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Plummeting oxygen levels

This is my first post anywhere, my mum has end stage copd she’s been on home oxygen for a year now she’s now on it 24hrs a day and goes on a mask over night and a couple of hours in the afternoon. She’s seems to just get worse and worse, she’s at a point now that she can’t do very much for herself and if she does her oxygen levels drop dramatically for example last night she walked upstairs aprox 12 steps and she did it slow even took a break, once we got to her bedroom merely another 5 or so steps her oxygen was at 76 her Heart rate was 110 lips purple. According to her this happens every time. I don’t really no what I’m asking but surely her body can’t keep coping with this? Honestly I feel I’m on tender hooks all the time. Anyone have experience with this. Thanks

  1. Hi MrsBaldwin, and welcome! I see you are a new member here, having joined earlier today. We are glad to see that you are already posting in the forum section so soon after becoming a member!
    We appreciate your candor in sharing this information about your dear mother. Although we cannot offer medical advice or diagnostics over the internet (for your own safety), your concern certainly warrants a reply.
    The symptoms you have shared here (challenging self-care, precipitous drops in oxygen saturation levels, limited mobility and activity), on a fairly consistent basis can be associated with late stage COPD. It's understandable how you must feel as Mom's daughter.
    In order to have a better understanding of prognosis and current care (beyond the oxygen therapy and medications), you will probably want to discuss this in earnest with Mom's private medical doctor (PMD). What do you think?
    Since this is our first conversation, if there is anything further we can assist you with, please let me or any other moderator / team member know.
    You are always welcome here in our online community.
    Wishing you (and Mom), well!
    Leon (site moderator

    1. Hi there thank you for the warm welcome, unfortunately here in the uk it’s harder to talk to a doctor unless she is actually in hospital. The last time she was in hospital approximately 2 weeks ago with a flare up all the doctor told me was that each time this happens her lungs are more damaged. She just seems to be going downhill all the time.

      1. Hi again, MrsBaldwin - thanks for responding and the further explanation - we appreciate it. I hadn't realized that Mom was in the hospital about 2 weeks ago. If she continues to struggle at home, would you consider having her readmitted to the hospital? Do you think that might be of some help at this point? I am sorry this is happening for you both at this time.
        Warm regards,
        Leon (site moderator

    2. Thank you for the warm welcome, x

      1. Hi there. Welcome to the community. I'm glad you found us! First, I want you to know that you aren't alone and it's clear how much you care about your mom. She is lucky to have you. <3 I am not an expert, but I find myself wanting to think of practical ways you might be able to support her right now. Recovery can be long after a flare, especially when she is in end stage COPD. If she is going upstairs to go to bed, it may be helpful to set up a couch or other sleeping situation downstairs so that she doesn't have to struggle as much. It might also be best to help with personal care (bathing, etc) from a seated position -- are you able to get access to a wheelchair? There is no shame in using aids of any kind to make life easier and less stressful.

        I don't know what the situation is in the UK, but when a person is significantly struggling with activities of daily living, you may want to ask about in-home assistance or even hospice care. Hospice is not a death sentence -- it can open up new options for care and make Mom's days a lot simpler, which is good for both of you.

        Lastly, I want to say that you're doing a great job as caregiver just by being here and seeking support. Please try to take good care of yourself too -- eat and sleep, and reach out for help if you need to talk to someone. It's not easy to be a carer and we are all here for you! Sending hugs. -Melissa, team

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