There are many people who have portable ventilators and continue to live a relatively normal life. However, people who are using a life – support device don’t always recover. They may not regain the ability to breathe and function on their own.
Time to death after withdrawal of mechanical ventilation varies widely, yet the majority of patients die within 24 hours. Subsequent validation of these predictors may help to inform family counseling at the end of life.
So, if you ask if your loved one can hear you, the answer is YES! They do hear you, so speak clearly and lovingly to your loved one.
Will the Ventilator be Painful? There’s usually little or no pain when on a ventilator.
The organs are no longer able to function on their own. Keeping the treatment going at that point may draw out the process of dying and may also be costly. Choosing to remove life support usually means that the person will die within hours or days.
“ You pull the plug when the person has no brain waves, and no hope of quality of life,” Braverman said.
After discontinuation of ventilation without proper preparation, excessive respiratory secretion is common, resulting in a ‘death rattle’. Post-extubation stridor can give rise to the relatives’ perception that the patient is choking and suffering.
It is possible that patients can hear and feel what is going on around them, even when apparently unconscious, but they might be too sleepy to respond when we speak to them or hold their hand. This is the reason that the nurses explain everything they are doing to the patient and why.
While the dying person may be unresponsive, there is growing evidence that even in this unconscious state, people are aware of what is going on around them and can hear conversations and words spoken to them, although it may feel to them like they are in a dream state.
Remember: hearing is thought to be the last sense to go in the dying process, so never assume the person is unable to hear you. Even when a person is unconscious or semi-conscious, they might be able to respond with faint pressure from their thumb, or twitch a toe.
Now UBC researchers have evidence that some people may still be able to hear while in an unresponsive state at the end of their life. This research, published recently in Scientific Reports, is the first to investigate hearing in humans when they are close to death.
Tracheal intubation (TI) is commonly performed in the setting of respiratory failure and shock, and is one of the most commonly performed procedures in the intensive care unit (ICU). It is an essential life -saving intervention; however, complications during airway management in such patients may precipitate a crisis.
Any patient except the crash airway can be intubated awake. If you think they are a difficult airway, temporize with NIV while you topically anesthetize and then do the patient awake while they keep breathing.
When people are in comas, they are unconscious and cannot communicate with their environment. However, the brain of a coma patient may continue to work. It might “ hear ” the sounds in the environment, like the footsteps of someone approaching or the voice of a person speaking.