problem with my mother - need ideas for giving medications

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by muttmeister, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    My mother will be 98 on Monday. She lives in a senior apartment (not independent living; just an apartment with no real oversight). She's pretty good but has NO short term memory. Had her to the doctor for some tests today (another post for another day) and they changed some of her medications. All of her medications so far have been pills; she takes some AM and some PM. I go to her house (7 miles) once a day and set up her pills for that day only - morning pills in the kitchen and night pills in the bathroom. So in the morning I call her and tell her to go to the kitchen and take her morning pills and at night I call her and tell her to go to the bathroom and take her night pills. It may sound weird but it works.

    Now they have prescribed a liquid that she is to take before each meal and before bed. HOw the he!! am I supposed to get her to do that? She can't see well enough to dispense it herself and even if she could, if I leave the whole bottle there she might take it 4 times a day as prescribed or she might take it once a day or she might take it 20 times a day. I didn't see the doctor; he just left instructions. I will talk to the pharmacy tomorrow but do any of you have experience with this kind of thing? I need to be able to measure it out for her and put it someplace safe and then call her and tell her to take it but that sounds like it will have a lot of places to go wrong. She might take it all at once, spill it, misplace it, whatever. Any suggestions>
  2. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Call the doctor. Ask for a different medication. There is probably another form or a different medication that is better suited for her situation. Even *if* this medication is the best choice in a perfect world- remind them it's not a perfect world -- and in your mom's case - taking a liquid may mean she takes way too much or not enough. ie: it won't do her ANY good if it's not taken properly.

    While not the same situation- when my oldest was a toddler in daycare & often sick & prescribed something (amox usually) 4x a day for 10 days; I learned to request something that could be taken twice a day (so only at home) instead. Same thing when my kids were in school. They were always happy to accommodate.

    God bless your mom- 98!!! And you are a wonderful daughter.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hmmm.....this does sound like a failure plan but for the time being I am wondering about using old pill bottles with a dose of the liquid in it but get the non-childproof cap on it so she can get it open. I actually think I saw one gadget that was a cover for a pill bottle and you could set it for the time the medicine was supposed to be taken and it would beep and then the cap would allow you to remove it from the bottle. It was a locking mechanism too. Sort of a child lock along with a memory aid.

    I will do some more searching tomorrow on the internet sights for the elderly and taking medications. I am looking for a better locked medication pill box myself.
  4. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Ask the pharmacist about alternative formats and alternative medications, so you're up to date before you talk to the doctor. Too often the assumption is that there IS someone coming in multiple times per day to assist with other stuff anyway... the doctor probably wasn't thinking.
  5. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    In the event that you can't change the medication, I remember when my grandparents had a visiting nurse and no support, she poured the proper amount of medication in a medication cup in 3 doses and put in holes cut in a aluminium pie pan(so it doesn't spill) Put 3 doses every day and put it where she eats. You can call at mealtime to remind her.
    You might want to ask for visiting nurse support.
  6. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Or.... to take Fran's suggestion a step further, how about syringes with each dose measured and labeled for what time to take it. Might still require you calling her to remind her but at least the doses would be done. I'm pretty sure you can get cap-like thingies for the syringes as well - prevents spillage. Found this on a quick google
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Call doctor and explain the situation. If medication can not be dispensed in pill form, then an alternative needs to be substituted. It's not hard to do.
  8. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    Talked to pharmacist and doctor; no substitutes. We can get premeasured doses - for $150 per week. Yeah, right! I poured 4 doses in dose cups and set them in a small pan in her cupboard. Hopefully she'll get at least a few of them when she's supposed to. She'll get the one before lunch and the one before bed because I call her then - unless she takes all 4 of them at once. The breakfast one and the supper one are doubtful. We'll see.

    Thanks for all of the suggestions.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    What kind of part D insurance does she have? I seem to remember that she has given most of her money to the grandkids. Is she eligible for medicaid? Is she eligible to have you being paid to be the one taking care of her? Things to look into.

    I know she has the part D at least and you really should as the pharmacy again what HER part of the copayment would be for that 150 would be. If you cant get past that part, find out who the manufacturer is and contact them in person. Tell them your plight. I actually had a rep for one of the big name companies tell me that they will help out seniors and people on disability who have issues with getting their medications. I would call them in a New York second to see if they wont send her this medication in the formulation that would help her get it in the best way possible. Tell them you would be happy to right a glowing recommendation for the company on the