The Bakersfield Californian
March 10, 2012
We used to call pneumonia “the old person’s friend” because it is a relatively peaceful and quiet death, largely absent of suffering’s “fire.”
Today, it is the rare person who need die from pneumonia. Even those with bacteria-resistant infections can usually pull through with a “full-court press,” including a few days, or longer, on a ventilator.
For the healthier person who can recover to a high quality of life, those efforts are well-spent. But what of the very ill patient Dr. Craig Bowron describes at the beginning of his wonderful essay? Is that patient well-served by days or weeks in the intensive care unit?
Read the full article at The Bakersfield Californian
Thanks to the DeathCare Discussion List for alerting us to this article.
At the end of life, why is it so hard to let go?
The Bakersfield Californian (03/10/2012): I know where this phone call is going. I’m on the hospital wards, and a physician in the emergency room downstairs is talking to me about an elderly patient who needs to be admitted to the hospital. The patient is new to me, but the story is familiar.