Update and Advice on delirium please

Hi everyone. I wrote a post about a month ago about my close friend who was in an induced coma with chronic pnuemonia and sepsis. I thought I would update you and also ask some more advice if that's ok. At 3weeks he had his breathing tube taken out of his mouth and had a tracheostomy fitted. He was then kept sedated for a further 5days or so. Once the sedation was stopped, ok he was confused sometimes but was able to communicate and it was like having him back with us. We got very good at lip reading. This lasted about a week. Monday just gone it's like someone has flipped a switch, he's laying still, although has developed a twitch/jerk, he is looking through us and not really responding, it looks like he's seeing things we are not. The doctor says they think he now has delirium. His chest is getting better although still on oxygen through his trachy and he is off kidney dialysis at the mo but his blood pressure has become raised, it's such a rollercoaster, it's 6 weeks on Monday. The end seems a long long way away, I know reading some of your posts this is still early days though. I know everyone is different but I just wondered what advice you would have for us as visitors while he is in this state, is there anything that could help, and also what experiences you may have had of this xx

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  • It took me eleven days to fully wake. Although I didn't suffer delirium as such, I was plagued by the most vivid and unpleasant dreams. My wife is convinced that all of these episodes occurred during this period. I would describe these dreams to be almost like an alternate reality ( they were that 'real'). Those dreams incorporated all of the people sitting around my bedside & those they talked about. Keep talking to him and reassuring him I guess...

  • Thanks Sepsur, I do keep talking and telling him he's in the hospital and try to be positive, I wondered if he would incorporate what I say into what he thinks/sees so also try to be careful what I say too. X

  • Hi, I wish you and your friend the best of luck and he will pull through.

    In terms of advice, be as positive as you can and as upbeat as possible. The hallucinations that your friend is experiencing can be quite frightening and are difficult to understand. Talking positive and being positive will definitely help. Good luck.

  • Thanks for your reply RichardNeill, yes I read that they can be very frightening. I am generally a very positive person, thank goodness, as this is helping me through x

  • It can be very distressing for ICU patients, relatives and friends to see them like that, I can still remember so clearly even though it's nearly 7 years ago I was in ICU, seeing things that weren't there including the grim reaper walking around the ward & a train stopping outside the door, along with many other bizarre things, delirium can appear very frightening, ICUsteps have booklet supplement on delirium & intensive care that can be downloaded in PDF format for free from their website at icusteps.org/guide other guides are available are available from the website which will hopefully answers some of your concerns.

    Recovery can be a long process and for some it can be years with many obstacles along the way but with the right support most people make a good recovery.

  • Thankyou Luckyone, I will definitely have a look at those guides. I think it will be a long process for my friend but I hope for him being able to talk about it afterwards will help. I will definitely tell him about this site and how it helped me understand things. X

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