Kind of a cynical title, but I just got a call from my sister-in-law after she, another sister-in-law, and their mother had spent many hours in the hospital. My 92-year-old mother-in-law has senile dementia and has a great deal of trouble communicating about health issues. My wife and her sisters and one brother take turns providing 24/7 coverage so she can stay in her own home instead of a nursing home, and twice in the past month, my wife has noticed behavioral swings in her mother, general discomfort, etc, and has taken her to the hospital to be checked out. One visit resulted in a diagnosis of congestive heart failure (with Lasix prescribed, etc) and the other turned up a nasty urinary tract infection. Today, my wife and two of her sisters conferred, and decided to run her down to the hospital to be checked out. Lung X-rays have turned up what may be pneumonia, so the old girl is in for another round of tests tomorrow. I don't ever want to get so old that I am such a burden on my family. When she has lucid moments, she is very depressed about how accommodating her condition is taking her adult children away from their own families and spouses. When she is not lucid, she often complains that there are "too many people" coming and going, yet she keeps asking why more of her kids are not showing up for meals, etc. It's really sad.