Home Is Where Her Heart Is
Staying Home. That’s all that matters to a 65-year-old Arbor Palliative Care patient suffering from pulmonary fibrosis and abdominal cancer. Arbor Palliative Care is happy to make that dream a reality.
“When I first visited this patient, she was miserable,” said Marie Heys, MS, FNP, BC, Arbor Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner. “She was experiencing pain, constipation and nausea. Her physician already had her on a pain medication, but it was apparent that it wasn’t doing enough to control her symptoms.”
Heys spent two hours with the patient and her husband to gain a complete understanding of her medical history, condition, symptoms and goals for care.
“I learned that the patient desperately wanted to stay at home with her husband. She did not want to go to the emergency department. Yet, she told me that on more than one occasion she’s had to reach across the bed for her husband in the middle of the night because she was in so much pain. At those times, she had no choice but to go to the hospital.”
As an expert in pain and symptom management, Heys made three recommendations to the patient’s primary care physician. Three recommendations that would keep the patient at home, comfortably.
“I have the benefit of seeing a patient in his or her own home and the ability to spend more time with them,” Heys said. “I was an additional set of eyes and ears for this patient’s physician and was able to help him understand the patient’s symptoms. Together, we implemented two of three recommendations and have successfully kept the patient at home, where she wants to be. Keeping the patient home and out of the emergency room is important.”
Now that the patient’s pain is under control, Arbor Palliative Care will continue to follow-up with the patient to ensure it stays that way. And on Saturday, the patient will be attending her granddaughter’s wedding, without fear of a pain spike, extreme nausea or discomfort.
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