cat) couldn't or wouldn't jump up on tables anymore. Noticeable wobbling when walking, all the cats were sure footed. Disorientation when she got into the bathtub where she had never been before, and meowed like she was lost or wondering where she was. Social withdrawal to petting and with the other cats for a few days and then labored breathing came at the very end for maybe the last day when she died in our laps finally. No veterinarian visit, we knew what was happening and that she was dying from old age, she wasn't in pain and the strange smells at the vet's office was not the last thing that we wanted our cats to remember in their life with us, so they died naturally at home with their loved ones. After the first cat died, a year later a second cat, and a year later, the third cat, all from old age and basically all the same indicators in that order. For some pet owners, pets are people too.


about 3 years ago, said...

My daughter has most all of these symtoms. She is 28 years old. She's suffered for so long its heartbreaking to watch her suffer. The dr just continue to test snd test her. They have not diagnosed her with any terminal illness, so the test ate endless. She's now on oxygen at night , but I don't think it helps. She's so pale. She's so confused. She's just sooo ill. Because we have no diagnoses, we have no hospice. Sad....so sad. I wish they'd find something just so she could just rest. I know she'll be gone soon , mothers intuition. I will miss my beautiful intelligent daughter, but I love her enough to let her go.


about 3 years ago, said...

My Mother passed january 1,2004, she experienced these signs in this order.She was at peace. My Father just passed on December 20, 2012. I wish he had a peaceful death, but instead it was haunting. He had extreme Delirum, agitation,Hallucinations,heightened behavioral symptoms. This went on for three days. He had to be restrained to the bed with both hand and feet restraints. His Diagnosis in the begining was pneumonia, then meningitis. He was given massive doses of Haldol, theb sedated with Morphine, and large doses of Lorazepam. Onc ethey sedated him, they kept him on intravenous for hydration and rocephin. He passed later that evening at full life of the drugs. After he was sedated they performed a C T scan, nothing showed on the scan that could have been the cause of this illness. However after all that had been done and on the last day of his life the scan did show signs of early pneumonia.Other then that i have no idea what happened or what went so wrong. It was Haunting. This was just so sad, he had cuts every where from the extreme Delirium and agitation.


about 3 years ago, said...

my nana is 59 and is experiencing the tired,fatigue , loss of appepitie,depression. loss of energy. my nana has always seemed young to me. she has always been energetic and hard working. she would do a mans job in construction untill she turned about 55. when she began to develop joint and thyroid problems. It just dawned on me that shes getting up there in age. it terrifies me because were so close and I really dont know what I would do if something happened to her


about 3 years ago, said...

Sure signs that the end is near are when the patient is sent to hospice, and the words, "We will make the patient as comfortable as possible." are said to the family. The family is told that any treatments that are now being given will remain the same..(Not true. ) Pain medication is increased gradually but surely.


about 3 years ago, said...

not good for a hypocondriac to be reading this. im 19 and this article scared me because im always sleepy and fatigued


about 3 years ago, said...

I was with my husband when he died a year ago. He was at home and we had hospice care. He just gradually faded away over about 3 days. It was not frightening and I am so grateful to have those final hours with him.


about 3 years ago, said...

This article is 100% accurate, I lost my mom on Feb 11 2011 she had alzeheimers for approx 9 years, she was able to get around but was confused most of the time. She suffered a stroke in Nov 2010 and was paralized on the left side. She never improved and I brought her home in January 2011, she lasted 1 month and passed away. The day before she "Thanked Me" the first words that were clear in 3 months. I am so glad I brought her home. Very difficult for me (the caregiver) and my family, but very rewarding to know I did what I could to make her last days comfortable. I lost my husband of 31 years Jan 2012, He was out of town working and had a heart attack and died by himself in a hotel room, I wish I was there to be with him.


about 3 years ago, said...

The older I get them more I wonder if I will know when my time is up...Sometimes I think I will not live another day, mostly because of pain and depression, yes I have talked to doctors and they want to put me on pills, but pills can not cure something that you are going thru it is called old age. Yes I am busy, and yes I am dieting and yes I go out and yes I have a hobby, and yes I interact with my family, no I do not exercise, no I don't go out much, but yes I do keep in touch with the outside world by using the internet, and Yes I am writing a book about stuff some of it is about me and the rest is made up, I am 75 pages into the book, is it good? It is about a guy who is dying and he tells about his life from age 10 until age 70 , he is in a hospital with something that is killing him slowly,the doctors do not know what it is, but he knows...old age! I hope to finish it before I pass on maybe. Anyway I still have goals and I think that way life is all about setting goals and striving towards those goals, until death comes and so it goes , so it goes.


about 3 years ago, said...

hey this is the worst thing to read! if you think your dying or some doctor told you you are just remember the mind is very powerfull! dont let people tell you you or your loved ones are going to die! what you confess with your mouth has a very severe impact on your whole body. that is if you say im sick- you will become sick or even sicker. you must tell yourself your getting better! that you feel beter than you did yesterday and you will. it is true that we all must have an appointment with death but remember your mind controls your body! dont let things get you down, you will get better.


about 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for this article. My dad is dying and although I'm looking @ him I couldn't (maybe didn't want to) see these signs. Reading this is helping me to prepare for what is a normal part of living. We all know that one day we're going to die....if we're lucky' we're not shot, run over, accidently killed. Still its hard to accept the 'natural end'.


about 3 years ago, said...

What a great and timely article. I'm a caregiver and this will help me immensely both for myself, the client and the family. Thank you so much.


about 3 years ago, said...

what if u r the one experinceing these symptoms , because no one will treat u for the cause of your illness . In my case i was expossed to rodent infested materials , animal carcasses , dog shit , and ended up with multable insect infestations , I trapped the insects and showed 3 differance doctors .2 said i had dermattis and 1 said scabies . The insects i trapped were very small and i could only identify bed bugs . After a few months sealed in a buck i could identify ticks and fleas also , but i have been unable to get med treatment . My symptoms began with the flu , then round red spots on my leg . extreme fatgue , extreme sun sensativity, trouble breathing , extreme blood pressure , confusion ,extreme itching , the skin on both hands and feet falling off down to the raw tissue . My finger nails went from smooth and flat to pitted , humped and curling down . I'm now unable to walk very well . All i can do is keep asking for help. I truly don't want to die. Jerry


about 3 years ago, said...

get a good speech at your funeral! if posible, write your own, if not find a writer! i am 82, after a stroke, kidney problems and anemia-yet life is beautiful-i am a conpulsive lier-so what, can't i have humor?


about 3 years ago, said...

ouo wow this is really freaking depressing


about 3 years ago, said...

I would like to commend the author of this post. My mother passed on Valentines day 2010. this article is word for word what happen in her last stages of life. the twist is her meds had to be reduced, in the process of weaning her off steroids, she became weaker, she was a diabetic but took good of herself. she went in for pneumonia but it was too far gone. they said she had lung disease. she never smoked or drank a day of her life. it was thought she got it from cleaning houses. that Friday she stopped eating. but on Saturday eve, when all ten of her children and a host of church family began showing up, she began to talk to us about choices. On Sunday, things began to go downhill No response the whole day. No one went to church that day. On Monday morning, The plan was for her to be transported to a "Hospice facility". when that day came, we knew she wasnt going to make it . At 12;00 that afternoon she let go... it was a difficult experience for me and my family. she was the staple, the fabric of our lives. Thankfully, she had gone to church all her life and she left this life with an empty pail. she gave all she could give. not riches for she was poor. No what she had to give was her heart , mind and soul to each person young or old that she'd ever met. she taught us what it meant to have faith beyond sight. she overcame abuse at the hand of our father whom she still loved. So on that peaceful afternoon, she took her last breath, and was gone. this comment is surely in her memory as we come to her anniversary. Let us all be kind and helpful to others as they go home.R.I.P. DML 1926-2010 thank you , concerning*ever*after


about 3 years ago, said...

These signs are real i know... the only thing I can say is that.. even as we are experiencing the signs, or watching someone experiecnce it... lend a hand to eternity... make sure you know Jesus before you die...Thanks.. Love you all. thanks for the knowledge...


about 3 years ago, said...

To the last poster, please don't beat yourself up over not knowing the signs. My Mom was an RN, and even though Dad's signs were very clear, she did not see it. He kept saying he wasn't going to be around much longer, yet she had him in to the dentist for extensive work, and insisted he get off his butt and do things. All the while ignoring her her own signs of fatigue, weakness and increasing COPD. Once she found out she had a tumor, she declined anymore testing, so we don't know how far the cancer had actually spread. Both of my parents were very coherent, mobile and eating somewhat up until days before they passed. The final days of Dad, he had the mottling and temperature changes. About two months before Mom's passing she had extreme edema in her legs. I was helping her eat the last week, and she even took some food in on the Friday before passing early Sun morning. I also think she had mini strokes weeks prior to passing too. There was one instant where she just seemed to have a skip, even though she said she was fine. I will say that it is difficult for most of us that are very close to them to always see and recognize the signs. My only training was a CNA about 30 years ago, and working in a nursing home, and taking care of all of my animals. Believe me, we are more humane to our animals than ourselves. Another thing the article did not address, is like in my Dad's case, he was withdrawing from being social up to about a year prior. He didn't care if he shaved or was presentable, and he had started giving or throwing things away. Like it says every death is different, although there are a lot of things that happen that are similar. And yes sometimes medications will mask a lot of the signs.


about 3 years ago, said...

Most people do not realized that, the one day that a dying person has proven to be well alert is his or her last moments. Most of the time they think, this person is getting well. Then all of sudden they are dead. I think the advise should be for love ones to use that moments to talk about good times and spiritual matters, like reading the book of John 5:28, 29. where it talks about the resurrection of the death, Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10 where it talks about what happens to the dead. I think reading the scriptures will prepare love ones and too, to have an idea what happens to their love one when they die.


about 3 years ago, said...

Everything listed above (except I didn't notice mottled veins, swelling of feet or coolness of tips of fingers and toes) happened to my dad in the days before his death (10/5/12 - lung cancer). What was so frustrating is that we (including his home health nurses) contributed everything (loss of appetite, weakness, etc.) to the sterioids his oncologist had him on (to reduce brain swelling...the lung cancer had actually come back as a brain tumor). It's very hurtful to know I was begging my dad to eat, to drink, to try to do bed exercising when his body was telling us to give him a break and let him go. It's a very hard thing to try and forgive my ignorance.


about 3 years ago, said...

There is no such thing as a "Good Death." All deaths are bad. There is such a thing as a peaceful passing. I witnessed, and pronounced, my Mother's death. She died of a stroke and had some of the signs above. She was lucky, as stroke victims go, in that she dies semi-peacefully, but don't kid yourself, there is no such thing as a "good death". There is only a non-painful or a painful death. When you witness a death, you must remain positive around the person until that person passes and maintain your control no matter what it cost you. Never be negative. Talk to them normally, but try and be honest without being harsh. Usually, they know. As to what to expect: expect breathing to stop and the mouth to maintain the position it was in when the last breath was taken. Also, expect a reaction yourself that sometimes may be delayed and, of course, shock. And don't believe everything you read in articles because you won't know until you experiene it.


about 3 years ago, said...

To "anonymous caregivers" and any others with similar feelings: Depression and thoughts of suicide is a serious health problem that requires attention and care from a doctor or licensed medical professional offline. This is not a problem that can be resolved in an online forum or in the comments section of articles on our website. Please immediately seek help by contacting 911, your doctor(s), or a toll-free crisis hotline, such as 1-800-784-2433 or 1-800-273-8255. Caring.com is an informational site only. Neither Caring.com nor its partners provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. By using our website, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy: http://www.caring.com/about/terms


about 3 years ago, said...

I lost both of my parents last year. Dad had suffered from Shy-Drager's syndrome. He had a lot of the symptoms leading up and until his death. I was able to be there when he went, and he went with the most peace I had ever seen. Both his heart and breathing stopped at the same time, and he was gone. Mom found out in April that she had a lung tumor, and decided against any treatment. I was her caregiver for her last two months. She just kept getting weaker, and had three falls on Memorial weekend. Those just seemed to take the starch out of her. I was fortunate that she was able to stand up until 3 days prior to leaving, so I could still have her up between her bed and recliner. I was able to transfer her to the toilet and table too. Her last week, she slept more, and ate less every day. She also talked to the other side often, and about a week before she passed she sat up and said she needed to go see God. She never really did lose her mental focus during the process either. My husband was finally able to get away from work for a few days to fly down and help me. The last concious thing she did was to give him a huge hug and kiss. She was gone the next morning. I will also say that with both of my parents there is a time when they have "left", yet the body is still here. Mom's heart was very strong so it beat a little with long apnea in between. I used to work in a nursing home, and I have had to put numerous animals to sleep, and my parents went as peaceful as they could. I was late to grieve, I didnt' grieve until my birthday in Nov. I miss them both, but know they are together in a better place.


about 3 years ago, said...

To the man who just wrote the last comment... my heart goes out to you, you may be a stranger to me but I feel concern when you talk about taking your life and the pain and grief you have inside of you. It is so good that you are going to therapy - maybe you can also find a group of people at your church, community center, online,..and maybe they can help you too. I have had people I love, young and old, die. It is hard because we loved them so, it's hard to let go, but even so - you have been in pain for 7 years now. I may not be able to understand exactly how you feel, but I truly believe you can find the help you need. It is so good that you can express how you feel and what you are going through. You are reaching out and even though I don't even know if you will read this - I'm putting this out there, people do care and you can feel better. Maybe it would help to get out of the house. I find when I volunteer at the animal rescue center it gives me a such a good feeling inside. I just have to watch myself and not bring home every one of them. Just know -- there is hope and you really can feel better. It is good that you can open up and talk about it because your feelings are real. Your wife and I'm sure other people around you love you so much and you are an important part of their lives. Take care and God bless you.


about 3 years ago, said...

i know the pain every one feels. i lost my brother 7 years ago. we live in illinois we had to drive to indiana to the morgue to claim his body. he was hit in the drivers door buy a huge dump truck!! they had already done the autopsy by the time i got there.you could see where they had cut him open and sewn him back together they had his scalp held back together with big rubber bands. we had to have his body shipped back to ill for the funeral.we had to wait a few days for the funeral because my other brother was in irac in the army fighting. the red cross finally got to him and got him home. we had my brother buried in abraham national cemetary with a full honer guard and a 21 gun salute. when the staff sargent handed me the flag. ( and on behalf of a greatfull country ) i havent been able to work or do much since!! all i do is cry have bad dreams my heart is still out of my chest i go for theapy twice a month i tried suicide but my wife cought me. ( damn her ) i took a bunch of sleeping pills she called the ambulance they took me to the hospital got my stomach pumped. the funeral director let me stay with my brother at night. god bless him now im on ssd. i used to work evey day now all i do is wonder around aimlessly. so god bless you all thats been through this. nothing helps the grief


about 3 years ago, said...

My husband of 33 years passed away suddenly 5 weeks ago. He was diabetic, had 4 way heart bypass surgery, and also had asbestos plaque on his lungs. He spent the whole last summer getting rid of pneumonia. He got a cold, and I took him to the Dr., not waiting for it to become pneumonia. Four days later he was gone. I waited up with him because his breathing was not normal, but also not like when he got pneumonia. When his breathing got more normal I went to bed and left him in his favorite recliner. He had a Dr. appt. for the following morning. I got up at 7:00 to get him ready for his appt. and he was already gone and had probably been since just after I kissed him good-night and told him I loved him. His last words to me were "I love you too". I did not recognize it then, but the things I read in this article are very much what I experienced with him the last week. Thank you for having an article here that tells me that it was nothing that I did or didn't do that contributed to his death. It is very difficult, but he would have hated going through all the things that could have happened to him due to the medical problems that he had.


about 3 years ago, said...

I find it amazing the number of people who commented below that they have all of these symptoms now. As someone in the medical field who has dealt with the dying for many years, I can assure you that your signs/symptoms may be similar, but they are not the same. I have also been with my many of my own family members during their dying process. I am now a chronic pain patient after surviving an accident where my family was told I only had hours to live....and I assure you that I know to be SIMILAR to these symptoms in NO WAY WHATSOEVER is the same as they are as death approaches. The only addition I would like to make is that I have very often seen patients rally around a few days or perhaps weeks (depending on the dying timeline for each individual). Suddenly an extremely ill person will become alert and communicate giving a false sense of "getting better" in the eyes of the family/friends. If and when this happens to your chronically ill loved ones, please enjoy every moment while it lasts. And don't forget to talk to them even when you aren't sure they are hearing you or even aware you're in the room. Best Wishes to All.


about 3 years ago, said...

SO TRUE. I WAS WITH MY 27/4 FOR ABOUT THREE WEEKS BEFORE HE DIED BACK IN NOVEMBER 30, 2010. HOSPICE AND MY BROTHER WAS TRYING TO GET ME TO AT LEAST GO OUT FOR BREAKFAST/LUNCH SO HE CAN PASS. TOLD THEM NO BECAUSE I WOULD FEEL TOO GUILTY. THEN ONE PERSON FROM HOSPICE SAID WHY DON'T YOU GO TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROOM BEHIND THE CURTAIN AND HAVE YOUR BREAKFAST THAT YOUR BROTHER BROUGHT YOU. TOLD HER THAT'S PERFECT. SO I LET DAD KNOW THAT I WAS GOING TO GO OUT FOR BREAKFAST AND I'LL BE BACK SHORTLY. SO ME/MY BROTHER WENT BEHIND THE CURTTAIN AND NOT EVEN TWO MINUTES LATER AND BEFORE I WAS DONE WITH MY FIRST BITE OF MY BREAKSFAST ONE OF THE HOSPICE PEOPLE TOLD US COME QUICKLY AND SAY YOUR GOODBYS. I TOLD HIM THAT I LOVED HIM AND KISSED HIM ON HIS FOREHEAD AND WITHIN SECONDS HE PASSED AWAY VERY PEACEFULLY AND WITH NO PAIN. THE GOING OUT WITHOUT GOING OUT FOR BREAKFAST/LUNCH WAS PERFECT AND GUILT FREE. IT ALSO GAVE DAD THE PRIVACY THAT HE NEEDED TO PASS AWAY.


about 3 years ago, said...

