stages of dying stages of dying | allnurses

stages of dying

  1. 0 i have been googling the stages of death and came across this website...my sister-in-law is dying and is being cared for by hospice...the nurse told my mother-in-law a few days ago, that she is in the "wasting" stage of dying...i'm not really sure what this means...and i didn't want to ask my family, because we are going through so much now...can anybody help me with this question???
  2. 12 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  Murse901 profile page
    1
    I may be undereducated, but the only "stages of death/dying" I know of is the same as the Kubler-Ross Stages of Grief -- Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance.

    I searched around a bit and was unable to come up with any special hospice stages of dying. The only thing that I can infer from what you've posted is that your sister-in-law is going through the process of muscle and tissue wasting, which will inevitably lead to organ shutdown.

    If you get a chance, just ask the hospice nurse directly. I'm sure she'll be willing to explain what she meant by her statement.

    It's great that your family is utilizing hospice to attempt to make the transition easier. So many families stay in that Denial stage mentioned above for the whole ride.
    JohnnysGirl likes this.
  4. Visit  SWEnfermera profile page
    0
    I've never heard of the "Wasting Stage of Dying".

    Does your sister-in-law have cancer? There is such a thing known as the "wasting of Cancer". Here is a site that explains this condition:
    http://www.cancerwasting.com/index.htm

    Elizabeth Kubler-Ross was a physician who spent many years working with the dying and conceptualized what is known as the "Stages of Grief and Loss". There are many sites referring to her work. here is the Wikipedia definition:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K%C3%BCbler-Ross_model

    My prayers to you and your family.
  5. Visit  thatsme70 profile page
    1
    thank you so much...i'm sorry, i should have been more specific...the stages of dying, that i was referring to, are what the body goes through while you are dying...my mother-n-law did mention something about the muscles and that the organs will be the next part of this phase...it's just been a very overwhelming experience...

    she does not have cancer...although she is "terminal"...she is only 23, but she is very handicapped...she is not able to communicate verbally, which makes this even more difficult...my mother-in-law has been her caregiver her entire life...hospice has been very helpful...thanks again for helping me...
    lindarn likes this.
  6. Visit  leslie :-D profile page
    7
    i'm a hospice nurse, and we recognize 4 categories of dying:

    psychic- in response to the initial diagnosis of terminal illness

    sociologic- where the patient starts withdrawing from people, activities

    biologic- involves loss of those qualities that characterize us as human, i.e., our personality.

    physiologic- steady deterioration and organ failure. this is where the the patient is 'wasting' away through accelerated muscle loss.

    i'm so sorry to hear about your sister in law.
    please do not hesitate to share any/all concerns and questions with the hospice nurse.
    s/he is there for you/family as well as the patient.

    wishing you all, a most peaceful journey.

    leslie
  7. Visit  NurseCard profile page
    0
    I'm sorry to hear about your sis in law. One of my very best friends died of muscular dystrophy... well actually, congestive heart failure... when she was only 30. She too had become very handicapped; could not take care of herself at all nor did she have family able to take care of her and she had to live in a nursing home. Her death was a blessing and for me, a relief... my prayers are with your family..
  8. Visit  Jo Dirt profile page
    0
    It gets to a point where it is harder to see them living in the condition they are in than if they pass on.
  9. Visit  Daytonite profile page
    0
    what the hospice nurse was referring to was the stages of dying not kubler-ross' theory on death. some hospice nurses are very detailed in giving information to the families; some don't go into such scholarly detail. this information can be found on the internet by searching for "end of life". here are some of the links i have for the nursing students:
  10. Visit  leslie :-D profile page
    0
    Quote from daytonite
    what the hospice nurse was referring to was the stages of dying not kubler-ross' theory on death. some hospice nurses are very detailed in giving information to the families; some don't go into such scholarly detail. this information can be found on the internet by searching for "end of life". here are some of the links i have for the nursing students:
    while categoric changes of dying are always intertwined, the op was asking about the 'wasting', which would be the physiologic aspect of dying.

    leslie
  11. Visit  exnavygirl-RN profile page
    0
    I am so sorry about your sister-in-law. I'm glad you were able to find some answers on this forum. I've learned a lot myself.

    My thoughts are with you and your family in this difficult time.
  12. Visit  scrappymom profile page
    0
    My heart goes out to everyone who's going through this right now - both patients and caregivers. Our family is also experiencing it at the moment. My question is how long can the 'final stage' (wasting) last? Does age make a difference? My MIL is 91, with acute asthma, pneumonia & congestive heart failure. She's currently past the acceptance stage and her kidneys are shutting down; she's extremely weak and can't swallow more than a few ice chips.
    thanks,
    Scrappymom
  13. Visit  CHATSDALE profile page
    1
    leslie is right,
    stages of death are more familiar to lay people as the emotional /mental stages but the physical body goes through stages as well as the organs falter, food intake is lessen d/t loss of appetite and the failure of the digestive organs
    this stage can continue for awhile because it is [usually] not a steady slide but a go/jerk/stop process
    leslie :-D likes this.
  14. Visit  leslie :-D profile page
    0
    Quote from scrappymom
    My heart goes out to everyone who's going through this right now - both patients and caregivers. Our family is also experiencing it at the moment. My question is how long can the 'final stage' (wasting) last? Does age make a difference? My MIL is 91, with acute asthma, pneumonia & congestive heart failure. She's currently past the acceptance stage and her kidneys are shutting down; she's extremely weak and can't swallow more than a few ice chips.
    thanks,
    Scrappymom
    this is so hard on the loved ones.
    i'm glad (and not surprised) your mil has accepted her dying, and will prevent any anxious lingering.
    if she's not in any pain or resp distress, it can be a matter of days...
    there are so many variables involved.
    if there is any physical or mental pain, it can take longer.
    once the body, mind, spirit is truly and totally integrated, it allows us to die peacefully.
    if she senses her family is unwilling to let her go, she may hang on for your benefit.
    it's an important final step, to let her mind rest as well.
    tell her you love her, that you'll miss her and how special she is to you...
    but she needs to know it's ok to leave you.
    who knows when this will happen?
    but if she is ready, it will definitely be sooner rather than later.

    many hugs and heartfelt thoughts to you and yours.

    leslie

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