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Life expectancy of final stage Aids patient

Dec 13, 2004

My brother has been living with full blown aids for many years. He has had a great team of docters taking care of him. The docters are telling us that he is in the final stage. My brother is receiving blood transfusions once a week, his liver is not function correctly, his kidneys are not functioning correctly, and he is not thinking clearly. He is receiving platelets because they were so low he began bleeding from his noes and it wouldn't stop. The docter said it was inhumane to allow him to bleed to death. He has fevers twice a day, sometimes going up to 103. How much longer do you think he can live like this? My brother is not ready to die. He is begging for help. The docters have said any further treatment would cause more harm than good. What else can we expect?

Response from Dr. Horwath

I cannot answer your question about his life expectancy, but your brother is certainly extremely ill. You are best served by trusting in the judgment of your brother's doctors. If they have experience with advanced AIDS (as it appears they do), then they are in a good position to know what treatment is likely to be helpful, and what treatment is likely to primarily cause further suffering with little additional benefit.

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