cirhossis and hasnt stopped drinking !

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My dad was hospitalised 2.5 years ago after losing a lot of blood and collapsing. He was given 6 pints. He had infections. Confusion, muscle wastage. Had to have physio to walk again. 6 weeks later he came home and had been told his liver was cirhotic and small and if he drank again he would kill himself ! He stopped drinking for 6 months then gradually he started a few halfs, the odd Baileys, a few glasses of wine. Now he is back to a litre of whiskey every 2 days and has been for the last year ! He has regular doctors appointment and a blood test that always come back " abnormal but as expected " he says the doctor says he's fine. But I only get what he tells me. If I speak to the doctor I think my dad would want nothing to do with me and I can't have that as he's only got me , and I know he can't have long but Iv told him and told him to stop drinking he just won't. He's old school, he's been drinking for 60 years, ( he's 78 ) he says the doctors are all wrong ! His skin is like paper, if he knocks himself it peels back and bleeds forever. He's sometimes a bit yellow but not always. He has a fluid retention problem in his legs but takes a dietetic also omiprisole and multivitamin . Recently he's been sleeping in the day and staying up all night ( although he says it's because of olympics) medically he should be dead according to all the information Iv read , I seriously don't know what to expect. I'm just waiting for the call from the warden ( warden assisted accommodation ) to say they found him. Is this really as unusual or is anyone else known this and can advise me what's happening. I swear he's pickled from the inside !!

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  • Posted

    RG..will give you a good explanation.

    I just wanted to are not alone..and we ARE reading your post.

    It is hard for ME to answer this...

    You are correct...he is wasting himself away with his continued drinking. In my mind...for his age...all you can do is what you have been doing...expressing your concern and letting him know you love him.

    It is not his fault...the alcoholic condition is very hard to kick.

    And after as many years that he has been drinking...Well, its almost impossible and nothing anyone can say to make him stop...well, its highly unlikely you can say anything sad.

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  • Posted

    Right in order, then at the end, other matters.

    I have been hospitalised, so I know a bit about it, if he had to be given blood, then it was probably plasma to stabilise him. Yes, he will have cirrhosis, and you will need to ask what Child-Pugh classification he has. You need to make sure, that as next of kin, the medical profession allow you full access to his details.

    Yes,you can get infections from drinking, and yes, if you go to hospital, they will pump you full of things. Confusion is hepatic encephalopathy. Muscle wastage is due to the alcohol and the terrible diet that alcohol dependent people have.

    It is normal for people to have a hospital visit/scare and give up for some time, Then they try a bit and the alcohol gets hold of them and they go back to how they were before.

    I'm afraid your GP will have given up on him, he is not interested. GPs usually see people with alcohol dependency as lacking moral fibre, a lost cause and with your father's age, a waste of resources.

    The skin condition and the bleeding is a sign of his liver and the bleeding comes fown to a low platelet count. Yellow is jaundice and a sign off late stage liver cirrhosis. Fluid retention is also another sign of liver cirrhosis and diuretics try to stop this. The omeprazole is probably to stop his gut from too much acid and maybe oesophageal varices. As for medication, he should be taking, thiamine, vitamine B compound strong, folic acid and lactulose.

    The staying up at night is just because drinking late at night is preferable to day time drinking, as you know, it has nothing to do with the Olympics.

    I'll come back tomorrow with the psychological bit, but in answer to your last paragraph, what are you expecting?

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    • Posted

      Thankyou. My dad was a soldier for 30 years and always drank socially as it was part of routine. My mother also drank a lot and she died 10 years ago age 66 of lung disease. Ironic as she never smoked but drank like a fish ! My dad is not a public drunk and no one really knows he's a drinker, except my children who are adults and myself. Iv prepared them for the last couple of years that their grandad is not helping himself and could go at any point, going by the hospitals advise to not drink and him ignoring them ! I'm surprised he's still here, like I said earlier he thinks medical advise is all wrong and he's ok ! What I need to know is what am I looking for now. What signs or changes should I be worried about, Iv read 3-5 yrs survival and that's if he stopped drinking.

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    • Posted

      one more quick post tonight. Yes, ex-forces people quite often turn to drink. They have beers with the lads off-duty, but are kept in check for most of the time under the scrutinty of the sergeants and offices.

      Unfortunately when they get back to civvy street, they lack the discipline and order in their lives. Your dad probably knows exactly what is wrong with him and exactly where he is heading. People with alcohol problems, still understand what is happening to themselves.

      I'm not sure what signs you need, it sounds like he is on his last legs. As for his survival, you need to ask, what is his Child-Pugh grade and the score within that grade.  He already has all the latter stages like jaundice, I think he probably has varices and I'm surprised you have not mentione ascites.

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