My mother didn’t die from Alzheimer’s

Leslie Coates, Opinion Column, The Ottawa Citizen

The death certificate read: “Cause of Death: Alzheimer’s Disease.” I am not a coroner, nor even a doctor but I know for a fact that my mother did not die of Alzheimer’s disease. Here is our story. On Oct. 28, 2014 in the early evening, I received a call from my sister and all she said was, “Mom’s had a fall, I’ll meet you at the Queensway Carleton Hospital.” I was puzzled as my mother was in the late stages of Alzheimer’s disease and had been in a wheelchair for more than a year. How was this possible? The Queensway Carleton staff could not have been more pleasant, efficient or empathic in letting us know, after the X-rays were examined, that she was literally a broken woman. She was covered in bruises, and her hip and right arm were shattered. Surgery was not an option due to her delicate physical state. They sent her back to her long-term care facility to be “kept comfortable” until her death.

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