overtreated to death

overtreated to death

There are 5 comments on the Monterey County Herald story from Jul 1, 2010, titled overtreated to death. In it, Monterey County Herald reports that:

Alexandra Drane shows a picture of her sister-in-law Rosaria Vandenberg. After watching Vandenberg lose a battle with cancer in the hospital, Drane created a website to help support a personA*s option to spend their final days at home.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Monterey County Herald.

Bob Loblaw

Seaside, CA

#3 Jul 2, 2010
Very sad story. It illustrates how important it is for the patient to be involved in the decision-making process. Sometimes it means butting heads with your doctors, but their interests do not always coincide with your best interest.
Random Thought

San Francisco, CA

#4 Jul 2, 2010
Very sad indeed. Sometimes it's the family members who can't let go and force this treatment on their loved ones. The movie "My sister's keeper" which is based on a true story gives great insight into the lengths a mother went to to save her daughter.

Carlsbad, CA

#5 Jul 2, 2010
"Some things are worse than a loved one dying." That's a fact, and I've witnessed it more than once. It's hard to tell someone they are out of options, but no one should become a living science experiment unless they personally really insist on doing so.

Very sad, but death is inevitable and as much a part of life as birth or anything else.

Hollister, CA

#6 Jul 2, 2010
Very sad. My daughter died 2 yrs ago at 30 yrs old after 5 1/2 yrs of battling.
Since she was over 18 I wasn't able to get a full picture from her doctor without her permission. We didn't find out how little time she had left until the last 5 weeks. Then we got the full story from the doctor. She knew for over a year she was terminal but did not want to share with us.
She so wanted to live that she was willing to try the agressive chemos. However we had a heart to heart with the doctor who said it might only prolong her life a few weeks or months and quite possibly make no difference at all. The chemo might have given her more time but the chances of uncontrolable pain was likely. We did not want that for her. She was so weak but was told that she needed to get a little stronger first. It wasn't the best thing to convince her to do but we all felt that she had given it her best and wanted the last few weeks to be as good as possible.
We had some pallative treatment to reduce her vomiting, got her home, called hospice and just let her go peacefully.
Not an easy decision as who wants to be 30 and know you are dying.
She spent the last few days in a hospice retreat in the redwoods with us. I will remember the hummingbird feeder outside her window that was always busy with birds that we both watched. When the end came it was very quick and peaceful vs what might have been.
It made me think alot about letting go sooner if I was to be in her position. The final decision must rest with the patient as long as they are able to make decisions that make sense. Sometimes family prolongs not the patient. I think that this is often overlooked.
Many times they are just waiting for you to say it is OK because they are worried about you. You have to tell them you will do OK and once you can pass this hurdle it will make their journey easier.

Monterey, CA

#7 Jul 2, 2010
accepting death is not an easy decision. after withdrawing treatment, and the end comes, there are no "do overs". Examine your conscience, lead the life you want to live, and enjoy every moment for as long as you shall live..

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