10 OUT OF 10


about 3 years ago, said...

All of it. Thanks !


about 3 years ago, said...

SO TRUE. I WAS WITH MY DAD 27/4 FOR ABOUT THREE WEEKS BEFORE HE DIED BACK IN NOVEMBER 30, 2010 AND HOSPICE AND EVEN MY BROTHER WAS TRYING TO GET ME TO GO AT LEAST FOR LUNCH SO HE CAN PASS. I SAID NO I'D FEEL TOO GUILTY. SO ONE OF THE HOSPICE PEOPLE CAME UP THE IDEA OF ME/MY BROTHER TO GO TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROOM BEHIND THE CURTAIN TO FINALLY HAVE MY BREAKFAST. I TOLD DAD THAT I WAS GOING TO GO OUT FOR BREAKFAST. WITHIN TWO MINUTES AND BEFORE I SWALLOWED MY FIRST BITE ONE OF THE HOSPICE PEOPLE SAID TO ME/MY BROTHER COME QUICK AND SAY YOUR GOODBYS. WE DID AND WITHIN SECONDS HE PASSED AWAYVERY PEACEFULLY. FOR ME IT WAS A "GUILT FREE" GOING OUT WITHOUT GOING OUT AND IT GAVE DAD THE PRIVACY THAT HE NEEDED. ALSO HE WAS AWARE THAT HOSPICE WAS THERE WHICH MADE IT NICE FOR HIM KNOWING THAT ME/MY BROTHER WEREN'T ALONE.


about 3 years ago, said...

My dad had all these signs, too. In addition, we knew he was going to die because his intestines stopped working completely about 7 days before. The doctors tried every procedure, but there was nothing left to do. I knew the moment was coming when his breath began to change. It went on for about 3 hours, and then there was that last breath. It was one of the biggest blessings of my life to actually be there when he drew his last breath.


about 3 years ago, said...

Nothing much since I have dealt with death many times before and since I was a child and even was with a person as she lay dying. This time is different because it is my Mother and I want to be extra sure of what to watch for and what I can do to maake her as comfortable as possible. It gave me more things to watch for and more things to do and for that I am grateful!


about 3 years ago, said...

concisely presented


about 3 years ago, said...

As a retired RN who has been with sleeping patients near death, I noticed a definite darkening around the eyes indicating death was very immanent.


about 3 years ago, said...

Sure wish I'd known this when my partner was dying 25 years ago. It would have made his death *so* much easier for me to understand - and bear.


about 3 years ago, said...

That all the signs of impending death I experienced with my Mother were contained in an article I could give to my daughter so she can prepare for my death.


about 3 years ago, said...

My Mother died in December of 2007. Reading this article reminded me of everything that happened to her in the nursing home and, finally in the hospital. I still get emotional remembering my Mother's death. I was with her at the end and didn't even know the exact moment she died, though I did tell her it was alright if she wanted "to leave" while stroking her arm which was very cold. She had labored breathing even with an oxygen mask on her face. I guess that was "the death rattle". I miss her still and probably always will. Thank you for your very informative article. I will pass it on to my daughter so she will be prepared and informed about my death in the future.


about 3 years ago, said...

Yes, my mother just died and all of these are right on. One other interesting bit of information -- which was told to me by a hospice care giver -- is that the dying person often stays alive until a number of family members and close friends have stopped by to say their good-byes, and, perhaps, after a priest or reverend has given last rites. Then, the hospice care giver said, the person often feels at peace and slips away during the night or when everyone steps out for one reason or another.


about 3 years ago, said...

I've just started reading CARING.com and am very very impressed! I look forward to reading much more. I came to you via AARP and thank you very much.


about 3 years ago, said...

kidney info was helpful, also the reminders about touch and hearing


about 3 years ago, said...

After being so close to death this past summer, it was extremely good in its explanation of the dying process. It explained all the things that my relatives had told me when I started to come around to consciousness. I still don't understand the how and why this happened to me after having minor surgery on my foot that had become infected. Thank you.


about 3 years ago, said...

It's fine as is.


about 3 years ago, said...

Excellent information. I was with my grandfather, my mother, and my father at the time of their deaths and this info was spot on on all of them. The death rattle is not something you do when you are alive and moving around. It is more of a labored breathing at the very end and it is unmistakable. It varies in degree with each person, but when you hear it, there is only minutes before they pass.


about 3 years ago, said...

If a person start to have a small temperature, he has about 48 to 72 hours before he dies. (retired nurse)


about 3 years ago, said...

MY MOM PASS 2005 WE TALK I REALLY UNDERSTOOD DEATH BETTER SEEING MY MOM DIE DAY BY DAY I KNOW BY WATCH HER I SAW PATIENT DO THE SAME THING AND TALK TO THEIR FAMILY THE LOOK UP TO THE CORNER OF THE SEALY I ASK MY MOM WHAT ARE YOU LOOKIN FOR SHE SAID HE CARRIAGE WAS COMING SHE ASK HOW COME GOD HAVE NOT CAME TO GET HER YET I SAID MOM THAT BETWEEN YOU AND GOD ,I SAID MOM U WAANT TO GO ,I WILL BE OK I AM THE ONLY CHILD , SHE LEFT I HAD TO TAKE OF MY MOM NO NURSING HOME IT WAS RUFF BUT MY GOD WAS WITH ME HE WAS RUNNING THE SHOW ,,,MY FATHER DIE 2003 ON MY MOM BIRTHDAY HE WAS CRYING I SAID DAD WHY ARE U CRY HE SAID ,I DROP A TEAR ITS ALL ON YOU HE SAID IM SICK AND YOUR MOTHER IS SICK I SAID HEY IM WORKING WITH GOD ,THAN HE SAID SINCE YOU PUT IT THAT WAY I AM READY TO GO I SAID TAKE A NAP THE NEXT WEEK HE WAS GONE


about 3 years ago, said...

All of it . my mum is very ill with dementia and is slowly declining and lots of what i have read is what appears to be happening at this moment in time. It helps to know , even though i will still be hard to take in when it happens as we all know it is always difficult when a close family member is suffering


about 3 years ago, said...

Thanks for the great info! What seems a little odd to me are the comments about leaving the body and living on after death. It makes much more sense to me to believe that when we die, we actually die (no more thoughts, movement, or anything), and that the hope for the future is that God will remember us and one day resurrect folks to life back on earth as he intended the earth to be. One of the Jehovah's Witnesses pointed this out to me and, regardless of what one make think of them, that explanation has always made really good sense to me. Just my 2 cents.


about 3 years ago, said...

For "Reality 13" Does it benefit anyone to keep dying people (who at the end don't have any quality of life to stay alive for) alive a few more hours besides relatives who are coming at the last minute from a distance because they didn't want to come when the dying person was alive, or relatives (or perhaps the dying person themself) besotted with unspeakable guilt that they didn't have the courage to work out when the dying person was more themselves, or the life insurance companies who can hold on to their premium investments just a few days/dollars more?


about 3 years ago, said...

This is for PhD. Yes, it is scary to look at symptoms and compare them with your own condition! You are taking so many medications. Have you looked at your diet? Are you willing to change anything in how you eat? It's my belief that many of us overload our systems with too much of a food that is either one we don't need so much of, or one that our bodies don't handle as well as they used to, or to which our own individual body chemistry makes us more sensitive than others. You might experiment examining your diet to see what you consume in large amounts, or keep records of what you eat and see whether there is any correlation with your symptoms, and leave out what seems appropriate. This could be dairy, meat, tomato-group vegetables, peanuts, or wheat products, or perhaps others. "The physician treats, Nature heals". My best hopes that you start feeling like your younger self again. Hugs, Rich


about 3 years ago, said...

As a home health care attendant to the dying I noticed the blood pooling in the legs, a result of slowed circulation. This was evident even when the person was communicative and alert. I considered it a very bad sign, signaling the imminent approach of death.


about 3 years ago, said...

I shall be 73 years old this coming February and my wife was 72 years old this last August and both of us seem to be experiencing some of the [last stages, together]. Nothing else to say but, THANK YOU for the inormation. I feel relieved. But, please! Remember this: I shall leave no special instructions for heroic actions or special request ! Just remember the Public has not been left the burden of paying any Public debt. My personal experience is to be labeled [forensic evidence]. With my estate placed in a mislabeled Probate proceeding, prematurely] is intact, without dispute, enough to pay what I owe. My entire famiy shall not pay the National debt. It shall be evaluated for the benefit of the entire family, world wide. The compensation is for being human, not artificial. They shall be unharnessed from the clouded title of their Masters on this Earth.


about 3 years ago, said...

My mom is 98 and is just starting some of the process of dying - for that is what it is. The body knows and does its job and I believe those that are making foolish comments must be be in denial and frightened, because I have seen others of my relatives die and they have had some or all of the symptoms unless they died quickly. But just watching the aging process in my mom is knowing that her body is beginning the process. And she knows it to some degree as well. Thanks for the great article and the reminder of our own short days so be kind to one another.


about 3 years ago, said...

I don't know. I benefitted from it just as it now stands. Thank you.


about 3 years ago, said...

I lost my daughter through suuicide and l am getting the symptoms that is written in your article, am i dying from grief?


about 3 years ago, said...

If someone has stopped eating it may be because of swallowing disfunction and/or discomfort due to aspirating food into the lungs -- in which case giving ice chips/popsicles/liquids are likely to exacerbate the problem.


about 3 years ago, said...

I FIND THESE ARTICLES ISSUES , SUBJECTS AND OR TOPICS TO BE FUNDAMENTALLY INSPIRING ,WHEREAS I HAVE BECOME ENGAGGEC WITH THESE FORMS OF NEWS IDEAS EACH AND EVERY DAY AS I BECOME OLDER WITH THE SENSE AND OR ESSENCE WITH MATURITY , IN FUTURE DRAFTS I WILL BROADEN WITH EXPANSIVE THOUGHTS SO AS TO BE INCLUSVE WITH OTHERS OF SIMILAR INTERESTS ,VISIONS AND CREATIVE OUTSETS ,THANK YOU TREVOR MERCHANT BRONX , NEWYORK CITY , WEDNESDAY , JANUARY ,02. 2013


about 3 years ago, said...

Death is a natural phenomenon. People in India who still follow spiritual practices, follow enlightened gurus and sannyasis, and fully aware of the temporal phenomenon called body, are aware of death... Most of masters the very very recent masters like Ramana Maharishi, Kanchi Paramacharya, Sivananda, Seshadri Swamigal, Seshadri Swamigal's mother and many many others have said to their near/around people about death in next 24 to 48 hrs with so precision as if i am going to have lunch. Humans whose internal awareness gets deeply clicked understand the subtle changes internally/externally.


about 3 years ago, said...

as a only chid I wached the demise of both parents..Thank God for Hospice!!!


about 3 years ago, said...

My father, who was 103 when he died of pneumonia in August several years ago, exhibited many of the 10 signs. He had always been in good health - active and mentally sharp - until his death. I had seen him the week before and he was fine, but then I received a call from my brother. "Dad's not feeling well," he said. "He's having trouble breathing and he's not eating." I called a pharmacist friend and asked if he could get an oxygen tank over to the house. As they wheeled the tank into my dad's room, untangled the plastic tubing and brought the mask to his face, he roused himself and pushing the mask away he said, "Tell Nicky, 'no thank you,' I don't want to miss the bus." The next day he passed away. He had never learned to drive a car. He walked every where or took the bus. Those in the room thought he was speaking nonsense, but I believe he knew exactly the bus he meant to catch.


about 3 years ago, said...

pretty damned scary... seems I have all of them at 70 yo. a NEVER smoker it seems I have a rattle sometimes, that sounds like a small voice. I have varying blood pressure once or twice a month 203/192 heart rate can be 100-105. I take captopril 25 mg BP medication 2x a day without fail. no heavy salt usage. I have type 2 diabetes controlled with 2 types of pills, Metforman 500mg 2x a day glyburide 40mg 2x a day. intentiontremmors propranolol dose 3x a day helps but no cessation. Tamsulosin .4mg once a day really helps for urination. Prozac 40mg 1x a day for depression not much help, but have tried many others, this is good as it gets. I also take 2mg of clonazepam 2x a day for panic attacks in public stores, crowded areas, movies, etc. (magic medicine) in 30-40 min. after ingesting panic goes away, heart slows to normal, etc. all symptoms disappear asymptomatic. No drowsiness or other things MD worried about. I take semivastatin(?) one whole orange pill every other day for blood something, I don't feel any change when taking or not taking, but blood work pleases MD. Also take Docusate max dose 2x a day to help with constipation induced by pain pills. Pain is caused by Charcote Marie,Tooth neurological disorder. Diabetes causes constant foot ulcers, ergo much attention to feet necessary.


about 3 years ago, said...

As a registered nurse of more than 23 years, I still don't know enough about caring for demented patients, or those who are dying. Thank you for your education.


about 3 years ago, said...

Excellent article!! As a retired hospice nurse I would like to one suggestion. Many people give patients encouragement by telling them to "fight" their disease. However, as the disease progresses and the patient is actively dying, it is helpful for the patient to hear that it is OK to let go and that loved ones will will be OK when they are gone. It is a gift to say to that person "I love you and always will, but I don't want you to hold on for me. I will be OK. Be at peace. I wil always love you.


about 3 years ago, said...

Excellent article...


about 3 years ago, said...

Grace of a happy death to be home or homelike setting surrounded by loving family and friends.


about 3 years ago, said...

We lost mom about 8 months ago after a lingering bout with CLL and pneumonia - I stayed with her the last night- sitting by the bed and softly talking - she was fairly lucid - at one point I asked her if there were pets in heaven - she said she thought so and I joked with her that all her dogs over her life would beat dad waiting to greet her - she laughed softly and then didn't speak much more - She had to go to the bathroom alot and I lifted her from the bed to the "potty" next to the bed - I took care of the "hygeine" needs and put her back to bed - it dawned on me that life had come full circle - I was the youngest of five and 58 years old and I was taking care of her as a new born infant - It was such an overwhelming feeling of love and closeness that will always be with me - about 6 am she became restless and was moaning - I woke up my sister and we called the hospice nurse who arrived about 10 minutes later - she told us she had all the signs of imminent passing and would go that day - after talking to the hospice doctor she administer the meds that dry up all the secretions and stops the death rattle - at this stage all meds except for the morphine were given as eye drops - At about 8 am my brother and wife came and I left to go home (about 15 minutes away) to grab a nap - a couple of hours later my brother called and said she had passed very gently - he was laying on the bed with her gently rubbing her arm with his wife at the foot of the bed rubbing her feet - she took a deep breath, let it out and then didn't breathe - they though she had passed and started to tell my other brother and sister when she breathed again - scared them pretty good - this happened two more times and then quit altogether - she was at rest! How I wish I could have read this article before she passed - it is spot on and would have taken away alot of fear and concern - thank you folks so much for the work you do - and as for Hospice, ANGELS ON EARTH!!!


about 3 years ago, said...

Most important not to force fluids or food but to offer. Gently caring for their lips and making the loved one comfortable


about 3 years ago, said...

This is the first time I wrote about my experiences. Over the last 20 months, I lost my mother to Breast Cancer, my father to Colon Cancer, my mother-in-law of heart failure, an aunt to Kidney Failure, and a great-aunt to complications of a stroke. All passed in a very beautiful hospice. Now, I am the eldest of the children by all. Each of their deaths were different : My mother had dementia and was very clear toward the end. She had all of the signs of transition mentioned in this article. She mentioned two men over a period of time and mentioned my brother in the room. He passed 10 years ago. My father had a brilliant smile on his face. All were at peace. Yet, closure was difficult with some of my family members. I spend a great deal of time with them before they passed and each had a wish. If there was anything to fear, my mother would have been the barometer for me. She would have kicked and screamed, if she knew her Cancer was terminal. We opted not to tell her. Yet, she peacefully passed away. Just asking me if there was anything I wanted to talk about. My answer was no. I took time to know how she felt about issues and people. Even, made a few calls to people she wanted to speak with. I am happy. I did the same thing with my other family members. I am satisfied that the hospice route was taken. I would do it for me, if God is willing.


about 3 years ago, said...

The comments about Obamacare death panels are stupid, which is typical of ignorant right-wingers.


about 3 years ago, said...

YOUR DAUGHTER'S DOCTOR WILL KNOW WHY YOUR DAUGHTER'S HEAD SWELLED UP BEFORE SHE DIED. YOU CAN ALSO GET COPIES OF HER MEDICAL RECORDS. IN THE MEANTIME YOU COULD GO ON GOOGLE. THEY HAVE ALOT OF GOOD INFORMATION. HOPE YOU FIND WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING FOR.


about 3 years ago, said...

Sign Eleven Obamacare Death Panel doctors refuses medicine or treatment.. because you are too old and/or it's too expensive..


about 3 years ago, said...

Oh my God! This is phenomenal! The signs of Death. I have witnessed this very recently when I saw my mother who passed away in Sept. of 2012. Everything you mentioned here happened to her, I mean everything. Thnk you all so very much! This is very educational and all of us need to know it because death is inevitable to all of our Lord's Creatures.


about 3 years ago, said...

It let me know why my daughter's face was so swelled up before she passed away. She was on life support when she left to go to heaven. She was only 19 and died of bone cancer.


about 3 years ago, said...

My 19 year old daughter passed away June 17 2011 after fighting bone cancer for five and a half years. She passed away when her heart was beating to fast for to long. Her blood pressure got down to nothing. I think about her each minute of everyday, 365 days a year.


about 3 years ago, said...

