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KarinBe

Hi, I have shared my story here regarding my mother´s death, and how her breathing was very rapid for 9 hours before she passed, although she was completely awake and alert.

I have so much guilt for calling the nurse that second time soon after the first, to ask if Mom could have some more morphine. My Mom died 45 minutes after the second shot.....

Everywhere I read about near death breathing patterns, but they are all about Cheyne-Stokes or slow breathing with pauses. But what about the rapid loud breathingWITHOUT any pauses? Is there anyone else but me that has witnessed this in a dying person? I feel so alone. It was very distressing to witness and it freaked me out, and I asked for more morphine thinking I was helping her. She didn´t want it, I could tell, but I was on autopilot, having cared for my Mom for so long, been forced to take many decisions for her, despite her showing she didn´t agreed and those decisions prolonged her life, only this time my urge to help and take charge had the opposite effect..

But if someone more than me have witnessed this kind of breating, it would help me a little to hear that.

Thank you<3

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Dear Karin,

I haven't experienced this but I think it is normal. I think more people would know more about this at a site called Aging Care.

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KarinBe

Thank you for answering, dear Reader, very kind. And thanks for the advice.

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The morning my John died he was breathing very rapidly and shallowly.  I don't know how long he'd been doing this, but his eyes were also panicked and darting around.  He had been virtually unconscious for days before that from sedation.  I thought he would pass peacefully and was shocked to see him like that, in pain and awake and panting. I still wish I had stayed the night. 

Part of it was pneumonia, but I also know that he was terrified, awake in spite of all the heavy medications they had given him and aware that he was about to die. Once I hugged him and told him it was okay to go his breathing slowed and he died five minutes later. 

Apparently restlessness is not uncommon just before death. 

My doctor tells me that it's very distressing for family members to see this.  I know it's been very hard for me remembering him that way.  I wish he'd just slipped away. 

 

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