Posted by: Elizabeth | 2012/08/26


My husband is 81 years of age and has congestive heart failure plus dementia. He is on Risperdal, Vesicare, Captopril, Lanoxin, furosimide, Plenish K and Ecotrin. A week ago he had sudden heavy anal bleeding. He thought he was passing wind but passed quite a lot of blood and clots. He was admitted to hospital where they did blood tests, X-rays and a gastroscopy which did not reveal anything. There was talk of doing a colonoscopy but the surgeon decided against that because of my husband''s frail condition. He was discharged from hospital and I am caring for him at home. I am giving him Naxium and Movicol. He passes a black stool every day, black, tar-like and very foul smelling. He sleeps a lot, eats the meals I give him and is not in any pain. Is there anything else that you would suggest should be done for him?

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Our expert says:
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Given his poor health, it will be difficult to make a proper diagnosis. I do however, suggest that you consult a doctor for blood tests, to determine if he is anemic. It is very important to exclude anemia, as this will cause further heart failure.


Dr Anrich

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Our users say:
Posted by: Elizabeth | 2012/08/30

Thank you for your response. Since I spoke to you the bleeding has stopped and he is passing normal stools (not melena). Doctor has taken blood tests but does not inform me of results so I assume that they do not reveal any anemia. Although the tummy has improved, his general condition has deteriorated which I think is due to the anaesthetic as the anaesthetist did warn me that he would take a long time to recover from it. He can no longer walk, even with a walker, he is wearing nappies but still stands(aided) to urinate and I pull down the nappy for him. Often while he is standing urinating he has a motion. He no longer speaks - or very rarely. I feel that he has reached the end of the road and I think he is ready to go. I am just looking for reassurance that there is nothing more I can do to keep him comfortable to the end. I want him to be at home in his own bed when the end does come.

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