This is so important to alot of people cause people inturn are so blind to knowledge it makes me sick. In most cases people take good advise as hurtful remarks. I know alot and always looking for more info thanks so much.


about 3 years ago, said...

I was by my grandfather's side the last 48 hours of his life. He had suffered from severe dementia for several years and had reverted back to his childhood and early adulthood. He did not recognize any of us for the last couple of years. I saw MANY of the signs you have listed and also in the very last seconds before he left us, he had a moment of total clarity where he looked around the room at all of us and KNEW who we all were. He looked at each of our faces and tears streamed from one of his eyes. It was amazing and I am so thankful I was there for that moment.


about 3 years ago, said...

When my mother was dying of cancer, water began to seep out of her skin. I was told by a nurse that it was a part of the body shutting down.


about 3 years ago, said...

I wish I knew where my brother is in this process.


about 3 years ago, said...

my aunt passed away and she called a name of a person that was not theres name, and had some of these symptoms also


about 3 years ago, said...

My sister died of lung cancer and she did experience all of these. Thank you for this information.


about 3 years ago, said...

You are right on the money!


about 3 years ago, said...

Wow a lot of different perspectives. We take what we each need and to those of you who didn't like the information I hope for your loved ones who will someday need someone to comfort them on their death bed, that they have someone other than you. Someone who can be strong when they need the support. I want to thank you for this information. I wish when I became a nurse there was a book on this but nope just the text book stuff not the compassion for the dying person. I had learned the hard way. Thank you for sharing this.


about 3 years ago, said...

The person eye color change to a blue deeper than the ocean. They talk to others in the 5th. dimension, and ask you to pack their suitcase and yours also. Including hold your hand as they pass over. Its just the shell of the body that has stop working. We are spiritual beings and that spirit will never die. If you learn how to astral project you can go where your love ones are anytime you need them.


about 3 years ago, said...

Actual information would help. None of this was relevant to anyone who I have seen die.


about 3 years ago, said...

I own a home care agency and thought this article was very well-stated and to the point. Marsha Oritt, MSW


about 3 years ago, said...

I spent the last two weeks of my mothers life at her bedside, For the last three days she had'nt spoken a word. About an hour or so before she passed, I clearly heard her talking to my father, who passed away thirty years ago, and unmistakably talking to her cousin who passed away sixteen years ago - a person I have'nt heard her mention in a decade - I will never again doubt there's 'something' going on after our life here ends. By the way, hospice nurse's never get to hear their patiants say thank you for your help and care like other nurse's do, so I'm gonna say it right here. THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS YOU.


about 3 years ago, said...

This is the way people die (leave the body) after years and years of medical drugs and medical poisons.


about 3 years ago, said...

Good information filled with compassion. To "crappy article",it is sad that the lack of knowledge that you express in your opinion still exists.Conservative or liberal, death is a natural part of life, and I have been honored to observe the peaceful progression, rather than creating chaos during the last moments of the inevitable.


about 3 years ago, said...

Dehydration. Usually IV's are used to keep the patient hydrated.


about 3 years ago, said...

when my husband passed away,we had Hospas here at home with him,he passed away peasful,it was so hard to let go of him,I just w/anted to keep him,I miss him and that has been three years ago,when will I stop missing him?I dont know if I ever will but I know that I will see him when God call,s me home.


about 3 years ago, said...

This is very good info. I have fybro. & lupus and one of my specialist told me that the two of them are cousins


about 3 years ago, said...

Hey this sounds like me! I think all the stress at work is killing me :(


about 3 years ago, said...

TRIED TWICE TO LEAVE A COMMENT AND BOTH TIMES LOST MY WRITING AND QUESTIONS TO CYBER SPACE. GOOD INFORMATION ABOVE. THANKS, SUSAN E.


about 3 years ago, said...

My wife's grandma passed away this month, she got those simptoms she did not feed for two months, she was sleepping day and night and she died by anemy,she lost the good acttitud to life.


about 3 years ago, said...

My mom passed away 5 1/2 years ago. I saw alot of these with her in the weeks leading up to her death. I didn't realize it at the time that was what I was seeing, but about a week and a half before she passed I knew it wouldn't be long and trying to convince my Dad that she was leaving us was pure heck. I told him he needed to call in my siblings so they could say their goodbyes, he kept blowing me off, saying it wasn't necessary yet. All but one of my siblings made it in and were able to say goodbye the day before or the day she passed. I wish though she had that spurt of energy in the few days before, so we could talk one last time. Dad was with her and holding her hand when she passed. This list really needs to get out there, while it is emotional to read, I think it should be a pamphlet for hospice/hospitals to pass out to families who are losing their loved ones so they know what to expect. Not seeing her eat/drink/speak and sleeping alot was scary and it would have been helpful to know this information.


about 3 years ago, said...

ask any street person, they will say "when your elevens are up" .


about 3 years ago, said...

Why didn't you just title the article "How to Help Someone Die." What a bunch of liberal crap!


about 3 years ago, said...

I responded to this article 10 days ago. My grandson passed Christmas day. The insight gained from this article helped alot. I gave my daughter a copy to read while we sat with her son during his last hours. He slipped away quietly and peacefully. Thanks for the hugs and the prayer.


about 3 years ago, said...

Is there a way to save this article?


about 3 years ago, said...

this is t9otally absurd.. haha totally false and utterly ridiculous


about 3 years ago, said...

I wish I have known this before I did the wake at my fathers bed and helped him die.


about 3 years ago, said...

I went through all of this early this year , when my younger sister was dying from complications from LUPUS. I am sorry I didn't know some of these prior because she exhibited some of these symptoms even when she seemed fine


about 3 years ago, said...

My Mother is a nurse and has been present when several people have died. She said that if they are not too medicated, the last moment is often wonderful. They see and respond to the next world with radiant joy. I was present at one passing. The person became alert, opened their eyes and was able to hear one last word from a loved one. It is good to not die alone.


about 3 years ago, said...

Yes, I noticed these things on my wife which passed away from brain cancer...It was hard to see her in this condition as she was slowly passing away...


about 3 years ago, said...

This website is a joke. I would never reccomend it to anyone.


about 3 years ago, said...

Been there, done that with both my father two years ago, and my step mom last fall. The symptoms, the causes and the recommendations for care giver response follow closely what we experienced in making the transition for my parents as comfortable as possible. I think we did a good job in that regard, but sometimes it is extremely hard to know. (and thank Heaven for the Angels of Hospice, who were with use most of the way)


about 3 years ago, said...

You all heard the medical comments but hopefully this one will help some of you that feel helpless. I have known many people that were in the process of their final stages of life and or healthy and due to an accident or something else unexpected passed over. What I found in all these individuals is that they have a glow. I can't explain it but they seem to shine. My own Mother began to talk about the angels and her departed Mother that had been talking to her for the last few weeks of her life. She knew she would be crossing over soon. Right before her death and as she lapsed into a comma she told me how much she loved me and said something to her grandson. She died a few days later. My son, perfectly healthy, died in a crash but right before his death, he spoke of his life insurance policy and just other things that were not in his normal conversations. He was only 24. He looked absolutely beautiful, he had a glow. You can believe what you wish, but when your loved ones go over, there is someone on the other side helping them across.


about 3 years ago, said...

a democrat occupies the white house.


about 3 years ago, said...

Article on a single page here http://medicmagic.net/10-usual-signs-when-death-is-coming.html


about 3 years ago, said...

My grandsons time is getting close. During the our last few trips to the ER I have asked the doctors what symptoms to expect leading up to the end. Thank you for this article something the medical profession has failed to give me.


about 3 years ago, said...

As a hospice RN, I see this quite a lot. The hardest for me is when the patient loses appetite and family members insist on forcefeeding, g-tubes and NG-tubes. I gently explain to the family that loss of appetite is normal and forcefeeding isn't necessary. This is when I am generally accused of being neglectful in my duties; it helps to provide family and loved ones with a publication, "Gone From My Sight," written by a hospice nurse, that explains the signs and stages of death. Another bone of contention is when the patient is lethargic and fatigued or perhaps just confused and a family member will shake and/or shout at them to "snap out of it." It's hard to explain to the family that this is normal, that even though it seems like plain old forgetfulness, there is important work taking place and it is for the best to simply make the patient comfortable. The absolute worst is when the patient is clearly terminally ill and already in the stages of death and the family insists on pursuing long-abandoned treatments, unnecessary surgeries, ineffective medications and feeding tubes. They insist, not because they believe it will be of any help to the patient, but because they themselves can't bear to let go. It's too painful to lose a loved one, so they keep the patient alive by any means necessary, without taking into consideration the patient's quality of life, comfort and final wishes. They override the patient's wishes and in some cases have even gone to court to force treatment refused by the patient. I have to be the patient's advocate and in most cases, there is a DNR in place and despite insistence from the family, I cannot violate it. And upon death of the patient, I have experienced every reaction, from appreciation for my services for their loved one, to being accused of killing the patient, to being slapped for not resuscitating the patient in violation of a DNR. It got to me so much, I decided to go on a sabbatical. I needed time to think, to make sure this is what I want to do for my career. At present writing, I am still undecided but leaning toward returning to hospice.


about 3 years ago, said...

My Mother had Cancer of the Pancreas (probably from SMOKING so do NOT use tobacco in ANY form!) She had a "curative" Whipple which was Rough but the metastasis to lymph nodes and liver gradually took her down. She had edema of the feet in August, then the belly, pain, and, three weeks before Death, sudden confusion. There is a Lesson here..the Surgeon who was following her medically gave her a LOT of Aldactazide for the swelling. This caused Disastrous hyponatremia that makes the Brain swell and cause confusion percerveration and combative behavior. She was transferred by ambulance to a hospital and less than a week later, to inpatient Hospice. They cleared up some of the confusion and edema, and me and my Father had some good time with her but she inevitably slipped away. It was NOT pleasant. She was semi comatose, then alert but gasping for breath as heart failure did its thing. She died gasping with her mouth open. (We could no close it) in the wee hours New Years Eve. I am an MD myself and support Hospice, but I Do hope that Cancer and AD will be a thing of the past or controllable (like HIV) so few need it


about 3 years ago, said...

when my grsndmapassed she was in the alizhimer unit she layed in her bed rocking back and fourth talking to her mommie and daddie and it was hard to sit there and watch her she seemed so restless but disoriented i don't kknow if anyone has experienced this mybe it was before some of the other signs i did see alot of the signs in this article also it is so said to loose a loved one i also lost my mom to cancer and she died suddenly but had been in the hospital for a week and it was awful watching her on a resperator and fighting the nurses trying to help her you could see the pain she was in i miss her sooo much there is no one like your mom


about 3 years ago, said...

thank you for posting the process of death and how to react when present . Accepting life is to accept death. Very hard to have someone explain the process so that its understood. Thank You


about 3 years ago, said...

its sad that I only read this after the "sudden outburst of alertness" of my grandma was done, we thought she was getting better so we didn't do anything that much on that day...its a shame


about 3 years ago, said...

Having been with my father at a hospice house while he was dying of lung cancer, I want to say that although reading about the symptoms may cause you to fear being with someone who is dying, when the end comes, please be there. You will always be glad you stayed, and you will always know that the person who was your loved one was no longer in their human body. I can't describe it well, but the body takes on the appearance of an empty shell, and the spirit of the person moves onward. The memory brings me great peace of mind.l


about 3 years ago, said...

Re: Loss of appetite: Advanced AD patients love ice cream but you need to use a syringe to get it past the lips so they can recogniuze what it is. Eating is a complex process. AD patiets lose the ability to perform complex processes. Once the ice cream is past the lips the patient will use the tongue and suck it up as we all do with ice cream, Once we get ice cream into our mouths we kind of suck it to the back of our mouth before we swallow it. The syringe IS ONLY USED AS A CARRIER - it is the best method because it both holds an amount of ice cream and it allows direct placement of the ice cream past the lips barrier, into the mouth where it will be tasted, recognized and enjoyed. One might try to find a flexible walled (plastic) baby bottle with a wide open nipple to allow thick ice cream to pass through but this still involves sucking first to get the material past the lips. If you can squeeze the bottle gently to express ice cream slowly into the mouth you have the same effect as if you were using a syringe if the AD patient is in a facility where they are afraid all syringes are used for force feeding. The difference between using a syringe as a method for delivery of ice cream and using a syringe for force feeding is the amount of force you use when you express the ice cream and the speed of pushing the plunger. For feeding ice cream you only want to express small amounts at a time so the patient is able to enjoy tasting the ice cream and eating it, No more than an inch at a time or just enough to be handled by the patient with her tongue is what you try for. Wait until the amount you expressed is swallowed before giving more. Some stages last longer than others. A patient who stops eating won't last as long as one who is able to keep her energy up by continual feeding. If the patient is otherwise in fair to good health with no pain or other problems she will still enjoy simple acts like eating or just watching TV or videos or other forms of activity she can no longer participate in. Quality of life is a strange thing to define. Some AD patients can enjoy just being alive. We must be careful not to impose our idea of what quality of life means to an AD patient. As long as he or she can occasionally smile we know they are still happy - even if they can no longer speak. A common mistake is to think an advanced AD patient can no longer communicate. They can and do communicate - non-vebally. We just need to modifiy and fine-tune our recognition of their communication. You may notice that in a facility where they have special care for AD patients, the best caregivers have Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). This is because ADD people are accustomed to non-verbal communication cues. In situations where AD patients need care, People with ADD have an izeadvantage and are generally better at communicating with these patients than are caregivers who don't have ADD. {It's time we recognize ADVANTAGES of ADD instead of treating it like a disadvantage all the time. Caring for Alzhemer's patients is one place where Attention Deficit Disorder comes in handy and is a definite advantage. Now that you are aware of this, pay attention to the better caregivers. You will find many of them.have ADD (if they are among the lucky ones who are aware of it).


about 3 years ago, said...

My mother was diagnosed with demensia. She has diabeses, and 75 percent hearing loss. Lately she has not been steady on her feet. She is a positive person normally, but after looking at a picture of her youth she said, I don't want to see that. I was happy then. I am sad now. My sister, Unfortunately is the caregiver. She almost always feeds her soup, yogurt. cottage cheese, and hot instant cereal. I take her out to eat to get solid food and atmosphere. She asks the same question within a minute. I do not live in the house. What can I do to make here life more pleasant?


about 3 years ago, said...

Obama has these symptoms thats why America is dying.................


about 3 years ago, said...

Death does not always happen that way I came down with stage 4 colon cancer and i thought it was just the flu, that night my organs were failing no body sign , rushed to hospital had 1 day to live had 12 surgerys in a period of 10 days I am still here 2 yrs later although i take chemo treatments 2 times a month , I feel strong as ever...


about 3 years ago, said...

Excellent information. For those interested, The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying By Sogyal Rinpoche not only paralells the information here, it gives details on what the soul is going through as it prepares to transition from this bardo to the next. The mantra for those dying is "Om amitabha hrih" which is the mantra of the buddha of infinite light and infinite duration used to guide souls to one of the countless purelands the first buddha mentions in the ancient sutras.


about 3 years ago, said...

When my Dad passed away years ago he told me that night that he was going home in the morning. Out in the hallway I asked the nurse if this was true, and she shook her head no. My father died the next morning. I found out later that this is fairly common. I also noticed that he did not want his pillow underneath his head. He kept sliding off it and didn't want to lie down on it. I've heard dying patients do this a lot too.


about 3 years ago, said...

My grandmother passed away this morning and I could definately see some of these things in her during her final hours.


about 3 years ago, said...

I have an Aunt who is being cared for by my Uncle (they've been married 68yrs) and struggling a bit. I think this article would help him so I will make it available. My mother (her sister) will also benefit from it. Thanks!


about 3 years ago, said...

My father-inlaw is in the Hospital . He fell getting out of bed his feet sliped & he fell back wards and landed on his arm. He is 90 yrs old . The blood got black and swelled up bad. I found out the Cumiden helps if you have a strok but it causes more problems . We removed him from that medication. The article .helped me see the 10 steps of death


about 3 years ago, said...

All those things mentioned happened to my dad. You can also smell death. A sour smell comes from mouth and it gets stronger the closer you get to death. Their eyes take on a pale look and even their face, after death, seems to take on a skeletal look. I say the soul is gone and you definatly can tell that by looking at them.


about 3 years ago, said...

The body does show the signs of the organ systems shutting down for those who have been ill for some time. For those who have sudden death things are not so predictable. For those who have been resuscitated by CPR and prolonging the code we have another issue. I am one for - Not calling off the code too early because experience still shows that medical science cannot define clinical from physical death and some people do return from the "dead".


about 3 years ago, said...

when I as 17 the man I had believed to be my father my entire life (until it was revealed to me at age 15 during an arguement with my mother) committed suicide due to terminal throat cancer and even though this man really wasn't in my life all that much ,when he was he made me feel special and like I was his child and I had a fondness for him up until he died dispite all the rotten things I always been told about him and still felt bad for him. My Best friend at the time's mother very unfeeling told me Oh well we all have to die some time. And THAT comment should be on the list of things not to say.


about 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had read this back in March, 2012 - when we realized by Mom was getting close. I searched the internet for clues as to what to expect when one passes from pancreatic cancer. I wanted the details, like this provides. Mom had more end of life unpleasant actions than described here, but she also had each of these. I've saved this, in case I ever need to "remember" these things again. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!


about 3 years ago, said...

An anonymous caregiver said... about 1 month ago who would post such an evil story like this :-( isn't there anything else to write about except morbid depression things? _____________________ Death is a part of life. It happens to everyone. Being in denial just makes it worse for you. Face it. Understand it. Do not stick your head in the sand.


about 3 years ago, said...

The information was accurate and very informative on how to deal with death, a subject most avoid.


about 3 years ago, said...

