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Personal Experience

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Strength of will

Language: English
Country: Italy
Typology: health care professionals
I have recently visited a sixty years old man, who suffers from cerebral amyloidosis, and who has been affected by fourteen brain hemorrhages in the last ten years. The patient is a senior executive, he is educated, friendly, sporty, married, father of a family, generous and very smart. The last brain hemorrhages had been clinically disabling, both in terms of cognitive and motor functions. Despite the severe brain injury, the man had started again to swim, play tennis, be a father and a husband, relate to strangers, go to the theatre, read. What impressed me most is the tenacity, the great strength of will that the patient showed while being in hospital where he had to stay still on the bed. He was incontinent, aphasic, unable to communicate with relatives and health care staff, unable to make us understand that he could perceive his body, even if he could not control it, that he could recognize people, through their voices, but he was not able to communicate it. Ten days ago, I saw him in the medical department of this hospital. The diagnosis is always: brain hemorrhage, but this time it is massive. I take care of him but this time I can feel that he has lost hope. My patient has no longer the desire to fight. Together with his wife, we have decided to transfer him to his house after asking for nursing home care and after having placed the PEG tube to ensure his feeding.

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