If the person you care for deteriorates suddenly, or gradually over a period of time, you may have concerns or want more information about their end of life care.
When someone has a stroke it is extremely difficult to know whether a patient will die. There are some signs which would indicate a poor prognosis or outcome. Although none of these signs individually necessarily mean the person is near death, in combination they indicate a large stroke and hence a poorer outcome;
- if the patient is not responding to speech by opening their eyes
- if they are not moving their unaffected arm or attempting any activity. For example when you ask them to squeeze your hand.
- if they are not attempting to talk or communicate in any way
If person is likely to have had a bad stroke, or be seriously ill from an infection, or another complication of the stroke; they will be at higher risk of dying or having a poorer quality of life if they survive.
End of life care is sometimes known as palliative care. If you feel end of life issues are not being discussed, ask to arrange a meeting with the consultant or doctor in charge of the persons care. You can take a friend or family member with you to help with these difficult conversations. Carers and families should be able to take part in the decisions which affect their loved ones.
For more information about palliative care, please see: Palliative Care Zone | NHS Inform.