Friday, January 22, 2016

Second week of work

We parked on a small side street and walked another 400m down a narrow alley, and at the first corner on the right, stepped up to our clients home. Here we find a small two room home; a kitchen and a bed. A young women, very thin and tiny is writhing on the bed in pain. She is able to answer some questions if prodded, but most of the time she is lost in her world of pain. Her young daughter is looking after her, along with her own small child and husband. This woman has a feeding tube because of cancer in her esophagus and this tube is coming out. Her daughter knows that it's time to stop using the tube and make her mother comfortable. She doesn't have much time left. 
My home care nurse gets the information about this woman's condition, what is happening now, and how things have changed in the last 2 days. A doctor is contacted and orders received. The nurse inserts and butterfly needle into the woman's thin arm and administers morphine. Within 10mins we can see the start of the woman beginning to settle... The pain is not gone yet, but it's improving. The nurse gives her a medication to settle her restlessness. And another dose of morphine. All the while, counselling the daughter about what the options are and what would be the best thing for her mother. 
An hour and a half later, we leave the daughter with some more doses of morphine and a promise to check in again later. This woman is now resting calmly. The daughter asks "how much time ?" We answer as gently as we can "not much time". 
This woman dies peacefully 4hrs later with a daughter grateful for the nurses expertise and support.

This is the work this team in Hyderabad does. This is the work we try to support. We are attempting to raise excellence so this team can continue to serve their community with dignified and quality end of life care. 
What a privilege to see them at work and walk side by side in this journey of learning palliative care. I take my leave renewed in hope of world wide pain and symptom management and expert end of life care. 

Thank you mnj and palliative care society for welcoming us into your world. Thank you Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration for the amazing opportunity and for your support of this team and many others!

Jagratada undu! 

No comments:

Post a Comment