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Alzheimers; a right bastard

Currently observing SWMBO's godmother dying slowly of Alzhemers in a care home. She will recognise someone occasionally (usually her own husband / kids but few other people). She is bed bound and has lost most of her power of speech. She is doubly incontinent and requires 24/7 care.

If this happens to me I would be very grateful if someone would please administer 265 grains of lead alloy via the mess Webley.
 
Currently observing SWMBO's godmother dying slowly of Alzhemers in a care home. She will recognise someone occasionally (usually her own husband / kids but few other people). She is bed bound and has lost most of her power of speech. She is doubly incontinent and requires 24/7 care.

If this happens to me I would be very grateful if someone would please administer 265 grains of lead alloy via the mess Webley.
Said the same to my Doris. My father is the middle stages of Alzheimer's, I have a few years to go before I reach the age that he first showed signs of it, none the less its tragic to see him slowly lose all sense of time and reality. He still retains his sense of humour, but the circle of questions to who you are, who is your wife, what's your children's name's? is a never ending circle of the same questions. I have his discharge papers from 1947. Sgt R.A. signaller. 26th regt. R.A. Burma.
 

StBob072

LE
Book Reviewer
It's so sad to read some of the posts on here, but also heartwarming to read that the ARRSE community is upholding the family values that the Army breeds into us. I for one am heartened at the responses made to posts from folks going through agonies similar to me and Mrs Dave - thank you everyone, they are really appreciated.

Anyway, update on my post 142
Mid-June we were surprised to receive a letter from the neurological department with an appointment for further tests. Off we went and the consultant showed us the results of the scan and showed us how the cerebro-spinal fluid had affected Mrs Daves brain. He gave her either the MMSE test* or the Addenbrooke Test** which resulted in her getting a few of her answers incorrect. She was then subjected to a walking distance/time test whereby her gait was also measured.

All in all it was a totally different experience to the first meeting with the young doctor - it was conducted with humour, caring and was totally professional. The consultant was patient, answered all our queries and put Mrs Dave totally at ease.

As a result of the tests Mrs Dave has a pre-Op scheduled for this coming Monday, the following Monday (16th) she will be admitted for a procedure whereby they will drain spinal fluid over a certain time period and assess her again with the MMSE/Addenbrooke Test and the walking test. They will then compare the results with those taken at the first session in mid-June. Her stay in hospital may be two or three days, of which she is terrified as she is hospital-averse.

If there is a noticeable change in her demeanor they will then admit her to fit a gadget in her head which will drain the fluid and empty it into the stomach whereby it will disperse naturally.

One big problem - she has just said "I don't think I'll attend the pre-Op on Monday as its too hot!!!"

It looks as though it is going to be a struggle to get her to attend both appointments but I'm sure we will succeed.

For those interested, see here -
* MMSE test - Mini–Mental State Examination - Wikipedia

** Addenbrooke Test - Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination - Wikipedia

I'll give you an update as and when.
I really hope this is a breakthrough for Mrs Dave, and the benefits outweigh her anxiety about hospitals.



Best of luck to you both.
 
 
Certainly the only thing my Mum reacts to now is music. She was a rather good chorister in her time; (English baroque Choir at the Albert Hall amongst others), and she sings along happily to tunes that she knows when she's in the mood. She likes "Singing in the Rain" a lot and some Gilbert and Sullivan. Anything she doesn't know is a waste of time.
 
Certainly the only thing my Mum reacts to now is music. She was a rather good chorister in her time; (English baroque Choir at the Albert Hall amongst others), and she sings along happily to tunes that she knows when she's in the mood. She likes "Singing in the Rain" a lot and some Gilbert and Sullivan. Anything she doesn't know is a waste of time.
This is something that is really noticeable when I take a service once a month at the local care home. Various residents who couldn't tell you what they had for lunch, or even their own names hear old, familiar hymns and are still able to join in. (albeit not very well but............)

It is rather strange what can act as a memory trigger, I was with one lady in her late 90's who really has no clue what is going on. Her son had sent her a picture of a dance at the local RAF camp taken in the early 1950's. She could name every person on the picture and often tell me a bit about them. Interestingly, each time she looked at the picture it was as if she was seeing it for the first time.
 
It's so sad to read some of the posts on here, but also heartwarming to read that the ARRSE community is upholding the family values that the Army breeds into us. I for one am heartened at the responses made to posts from folks going through agonies similar to me and Mrs Dave - thank you everyone, they are really appreciated.

