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Making Tough Decisions about End-of-Life Care in Dementia

Anne Kenny, MD

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Practical, essential advice about making tough decisions for people with end-stage dementia.

Each year, more than 500,000 people are diagnosed with dementia in the United States. As stunning as that figure is, countless family members and caregivers are also affected by each diagnosis. Families are faced with the need to make vital end-of-life decisions about medical treatment, legal and financial matters, and living situations for those who no longer can; no one is prepared for this process. And many caregivers grapple with sadness, confusion, guilt, anger, and physical and mental exhaustion...

Practical, essential advice about making tough decisions for people with end-stage dementia.

Each year, more than 500,000 people are diagnosed with dementia in the United States. As stunning as that figure is, countless family members and caregivers are also affected by each diagnosis. Families are faced with the need to make vital end-of-life decisions about medical treatment, legal and financial matters, and living situations for those who no longer can; no one is prepared for this process. And many caregivers grapple with sadness, confusion, guilt, anger, and physical and mental exhaustion as dementia enters its final stage.

In Making Tough Decisions about End-of-Life Care in Dementia, Dr. Anne Kenny, a skilled palliative care physician, describes how to navigate the difficult journey of late-stage dementia with sensitivity, compassion, and common sense. Combining her personal experience caring for a mother with dementia with her medical expertise in both dementia and end-of-life care, Dr. Kenny helps the reader prepare for a family member's death while managing their own emotional health.

Drawing on stories of families that Dr. Kenny has worked with to illustrate common issues, concerns, and situations that occurs in late-stage dementia, this book includes practical advice about

• making life-altering decisions while preparing for a loved one's inevitable death
• medical care, pain, insomnia, medication, and eating
• caring for the caregiver
• having conversations about difficult topics with other family members and with health care, legal, and financial professionals

Concrete to-do lists and lists of important points provide information at a glance for busy caregivers. Each chapter concludes with a list of additional resources for more information and help. Making Tough Decisions about End-of-Life Care in Dementia is a lifeline, an invaluable guide to assist in the late stage of dementia.

Reviews

Reviews

The text is enriched with stories of Kenny's own family (her mother died of dementia) and from numerous other patients and families, which brings what she has to say to life. She does not pull any punches about dying and death and all the problems they bring, but she does so in a kind and caring way... I think this book will be very helpful to many people... If your work in palliative care involves significant numbers of patients with dementia, this book will give you plenty to reflect on.

A safe and reliable guide for family members caring for loved ones with end-stage dementia.

This book offers the professional and personal perspective of an excellent physician—an opportunity to ask the expert, 'What would you do if it were your mother?'

This book fills a critical gap for families in the throes of coping with the care of loved ones in the final stages of dementia.

This guide provides critical information on clinical needs and changes to help the caregiver cope, balanced with communication strategies for the emotional highs and lows that surround those involved. The book is a wonderful and much-needed contemporary resource.

About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
5.5
x
8.5
Pages
232
ISBN
9781421426679
Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
1. Understanding the End and the Need for Letting Go
2. Preparing to Let Go: Emotions of Caring
3. Making Decisions for Others
4. Legal Aspects of Decisions
5. Complex Medical Decisions

Preface
Introduction
1. Understanding the End and the Need for Letting Go
2. Preparing to Let Go: Emotions of Caring
3. Making Decisions for Others
4. Legal Aspects of Decisions
5. Complex Medical Decisions
6. Decisions About Places of Care
7. Changing Care Needs in the End of Life
8. Changing Needs for the Caregiver/Partner at the End of Life
9. Active Dying
10. Afterloss and Adjustment

Author Bio
Anne Kenny, MD
Featured Contributor

Anne Kenny, MD

Anne Kenny, MD, is professor emerita at the University of Connecticut Health Center. She currently practices as a consulting physician.