Tough question. What happens to the body during the final days of life?
I’m up with my girlfriend in Northern Michigan. I’m up with the clan (my girlfriend and her rather large family). We’re here with her Grandma who is going to be transferred to hospice tomorrow. She is 85, has a slow progressing bone cancer, just had chemo, has a tone of other health problems and now she has pneumonia and the antibiotics aren’t helping. She has a bowel obstruction that they aren’t able to do anything about. And, because of the pain (bowel obstruction), she’s on a heavy painkiller, Dilaudid (apparently stronger than Morphine) and is asleep most of the time. She is also not producing a lot of urine (half dollar size). They decided to stop the antibiotics because they weren’t working. They’re not feeding her, as well.
I went through this with my Mom. From what I remember, the body slowly starts to shut down. Also, the breathing becomes irregular (as well as the death rattle), and their feet and fingers change to a purplish color. What other signs to look for when the end is near?
Pretty emotional and draining.