Anyway, update on my post 142
Mid-June we were surprised to receive a letter from the neurological department with an appointment for further tests. Off we went and the consultant showed us the results of the scan and showed us how the cerebro-spinal fluid had affected Mrs Daves brain. He gave her either the MMSE test* or the Addenbrooke Test** which resulted in her getting a few of her answers incorrect. She was then subjected to a walking distance/time test whereby her gait was also measured.

All in all it was a totally different experience to the first meeting with the young doctor - it was conducted with humour, caring and was totally professional. The consultant was patient, answered all our queries and put Mrs Dave totally at ease.

As a result of the tests Mrs Dave has a pre-Op scheduled for this coming Monday, the following Monday (16th) she will be admitted for a procedure whereby they will drain spinal fluid over a certain time period and assess her again with the MMSE/Addenbrooke Test and the walking test. They will then compare the results with those taken at the first session in mid-June. Her stay in hospital may be two or three days, of which she is terrified as she is hospital-averse.

If there is a noticeable change in her demeanor they will then admit her to fit a gadget in her head which will drain the fluid and empty it into the stomach whereby it will disperse naturally.

One big problem - she has just said "I don't think I'll attend the pre-Op on Monday as its too hot!!!"

It looks as though it is going to be a struggle to get her to attend both appointments but I'm sure we will succeed.

For those interested, see here -
* MMSE test - Mini–Mental State Examination - Wikipedia

** Addenbrooke Test - Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination - Wikipedia

I'll give you an update as and when.
I wish you both well my friend.
 

StBob072

LE
Book Reviewer
Certainly the only thing my Mum reacts to now is music. She was a rather good chorister in her time; (English baroque Choir at the Albert Hall amongst others), and she sings along happily to tunes that she knows when she's in the mood. She likes "Singing in the Rain" a lot and some Gilbert and Sullivan. Anything she doesn't know is a waste of time.
Yep, same here!

Music and poetry are the last things to go, thank whatever God that my family were blessed with the gift of music.
 
....and here is the latest update on The Saga of Mrs Dave and Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus -

On Monday after some 8/9 hours in the Admittance Ward whereby the drain was fitted to her spine to draw the fluid from her brain, The Boss was finally found a bed on a recovery ward. Over the period of 3 days an amount of cerebro-spinal fluid was drained from her head and this lunchtime she was tested on her walking, balance, memory and speelung (ie, how do you spell "world" backwards!!).

She is now home and at the moment appears to be more "with it", her memory has improved, her walking is better but not vastly improved and her general demeanour is very good.

We are going to have a chat about the fitting of the shunt from her brain down to her stomach and if she is OK with the op, she'll be admitted in about 3 weeks. She'd better agree to the op, otherwise she'll go back to the Dark Times.

All in all a very successful operation and it gives us great hope for the future. Considering that she was rapidly going downhill in the last few months and the girl I married was disappearing forever to get some of her back is wonderful - if she agrees to the shunt she should be brought back totally.

The success of this procedure is a great advertisment for the NHS and their solving of this type of dementia and hopefully the advancements can be brought into other types of dementia.

Our youngest visited with me yesterday and as he was leaving the ward he was rather dismayed that half the ladies in the ward were younger than him - he's 36. Whatever their problems, it shows that this type of problem is not age-related.

The staff were wonderful, very caring and extremely professional. Having to deal with Mrs Daves situation and the 5 others on the ward, all with different problems, their attitude was exceptional.

Here's hoping for a resolution in three weeks.

Thanks for listening

Dave
 
All the best with that.
Not much else I can say.
When the dark days arrive, log in here and we'll insult you ;)
 
....and here is the latest update on The Saga of Mrs Dave and Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus -

On Monday after some 8/9 hours in the Admittance Ward whereby the drain was fitted to her spine to draw the fluid from her brain, The Boss was finally found a bed on a recovery ward. Over the period of 3 days an amount of cerebro-spinal fluid was drained from her head and this lunchtime she was tested on her walking, balance, memory and speelung (ie, how do you spell "world" backwards!!).

She is now home and at the moment appears to be more "with it", her memory has improved, her walking is better but not vastly improved and her general demeanour is very good.

We are going to have a chat about the fitting of the shunt from her brain down to her stomach and if she is OK with the op, she'll be admitted in about 3 weeks. She'd better agree to the op, otherwise she'll go back to the Dark Times.