Thanks for the email about the loss or lack of appetite, while my Dad who passed away last week on Friday no long has that, we get it greatly from my mum whom I'm still looking after. So I have decided to take note from her that should she be hungry then she will have or take food, even if it is a small amount but if Mum isn't feeling hungry at the time of us asking then let it be. I do not believe force feeding will do any good but definitely will do more harm. Even if one feels a tad guilty when we're eating then it should be fine especially if we ask again...however sometimes she'll say yes, then no, then yes again...talk about a tricky person to deal with! Best wishes to all


about 3 years ago, said...

I have witnessed the passing of a loved one before. Everything in this article was right on the money actually. It was slightly different, but it is different to a degree with everyone I would imagine as you stated. And yes I cherish the lucid moments that I shared with my mom on Christmas Day four days before her death. This article should be a small comfort of what to expect when a loved one is passing away. My mom passed in 1984 and I remember all of it, but not in pain or sorrow, but with love that I was able to be with her. Talking with her on Christmas Day; hearing her voice one more time and feeling her arms around me and telling me that she loved me is the best gift I will ever have. Thank you for the article.


about 3 years ago, said...

We can never prepare ourselves for their deaths, but somehow they manage to prepare themselves for their own. Do not beat yourself up in thinking what you did was right or wrong. The main important thing is that you loved your mother or father, with that, you can NEVER go wrong.


about 3 years ago, said...

Thank you, I have been at the bedside of many of my loved ones upon dying and it is Never easy. The symptoms you described are correct from what I have witnessed. Unfortunately I am now watching my Husband slowly slip away from us and hoping I will be strong for my daughters and not break down in front of them.


about 3 years ago, said...

My Fred died Oct.31 - I was just comparing!


about 3 years ago, said...

my mom has been under hospice care since february of this year until now when they transferred her into palliative the week before thanksgiving of this year. we did to appeals but they denied them both. the only reason why i'm half way okay with this is because mom can go back under hospice care immediately when need be. i'm learning that a person can go back and forth between hospice and palliative care twice before passing away. also this is the 2nd anniversary of my dad's passing november 30, 2010. just going to be quiet tomorrow and talk with mom.


about 3 years ago, said...

My mother said my grandma started seeing people (family & friends) and started laughing and communicating with them. She was not in the room at the time of death, but my brother and cousin were, and to be honest, I don't know if I could have handled that.


about 3 years ago, said...

educational . the whole article.


about 3 years ago, said...

my husbands breathing changed and his eyes went back and forth across the room slowly...the breathing changed at the last 30 mins. the eyes moved back and forth at least half the day...


about 3 years ago, said...

This article has helped me to understand what my grandpa is going through.. i feel so bad to see him this way.. the only thing I can do is stay by his side. if i hadnt read this I dont know what I'd be thinking..


about 3 years ago, said...

My mother had a heart attack in March of 2008, and she died four days later. I held her hand as she was dying and for quite awhile after she took her last breath.


about 3 years ago, said...

My husband died at home 32 months ago. I didn't want to send him to a nursing or hospice. Hospice care came to the house to help me taught me how to care for him. He had a feeding tube, anal tube and catheter. I took care of him for about 2 weeks before he died. I wish I'd been told all these symptoms of the end so that when they began to happen I wouldn't have felt I wasn't doing enough for him. I still go through the what if's or maybe if I had's almost 3 yrs later of wondering if I could have done more. Especially when all his bodily fluids escaped the tubes attached to his body hours before he passed. I wasn't told this might happen and I was afraid something was done wrong. When I called the nurse and she quietly told it was the beginning of the end I was stunned.But, after reading this article I see now it was all natural what was happening to him and it had begun some time before he died.Even the Sunday he rallied enough to sit up and talk and laugh with his sister on the phone, then he died 2 days later. Everyone doing hospice at home should be given classes on what to expect so it isn't so traumatic and cause unneeded guilt. Thank you for your article.


about 3 years ago, said...

This is really excellent. Thank you.


about 3 years ago, said...

This is exactly the way my father passed away. I beat myself up for two weeks while he was in a nursing home because I thought he was mad at me for putting im there. I just could not take care of him at home anymore. He has been gone three years and I am not over it yet. I wish I had this article then it would have been helpful.


about 3 years ago, said...

I watched my mother die over several days. Nothing prepairs you for the experience and I can think of few things that would be harder to live with.


about 3 years ago, said...

The above, while accurate, are also (many of them except mottled veins and apnea) signs of a Urinary Tract Infection in an elderly person. Low appetite, confusion, falls, low intake of fluid and output, fatigue, loss of appetite - are all consistent with this common and easy to rule out infection which if left untreated, can cause sepsis and ultimately... preventable death.


about 3 years ago, said...

oooooooooooooook


about 3 years ago, said...

Why don't they put this person on introveines? Why should he have to dehydrate, which adds to his suffering, in these last days and hours of his life? It seems very cruel.


about 3 years ago, said...

HOSPICE IS A SPECIAL GROUP OF PEOPLE. THEY NOT ONLY CARE FOR THE DYING PERSON BUT WITH THE ENTIRE FAMILY.AS WELL. IT'S BEEN A VERY EXPERIENCE. JUST VERY GLAD HOSPICE HAS AND STILL IS ON BOARD. IT GIVE ME A GREAT DEAL OF COMFORT KNOWING THEY ARE THERE.


about 3 years ago, said...

According to his oncologist, my hubby is in the final stages of pancreatic cancer. Hospice care has been started, but I wanted to know more. Thank you for being there for me.


about 3 years ago, said...

It helps you understand the process better, and to know that it's completely natural. Our hospice nurse told us that our dad's ears would begin to droop, because the cartilage relaxes, and sure enough, they did. It was such an amazing experience that I'm considering becoming a hospice volunteer.


about 3 years ago, said...

My 88-year-old friend will soon be making her transition, so I am grateful to have this article to prepare me, in case I am with her when it happens. Thank you for this consideration. Rev. Allorrah Be Circles of Light Ministries Sebastopol, California UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!


about 3 years ago, said...

I did read all four pages of your aticle. It's good, honest, practicle advice, and useful.


about 3 years ago, said...

Jeez, I've already got several of these symptoms and I'm just 44 years old! Where does that leave me? It kinda freaks me out though because of an injury incurred while on active duty - I can no longer work and have lost a lot of weight and strength. I have no appetite and because of prescribed narcotic meds, I sleep quite a bit during the day and at nite. Had myself an accidental OD two months ago because I lost so much weight (I'm down to 85 lbs) but never thought of the dose of narcs I was taking as being too high for my weight - so they knocked me out almost to death. Went to sleep one afternoon and ended up waking in the hospital and spent 3 days there- being very ill. This is one of the reasons my mother lives with me, to help take care of me because I can't always do it myself. I have a feeling I may not make it past 55 yrs old, and I've got a 14 yr old daughter to take care of. (father took off when I was pregnant), so she'll be without me when she'll need me. I just don't like that idea. Well, here's to trying to stay and become more able/healthy in my life. Don't want to live into my 90's, but I don't want to die in my 50's either!


about 3 years ago, said...

cats and dogs can tell when their masters are dying.


about 3 years ago, said...

only if I had seen it sooner, Thanks!


about 3 years ago, said...

an easier way to print it ,for future reference


about 3 years ago, said...

don't forget being head to toe with bruises with no explanations at all.


about 3 years ago, said...

Last year, I witnessed all of these signs as my mother was dying. She had been sleeping a lot and one day, surprised me by getting up early, saying things that didn't make sense. I tried to get her to eat, but she was not hungry. Just a few hours later, she was unable to get up from her chair saying her legs had given out on her. She was aware she was dying, as she asked me to have her hairdresser fix her hair. I told her that we would have to wait untl she felt better. Her reply was that she would come to the funeral home. In the hospital, she had every other sign mentioned. I had not read this article before she died, but was surprised that it matched her death experience so closely. Within a week from the time she said she couldn't get her legs to work, she slipped further away until she did die. My aunt, who died earlier this week, had been hospitalized for several weeks. I went to see her and was surprised when her doctor told me that this was the first time she had been so alert, talking to both of us, as she had not been that way in the 3 weeks she had been hospitalized. That was her last time to be so, as when I went back later in the week, she was completely unresponsive and I knew the end was coming. No matter how much you try to prepare yourself, it is so very hard.


about 3 years ago, said...

Early identification w/ Alzheimer's. My first wife died 11 yrs ago today. We were married 29+ yrs. She died in my arms in her house & I was her caregiver for 4+ yrs. I am married now to a wonderful lady (10+ yrs), but I'm still concerned about dementia. You druggies should work harder on prevention/cure for this nasty pest!


over 3 years ago, said...

Very Practical and Useful information :-) Thank-You ..


over 3 years ago, said...

tell the person you love them. Also give the person permission to let go of life. my father-in law was struggling and appeared to not allow himself to die. I asked my husband when was the last time he told his father that he loved him. My husband could not remember, so I suggested he tell his father now. My husband told his dad he loved him and my father-in-law gave a smile, sighed and passed away.


over 3 years ago, said...

To me a good death would be dying in your sleep without expecting it or knowing it was happening.


over 3 years ago, said...

I have only just now read this article; my Mother died in June. However, I was with her in the hospital for four days and saw her go through all these stages. My very good friend is an RN and has worked as a hospice nurse. Thank God she prepared me for Mom's final days by explaining what would happen as she began the dying process.


over 3 years ago, said...

Having read your article it has truely helped me to understand that what I deep-down knew & sadly experienced with my deceased Mother one year ago is infact the stages. Especially the "sudden talking" part - as I recall the afternoon before the night she passed away the care-nurse called me to let me know that my mother had spoken to her & told the nurse her full name.This was really nice to know as my mother had the later stages of dementia & sadly could only mumble words during the last year of her life. For anyone who has to experience it - be strong.


over 3 years ago, said...

Listing the conditions just prior to actual physical death. I watched my 97 yeasr old father go through these exact symptoms for one week before he passed away. Through so much of it, I felt so guilty as his son, that I was not doing everything that cold be done to help. I feel better after reading this article and it list of conditions. Thank you. Allen


over 3 years ago, said...

I held my granny as she took her last breath of air on earth and I encouraged her to go home to see her mom and dad, twin sister and her 9 siblings. It was hard but an honor to hold her in those last final moments.


over 3 years ago, said...

my mom very sick she had a stroke 4 months ago.she got a few other med problems.she been talkin and seein her mom and dad thay been dead 30years.is that a sigh of deaf.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is very helpful to know if you haven't seen death before. My step-father had the cheynes-stokes breathing for about 24 hours and we found it quite harrowing because he was at home. The nude explained that it meant it was near the very end - he died next day. He had a seizure right near the end too so don't be alarmed by this. We had to wait for about 10 hours for a doctor to come for a death certificate because it was Easter Sunday so the hospital suggested moving him into a position that was suitable for viewing before rigor set in. I closed his mouth and mum straightened his legs out and laid his hands on his chest. We were in contact with the palliative care unit at a nearby hospital and their nurses were great. It was very hard nursing him at home at the end but felt a happy ending. Don't do this alone. We had three of us taking turns to sit and sleep and my step-brother administered morphine. Although people say the person can hear , my step-father seemed unconscious and comfortable so don't feel bad if your lived one has to die in hospital. Just be there and be calm.


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for this article & such great details. I was there helping my mom die from liver failure & end stage of COPD. It was a traumatic experience & I still cry randomly & dream of her alive after 2 years. Death of ur mom/best friend is terribly hard & esp if you were the main one giving the palliative care. I wish hospice could've been there with me more. Once I placed my mom on it, she died 2 days later.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is helpful. I am advanced in age, live alone, would like to be able to monitor condition & process. These evidences or indicators afford good awareness for this purpose. So I am glad to see them posted. Monitoring the process is not alarming to me. I am baptized into God's redemptive provision "through faith of Jesus Christ". (Romans 3:10--28 is blessed information. See esp. verse 22, well, 21&22, well, read the whole range of verses). Anyhow, to the extent that I am able to proceed on the basis of 'walking' through this process, as far as possible, I am glad to have the awareness. Thanks again. I don't need a medical plan. I am a disabled veteran. Moreover, in general I dislike AARP for its ultra liberal bent. Nevertheless, thanks again for this.


over 3 years ago, said...

This article was very helpful. I just lost a close relative, only 55 yrs. old, and your article was extremely accurate! Thank you!


over 3 years ago, said...

In my case, I was the one that was dying. I read that article and realized I had about 7 of the signs. At the time, I was in the hospital with cardiomyopathy and conjestive heart failure and my family was told I was terminal and that it was a matter of hours. I was my own patient advocate and was determined to rise above the signs. I'm glad I read that article It gave me a focus and something to fight with. It gave me hope when no one else would. I think someone should write a book about what NOT to say to a dying person. We don't always die. :)


over 3 years ago, said...

This article helped me understand what I witnessed during the deaths of my grandparents.


over 3 years ago, said...

nothing My Mom passed 3 years ago and as I read your article it was almost everything as you described it and I did react the way you wrote about it.


over 3 years ago, said...

Thanks for the info.The stages of first signs of dying were the signs that my passed wife went thru.


over 3 years ago, said...

I was with my dad when he died. He had many of these signs about two weeks before, but the hours before death we're marked by the change of breathing. It was a great privilege to be present as he took his very last breath.


over 3 years ago, said...

who would post such an evil story like this :-( isn't there anything else to write about except morbid depression things?


over 3 years ago, said...

it is very nice to know that alot of people care about someone else. other than a family member 'thanks for the tips


over 3 years ago, said...

These so-called "signs" are indicative of MANY disorders and health issues. How typical of media to resort to more fear mongering to fill its pages. You should all be ashamed of yourselves


over 3 years ago, said...

Death is death and there is no good death when we can not see our loved one again about to die. Death is the worst enemy on eaeth that can not be controlled but we just embrace when it cimes.


over 3 years ago, said...

I felt the entire article was helpful in that I will be able to face what is known and not be fearful of the unknown.


over 3 years ago, said...

It's nice to know what to do before the very end .


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother passed away a little over a week ago. I am now feeling the guilt that I should have done more. She was in the latter stages of Alzheimer's. She was living in a wonderful memory care home after living with me for the last 12 years. For the past 2 years, she became totally incontinent and was suffering from hallucinations. She had a history of TIAs. About 2 weeks ago, she seemed to be more confused, was losing her ability to talk and had little energy. The week before she passed, she had a bout of vomiting and the nurses gave her suppositories to stop this. This was the one day that I didn't go visit her. When I went in the next morning, she was no longer able to feed herself, so I started going in for all three meals and helping her. She would look at the food, but didn't know what to do with it. I did this for 3 days. On the 4th day I went in that morning, and could not wake her up. She was just totally unresponsive. She opened her eyes a few times that day and I was able to get her to take a few bites of applesauce. She tried to say something once, but it was just garbled sounds. When I left that evening she was looking at me and I said, "I love you" and she responded "I love you too" and I could understand what she said. My Mom had an living will requesting no additional support (feeding tubes, etc), so for the next two days I sat and watched her die. I did talk to her and continued to massage her arms and feet, and tried my best to comfort her. She would let me put a sucker in her mouth, but wouldn't eat. Hospice was with me the entire time and they were a tremendous support. I'm an only child so it was just my husband and I there with Mom. They asked me once if I wanted to send her to the hospital, and now I feel terrible that I didn't say YES. I know that the hospital probably couldn't have done anything, but I still feel guilty. She had begged me before that when it was her time to go I should not insist on medical care. She said she had no quality of life and was ready to go. I guess the guilt is part of being a caregiver, but I feel so bad that I didn't do more.


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I'd known the signs. Mum at 87 was fine although she had a history of atrial fibrilliation for which she took medicine. I remember the day before asking her why her legs were so blue and she answered "I dont know". She was fine except for that, we'd been shopping a few days before and went out for a meal and the movies only two days earlier. I came home from work and we had a snack watching tv when all of a sudden there was a really loud gurgling noise coming from her chair - I yelled "Mum are you alright" but I think she'd already gone - her eyes were wide open and she had started going blue. We placed her gently on the floor and commenced CPR - knowing what I know now, we shouldnt have done this. It didnt seem to work and with each breath we gave her there was more gurgling noises. I'm sorry to tell you all this but it is something you must know - we loved her very much and we wanted to save her, but we made it worse. The ambulance arrived and they also gave her CPR and electric shock therapy and managed to get her heart started. Then she was in hospital and in an induced coma - her eyes looked strange - the iris like a slit and there was no response. She died the next day and in a way we were relieved because if she had come round there was a high possibility of brain damage and she would have hated that. She was my best friend - I lived with her for 10 yrs since my father died. We laughed together like good pals and enjoyed each other's company. I will always love her - but I never had the chance to say goodbye. Some may say it was a good death, at home with loved ones. From my point of view I must agree with that but for my brother and I it was traumatic and will haunt us forever.


over 3 years ago, said...

When Hospice was called in to help us with my Father's passing a few years ago, I was so thankful to have them there. One of the "girls" was experienced and did well at letting us know what to expect and guiding us through everything in a calm and caring manner. Everyone should be aware of the signs of impending death. It can be so frightening without this knowledge. Thank you and God Bless. Kathy


over 3 years ago, said...

when obamacare is fully implemented, repost this. we'll need it agian.


over 3 years ago, said...

The primary concern should be of ones Soul at that point. All the comforts of the world can't prepare them if they are not saved!


over 3 years ago, said...

