My husband is at the end of COPD and CHF

Last updated: January 2022

My husband is 66 and has had COPD and CHF for 12 yrs. He has had 2 open heart surgeries and 19 stents. He was at the end of his life 9 yrs ago, had they thought just a few days left. But they said a Thoracic surgeon was coming that afternoon and would get a consult with him.

A second chance

The Dr said he would open up my husband and see if there was anything he could do. He couldn't guarantee my husband would survive it or ever come off of the ventilator. At that time he was on 5 liters of O2 and 200 lbs.
The Dr performed a miracle and opened up one last vessel, and said that was it, no more could ever be done. My husband got off of O2 for 5 yrs! Drs couldn't explain why. And he got to 100 lbs. He had a second chance at life and was fully active.
Three years ago, he started needing o2 again. His needs grew and about Oct last year was up to 8 liters of o2 with activity. The end of Oct he got the Pfizer booster and went into respiratory distress and I could not get his o2 to the 80s. So I called an ambulance and he spent a couple of days in the hospital on prednisone and a nebulizer.

A turn for the worse

Since then he has gone downhill. In Nov he did another walk test for 02 and was switched to 8 liters of o2 with an Oximizer which almost doubles the output. They also sent us a new concentrator that goes up to 10 liters. at rest he is at 6 liters. But walking 25 ft he is so winded...and gets close to panic attacks. Plus his chest burns, which his Dr said it is probably his heart. He also has been having chest pains at times.
A year ago the CT showed he had 1/3 of one lung left functioning. Everything else, including diaphragm does not function. After the booster shot he had another CT which showed a 10 mm lung nodule that had not been there.
I tried to get him on Home Health/Hospice last week, but he wouldn't do it, didn't think he needed it right now. I am working full time at a hospital 25 min away and do call about 3 times during my shift. He tries not to walk around the house much, except to the bathroom or kitchen unless I am home.

Looking for support

I am worried he will get up to go to bathroom and have a heart attack. He is too. Drs say there is nothing can be done to improve his heart or lungs. I worry I will come home and find him passed away. I really wish I could get some support, just someone to talk to about going through this end of his life, and I told him that.
That is my story in a nutshell... thanks if you read through all of this.

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