Kind of a morbid question: With a slow death, is there any data or research on which of our senses fade away first / last?


6 Answers

Ancient Hippy Profile
Ancient Hippy answered

I'm not sure if there is any research done on that subject but my wife passed very slowly over a period of a few months. I know for a fact that feeling and giving love was the last sense that she lost.

PJ Stein Profile
PJ Stein answered

I would think it would depend on the cause of the slow death. My mother-in-law has several medical issues, one being COPD. The one that is causing her to lose a sense the fastest is macular degeneration, which isn't killing her, but is robbing her of her sight. (I am going to get preachy here...) The morale of the story of her life is don't smoke.

Tinkerbell St. Basil Profile

Not sure if it's true, but when my Mother was dying the nurses told me to constantly talk to her because she would hear me 'til her final breath. The first to go for her was taste. In the end, there was no more food and drink... Only morphine.

Didge Doo Profile
Didge Doo answered

I spent a lot of time with my father as he declined slowly over a six month period and was actually with him when he died. I can't recall any one of his senses failing first, or which one was the last to go. I know that his sight, hearing and touch were still fine; I can't comment on taste and touch.

That was more than 60 years ago so my recollection made be inaccurate, but I don't think so.

On the other hand, I'm 78 now. My eyesight is shot to bits, I'm as deaf as a post, and my smeller is on the fritz. Reversing the polarity of your question, could that mean that I'm dying and that only my touch and taste remain relatively intact?

Hmm. If I disappear from Blurtit in the next few days you'll know that's what happened. >:-(

Medic Sixonefour Profile

Going off on a less morbid tangent:

When you are coming to, after passing out, touch comes back first, then hearing, followed by sight.  Funny story, I'll tell you sometime.

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