NHS England: A Call to Action

Mother of 93yrs frightened after been told that she has Heart Failure

My mother was admitted with a chest infection to A&E and is now on a ward but while they were doing their checks they found she was in AF. They have put her on Warfarin and nothing else? What has upset her the most is the fact that they told her she has Heart Failure and will have to have warfarin forever.

When I spoke to the ward sister I asked "Is it AF" which she confirmed. I told her that I was diagnosed with AF in 1992 so am fully aware of the condition, but would it not been better to explain the condition instead of saying Heart Failure to a 93 year old who has fear of dieing!

BHF Explain it:

Heart failure

Having heart failure means that for some reason, your heart is not pumping blood around the body as well as it used to.

Which is far better than just two words that have frightened her and took a lot of convincing that is a lot milder than my own AF but controllable.

Be Well

7 Replies

Once your mothers Chest infection is cleared up she will probably be put on medication for the heart failure, she will quite probably feel much better than she has for a while once it kicks in.

My Mum too is 93 and has problems on the same line, we do worry over them, but I realise although we love them, the doctors can only do so much. They cannot give back youth and vitality. I wish you and your Mum well, bless her!


thank you for your kind words.


My MiL was diagnosed with the same and was on Warfarin for years...about 12, I think. It was all perfectly manageable and had no side effects. I'm sure your Mum will pull round



I have been on warfarin since 1992 so not worried about that it was the non-compassionate way they spoke to her that got to me.


Sorry to hear this. All they need is a little understanding and compassion isn't it? All the best



thank you



After making our concerns of her being discharged to early they moved her out and arranged 2 visits a day and some aids for the house. Unfortunately she has not improved to the degree that the doctor took some bloods and sent them off. Once They had been analyzed the GP surgery was closed so the results went to the out of hours who called for a paramedic to go to the house. She was taken to A&E and more bloods taken. She was then moved to the acute medical unit for monitoring and at 3am we were told it was best to go home and let her sleep. When we went back she was on full blood as they found all her levels were low and have been dropping for some weeks. I got a call from a consultant the next day asking me and my sister to met him at 10:00 to discuss his findings in the ward she has been moved to. Once there we found it was the Oncology ward. The consultant explained the results to date and prognosis and further tests that will confirm the progression.

If they would of been prepared to look a little further and listen to our concerns, I a sure it would not of changed the diagnosis but maybe would of made those few weeks at home less of a nightmare it had become for her!


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