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    Erin –

    I’ve had paracentesis done a bunch of times and it’s not bad at all – I know it sounds awful and I hate needles. The relief it provides from the inability to breath and overall general uncomfortable pressure has always been an easy choice for me. My weight is increasing yet again and I won’t hesitate to have it drained. Just info from someone in the trenches.


    Dear Erin,

    I am so sorry for what your mom, you and your family are having to deal with. Know that we are all here for you to help and support in any way that we can. Thinking of all of you and hoping that mom is comfortable and not in pain. Please let us know how she is doing.



    Thanks for your kind words.They were unsuccessful in placing the metal stent because they were unable to get by the tumour. They did put a plastic one in. There was some short term lessening of her jaundice but she is getting more yellow again. Things seem to be progressing very quickly, but she has had a few okay days and we’re soaking up time with her. I’ll keep the board posted. I am so grateful for everyone’s concern.


    I am sorry that your mother-in-law is having discomfort. Her case sounds a lot like my mother’s. She was 85, although a very healthy and active 85, when she was diagnosed in August and everything progressed quickly after that. She was not offered much in terms of treatment, but did have an ERCP to place metal stents with a long recovery from that procedure. She entered hospice care in early October and passed away two weeks later very peacefully at her home. She never had ascites, so I cannot offer you any support on that topic, but I did want to offer my warmest thoughts and prayers for your family. Please let me know if you have any questions about my mother’s disease, as I know what you are going through and I truly care.


    Thank you so much for your replies. MIL is in hospice now and while I expected ascites at some point, I’m shocked at how quickly it has happened. But then, I’m shocked that she’s in hospice so quickly, too, because she was only diagnosed a month ago. At this point, there has been mild discomfort associated with the distended abdomen. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what they recommend when it becomes worse. Thanks again,


    I think it depends on how long it was since she had it drained and how her vitals are. My dad had ascites and had it drained weekly until the end. At the end he had it drained then died 3 days later. He was vomiting a lot and could not eat.


    erine…..I hope that others will come forward to share their experiences with you in regards to this important subject.
    From my experience and what I have learned “Paracentesis” a procedure to remove fluid that has accumulated in the abdominal cavity is that of a palliative treatment. Perhaps your mother in-law will agree to this procedure because; it instantly will increase her comfort level.
    Please stay in touch,


    Hi, Erin,

    I’m sorry to hear that your Mother-in-law is suffering from this.
    There is no set time with which someone can live with ascites, I mean, there isn’t a time frame per say. The only issue is that it can get rather uncomfortable for someone if their belly is very swollen. You may see that it makes it harder for her to breathe if she is laying flat, as the fluid will be pushing upwards on her diaphragm in this position. She may need to sleep in a recliner, an adjustable hospital bed, or be propped up with many pillows to provide comfort, which is definitely do-able. She could also have an external drain placed that is attached to a bag for emptying. There is a small valve on it that can be opened to allow fluid from her belly to drain out, which will ease some of that pressure/discomfort.

    I hope this info helps you, to help her!

    Karen D

    Please see this message as my opinion only, and do seek professional medical advice from your treating physician.


    How long can a patient live with ascites if it was left untreated? My mother in law is in hospice and will likely chose not to treat it. I know no one can give me specifics, but anecdotal information is so helpful to me, for some reason. Thanks!

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