How long can my mother live with only 10% kidney function? asked...

my mother is in a skilled nursing home and will be transferred to a in-care home under Hospice shortly. she is suffering CHF (has a pacemaker) along with a 9-10% kidney function. i hate to see her deteriorate and suffer and pray for her quick passing. how long can she manage to live with 10% kidney function when she is not taking dialysis and is eating/drinking very little? today, the nurse asked if they can put her on Morphine and i said OK.

Expert Answer

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

Please have my sympathy. I know it is hard to watch your mother deteriorate slowly. Thankfully, she is on hospice, so they will help manage her symptoms so that she is comfortable in her remaining time here on earth.

Your question is about your mother's prognosis, meaning how long does she have left to live. If she is on hospice, by definition, she is in the last 6 months or less of life. However, since you said she is not eating/drinking well and the nurses are asking about starting morphine, I would say she is in the last weeks to months of her life.

Since your mother is on hospice, do not be apprehensive about asking the staff questions about what is going on with her. By all means, they are there for you too, as they know this is a hard time for you.