In my husbands last hours dying of bone marrow cancer ( age 56) at the Hazelton (PA) hospital in 2006, he was in a coma and ice cold. He didn't have so much as a sheet on him and I demanded a blanket. The nurses refused saying he had a fever and they could not cover him. When he heard me talk to him when I first entered his room, I saw his eyes pop open but he was now blind. He could not see, move or speak but he must have been able to still hear and think. However, when he heard my voice I saw tears coming out of the corners of his eyes. This was about 7:30 pm and he died around 4 am the next day. At least my mother and I were able to tell him goodbye and that we loved him. I don't think he was in a real coma but rather in a locked in condition. The greedy drs wanted to operate on his kidneys that day ( knowing he was dying anyway) but postponed the operation when they saw he slipped into the "coma." I still think hospitals/drs are just in it for the money and will keep anyone alive as long as possible to squeeze that last dollar out of the victims, I mean patients insurance. In my work I saw this with my own eyes many times. ps I work in healthcare w/ elderly and I feel sorry for what they go thru in my area. Oh great, now I'm starting to cry again thinking about my husband. I'm sorry I commented.


over 3 years ago, said...

to be able to understand the process better


over 3 years ago, said...

Very good article. Father-in-law has been quite ill for some time. Have seen all these signs since January 2012. The priest has even come in at least 4 times for final rites. The doctors have been trying to prepare us and it seems they don't know what else to say. They just shake their heads. I know the doctors and nurses know the signs. When he's back and forth to the hospital and rehab they all say "back again." They are just as puzzled as we are. All we do is take it day by day. My parents passed in the hospital. I was not there when they passed. My father was to be released the next day. He had a heart attack the morning of. My mom died right after my older sister left the hospital. She described that my mom looked as if she was asleep (her eyes were slightly open).


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother died in hospice care and she experienced most of these things. In the last hours she had episodes where she would spike a very high temp. and then it would drop very low. The staff was wonderful about keeping her comfortable throughout all of this. She had an extremely peaceful passing.


over 3 years ago, said...

VERY INFORMITIVE AND HELPFUL


over 3 years ago, said...

Yes, this article was thorough and accurate. I was a caretaker for each parent, one after the other, continuously, for 28 years. You didn't miss anything.


over 3 years ago, said...

I sat and watched my Mother die of Lung Cancer. Only 2 of the signs you pointed out were logical. All others were non-descriptive. Perhaps you should do a segment on 10 Signs of Life Approaching and include 1) loving family (even if they are crazy), 2) loving friends (as long as they are right by you), 3) enjoying sunrises, 4) enjoying sunsets, 5) enjoying good coffee, 6) enjoy a fresh peeled orange, 7) the luster of one's skin after making love, 8) the breath that's taken away when you are at the top of a tower/roller coaster ride/building, 9) a child's laughter and 10) coloring outside the lines.


over 3 years ago, said...

I remember in June 2001 when my father was dying of cancer how very much the Hospice workers helped our family through the trauma of losing our father and our mother losing her husband. We were novices. We had never had to lose someone slowly, the way our Dad and Husband was dying. We cannot thank them enough because they explained, compassionately, what was happening to our father and to us. We are now wiser and so support people who are there for the dying and their relatives and friend.


over 3 years ago, said...

You forgot the grey-ashen color to the face. I have seen this repeatedly. Mouth open while sleeping. Death- like look while asleep.


over 3 years ago, said...

Why would something like this even be written? God, are we so desensitized that this is considered appropriate?


over 3 years ago, said...

I am a cna and have seen most of these in my work.


over 3 years ago, said...

My brother passed away in a Hospice facility. When we brought him in, the director sat with us and explained the process. It was comforting to know what to expect and helped us to help him have a more peaceful passing.


over 3 years ago, said...

Generallly good.


over 3 years ago, said...

i developed a full service hospice program and mgm it for 16 years. i agree with this article. i have also seen patients who were up and about and told me that "this is the day" and hours later went to bed and died. dying is a process, not a happening. dying persons are always unique in their dying as they are in their living.


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had read this article last year when my mom was in her final stages of life. It would have been a great help...


over 3 years ago, said...

This article made it much easier to understand the process of dying. I recently lost my grandmother and this is exactly what occurred. I was unprepared for it at the time but the article helped me to see it was all part of the process.


over 3 years ago, said...

signs of death,to be aware of


over 3 years ago, said...

My coudin has liver cancer snd has been trying ternative methods to survive. His wife called to ask me to come..when I got here..many signs of him bring in last stages of dying..bug she is in denial. She is still trying to cure him withveflex and dso's massaged onto his swollen legs his breathing is rattled most of the to3 and his skin is pale..snd ashen. He is sometimes aware of our presence. He gets the hiccups. He sleeps most of the time and his bp is low. How can I gently help her?


over 3 years ago, said...

more ways i can help someone more comfortable


over 3 years ago, said...

I saw my husband die this way. The Dr. and nurses did not tell my son and me that he was in his last hours. We knew he was very sick and it would have been much better if they had told us the truth. Lots of frustration!


over 3 years ago, said...

I am an RN on a med surg unit and occasionally have the privilege to assist the patient AND the family with dying. This article is good and hopefully will help families from trying to force feed their dying family member. And don't forget to discuss what your loved ones might want if they became irreversibly ill...It may save a lot of heart ache one day God forbid you are faced with that decision alone.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is a good article to help give guidance and comfort and as mentioned by so many also not all inclusive. Sometimes we forget that the survivors or caregivers also have a hard time after the loss of their loved one. It made me sad to read some of these comments that people feel they are at an end of life themselves. Depression can take over in a persons life and the lack of motivation to be involved in life's daily experiences. People need to seek help from a doctor to see if they have depression - not necessarily a negative thing to acknowledge depression, but it's not good to have no desire to be involved in anything any more. Depression can creep in with the loss of a loved one. I recently dealt with a cousin who did not realize he was in depression. I got him involved back into life (some of the old things he used to do) and he began to care again which changed his whole life. He in turn has been able to reach out to help friends around him dealing with companions having problems at end of life. His children noticed he wasn't the same, but didn't know what to do to help him. I go him involved back into life and when he did he got his zest for life back, and it was then they noticed the difference. I was a caregiver for 6 years to my mother and a friend in my home and saw two sweet women pass away at ages 95 and 96 within 6 months of each other, both showing these signs. Bless all caregivers and loved ones for all they do and let them know they are doing (have done) the right thing.


over 3 years ago, said...

All the responses were great. These were exactly the responses we had when my father was at the end of his life. He was a Hospice patient. My father always used to enjoy a bowl of ice cream while watching the nightly news. About a night or two before he died, my father requested some ice cream. So, on a Februay evening with 35-degree below zero abient temperatures, my husband went to the store to get him some. Father was so happy with the ice cream. He asked for some again the next evening. That was enough for him.


over 3 years ago, said...

Helpful to recognize the dying procedures happening to the body, as they happen...I care for my 91+ year old Mom, and so far things have been okay, I get a bit panicky though when I see things I can't help her with. So far, she's alright, still eats very well, drinks okay but not as much as I'd like for her to drink. Thanks again for this article on the dying process. Wish it didn't have to happen at all,but I know that isn't reality.


over 3 years ago, said...

You described the process of my mothers passing, thank you for describing this, I had better knowledge to know what to expect. Thank you so much.


over 3 years ago, said...

You notice you haven't breathed in for a couple of days. Your body odor is suddenly just a LOT worse. Nobody seems to expect you to answer them. They just stand next to the big box you are in and cry.


over 3 years ago, said...

although it has been twelve years, the info has given me answers to sooooo many guilt ridden events that have weighed so heavy on my heart. i currently cry as I respond because this is truly a soul releasing moment. Thank you for setting my mind and heart free.


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had seen an article like this before my mother passed, I felt helpless. One would think that an intelligent person would know what accommodations or actions were necessary. But I felt frozen even when knowing there could be something done. Hospice came twice a week to take vitals. I didn't even know the proper manner in changing the linens, I felt so stupid, to be so helpless. My mother has been gone 3+ years and my care given to my mother still seems so inadequate. I really wish someone had told me how helpless I would feel and whether my actions/no actions were normal.


over 3 years ago, said...

As my dad's caretaker years ago, I only wish I had known the dying process as explained in this article. It is excellent and very helpful. I will keep it and pass it on to friends and family if they are lost in the woods like I was.


over 3 years ago, said...

I would have liked these story sooner, as my mother was like this back in "97 I figured it out over the past years, but at the time I had no idea..


over 3 years ago, said...

I have been through this process with both parents. It is not an easy process although it is a natural process, and I'm glad I was there for both of my parents.


over 3 years ago, said...

The article contained accurate information that has already been given to us by our grandson's doctors. If there is an article on children dying, that might be helpful.


over 3 years ago, said...

My 90 year old father spends most of his time in his chair, at his home, sleeping. Most of what I read in the article are symtoms he displays and having spent quite a lot of time, staying with him, I actually now know he is closer to death than I had thought. His diuretics are not working any more and yet he can manage to get up and walk a little, still eats well but will nod off to sleep at the table. All too sad really.


over 3 years ago, said...

After death your soul will spend eternity somewhere. The most important thing you can do is prepare for death. Most people never prepare to face eternity. Where will you spend eternity? Heaven or Hell? What will it profit you if you gain the whole world but lose your soul? Make preparation now by repenting of your sins and trusting in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is true! I have experienced this with several relatives ,who died after I witnessed this behavior for a very short period of time!!


over 3 years ago, said...

This was very informative. My Mother is in the last stages of life.


over 3 years ago, said...

i think i well be dying soon. i don't like organized religion , but believe in an after life.


over 3 years ago, said...

I came across this website by accident but thought I should probably find some answers to questions I have. Five years ago my wife and I relocated from Northerm California to South Dakota. We had only been in Soth Dakota for approx. 6 months when my wife Terri passed away unexpectedly from a Pulmonary Embolism. I had retired from the Police Department in Northern California where I had worked undercover Narcotics and Gang Supression and my wife quit her job as a probation officer in California so we could move to a smaller and less congested little town. Just prior to our move to South Dakota my father passed away. We were very close and his death was devistating to me even though I knew his time was just about up. Two weeks after I lost my wife, I received a call informing me that my sister who was 5 years my senior had passed away from cancer. I knew she had cancer but nobody informed me that she had been in the hospital for a couple of weeks prior to her death. I never got to say goodby to her or even go to her funeral since she was cremated and her ashes were scattered along the shore of Newport Beach in the Sand Dunes. Since the death of my wife and sister I have been in a deep depression. My doctor here has put me on an anti depressant which really hasn't worked well as it leaves me with no energy to do anything. I turned 60 this past June. I see actors and entertainers on T.V. who I always thought were older than myself and then I come back to reality and tell myself that I'm 60 yrs old. I'm a senior citizen yet I don't think of myself as being old. I've always looked so much younger and more active than my peers yet my wife was only 45 yrs old when she passed away. I now live alone and have no family or friends who live anywhere near me. In fact, when my sister passed away I was left without any family at all. I own my home here and I have a life insurance policy on myself but no beneficiary to put down now since everyone of my family members have passed away. I have two daughters who live somewhere in California but they haven't spoken to me in over 15 years. I have no idea where they live, who they might be married to, if I have Grandchildren or even if they are alive or not. I do have my oldest daughters E-mail address however I have written to her at least 20 or thirty times a year yet I never get a response back. The E-mails seem to be getting through to her as they don't come back undeliverable yet I'm not sure she's even getting them. If she is getting them, she is not responding to them. I'm afraid that I might die alone in my house and nobody will even know about it. I don't know where to be buried if something should happen to me and without a beneficiary, I don't know what will happen to my estate. I don't have an attorney or even know of one who might be able to assist me in what I should do. I was hoping that I was still young enough to possibly meet someone but I just don't get out enough or even the willingness to go through all of the things you have to do to meet someone who is kind, attractive, well educated, and without all the bad habits that come with someone in my age group. I don't go to bars, I don't smoke and I certainly don't want a partner who does. I still ride my Harley but thats about the extent of my traveling especially with the price of gas. I'm very lonely and hate doing things by myself. I'm not rich by any means but I'm not poor either but my income was decreased by 1/2 when I lost my wife. I just don't know how to go about meeting someone to do things with who isn't already married or in a relationship or they live so far away that distance would be a major factor in getting to know someone. I wish I had someone to talk to once in a while in person and not just writing an E-mail now and then or talking on the phone. I'm not a very religious person and not especially keen on going to church especially if it's just to meet people as I think that would be deceptive. Anyway, I don't know what to do with myself anymore and if something happens to me, I don't want all of my personal things to be sold in an estate sale instead of having a son or wife to leave my estate to.


over 3 years ago, said...

This has been exceedingly helpful. Thank you s much.


over 3 years ago, said...

Norm McDonald sets his scythe in the corner, sits down next to you wearing a black hooded cloak and says "pull my finger."


over 3 years ago, said...

I have witnessed these symptoms first hand and cannot emphasize enough my agreement with the recommendation to continue physical and verbal interaction with the dying party. Even in the "coma" state I have seen proof that comprehension is still very existant. I can only equate it to a newborn realizing the love extended via touch and sound.


over 3 years ago, said...

this was so helpful. about a year ago I lost my mom. now it's my dads turn. I'm only 13 please comment if u know what's its like to be an orphan :(


over 3 years ago, said...

Thanks I Loss My Love in Nov 23 2011, And everything you describe was right to her last second. thank again.


over 3 years ago, said...

THIS IS SCARRY............ I'M A 73 YEAR OLD MALE......STROKE VICTIM 3 YEARS AGO AND ALL THINGS SEEM TO BE GOING DOWN HILL........JUST LIKE THIS. 1. I REALLY DON'T CARE IF I EAT OR NOT.......I DO BUT TASTE IS GONE AND I REALLY DON'T LIKE ANYTHING BYT CEREAL. 2. EXCESS FATIGUE......SLEEP. I GO TO BED AT 8 PM AND SLEEP TILL 9 AM THE NEXT DAY. I CAN NAP IN THE MORNING AND AGAIN IN THE AFTERNOON. 3. PHYSICAL WEAKNESS........MY STRENGTH HAS GOT UP AND GONE. I CAN'T DO ANYTHING ANYMORE. 4. MENTAL CONFUSION....I DON'T UNDERSTANT SIMPLE DIRECTIONS AND OFTEN FORGET WHO I AM AND WHERE I AM/WHAT I'M DOING. 5. LARORED BREATHING.......EVERYTHING IS AN EFFORT AND I AM ALWAYS SHORT OF BREATH. 6. SOCIAL WITHDRAWL.........ACTIVE ALL MY LIFE......I JUST DON'T CARE ANYMORE. I DON'T WANT TO SEE ANYONE OR CARE WHAT THEY ARE DOING. 7. URINATION CHANGES >....SOMETIMES I CAN BEARLY MAKE IT TO THE BATHROOM. 8. SWEELING - FEET/ANKLES.......YEAS CONSTANTLY. 9. NO COOLNESS NOTED IN FINGERS AND TOES BUT THEY GO TO SLEEP/NUMBNESS ALL THE TIME. 10 NO SIGN OF MOTTLED VEINS IN FEET........................ I SEE MY DOCTOR EVERY THREE MONTHS AND HE HAS NEVER ASKED ABOUT ANY OF THESE SYMPTIMS .


over 3 years ago, said...

My 92 year old father passed away a few years ago and I was amazed at how many of the symptoms that were described he displayed. Reading about it now answered some questions I always had about it.


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother is 95 and I know the end is nearing, so I am starting to feel anxious about her dying cause she has live with me forever, she is my rock and constant conpanion, so I just don't want to miss any kind of signs that will tell me that she is nearing dead, she is healthy other than blood pressure, but she is starting to not be too hungry, she is getting pickier about her food, she is much slower when walking, she sleeps a lot during day time, and sometimes she has a hard time sleeping at night, so she wakes up very late in the morning. She also think about her dying, worrying about me I guess, even though I tell her not to worry about me, that I will be ok, but you know us, mothers. Thanks for the article, it does help me to learn what to expect.


over 3 years ago, said...

Then there's Number 11: "The Mob guys say I ratted them out!"


over 3 years ago, said...

Excellent. info I can use starting today!


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for this information. If really enlighten me of this subject.


over 3 years ago, said...

MY DAD HAD DEMENTIA/PARKINSONS AND ALZHEIMERS. ONLY ONCE MY DAD DIDN'T REMEMBER ME. IT HAPPENED OVER THE PHONE. WHEN THAT HAPPENED I CRIED AND CRIED ON THE PHONE WHEN I TALKED WITH MY SON WHO IS NOW 40. I SAID HE DOES'T REMEMBER ME HE DOESN'T REMEMBER ME. JUST GLAD THAT ONLY HAPPENED ONCE. BUT IF HE CONTINUED TO NOT REMEMBER ME I ALREADY DECIDED THAT I WOULD GET TO KNOW HIM FOR WHO HE WAS NOW. ON NOVEMBER 30, 2010 HE DIED PEACEFULLY. FORTUNATELY I WAS ABLE TO BE WITH HIM 24/7 THREE JUST BEFORE HE DIED. I MISS HIM.


over 3 years ago, said...

I am seeing MANY of these with my mother and the advice about responding to each was helpful.


over 3 years ago, said...

Actually,I cant think of anything at the moment.This article has given me a peace of mind.I will know what to expect when and if this happens.


over 3 years ago, said...

More about dementia and what signs to look for as they can no longer communicate adiquately.


over 3 years ago, said...

I spelled rigor-mortis wrong and wanted to correct it. When it sets in the the body stiffens up and if you pick them up the wrong way they will stay in that position. If someone tried to pick the person up by the head it would look like the person is lifting their head to see things. In my experience I have found they take their last breath then loose all their bodily fluids. And I find they just want anyone to be next to them.


over 3 years ago, said...

I worked in a Nursing Home when I was 18 and I volunteered to sit with the dieing so they would not be alone in the last moments on earth. I know I do not want to be alone so I felt it was my job to do that and tell there family I was there until the end. That seem to make them fell better because they could not get there on time. I was with my mother also and knew what to do. The one thing to remember is that rigorrmortis sets in fast and you have to be careful how you lift them on to the Gurney


over 3 years ago, said...

