Hi All, I hope that you are managing to enjoy the sunshine as much as possible. I haven't been active on the site for a while as things have progressed with dad. Dad is now in a hospice as he had been sleeping a lot and we were worried about dehydration and the risk of UTI's as be is prone to them. He had been sleeping for days on end and we did think that he was end of life. When he is asleep it is impossible to rouse him for food and drink and because of his swallowing difficulties, he has to be fully awake otherwise it is dangerous. The hospice have been trialling dopamine patches to try to keep him more aware but after a good initial response, it has lost its effectiveness. When he is awake, at times, he seems to be on different plane and we aren't sure how aware he is of what is going on around him. At other times he seems aware and will join in the conversation as much as he can with his speech difficulties. We have become very attuned to working out what he is saying most of the time.
As dad was diagnosed with MSA a number of years ago and he is 81 years old, we really aren't sure how long we have left with him. However, the Consultant at the hospice says that he is a very strong and determined person and so the plan is for him to return home with a much increased package of care and respite for mum. This will take a number of weeks to put into place.
The main issue is dad's difficulty in communication and although he has had a Speech Therapy assessment and despite several requests for follow up, dad still hasn't been provided with any communication board or aid. Dues anyone else have any suggestions that seemed to have worked as it is getting to the stage where dad's speech is so faint and slurred that we are afraid he will not be able to communicate his needs. I would be grateful for any advice.