Friday, March 08, 2013

Help in making hard medical decisions

When to turn off extreme life support...or even whether or not to get chemo or surgery at a certain age...these are decisions more and more patients or their designated surrogates are making for themselves--rather than trotting along doing whatever the doctor says.

The San Francisco Medical Center and UCSF have developed software that might help you think things through.

It's called PREPARE. Go to

This techniques helps decide what the quality of life is.

Advance directives are just one piece of the puzzle.

The material, including videos, is written at the fifth grade level (I write at the 6th grade).

If you are trying to help a loved one toward the end of life, maybe this can put you are one remove so you can think more clearly.

I have been in this position. Usually you will make more than one big decision--it's a process.

You have to hold it together way better than the woman in the picture.

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