People with MS may need assistance to manage pain and help in everyday life towards the end of their lives. It’s crucial to understand the patient’s requirements and symptoms. An advanced care plan might also be needed to be develop early on because the patient may lose the option to communicate or make decisions.
Multiple sclerosis is a condition that manifests differently in each individual. MS is not a death sentence as it can be managed and maintained in remission. However, in other instances, deteriorating symptoms might result in a variety of disabilities. Although MS is not lethal, complications from the disease can result in a person’s death.
The ultimate stages of MS, often known as advanced multiple sclerosis, can drastically impair a patient’s freedom. At this stage, the severity of the individual’s medical problems need continual monitoring by a caretaker. Additionally, the caregiver may be expected to provide personal care and assistance with daily duties that they are no longer able to complete by themselves.
As previously stated, sickness is a factor of chance. Not everyone with multiple sclerosis will progress to the ultimate stages. However, it is critical to comprehend the final stages of multiple sclerosis and to have a complete picture of the condition. The greatest method for persons living with multiple sclerosis and their loved ones is to prepare and arm themselves with knowledge of the disease itself.
Discussions regarding hospice care might generate an outpouring of questions and feelings. Is hospice truly necessary? How do we begin the discussion?
Hospice care is founded on identifying the patient’s most critical needs and goals. Care begins with a strong emphasis on pain and other symptoms management. Patients and their family also receive practical and emotional support to ensure maximum quality of life.
Hospice care is available to patients with a life expectancy of six months or less as decided by the doctor and a medical director. Once on hospice care, a patient may discontinue hospice services at any time and resume curative therapy. Hospice care is provided in the home and a variety of nursing homes and hospitals.
Significant hospice benefits include the following:
- Adapting pain management to your needs and goals
- Personal care and light housekeeping aids for hospice patients
- Hospice registered nurses can assist in the reduction of infections, pressure ulcers and other symptoms.
- Medical equipment for use at home
- Anti-anxiety and anti-depressant medications
- Nutritional guidance and assistance with feeding
- Breathing assistance and apparatus
- Respite care is designed to provide temporary relief for family caregivers.
- Assisting you and your family with financial and legal matters to ensure that your wishes are carried out
Palliative care improves the physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of patients with multiple sclerosis. Care includes assistance and education for caregivers and family members.
Palliative care is available to patients and families at any time of an illness. It’s especially beneficial when someone requires additional assistance managing complex symptoms or preparing for future treatment. A primary care physician, neurologist, nurse or family member may refer.
Hospice care is covered by Medicare, the Veterans Administration, Medicaid and most private insurance policies. These benefits enable patients to experience a dignified death without incurring an undue financial strain. Medicare coverage covers all terminal illness-related services. There are no co-pays or out-of-pocket costs associated with this plan
Identifying Your Alternatives
It is critical to inquire about the experience of possible hospice or palliative care providers with Multiple Sclerosis. End-of-life care for multiple sclerosis requires collaboration between you, your physicians and the hospice or palliative care staff. Be assertive in requesting that the team change the care plan to your changing requirements. The top hospice providers will handle your immediate needs and assist you in developing long-term care plans.
Discussions about end-of-life care for people with multiple sclerosis are rarely simple. Some people put off hospice discussions in the hope of achieving one more remission. Hospice does not imply abandonment, it’s about providing meaningful, pain-free and dignified end-of-life care.
What Is Multiple Sclerosis?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a neurological disorder that affects the brain and spinal cord’s nerves. MS affects about 400,000 persons in the United States and affects almost three times as many women as males. Individuals are typically diagnosed in their 30s, 40s or 50s.
Symptoms & Complications
Patients may experience milder symptoms such as muscular and nerve pain, headaches, numbness, tingling sensation and exhaustion before the ultimate stages of multiple sclerosis. Symptoms often worsen in the last stages. During the terminal stages of multiple sclerosis, more severe symptoms and problems may arise which include the following:
- Breathing difficulties
- Inability to move/paralysis
- Complications with speech
- Excruciating muscular pain and spasms
- Suffering from mood swings and sadness
Many people who die due to multiple sclerosis complications do so due to respiratory problems, although each person with multiple sclerosis has a unique experience. While symptoms may grow severe, hospice care might help keep them to a manageable level.
How To Maintain A Standard Of Living?
It is difficult but possible to maintain an active lifestyle and great quality of life during the final stages of multiple sclerosis with the correct healthcare plan. The first step is to recognize that symptoms are worsening and to take preventative measures. Individuals with multiple sclerosis can ensure they receive the care they require with the aid of family members, a neurologist and other healthcare experts.
While many physical activities are not possible during the later stages of multiple sclerosis, many people benefit from being as active as possible. Mental activities, pain medicine and frequent contact with loved ones may sustain a high quality of life.
Palliative Care: How It Can Assist?
Palliative care assists people with multiple sclerosis manage families’ physical symptoms and mental stress and provide additional services such as spiritual counseling. They also assist with daily living activities, which frequently grow more and more difficult as multiple sclerosis progresses. Consumption, dressing, grooming, bathing and exercise are all examples of this.
One of Palliative care’s primary goals is to assist patients in maintaining a high quality of life despite their terminal disease. Palliative care can relieve family members of responsibilities and allow them to focus on spending quality time with their loved one rather than on 24-hour care.
Speak With A Palliative Care Provider With Experience
Contact Melodia Care Hospice’s Palliative Care Specialists today to learn more about the terminal stages of multiple sclerosis or another terminal condition. You can reach Melodia Care at any time of day or night by contacting us through our 24/7 online customer support chat or by calling 1-888 635-6347 (MELODI-7).