Etched in my mind is the sight of my mother suddently opening her eyes while her body was going through electrolyte imbalance (I guess another way of saying that the body is shutting down). It was a scary sight. The hospice nurse told us she went through metabolic change (a vague explanation) so it was not painful. It could be correct, but it surely did not look it. Can someone explain about the sudden opening of the eyes? Is it just a reflex of the body?It was a stare, unfocused. She went into a coma and passed away the next morning gently.


over 3 years ago, said...

This was a very good article and wished I could have been aware of it when my mother passed two years ago. I was told her body was shutting down, but I refused to accept it. I just wished I had of been with her at the end, instead of being hard headed and denying it. She also had the stare which was pretty scary since she just seemed to look right through me. I would give anything if time could go back to her final days and I could have been more sympathetic with what was happening and kissed and hugged her.


over 3 years ago, said...

The consistent reference to "comfort", both the verb and the noun is the best advice offered. The practical aspect of "what to do" are very helpful. I wish more/all people could access this Life experience coaching. Thank you!


over 3 years ago, said...

TEX THAT WAS GREAT. ALWAYS BELIEVED THAT THERE'S A SENSE OF HUMOR IN EVERYTHING


over 3 years ago, said...

helpful. was with my brother when he died from glioblastoma. i have looked at most of the comments made re this article. i did see one comment talking about the gaze of the person dying. a few hours before my brother died he started to become unresponsive. i saw him open his eyes and look outward, to the side of bed. i got in his vision--he was not blinking--i began to cry and told him that i was going to miss him, that i loved him, that i would be thinking about him where then he closed his eyes x 2/liked slowly blinked then went back to that gaze....has anyone had this experience? the list was similar to what i experienced with my brother....particularly around one hour before he died, he exhibited the "death rattle." phew! my sister-in-law then joined us and gosh did he become VERY symptomatic, dying shortly thereafter. gosh, death, to me is TOUGH!


over 3 years ago, said...

i'm not seeking advice about anything in general but do have an elderly aunt that in the future i may have need of some of this info about. thanks


over 3 years ago, said...

Don't forget sign #11: there's a knock at the door,you open it and there's a tall black caped hooded faceless figure holding a scythe and pointing a bony finger...


over 3 years ago, said...

When you can't pay for diabetes supplies and insulin because you can't find a job or health insurance because of a precondition.


over 3 years ago, said...

this was actually useful but in a way not expected: this week I had my CAT euthanized and she also demonstrated many of the same symptoms described here. I will always feel guilt that I didn't "buy" her more time, but with diabetes and liver cancer, she had already outlived her expected life span by nearly a year.


over 3 years ago, said...

very helpfull been with a few dying people and seen almost all these signs


over 3 years ago, said...

Just understanding the process better as my Dad and mother-in-law and older Aunts/Uncles will be passing at some future point....


over 3 years ago, said...

i have trained and worked as a hospice and medical social worker. I also have worked with seniors and adults with disabilties. Your article was very informative and well written in explaining what is very common and what most family and friends do not have any awareness of what to expect. Thank you for this article. Logan Wimer BSW/DPN


over 3 years ago, said...

I'VE BEEN A LONG DISTANCE CARE GIVER NOW FOR EIGHT YEARS WITH DOING HALF HERE AND HALF TIME THERE. I MYSELF HAVE M.S. AND IT' HAS TAKEN A HEAVY TOLL ON ME. I'M VERY GLAD I'VE BEEN ABLE TO DO ALL WHAT I'VE BEEN ABLE TO DO BUT I GUESS WHEN MY DAD PASSED I HAD KIND OF LIKE A WAKE UP CALL. I WAS LETTING ME GO. AFTER I GOT BACK IT TOOK ME TWO MONTH TO RECOVER AND I HAD TO HAVE SOME IN HOME HEALTH. NOW WITH MY MOM DYING I FOUND THAT I WAS KIND OF LIKE LOOSING MYSELF IN ALL THIS. SO IN ORDER TO KEEP ME GOING I HAD TO PULL BACK SOME AND BE KIND TO ME. I'VE LEARNED THAT IT'S OKAY TO DO THAT. AS LIFE IS A LEARNING PROCESS SO IS DEATH AND DYING IS ALSO A LEARNING PROCESS.


over 3 years ago, said...

As my best friend lay dying, one by one of these symptoms occurred. We assumed that this was the process of dying. We instinctively moistened her lips with wet swabs, propped behind her by propping her up, behind heand finally, sang to her for hours to calm her down. This article was difficult to read as it brought her dying so close to home.


over 3 years ago, said...

I can't think of anything; I'm caring for my 90+ mother, she has vacular dementia; since all this is so new to me, I'm reading whatever materials I can find to help me understand more things and to be more helpful to Mom. Thanks for this article on 10 Signs of Death as well as the links for more information.


over 3 years ago, said...

IN EARLY FEBRUARY MY MOM HAS BEEN UNDER HOSPICE CARE. MY MOM'S DYING PROCESS IS VERY DIFFERENT THAN MY DAD'S WAS THAT I'M FINDING THATI'MSEARCHING FOR ANSWERS. ARTICLES LIKE THESE REALLY HELPS ALOT


over 3 years ago, said...

ButterFly kisses. Please check google grief. I'm sure there will be a site. I am so sorrt for your loss as I know what you are saying. People do not realize that losing a child is the utter worst anyone can experience.We have lost both of ours, a gril stillborn, our son at 36, he had a blood clot in his brain. When you lose a child part of you dies also. One is never the same. People dont know what to say so in cases the person is avoided. I am here if you need to speak. I listen.Joes mom.


over 3 years ago, said...

This was extremely informational... Our mother passed away March 2012. We all cared for her. Hospice of Sacrd Heart of Eugene Oregon was our guide. But in the beginning till the end we really felt incompetent and this explanation may have got our attention. It was horrible what my brother went through when my mom started the labouring. He was on shift that night and called everyone over including grandkids.. He was at a point of using the last resort of the package he was given to end her life. It was so confusing to him. And no one could get his thoughts straight. Hospice used well educated concerns but it still did nothing for the moment. By early morning I arrived and he was fickled and mom was finally settling down. So much needs to be spoken of what type of amposhere should be going on during the last days. He created a crowded mess with children and grandchildren and greatgrandchildren. He just wanted all to be there. I believe at this point he thought it was good. He settled down a bit the next day after I told him to go and rest. He took too much control of the situation and failed to take instruction from other members of the family. To say the least after a good talking to the next morning from me he let our mom pass with quietness and a few people. He was a angry man to the younger brothers and sister and left alot to be undesired to remember.


over 3 years ago, said...

also notable is the greenish color on the whites of the eyes, which is a sure sign of a very close death.. my Gramma had this for about two or three hours. She also had a vacant look.. but she was looking around the room.. I could tell she wasn't really looking at US..


over 3 years ago, said...

I would'nt change much....it's the way life is dying is a part of living.....


over 3 years ago, said...

I found this article to be so helpful to me. I am terminally ill and am not at all afraid of dying but I was worried about the actual act of dying - would I be in pain? Would I know when the time was getting close? You've certainly answered every question I've had. I have had Hospice coming in for a couple of weeks and they have dropped off several booklets - most of which are for my family caregivers, which I have none of. I suppose I could read those books for more info but thanks for printing this article. It makes the process appear a lot less frightening than I had previously thought.


over 3 years ago, said...

As a nurse I couldn't help myself in finding this top ten list silly. But I am not always as empathic as I should be.....as empathic as my RN title would suggest. anyways....Its a good list.


over 3 years ago, said...

THIS IS AMAZINGLY HELPFUL.


over 3 years ago, said...

Now I know why I'm not the life of the party! I've got all these symptoms! I'm a zombie!


over 3 years ago, said...

very informative


over 3 years ago, said...

God, I have all ten of these symptoms! Should I see a doctor?


over 3 years ago, said...

As an RN, and as a person who has dealt with death frequently, but usually in the hospital setting where "heroic measures" are the norm, I feel that was a good overall article, but I wonder how many families would keep a person who is declining in such a way at home and follow the (good) suggestions you made? I feel, from my experience, most would panic and have the person admitted to the hospital via ambulance or by driving them to an ER. I've seen situations where the sick person has made it CLEAR he/she does not want the high tech heroic measures done, and yet the family members cannot deal with what they are seeing and call an ambulance. If someone has a terminal, incurable disease and little or no quality of life left, it is only kind to "let them go" especially when that is their stated wish. I've seen 90+ year olds with their ribs broken after aggressive CPR and other treatment in the hospital, because the family insists "everything must be done"..... Also, for what you suggest in the article, I noted only one reference to hospice. To me, a person that is in such a state should be under the care of hospice, whether staying at home or going to one of their facilities. Hospice doctors and nurses KNOW everything that was mentioned in the article and much more. They can keep the person from experiencing pain and nausea, help with the actual physical care of the bedridden or very weak patient, and give moral support and answer questions that the family has. As mentioned before, my mother in law had terminal cancer and chose to avoid all medical procedures (after the biopsy which diagnosed it) and have hospice come in to her daughter's home where she had gone to stay. They were there for her whenever needed and available 24/7. They changed around her pain medicine until they had the "right" one; and also controlled her nausea. She died, three months or so after diagnosis, in her bed with her daughters present and her favorite Frank Sinatra CD playing...... If people don't have a living will, which specifies what they want if they can no longer speak for themselves, they should----we all should----have it done NOW, and give xeroxed copies to the immediate family, the primary doctor, etc. If you have a living will but it's tucked away in a safe deposit box, and no one knows for sure what you want, the doctors and the most assertive family members will "take over"---something I've seen time and again. If a person is terminal, why put in feeding tubes, tracheostomies, put the patient on a ventilator to breathe for him/her.....when all this does is prolong the life which has no quality or enjoyment any longer. Many people go on hoping for miracles, and if that is their choice, they should make that clear also.....but they should know that the largest amount of money---of their life savings etc----are used up in these typically hopeless situations. If the patient is a child or young person, I do feel everything within reason is something to be considered.....but, again, when there is no hope and the person is in pain, with no good quality of life, the family must ask themselves WHO are we doing this for?? To get involved with Hospice, btw, you must go through your doctor, or a doctor, who has to fill out paperwork. Usually it will say the person has no more than 6 mos to live, but obviously if they live longer they remain in hospice and the paperwork is extended. Insurance, medicare etc cover it, as well.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is excellent. I've printed it for my children to read. I have three seperate cancers - one in each lung and one in my liver. About a month ago the oncologist released me and told me I have 6 months - more or less. I believe my daughters will handle it better if they know what to expect.


over 3 years ago, said...

after 8 very long months of wanting to know more--i feel you have given that to me--these things occured within 36 hours to my husband and i had NO idea that he was dying--i do however feel that HE may have known ( in retrospect )--we were married for well over 50 years and it is sooo hard to accept even though we talked about death--when it really comes, it is a whole other story. thank you so much for giving me a lot of closure and as another person wrote: God was really really gentle with him and also with me when i look back on it and how it happened right here at home. i've had death in my family of those i loved dearly BUT nothing can ever compare to this. thanks again and the tears i'm shedding now are a "good" form of therapy--i really needed this today!


over 3 years ago, said...

This article was very good I'm going to work for a lady with parkinson Disease and I'm trying to learn as much as I can to help her if I ever need to


over 3 years ago, said...

I have'nt been diagnosed with any terminal illness but some of the signs and symptoms are very similar to mine to a dying person like apnea, labored breathing, restlessness, somnia, extreme fatigue, muscle twitching,appetite good so far, any thoughts?


over 3 years ago, said...

This is an informative and gentle resource for people like me. My mother is actively dying and it was helpful to know what to expect


over 3 years ago, said...

These are very good tips, as a nurse and family member I have watched people die. I would want a natural death for myself so I am saving these tips for my caregivers. Thanks


over 3 years ago, said...

sounds like my ex wife


over 3 years ago, said...

My sister in law was diagnosed with breast cancer and after a barage of chemo, she fought hard for five long years. During the last days, being big and into the holidays, she insisted the celebrations go on as normal. Finally confined to her bed, and on many medications she awoke one day and told me "you see those two little boys over there?" " What about them?" I asked, not wishing to tell her that I didn't see a thing. " They want me to go with them" she said. " Do you want to go with them?" I asked. "No, not yet, I need to wait for Brian." Brian was her only son and he was on his way home from Iraq. A couple of days later Brian arrived. I believe she knew he was with her and she let go.


over 3 years ago, said...

I had just left the hospital to take my brother to his hotel after visiting a severly ill father. Our family was quite large and many family members were still with him when he streached his arm out to my youngest sister and told her to grab his hand. Confused, she took dads hand and he was gone. I think my father felt his spirit lifting from his body and he felt panic for a moment. When we returned to the hospital, my father looked to be at peace, but I knew he was no longer with us.


over 3 years ago, said...

Hi HarleyDude, The print link is the in social action bar to the left of the article. If you're not seeing the social action bar, or for additional help with your account, please get in touch with our team via the blue Feedback tab (right edge of page), Contact Us link (at bottom of Caring.com pages), and/or via moderators@caring.com. Thanks!


over 3 years ago, said...

Did I overlook an option to print the article? I would love to have a hard copy. The article contains excellent information that I would appreciate being able to peruse periodically - to be able to easily recall to apply and to share.


over 3 years ago, said...

I thought it was very informative. Thank you.


over 3 years ago, said...

my father in law had a very peaceful death, he told his son in law " tomorrow I will be dancing," He asked for his lunch, said he wanted to take a nap and then died in his sleep at 84 years old. How great is that.


over 3 years ago, said...

I have seen someone I deeply care about go though this process. It was a dificult time for me and everyine involved. it was my boyfriend mother. she was so young and beautiful.she died of cancer in 6 months,it happened so fast . I still cant believe she is gone.god bless her .i miss ou Cheri Browne of suffield ,CT


over 3 years ago, said...

My sister fied 6 years ago from a brain stem gliblastoma and this really is about what happen. I was the only one in her room with her and it was very peaceful and quiet...


over 3 years ago, said...

I added this excellent article to my own personal article: When death looms - the signs and symptoms of the last moments on earth. I went through 5 years of caring for my adorable mom Gertie before we landed on the last day, Feb 15. I was comforted by having found information about the signs and symptoms of death. Here's a link to my article: http://www.squidoo.com/death-signs-and-symptoms


over 3 years ago, said...

This is a great article. I wish I had known that a dying person will ignore loved ones. I was so hurt when my mother did this right before she died. I thought she was mad at me. I didn't understand and would have spent more time with her and been more loving to her. She had shown concern about the purple places on her skin but I chose to ignore them because I didn't know what they were. After she died, I even thought maybe they were caused by someone at the nursing home mistreating her, I hope people will read this as I wish I could have before my mother passed.


over 3 years ago, said...

yeah, when a person is doped up, he does have excessive sleep, & usually don't eat. Funny this is at the top of your list, when it is usually what happens at n.h. or hospitals, or money hongry relatives.


over 3 years ago, said...

My 96 year old cousin has been "slowing down" and is more tired and has less of an appetite than he did a year ago. It makes me feel better to know these are "normal" things that happen as a person as they come to the end of their life. Thanks---Pat


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had been aware of the wonderful advice given here. I lost my wife eight years ago and have been hurting ever since. The steps listed are almost exactly what I observed with her. I can finally lay to rest one of the questions that always bothered me: Did I do all that I could for her? I can see each step was a natural progression and that God was gentle with her and me! Thank You! I will make sure my children find this at the appropriate time that it will help them when it is my time to see my wife again! Sincerely, Steve M. Carson


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother's breathing became more as if she were doing lamaze breathing, pursed lips and quick inhale/exhale and it ws constant. I asked the nurse on duty if she could ease her breathing so she administered oral drops roxanol and in an hour my mom had quietly passed away. Forever burned into memory.


over 3 years ago, said...

information otherwise not known. will know not to panic when the time comes.


over 3 years ago, said...

To Marlenal, the metabolic changes refers to the electrolytes, like potassium, sodium, calcium, no the person would not feel it as pain. Rest assured that your mother was not in pain. The body just shuts down when it is time, so nothing is working like it normally does. My thoughts and prayers are with you. It's hard to lose your mother!


over 3 years ago, said...

IT DESCRIBED SOME OF THE SIGNS MY CAT AND MY MOTHER WENT THRU!


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother had a seizure before she went into semi-comatose state, and she passed on the next morning. The hospice nurse told me the seizure is due to "metabolic change" and that my mother did not feel any pain. I was too upset to ask what she meant by "metabolic change". Is that the shutting down of the organs and the brain? And would a dying person feel it as pain? Any feedback would be appreciated because I still need closure.


over 3 years ago, said...

Yes, my Dad turned his face to the wall when I asked him for help concerning his bills, where was his checkbook, what bank did he use, etc. He died a week later + I felt unloved since that moment, but now I see he was in the process of passing. All is forgiven Dad!


over 3 years ago, said...

fine list to keep in mind - relatedly it left out persons 'somewhat' close to death (tho maybe not as close as persons who exhibit items on this excellent list) 'often..' make oblique remarks about their mortality...


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for detailing this "End of life" time ! My family is experiencing this time now. I think that the mystery surrounding "our End Time" directly contributes to it's pain for all involved. I appreciate what you've given us. Thank You. Ea


over 3 years ago, said...

are you speaking of individuals who are terminal, or of elderly people in general? in the broad sense, loss of appetite, social withdrawal, weakness, and bladder issues are also symptoms of the aging process and do not necessarily herald the imminence of death. if you are referring to terminal individuals, then, yes, these may be signs. you have left much room for confusion and misinterpretation with your article's claims.


over 3 years ago, said...

I am a hospice nurse, and found this article to be spot on. Wish all our families could read this. One of the most difficult things families seem to deal with is, wanting IVF's because the loved one is not eating or drinking.


over 3 years ago, said...

I think I'm dying.


over 3 years ago, said...

