It’s pitiful the domino effect one small problem can have on the well being of an elderly person.
From the start of putting Daddy in the hospital bed, he has been very touchy on his left heel when I’m getting him dressed in the mornings. I had already, some time ago, asked for help keeping his heels in good condition, as I had noticed some splotchy areas there. The nurse said she would order booties. When they didn’t bring them, I asked the next nurse I saw about them, and she said she would take care of it. Well, the booties didn’t come, and yesterday morning Daddy had a water blister on the bottom of that left heel that is huge.
Even though it was Saturday, I called the after hours Hospice number, telling them about his heel. The nurse had a call to make in the opposite direction from us, but she said she would see him sometime that day. Sure enough, she did come about lunchtime.
When she measured the blister, it was 2″ by 3″!! His whole heel has broken down!! No wonder it was hurting. She used an ointment on it, padded it with gauze, wrapped his foot in Coban, and reminded me to hang his heels off a pillow and not let them touch anything. She said I did the right thing calling, and she thought it had been caught soon enough that it would heal quickly. Of course, Daddy is diabetic, so quickly is a relative term.
I’m just sick about that heel. I’ve been going to his house to fix breakfast and put on his shoes and socks for years now. I always checked his feet and made sure I smoothed out any wrinkles in his socks, before putting on his shoes. Now, too many people are dressing him, and I have no idea how the blister got started.
So, for want of a nail, the battle was lost. Hopefully, our battle is not lost, but it certainly has been put in jeopardy! Because of the huge bandage on his foot, he can’t wear his shoes. Because he can’t wear shoes, he’s not as sure footed when he tries to stand up. Because he’s having trouble standing or walking, he had to stay in the wheelchair almost all day long. Because he’s in the wheelchair and not walking to the bathroom, he’s not getting any exercise, so his legs are even weaker. Because he’s sitting almost constantly, with his legs up, the pressure on his bottom is greater, so the sores on his bottom are getting worse!
The nurse was obviously concerned that I had not gotten the booties when I asked for them. She said she would see to it that the medical supply company brought out the seat cushion, booties, and an air mattress as soon as possible. We’ll see.
This is exactly why I don’t want to put him in a nursing home. If his skin has broken down here, with me asking several times for the equipment that would have prevented it, how much longer would they have waited to deal with his skin, with no one around to remind them??
We spent the day yesterday trying to keep him as comfortable as we could, what with his bottom sore and his foot sore.
This was not the Hospice we had used with Mama and Pop, but the one the doctor’s office made arrangements with. I’m seriously considering switching Hospices. That means returning all the equipment and getting another set from the Hospice we liked, but at this rate, it will be worth it!! It all depends on how long it takes them to get this equipment to us this week. If it’s delayed, they’re fired, no matter how much of a hassle it is!!