View Full Version : suction apparatus advice?
01-07-2008, 09:39 PM
my aunt has been dealing with ALS for almost 2 years now. we've tried to convince her to get the feeding tube but she's still in denial and doesn't believe she has this disease or needs help with her feeding. the truth is she's always choking on food and can't form any words anymore. so she agreed to get something that might suck food out if it gets stuck? has anyone heard of such a machine? any thoughts or ideas? thanks so much.
happy new year and lots of love,
01-08-2008, 11:16 AM
So sorry your mom has ALS.
I think the machine you are referring to is a Cough Assist machine. I used this with my
PALS for the last month of her life. The Cough Assist is to help clear the airways due to congestion from a cold or allergies or if food get stuck. This machine is a bit tricky to get the hang of and it can scare you if you'll let it. It will take some "practice" and good training by the R.T.
Hope this helps.
Good luck and God Bless,
An interesting but slightly technical article on the subject.
01-08-2008, 10:04 PM
thanks al! i sent you a message and asked again but just read your response - so thank you for that. and thank you jeanne for your info. i will look into everything.
03-02-2008, 08:57 AM
The cough assist is good to clear out your throat and help you cough stuff out of your lungs when you do not have the strength to do so on your own. It also helps my grandmother get air deep into her lungs.
My grandmother has one. You really have to practice with the settings and get it set up for you and your breathing patterns.
My family has the same problem as you. When my grandmother gets choked on salava, we don't have anyway of getting it out at that time. We grab her and try to hit her on the back. It can get scary and we have had to call 911 once. We need suggestions on what to do in this case. With her PEG tube, we get scared to even try the hymnic (Spelling).
03-02-2008, 10:07 AM
tre, sorry to sound so naive, but what is the "hymnic"? Is it something the patient does, a device or what? Thanks!
03-02-2008, 10:21 AM
My sister had a cough assist machine...we gave it about a D for a grade. There was a time when she was trying to cough up some phlegm but it was too low for the suction machine to reach. We tried the cough assist, but if it wasn't timed perfectly with her inhale and exhale (which were very shallow at that point) the cough assist didn't seem to work. In fact, it seemed to make her more anxious...which when you're already anxious from choking, wasn't ideal to say the least. Perhaps we just didn't know how to use it properly. I hope it has worked better for others!!
Hi Irma. I thinh they were describing the Heimlich maneuver that is used to help someone choking.
03-12-2008, 09:55 PM
I use the cough assist followed by the suction. The cough assist pulls up the mucus and then I use the suction to clear my mouth. I only use the cough assist in the morning and at night. I seem to have lots of mucus in my throat after using the bipap. The suction I use frequently during the day because i have so much saliva. I even put the suction in my car for long trips because you can charge it up so it doesn't require an electric outlet. It's sort of like the long wand that the dentist uses to clear your mouth. You can put it into your throat but be careful or you will gag and get nauseated. Here are the electronics I can't live without:
1. cough assist
2. suction machine
4. soothing sounds alarmclock ( I like the ocean waves all night and for napping)
5. full size heating pad---- I put it in my recliner and it really warms me up
6. laptop (of course)
03-17-2008, 07:51 PM
Cough assist and suctioning will only work if that is what your aunt wants. You need to have a doctor or professional explain her options to her. I know you love your aunt and you only wish to help her and I'm sure you can't stand to see her suffer, but, you must help her to understand her options and then respect her decisions. It's not easy to comprehend the reasoning behind some of the decisions our loved ones make.. but, they make them for their own reasons. Try not to confuse what you feel is denial with what your aunt might see as a strong sense of her own being. I know... sometimes it feels like if our loved ones could accept the help that is available... life for them would be so much easier. Nothing is easy with this disease and the decisions that need to be made are the hardest.