All in all a very successful operation and it gives us great hope for the future. Considering that she was rapidly going downhill in the last few months and the girl I married was disappearing forever to get some of her back is wonderful - if she agrees to the shunt she should be brought back totally.

The success of this procedure is a great advertisment for the NHS and their solving of this type of dementia and hopefully the advancements can be brought into other types of dementia.

Our youngest visited with me yesterday and as he was leaving the ward he was rather dismayed that half the ladies in the ward were younger than him - he's 36. Whatever their problems, it shows that this type of problem is not age-related.

The staff were wonderful, very caring and extremely professional. Having to deal with Mrs Daves situation and the 5 others on the ward, all with different problems, their attitude was exceptional.

Here's hoping for a resolution in three weeks.

Thanks for listening

Dave
Dave I can only send heartfelt wishes for a speedy recovery to your good lady.

And mega thanks to the hospital staff who have looked after her so well.
 

Auld-Yin

ADC
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Reviews Editor
....and here is the latest update on The Saga of Mrs Dave and Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus -

On Monday after some 8/9 hours in the Admittance Ward whereby the drain was fitted to her spine to draw the fluid from her brain, The Boss was finally found a bed on a recovery ward. Over the period of 3 days an amount of cerebro-spinal fluid was drained from her head and this lunchtime she was tested on her walking, balance, memory and speelung (ie, how do you spell "world" backwards!!).

She is now home and at the moment appears to be more "with it", her memory has improved, her walking is better but not vastly improved and her general demeanour is very good.

We are going to have a chat about the fitting of the shunt from her brain down to her stomach and if she is OK with the op, she'll be admitted in about 3 weeks. She'd better agree to the op, otherwise she'll go back to the Dark Times.

All in all a very successful operation and it gives us great hope for the future. Considering that she was rapidly going downhill in the last few months and the girl I married was disappearing forever to get some of her back is wonderful - if she agrees to the shunt she should be brought back totally.

The success of this procedure is a great advertisment for the NHS and their solving of this type of dementia and hopefully the advancements can be brought into other types of dementia.

Our youngest visited with me yesterday and as he was leaving the ward he was rather dismayed that half the ladies in the ward were younger than him - he's 36. Whatever their problems, it shows that this type of problem is not age-related.

The staff were wonderful, very caring and extremely professional. Having to deal with Mrs Daves situation and the 5 others on the ward, all with different problems, their attitude was exceptional.

Here's hoping for a resolution in three weeks.

Thanks for listening

Dave
Every so often we get posts which put life into perspective. Okay the banter is what we are here for but real life can be a bûgger.

Dave, let's hope that the next stage goes well and your good lady finds a good quality of life - for both of you.

All the best to you and your wife.
 
I'm back from France again, each trip costing a bundle in flights and lost income, but there it is. Dad got the French power of attorney at last and it has gone to Mum's bank in the hope that they will then release her finances to pay for her care. There may be a delay because the POA is of course in French legalese and I suspect they will reject it unless it has been translated by a certified translator. Yet more problems to be dealt with that could and should have been sorted out years ago.

Mum has gone downhill hugely since I last saw her 5 months ago. My father, sister and I saw her in the nursing home and she obviously had not the faintest idea who any of us were. Understandable enough for my sister and I but my father was quite taken aback and upset. She said later that she remembered him, but I think she was just being pleasant. She made no sense at all during the hour or so we were there and nodded off to sleep. She does almost nothing, takes no interest in anything and hardly even moves. The staff say she is happy, but they would say that, she eats and she sleeps. that is all.

I think the end may not be far away and part of me thinks that might not be a bad thing when it happens.
 
I think the end may not be far away and part of me thinks that might not be a bad thing when it happens.
That was pretty much how we felt when Dad had a stroke & died six days later without regaining consciousness.
His Alzheimers had been getting worse, he rarely recognised anyone & talked nonsense.
It was almost as if he'd died some 12 months previous & what went was just the body he'd once occupied.
 
Wife's godmother is hanging onto existence - I won't call it life as she no longer recognises her husband of 60+ years other than very occasionally ditto her son and daughter and then only for a few seconds at a time.

She is bed bound and essentially in a semi-vegetative (95+% vegetative) state.
Less than 3 years ago she was a sprightly and intelligent 85 year old who walked 3 miles daily, had written and published a book in her early 80s and had a keen interest in photography. We often communicated via email as she was profoundly deaf from her late 20s.

We, including her husband, are hoping that she will die soon.
 
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