Now, think about how you would care for yourself in various situations. While some scenarios might be difficult to think about, you are encouraged to select answers and write comments about how you would like to be cared for. These scenarios can help your medical decision-maker with difficult decisions. Remember, there are no right or wrong answers.
Please ask for help from your healthcare team if you need assistance.
You are healthy when you have a major car accident. You have significant brain damage and are on life support and medical equipment to keep your heart, lungs and other vital organs going. Your future is uncertain. Do you stay on life support?
Yes, I would stay on life support.
No, I would not want to stay on life support.
You’ve had two heart attacks. You have a third, massive heart attack. It leaves you unconscious. If you survive, your quality of life will be greatly lessened. While unconscious, your heart stops. Do you have doctors do everything to keep you alive or do you let nature take its course?
Do everything to keep me alive.
Let nature take its course.
You are significantly overweight with heart disease and diabetes. Treating them to prolong life could potentially involve invasive heart procedures and long, complicated hospital stays. Would you want to pursue aggressive treatments or do you let life happens as it occurs?
I would pursue aggressive treatments.
I would let life take its course.
You have an incurable lung disease and have been in and out of the hospital several times with shortness of breath. One day, you are admitted to the Intensive Care Unit and placed on a ventilator to breathe and survive. Would you stay on the ventilator?
Yes, I would want to remain on the ventilator.
No, I would not want to remain on the ventilator.
You have been diagnosed with irreversible dementia. The disease progresses so much that you cannot take care of yourself, speak or swallow. The only way to survive is to have a tube inserted into your stomach to give you liquid nutrition. Would you want the tube placed?
Yes, I would want the tube placed.
No, I would not want the tubes placed.
You are diagnosed with cancer that has spread. Treatments temporarily stop its growth, but at some point they will stop working. The cancer will cause death. When you are too weak to walk, where would you want to receive care: at home or in the hospital?
I would want to be cared for at home.
I would want to be cared for in the hospital.
You are very ill and unable to interact with loved ones. There is a very small chance of recovery, which decreases with time. How long are you willing to try every medical means possible, including procedures that could potentially be very painful?
I would want to try every option possible until I die.
I would only try options if my chances of recovery are good.
Need help finding supportive care? Send us a message and we'll get back to you within 48 hours.