Monday, 29 October 2012

Liverpool Care Pathway – The Guilt Weighs On The Heart and In The Soul.

The Liverpool Care Pathway has spread into diverse and different settings. Here, it is used, allegedly misused, in its original setting - that of the cancer patient. The LCP leaves families of victims filled with regret that they could have - should have - stepped in to stop what was happening before their very eyes. The guilt weighs on the heart and in the soul. This is the LCP –

Could my father have been saved or was it murder?

Hi all,

I never thought I would be here writing about something like this, and just a month ago my life seems like it was someone else's life.

We have never been affected by cancer so have had very little knowledge of it. However, reading about others's success stories I feel my father was denied of the opportunity to fight his disease, which was all he wanted.

I am writing from London, in regards to my father, who recently died in a NHS (National health service) hospital aged just 54.

My father was active and fit, looked very young for his years which we were very proud of. He was a great father and good man. He was diagnosed with stage 4 lung adenocarcinoma with pleural effusion. The doctors said the pleural effusion had affected his heart also.
He was in hospital for a month to drain fluids and wait for tests to confirm cancer. During his stay they did not offer any treatment other then draining his lungs/heart 3 times. Later whilst waiting they said he had also developed pulmonary edema (fluid in the lungs) but no  Xray evidence to prove this.
They said his cancer was growing fast but still no chemo was offered.

Anyway at end of month, the doctors placed him on a Liverpool care pathway (LCP) this is a very controversial topic here in UK at mo (it's a combination on meds used to speed up death via specific drugs used to dry up secretions in body and withholding fluids and treatment). The doctors did not tell us that they had put my father on LCP but we could see something was not right. As far as we knew he was waiting for chemo to begin. 
This caused my father immense pain, he kept saying 'I'm burning up inside', due to dehydration. They decided not to drain fluids and continue the LCP,  2 days later my father died due to his lungs filling up with fluid and drowning before our very eyes. 
He suffered an inhumane and torturous death. My father was an human rights advocate, believe in the NHS and equal opportunities, so to lose him in this was is the biggest injustice of it all.

We believe that it was not the cancer that killed my father but the LCP, the withholding treatment using delay tactics. This is unethical and immoral and decision was resource led not person centred.

I do not want any more lives or families to be destroyed and want to make sure this issue is publicised. We will be advocating against this inhumane and unethical cruelty used to cut back and save resources in NHS. I will take part in a documentary called dispatches Channel 4 end of December 2012 to publicise the abuse of LCP.

However, in regards to my fathers illness, I want to know your views on a few questions unanswered regarding his treatment:

-  Is there effective chemo for his cancer and is this best effective the earlier you start?
- In regards to pleural effusion can you have chemo at same time as drainage or does it have to be drained first?

- Has anyone ever had pulmonary edema ( when fluids are in your lungs) apparently caused by the Adecarcenoma, can chemo still be used to treat this or is it too late when this happens?

- Also has anyone with fluid in lungs been treated with drugs to dry up these secretion (Hyocine) as a way of treatment?

- Also when you have fluid in lungs, can you still drink fluids or can this go into lungs if you do? We were given conflicting info as he was on route to dehydration.

Any other views also welcome.

Thank you for taking time to read our story.

My father's loving family.

Info about LCP: ml

No comments:

Post a Comment