To the one person i saw and others i missed for bashing and critisizing the person for writing this article. Think of the people you never got to say goodbye to. Now you'll be able to, if god forbid another loved one dies.


over 3 years ago, said...

all information was very important & helpful.


over 3 years ago, said...

What a wonderful web-site. So full of great information. Both my parents have passed. My mom passed first a heart attack. And my dad had the start of dementia. So I educated myself. I took a class, read lots of material. Then I got the call from my dad that he needed help and me to move in. I did not hesitate. My husband and I packed up sold our home and moved in with him. I can't say it was easy. One of the hardest times of my life. But I learned so much that last year of my dad's life. We talked alot. I knew his wishes. It is so important for you to educate yourself. I loved both my parents dearly but I know that I did all I could do to help them in their process of life. I miss them dearly. But I know both are at peace.


over 3 years ago, said...

Sometimes holding a hand can be more comforting than morphine. After 15 years in EMS I know that while they are my patient, they are also people.


over 3 years ago, said...

I finally understand what we went through when my father passed after all the half truths from the doctor. thank you


over 3 years ago, said...

Painfully helpful. Thank you.


over 3 years ago, said...

So sad, if you are not a believer of pie in the sky.


over 3 years ago, said...

My sister passed away in our home after fighting bone cancer for 3 years. On July 22nd, it will be the 10 year anniversary of her death. I was with her when she passed and the post (number 6) about social withdrawal was the only thing I remember about that day. The writer stated, "A few days before receding socially for the last time, the dying person sometimes surprises loved ones with an unexpected burst of alert, attentive behavior. This can last less than an hour or up to a full day." My sister had been either asleep or confused the last few days before she passed. Hours before she passed, she awoke asking for her ex boyfriend (the father of her 3 children), requested a toothbrush, a hairbrush and different shirt. She waited 20 minutes for him to arrive and she died in his arms. I would have given anything for it to be me instead of him.


over 3 years ago, said...

Very informative as written.


over 3 years ago, said...

I volunteer for hospice and I do vigils for the dying. It is the most rewarding experience, knowing that they are not alone. It is also comforting to the patient and the patient's family. This article has natural death spot on.


over 3 years ago, said...

My wife is slipping but fights to keep her happiness, independence, and freedom from obnoxious medicines (laculose for example). She had a stroke in 2002, quad by-pass 2003, morbidly obese, spinal/nerve problems, brain shrinking, vascular dementia, swollen liver, neuropathy, edema, heart ablation surgery, narrowing in C1,C2, C3 in her neck, lumbar problems, appetite problems, false teeth (uppers fit only), etc. Nurses are and have been helping her since her last fall in the bathroom step-up and yet she is more ambulatory than meets the eye. She is still willful. It's confusing as to whether or not contact Hospice.


over 3 years ago, said...

This article is excellent as is. It directly echoes the end-of-life pamphlet given us by Hospice years ago. We watched this sequence frame by frame, except the last couple of hours described here in such critical detail. We may see this again soon with a family member, so I'm very glad to have discovered this site. There's a wealth of information here.


over 3 years ago, said...

Any of what is mentioned can be normal also.


over 3 years ago, said...

Extremely well written


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you it is easyer to handel things when you understand what is natrual and how to be as helpful as you can because we really know there is not much we can do


over 3 years ago, said...

I worked in many nursing homes and experienced patients dying. There is another sign that was not mentioned, the ears start to "pin" back. The bowls start to look like "coffee grinds". I also learned that the last organ to "shut down", is the hearing. So please be respectful when speaking around your loved one or patient, they can still hear you. I held their hand and told them it was okay to go, be at peace, don't be afraid.


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother died at home of Ovarian cancer. I had been a CNA for several years and knew what to expect, but forgot to tell my sister. Mom's kidneys had failed which was to be the immediate cause of death, the primary being the cancer. She basically drowned in her own fluids. At death, "coffee grounds", as we called them, spilled from her mouth, brownish-black & granular in a dark fluid.as her lungs over-flowed and she "drowned". She had been in a non-responsive state for over 12 hrs. I doubt she felt pain. It had become a fight to die instead of the 5 yr battle to live. My sister and I, holding her hands, smiled and said, "She made it!" But I felt guilty for not warning my sister about that one unpleasantness in an otherwise peaceful death. She left to make the phone calls while I washed and prepared my mother for viewing by our absent brothers and pick-up by the funeral home. There can be many unpleasant things like this that can happen at the moment of death. I worked in a nursing home and attended many patients during their last moments. I think it is a disservice to descibe a peaceful death as the norm. I won't describe the things I've seen; I had some nightmares. I just hope I don't go out screaming as one poor old woman did, with such a look of horror on her face that we thought she was seeing Lucifer himself.


over 3 years ago, said...

My wife is 66 going on67 next week, She has lung disease and uses oxygen day and night. She smokes around three packs of cigarettes a day., She lies to the doctor all the time. I think she is seeking some sick hope of dying.


over 3 years ago, said...

Approximately how long after you begin to see these changes does death ococur?


over 3 years ago, said...

As a senior and son of seniors as well as working every hospital in SPOKANE , WA. I have seen this time and time again . Now as a senior pastor of a local church--I counsel both the dying as well as those that care for them. Thank you & GOD BLESS YOU for sharing this---I will be sharing it with everyone I know. YOURS SENIOR PASTOR JOHN ALL SAINTS COMMUNITY CHURCH SPOKANE , WA.


over 3 years ago, said...

Sounds like pregnancy symptoms.


over 3 years ago, said...

I just lost my brothr about two months ago. I was not beside him when he passed. Loss of appetite was one of the signs that alerted me to the reality that the end was near. When I was told that he refused to eat anything, I told my nephew not force feed him. Few days later he was dead. This article is an eye opening. Thanks


over 3 years ago, said...

it was great-helped me to understand how far along my Mother was with this disease. She shows many symptons listed. She is in nursing home on wing where she gets one on one care,


over 3 years ago, said...

unfortunately, i have witnessed all that was described in the article, it is a natural process, but one you rarely see, so it is confusing when mixed with the realization that these are your last moments together. something i have also read is that sometimes not giving the dying person a break from your presence makes them feel like they must fight harder than normal to stay. i don't think it is a bad thing to step away and give the person their rest periodically. their body and mind is so tired. my grandmother went for days and days in the dying process and struggled to stay with us, someone was always in the room with her. however, it was when everyone went home to get a few hours sleep that she finally passed. i miss her every day, but reading this article did take me back to those weeks and made me remember those moments with her and give me some comfort that nothing was out of the norm throughout the ordeal.


over 3 years ago, said...

Very enlightening ,


over 3 years ago, said...

My sister passed away this past January of complications from breast cancer. We were by her bedside in her final days. Everything on this list is very accurate. I just wish I had seen this article beforehand. Every hospital should have this information available.


over 3 years ago, said...

This is horrible that you would writle an article about something like this. that you would even be allowed to is sickening


over 3 years ago, said...

so the brain is killing the body then itself.What triggers the brain to do this?


over 3 years ago, said...

These steps are true with animals. My German Shepherd Dog lived for 13 years and 11 months. In his last year, I watched every last one of these things happen, actually from watch my father die of cancer, I was first introduced to them just by observation and guidance from Hospice. So when it came to my best friend, I am sad but was prepared. Its doesn't make it easier but it guides you thru. So now my baby and my dad are together with my sister and waiting for me.


over 3 years ago, said...

When my father passed, about 24 hours before he started to vomit a brown substance, referred to as coffee grounds. I wish I had known he was about to pass, I had left his side to get some rest and he died alone......the nurses should have warned me


over 3 years ago, said...

If this information would have been printed material given to me by the the Alzheimers Unit at the Nursing Home where my Father spent the end of his life. Even though I was working at ER somewhere else I had little "natural death" process information. This made it nerve racking to watch him go so slowly, Though I must say he did go very peacefully.


over 3 years ago, said...

By being forthright, & "blunt but sensitive", it helps to know that there exists a forum in-which I can read, study, and ask questions on my own schedule. Being the primary caregiver for a family member is so very much more demanding than working a shift (or even a double) on duty as a RN. Thank-you.


over 3 years ago, said...

Very easy to read and understand.


over 3 years ago, said...

I need to know what to look for thank you!


over 3 years ago, said...

The hospice care in the hospital was very helpful. Hospice is a very valuable service.


over 3 years ago, said...

With the recent death of my mother many of the facts stated in this article are true.


over 3 years ago, said...

I watched my Mother die over a 12 day period after she had a catastrophic collapse of the cortex of her brain. I witnessed all 10 of these signs during those 12 days. She lost her ability to speak and see the first day yet she hung on only making strange sounds when we spoke to her for another day. The Hospice nurse said it was as though she was waiting for someone before she could let go. The nurse was right. Mom was waiting for her only grandchild who had no interest in seeing her. My only child refused to see his grandmother and grant her dying wish. It makes me sick to think that I brought up such an uncompassionate human being.


over 3 years ago, said...

Social withdrawal is the first... not further down the line... because they lose interest in life itself... besides that.. the article is good.... M.O. L.P.N.


over 3 years ago, said...

I felt there were more signs that should have been listed. My husband died recently and he showed other signs.


over 3 years ago, said...

If I had it 8 years ago when my mother was dying and we were taking care of her with a hospice nurse to help. The nurse was worth her weight in gold!


over 3 years ago, said...

Nothing; my Dad passed away at Hospice.....everything in this article was evident in Dad......thanks.


over 3 years ago, said...

It is a pity that our civilization has not evolved to where we are taught, we learn that from the moment we are born our destination to a final celebration here on this planet is our passage. I do not believe in 'death'. It is one of the most misunderstood and feared moments and it is because of ignorance. Please go to our Sanctuary for Enlightened Passage and read another view. http://sanctuaryforenlightenedpassage.org/Home_Page.html


over 3 years ago, said...

The best place to die is at home. My husband was forced to go to a rehab center where they were supposed to help him regain his strength and go home. Unstead they put him a diaper, took his water from him and broke his wrist. I found him and had to call the sheriff's office to take him back to the hospital. Then they refused to admit that he had a broken wrist till one dear nurse came in late that night and told me that it was broken and to get it taken care of after we left there. Then they told me he couldn't go home that he was too weak. So once again I agreed for him to go to the care center in Payson, with the understanding that I could stay with him 24/7 with no problems. at 11pm that same night they told me to leave and stay away or they were going to throw me out. one nurses aid and 3 housekeepers were standing there to do it. So I called the payson PD. And they called an ambulance for him. When he was over at Payson Reginal hospital took a picture of his wrist and showed me a zerox copy of it, saying it was an old injury. I had him transfered to Banner Desert where they started working on his kidneys. It was really too late by then but at least in the hospital they started morphine again so that his wrist wouldn't hurt so much. I took the one xray to my former orothopedic's office and ask him to read it for me. He refused saying he wasn't getting tangled in a mess like that. If you have a loved one the kindest thing you can do for them is to keep them home and make sure they are kept well taken care of. I hate myself for letting them force me into taking him anywhere but home.


over 3 years ago, said...

I am a health care worker and I thought this article was perfect for a non medical person and written nicely. thanks keep up the good work


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had known these signs before my Hershel passed away. After reading this article I can remember alot of this happening.


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother is dying. Whew... four words... fifteen letters. It's amazing how much grief these few letters can carry. On April 12, my mother was diagnosed with stage 4 adenocarcinoma. It had spread into her lungs, stomach, gall bladder, ribs, spine and skull. We found it after she'd been admitted for abdominal pain, which we thought was just a diseased gall bladder. Three months later, we are working with hospice, while my elderly aunt (she's 80) and I (I'm 38) care for her on a daily basis. Mom isn't eating anything more than the occasional Glucerna or glass of water. She's beginning to see things that aren't there, pick incessantly at her O2 line, placing it up on her nose, thinking it's her glasses, and call her sister, "Mommy." The hospice nurse, minister and my aunt are telling her she needs to eat; that she needs to do her part in staying as healthy as possible. And here I am, hoping that my mom can maintain a little dignity before she goes. My sister lives 1400 miles away, and isn't able to help. My husband and three children are continuing their lives as usual as possible, which is what I want them to do, while I work my full time job, run my small business, and then tend to both my dying mother, and my dear aunt... my OTHER mother. If you're from the South, then you understand that concept of your other mom. People all say how wonderfully I'm doing. And I guess I carry this in a way that hides the burden as much as possible. Wow... I went off on an incredibly lengthy tangent... I guess the reason for my comment is to say how much I appreciate this article, with its straightforward approach in dealing with the inevitable. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone reading this article.. those traveling with me on this very lonely and difficult road. They say that which doesn't kill us makes us stronger... I just really didn't ever want to be this strong, I guess.


over 3 years ago, said...

I am close to death and it scares the hell out of me. But we all face it and soon I will see how I react as I think you don't know till just a few minutes or seconds before death how we will feel. All I pray for that it is not painful at that time.


over 3 years ago, said...

beautiful article I don't know anyone dying but I think this made it easy to understand and very caring thank you


over 3 years ago, said...

As a registered nurse, I have seen many people die and this article is a very good guide to those who are caring for them. It can be frightening and guilt producing if caregivers do not realize what they can and can not do and why.


over 3 years ago, said...

Earlier today, two members of the Caring.com community each posted a sad and disturbing comment on this article page that have now been removed. We have taken action to assist these individuals in seeking help offline as soon as possible.


over 3 years ago, said...

My beautiful daughter passed away on May 24, 2011 at 36 from breast cancer that spread to her lungs, her spine and her liver. I have such mixed emotions about her treatment(unfinished chemo due to Social Security cutting her off as she was unable to come in for an update interview and the surgeon who over confidently stated he felt he 'got it all' after her double mastectomy and did not order radiation) that it has been very difficult for me to stop grieving. She did come home to live with me, leaving her daughter and significant other in the last month and half. She knew she was dying, and one thing I will be grateful for always, is that we talked about it. In depth, and although she had so many misgivings about leaving her own child, she was at peace as she believed in an after life in heaven and was ready. She suffered intense fatigue for months prior and intense leg pain, which I massaged for her. She slept with me, and it was a huge comfort for us both. We switched oncologists in the last 3 weeks, as we did not know how far the cancer had spread. After brain MRI's and full body scans,she was just exhausted. On a Friday, after being in such intense pain she asked me to take her to the ER. She was hospitalized and put on IV pain medication. It was a relief to see her medicated. She was in high spirits and was so kind to all her nurses. On the following Tuesday, a nurse from the new Dr. came in and told her point blank. She was terminal. The nurse suggested hospice, and I wish we had not, at that point, as we knew not what to expect. I feel she had more time, and could have waited, but maybe I am wrong.She loved her room when we arrived, and planned on having her daughter come and stay days. Little did we know, she was going to be refused an IV, we were told they just didn't do that. The second day there, I was awakened by the Hospice Dr. shaking me a little too firmly. He told me I could not leave there without first calling the funeral home and making arrangements, that her death was 'imminent'. In looking at and speaking to my daughter, I did not see this. When each day there, they increased her pain medicine doubly she felt she was being 'put down' and told me to refuse the Atavan for her anxiety. I was her medical Power of Attorney (very important for your loved ones to specify this in advance if possible) and I followed her instruction. She demanded an IV. After 3 days of this, I got very very angry and demanded a meeting with the staff. In my case, this was so very beneficial. We met and I was listened to. An IV was started, although it was hidden in a drawer so that no other patients' family might see an IV pole in her room in passing by. This was suitable for us. They backed of the Atavan, which allowed her more awake time to spend with her family, which is why she wanted to remain alert. She wanted to leave the Hospice and return to my home to die with more dignity. It was advised that she would not survive the ride home, and I met with the rest of the family, and I decided to leave her in Hospice, where there was 24 hour nursing. Now, I must say, without some of the more experienced and compassionate nurses, I would have felt all the more helpless. They gave me a booklet on what they called the seven signs of the dying process. They were very close to the ones you listed in your article, except for one extra, which my daughter DID have. That was a restlessness, especially her legs.When this got to be too intense, I did order the Atavan restarted. It calmed her immensely. During these days, I could see the signs of death in my daughter, and my attitude began to change...I was able to accept better that she was more 'imminent' and I did make the final arrangements. Tuesday morning, a week later, at 5 a.m., while sitting with my daughter in the quiet, I saw the most amazing thing. A golden glowing oblong shaped 'cloud' rose up from her body on the bed. It hovered a few seconds, then 'stood' upright at her feet. It then flowed across the room and hovered a few seconds over her father(we had been divorced 31yrs but came together for her at this time)and then just 'flew' up to the ceiling and disappeared. I asked her significant other, who was lying on the other side of the bed, if her saw it. No he did not. I told the nurses what I saw, and they knowingly nodded and said 'yes, they have seen it as well, many times'. They told me it would be anytime soon, that she would die. She never regained consciousness. At 11:05, my daughter stopped breathing and passed. The Hospice team allowed me to give her final bath before she was taken to the funeral home. I had soft wonderful music playing, and I talked to her, washed her, dressed her. I gave her first bath and her last. Looking back, I am grateful to the nurses for their help, in listening and advice and understanding. My grief in not taking her home, well, that has taken time for me to process, I now know there is a reason for having place someone in Power of Attorney, to make the best decisions for your loved one's end care. I now know, the the glowing 'cloud' I saw, was "for my eyes only" as her mother and the closeness we shared. I listened to my daughter speak of her grandmother and seeing her on that last night. For days I held her hand, I swabbed her mouth with water, put chapstick on her lips, wiped her head during feverishness (another symptom not listed above) and stayed with her for her last 53 days. I feel blessed to have been able to have been there when she passed on.Yes, I miss her so very much, she was my best friend, my oldest child, my girl. It took me until January this year to stop crying daily. At that time, I had my first dream of her. She was sitting on a patio on a rooftop, she had a sundress on, and a full head of beautiful hair. I was so shocked in my dream to see her, I told her " I thought you were dead!", she shook out her hair, laughed and said "Oh, Mommy, I am FINE". The last thing I will say is this: Please all women, get your mammograms, no matter what age, and if you are under 50 and your Dr. suggest it, demand one. She was denied one that may have saved her life, due to her young age. I have tattoed on my wrist the pink breast cancer ribbon with her name dates of birth and death. This serves in conversation with those who see it, to remind the women I speak with about the importance of mammograms. I had my first after my daughter died, and find I may too have the beginnings of breast cancer. Now I know I must have mammos every 6 months, this is a life saving tool. God bless those of you who have lost ones you love.


over 3 years ago, said...

my dad went through this, i never new he was dying.so sorry dad.


over 3 years ago, said...

