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Do people smell strange right before they die?
Diet & Health / 11:22 PM - Saturday March 05, 2011

Do people smell strange right before they die?

I sit my grandmother. She is on hospice care. Can't move really. She has a catheter. We take really good care of her & keep her clean. Over the past couple of days every time I get close to her I notice a really odd smell. I've never been around a dying person before, so this is a new smell to me.

Is it a superstition, or true? I just have a weird feeling about this.

Update: March 06, 2011.
about her kidneys...the smell isn't even by the catheter bag at all. It's on her skin on her face, around her hair. It is the strangest thing...

- Asked by leander, A Hippie Chick, Female, 29-35, Artist / Musician / Writer

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my only opinion is the body is
going into (through) a stage.

the most sorrowful smell,(odor)
is death. i've been and can't say
more. peace. kitkat

- Response by kitkat19, A Thinker, Female, 56-65

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When your primary organs start shutting down toxins aren't removed from the body and they are secreted in perspiration. That's probably what you are smelling.

- Response by joybird, A Career Woman, Female, Who Cares?, Who Cares?

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Her kidneys might be shutting down and that smell would go thru the catherter.

- Response by frenchkiss49, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Tampa, Who Cares?

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It doesn't have to be near the catheter per sae, but it can still be the kidneys. As the body gets weaker and weaker and the kidneys start to shut down the toxins that are purged out of the body via the kidneys, liver and lungs begins to rise up to the surface and out of the skin. The skin is also a major elimination organ and it's also one of the last ways that the body removes them from inside when the main systems, such as the kidneys get weaker and begin to fail.

It could mean she's the end or just a systemic change overall. Either way all it really means is toxins are being eliminated via the skin as opposed to the kidneys. Have her checked out by a doctor if you suspect it's something more.

Hope she's alright!

- Response by richsifu, A Rebel, Male, 46-55, Science / Engineering

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Older people do have more dead skin. So that could be a cause.

- Response by diglebe2, A Guy Critical, Male, 36-45, Self-Employed

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