I'm 53 and should have died a long time ago and can't believe I'm still here and I have all 10 of these but there is a deciese that I and a woman in the northeast that I read about that when it gets down to about 35deg. the tips of my fingers will turn white, I'm saved and ready for death but just tired of the suffering, this is just a earthly body and instead of trying to stay in shape and buffed up a person needs to buff up their mind in Christ and God's word, never could see why anyone would want to live in this evil world, maybe Christ will come back soon, earth time!


over 3 years ago, said...

I lost my husband 12/04/2009 and my mother died 6 months later. I can't seem to get over this. Every one said it would get easier with time but it doesn't. I don't know how much longer I can take this


over 3 years ago, said...

My father experienced these symptoms as well as pneumonia, and head injuries before he died at age 84. I suspect that my mother's cold-blooded narcissist behavior while he was sick attributed to his deteriorating mental and physical condition. She wrecked his car, sold, gave away all of his belongings, including his mechanic tools, and clothes, than moved him out of state isolating him from family members. members.


over 3 years ago, said...

Hospice doesn't tell you that their records are kept for numerous years! 10 years in my state. Shop for your own hospice, not just the one your hospital usually utilizes. Also as a family, hospice also takes notes about you, who visits and what is said in their presence. NOT JUST the patients vitals etc.


over 3 years ago, said...

The reminder of the dying process....I use to work on the Alzheimer's unit a long time ago... my grandfather had it and died with complications from it... now my grandmother is pretty sick... also 91 years old now... so I just wanted some comfort of knowing what they are actually experiencing. I found the article about kidney failure comforting since this is how my other grandfather died about 10 years ago...


over 3 years ago, said...

I am in the end stage of a fatal condition, unless I get a transplant. I can testify that most of these points are true, except for the last few which I have not yet experienced. I'm fighting it all! This article will be valuable for my wife and me; particularly me since I feel so many sensations that are false and are not true signals. Be an organ donor; do good.


over 3 years ago, said...

im 28 and have about 6 of those symptoms.


over 3 years ago, said...

I just received this from my daughter-in-law upon her hearing of my husbands failing. This will most definitely help me in the days to come as I sit by his bedside.


over 3 years ago, said...

it was very well written i really don't feel anything could have made it better. just to reassure family and friends that everyone expresses the way they handle this process,so don't get upset with anyone because they are just handling this the way that is best for them


over 3 years ago, said...

My mom and dad and brother passed away in the past few years.


over 3 years ago, said...

understanding more fully the natural dying process.


over 3 years ago, said...

I took care of both my father and mother when dying from lung cancer. Watching them transition between life and death was the most humbling experience I have ever had. As you are with them at end stage you witness the most awesome things. At the end you do pray for their salvation, for their suffering to end, not to be selfish, but to be selfless. As the final moment arrives you know they have gone to the greatest reward in life, to the meeting of their maker, of seeing people gone before them, but most of all they have gone to the house of many mansions, and as a caregiver I learned they do see and speak to their people that have gone before them,. Thats when you know the time is almost near, in my case was within about 48 hours. Death for your loved one needs to be as precious as you can make it, Let them die with dignity, and listen to everything they say to you, it may not make sense at the time, but when you have time to wind down and regroup all things said were messages. They will detach from you, but not to be nasty, they are doing you a favor, because the people left are the ones that suffer, they don't even realize they do it. Your loved ones prepare you for their death you don't prepare them, All thoughts, sounds, actions and words are being sent to them from their higher power(in my parents case that is God). My mothers last words were tell them they can come the door will be open and it was. Both of my parents died at home, very peacefully and with their loved ones there. Hospice care is truly a blessing. Thank you for reading my comment and I hope this has helped someone, always remember they can hear you, at times they may not seem to comprehend, but in the final analysis, Please let them die with the dignity in which they so richly deserve.


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish I had known these signs when my loved one was dying!! Although I had expected the outcome eventually, it was a shock when all these things happened and death was right behind the door!! Thank you. I will share these 10 signs with others who find themselves in my past position.


over 3 years ago, said...

What does it mean when they keep repeating that they want to go home?


over 3 years ago, said...

It helped me understand the dying process of my parents and my brother.


over 3 years ago, said...

The article was so informative. I only wish that I found this sight earlier. My husband passed away in January. Most of the things mentioned in the article is exactly what happened to my husband. Hopefully ,others will read this article before they lose a loved one. Thank you.


over 3 years ago, said...

Thanks for the information, never knew that!


over 3 years ago, said...

My mother died of Alzheimers. Everything stated in this article is just as it happened to my mother. I did not get to see her often. Even though I knew she would eventually die, I was completely unprepared for the intense loss I feel now.


over 3 years ago, said...

It brought tears to my eyes But now I know how sick my Stepdad really is. Thank you


over 3 years ago, said...

The symptoms seem to match experience.


over 3 years ago, said...

I'm an Er nurse and I appreciate giving this info to the general public. Dying young is tragic and horrible, but dying in the late stages of life is normal and expected and when people know what to expect it makes it easier on everyone. Death is a natural, and unavoidable, process. Let us embrace it. Help our dying, die...


over 3 years ago, said...

My sister is in hospice with very little time left. She is my closest, dearest friend, and it is difficult to know what to say to her when I see her. The article has given me peace and understanding of the dying process so that I can talk to her even though she may appear asleep or unaware. The advice on just being there for her, touch, and positive comments were especially helpful. She may feel my love for her even though she may not be able to respond.


over 3 years ago, said...

I'm amazed at how little I know regarding general health issues. I can only attribute my lack of knowledge due to the wonderful start in life, thanks to my parents excellent excellent care, forever striving to keep all of their children healthy and safe.


over 3 years ago, said...

These are signs for a TERMINALLY ill patient. If some of you hypochondriacs develop these symptoms without a terminal diagnoses then you really should seek medical help of the psychiatric kind. Now, having said that, this is a very good article on what to expect. I saw most of these signs in my father just before he died of cancer.


over 3 years ago, said...

I think I'm dying...


over 3 years ago, said...

De JAR


over 3 years ago, said...

this article was most important for anyone who will experience a love one in the finale days. the more knowledge people have the more power they will have in their lives.


over 3 years ago, said...

kind of short on things like what age factor is that all there is to know?


over 3 years ago, said...

The "information" is ridiculously generalized. I know people who have had more than half these "symptoms" for a decade, and are still very much alive.


over 3 years ago, said...

Interesting article.


over 3 years ago, said...

I wish Dr.'s in ones life would give such wonderful clues and heads-up information on the basics of life and death situations. Could it be they themselves don't have a clue!


over 3 years ago, said...

I feel most if not of these symptoms after dealing with relatives after the holidays. Gimme gimme gimme I want I want i want syndrome


over 3 years ago, said...

Don't confuse these as being specifically related to being near death. Almost all these things happen randomly to me and have for most of my life. I do have a copd, I was diagnosed at 15 I am now 34. However, my doctor seems absolutely confident that I am not anywhere close to death.


over 3 years ago, said...

When my father was passing he went through all these signs. He was so strong. We hadn't seen each other for 20 years. We spent the last few days together, reconciled, told each other how much we loved and were proud of each other. We couldn't say goodbye. It's been four years, I'm still so sad.


over 3 years ago, said...

death will be a nice long sleep .rest .at last..


over 3 years ago, said...

Somehow we must balance letting a person live while they are dying, with being there for them without it being a deathwatch. I think the only thing that would be worse than slowly dying is being trapped with someone who is watching and waiting He knows I love him and I would want to say goodbye but it is not something he needs to see happen and second guess himself if he did the right thing. My son has veto power of medical decisions but whether to unplug me is to be done after 14 days if I have not improved. If I do not know I am alive then it is time to go. The Medical Power of Attorney and financial power of attorney must be separate. My organs can be donated after I am done with them, I am to be cremated and taken out to sea to an Oyster bed so I can irritate the Oysters and come back as Pearls, or he can take me and dump me in a Volcano. Just so there are no wrecks after visiting my grave and no obligation to stay nearby, If I am given admission to Heaven the God who created the Earth will be able to find me. Hopefully I will be an old Lady when this happens.


over 3 years ago, said...

For numbers nine and ten, I feel that darker pigmentations would present a different coloration during these phases of the dying process. I also feel, as well, that culture may manifest different physical patterns in the dying process.


over 3 years ago, said...

Pay careful attention to people with diabetes medication make their skin become thin as onion. Do not wear jewellery during stroking process. Giving some pedialyte (electrolytes) to drink helps to booster the energy. Hum or sing their favourite songs, talk about the pets, etc.


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for this article. It is really helpful, and gives good advice about what to do and what NOT to do to help the dying person be more comfortable as their end nears. It is also helpful for loved ones to know what to expect and how to respond.


over 3 years ago, said...

The only thing that would have helped me more was if I had read it a few months ago before losing my mother, I thought her sudden energy meant that she was feeling and getting better. She passed away 4 hours later.


over 3 years ago, said...

It was exactly how my mother passed away.


over 3 years ago, said...

The use of petroleum jelly products such as Vaseline should be used very carefully around patients that are using concentrated oxygen. A fire may result.


over 3 years ago, said...

I'm not sure if this has been mentioned before but Hospice will tell you that the sense of hearing is the last to go and, because the the lack of the other senses, becomes very acute. So if you're whispering in the front of the house ... watch what you say. Sometimes truthy confessions create that rally-unrally-rally effect. Some days, I wish someone would collaborate with a few thousand seasoned hospice nurses on their personal experiences with the physical dying process and the "journey" which the dying, as much as can be quantified, go through. It would really go a long way to returning the entire issue to a place of normality instead of the shocking event into which it has socially evolved. So, yes, the article does describe certain outward symptoms. Yet, in the need to address an unknown audience, it can not detail much because of a secondary need (I opine) not to offend someone, somewhere, for some reason.


over 3 years ago, said...

I just went through the death of my mother about 10 days ago. When I read this, I was shocked at the number of these symptoms she had, all unknown to me or my sister. I wish I had read it before she died, but amazingly, we did all the right things to keep her comfortable, including going outside to talk about her.


over 3 years ago, said...

Can't think of anything right now. It was very helpful. Thank you.


over 3 years ago, said...

Good article. But as others have commented, it would be nice to have a "Printer friendly" button for the WHOLE article. Oddly, my 73 year old wife was in the hospital for 3 weeks for a heart arrhythmia, less that one functioning kidney, numerous blood clots and more. Most of the time in the hospital was in ICU - and, now, she's been in Home Hospice for five weeks. At various times has demonstrated most, if not all, of these symptoms but she keeps on keeping on with extended periods of 1 to 5 hours of lucid, interactive awareness! I'll check in on her from time to time and, frankly, have mixed emotions when I see her draw another breath, Even she has said that she's ready to go and wishes that her condition would go one way or the other. Laying, be-ridden and depending on others to sustain her is not a condition she relishes!


over 3 years ago, said...

I would have liked to have all the information on one page (or more) so I could copy it and share it with others. As a Pastor (Ret) I have seen all these conditions and lamented their demise. I also felt badly for the loved ones who clinged to hope till the very last. God was there, offering life far better and much more loving.


over 3 years ago, said...

I read a number of comments posted and it is comforting to know others who have experienced being with one who is dying or has died. Something that encouraged me about hospice care was that they were able to help our loved ones with pain/agitation/anxiety. For my 90 year old mother, they could suggest offering her morphine or valium, depending on the situation, and these helped a great deal. With my younger sister, when she would lurch up to a sitting position, I asked if there were something prescribed for her for agitation, and within minutes they were able to bring her something to calm her. Her closer family members (spouse, children) didn't want to think of her as having to die. But she had asked that when she was close could I come to be with her. I recognized the need for her to be at ease, so I did what I could. All three of us, interestingly, were in the health care field as nurses. But each of us saw dying in a different way. I, myself, will welcome it - to be free from pain for the first time in a looooong time! And looking to a wonderful resurrection!


over 3 years ago, said...

This is absolutely frightening as I am 73, still working, but somehow have most of these symptoms. OH MY.


over 3 years ago, said...

I found the article on the 10 signs Death is Near to be very comforting, especially recalling my mother's dying process 12 years ago so vividly. I hope that friends and family will heed these reminders as I near my death. This should be something that is added to a person's "Wishes as I near death", and given to our health care agent as well.


over 3 years ago, said...

I was with my precious Mother when the good Lord called her home. It's an experience I treasure. She had suffered for 5 long years of lympe nodes cancer. She had 6 treatments of chemotrapy which put her in the hospital each time,nearly dying each time. After the 6th time, the docter told her no more chemo because she was resistant to it. Saying possibly one more time she probably would die from it. So that's where the long 5 years comes in. Soon my prayers were asking God to please have mercy on her and not to let her have to suffer anymore. As I knew it was HIS will not mine. On October the 6th that afternoon in the ICU room he called her home while I held her sweet hand. I told her to go on,Granny and GrandDaddy were waiting for her with the Lord, Iwould be okay and that I hoped I could be as good as a Mother as she had been to me. It's hard to believe it's been 3 and a half years. Now when someone loses their Mother I can safely and honestly say I know how you feel. So may God bless each and everyone who has lost their Mother. Jesus will hold your hand as you hold their hand! God Bless You!


over 3 years ago, said...

This was so on point scary but worth knowing.


over 3 years ago, said...

Maybe it"s just me but asking if this was "helpful" seems oddly ironic.


over 3 years ago, said...

Good information-share with any healthcare provider class


over 3 years ago, said...

This article was very informative, and I would like to see articles about the beginning of Alzheimers and how to determine if you are in one of the stages.


over 3 years ago, said...

This was a very useful articlekk. Thank you!


over 3 years ago, said...

thank you... I lost my mother last year. i feel so sad that there was so much commotion in my mother's room that when i stepped out for awhile and came back, she had ordered everyone out! She told me a couple of days before that it was too noisy. (Family had arrived, some who hadn't seen each other in years), so things were noisy. I now understand everything that happened, including my mother picking at her blanket when I peaked in. I spent time with her, sitting quietly as she faded, but wasn't there when she died. None of us was -- just hospice. I feel bad that I wasn't the one who held her hand after everyone was ordered to leave. I feel bad that there was so much noise in her room. I miss my mother. She was 87. She took good care of us. I know she is around me all the time. I see a penny here and a penny there, a tray that hung on the wall securely for 4 years suddenly falls; i get up to investigate a loud bang in another room and discover that small pewter carving that sits on a chair rail in my dining room has for NO reason, fallen into an old tin bowl on the floor; the fireplace screen setting in front of the woodstove to protect my granddaughter suddenly falls off in the middle of the night, waking me; my son in law tells me that while he was doing some work on his computer in the dining room late that same evening, three metal antique tins setting on another chair rail directly in back of him suddenly fall on to the floor. This is my mother and I can just invision her laughing. I regret that I didn't listen to her more when she wanted to tell stories of her teenage years in England during the bombings, her adventures(?) in the Women's Land Army, and her family. My best friend told me once how she loved to sit and listen to my mother. She said that once my mother was gone, it was final. You don't know final, until you want to hear more and realize you aren't going to, because she's gone and it's -- final. I found some pictures amongst my mother's posessions after she died. I also received correspondence from my cousin in England who has provided me with family history on my mother's side. There are holes in this history book that may never be filled. I can't ask her because she is gone and it is -- final. You never know what you want to know until you can't ask because it's "final." I am going to England next year to walk where my mother walked, to see what my mother saw and hopefully acquire new information on her family. I know she will be with me. I know she will love it. I miss my mom!


over 3 years ago, said...

it confirm everything i though would happen at the time of death... Didn't know that the person unconcious could still hear you... thanks


over 3 years ago, said...

I see that I've been dead about six months


over 3 years ago, said...

Very helpful in what to expect. tyvm


over 3 years ago, said...

Thank you for the article. It is very informative and helpful for me with my brush with cancer and major surgery, to how I'm feeling and responding now a-day's. There's times I feel like I'm dying. I have a lot of the symptoms but not as severe and my only advantage is that I'm still young, and trying all the time to stay active and eating and moving around. The article made me feel a little bit better knowing more about the stages and severity. GD.


over 3 years ago, said...

While caring for some dying persons, I have found that olive oil works much better than any creams or lip balms. I have even used it on the tongue with good effect.


over 3 years ago, said...

As a hospice nurse, I found the article to be very well-written and informative. It spoke in plain language easy to understand about the dying process, without all the medical-ese! Many family members are stressed and overwhelmed at this time, and making things easy for them is a must! This article hit the mark. Would I be allowed to print it and give it to my family members who are facing the loss of a loved one?


over 3 years ago, said...

I was given this same information when I moved my dad to hospice. He was still awake and alert when we moved him but declined quickly. It was helpful for us to know the signs and what they meant. I would have had many more questions otherwise.


over 3 years ago, said...

I listen to these political arguments that offer solutions or miscreant remarks. There is nothing 'human' about these comments. We can't have it both ways (unless your from the South). There is nothing Christian about a country that supports slavery, greed, corporattions that 'buy-off' our elected officials. Churches that are lost in their own greed and politics. How dare we claim to be a Christian Nation!


over 3 years ago,