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My mother on Thursday became very sick to her stomach and long story short turns out she has a bleeding ulcer. I found that out because they put a scope down her stomach. Now they gave her anesthesia and she has taken a turn for the worse as far as her cognitive functions. She was doing so well, yea she has vascular dementia, but she was doing great and was able to take care of herself. Now she has massive memory issues and after reading online about when people with dementia get anesthetized I'm afraid this may have pushed her to the point of no return. I pick her up tomorrow from the hospital and I'm hoping and praying once she is in familiar territory her brain will kick in. Anybody else have experience with this?Thanks for any input

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Now this is comming from someone who is terrified of the prospect of cateract removal, but usually no anesthetic is involved just a sedative and local anesthetic. After the proceedure most people wonder why they are scared!!!!!!!!
As far as being scoped again if she is not having symptoms or bleeding it really is up to you. GI specialist do like to stick their instruments in our orifaces. It is again usually done with sedation rather than anesthetic. What you have seen is very common amongst the elderly and my husband suffered severe weakness after his recent surgery. Your Mom seems to be well on the way to getting back to her normal self
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Glad to read your mom is bouncing back. According to WebMD, cataract surgery may be able to be done with just eye drop anesthesia. I'd consider that option, if it would work for your mom. Here's what they say about it:

Most cataract surgery is done using a topical anesthetic (eyedrops) or a local anesthetic. Local anesthetic may involve a sedative for relaxation followed by an injection beside, under, or inside the eye to deaden nerves and prevent blinking or eye movement during surgery.

General anesthetic may be needed for:

People with extreme anxiety that cannot be controlled with simple sedation or counseling.
People who are unable to follow instructions during surgery.
People who are allergic to certain local anesthetics.
People with other medical conditions that require the use of a general anesthetic.
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Glad to hear your Mom is feeling much better.

As for cataracts being removed, I wouldn't hesitate if all her doctors give the go ahead.... don't forget, her eyes are her life line to the world. I have read on these forums where it had done wonders for their elderly parents. Research it out. But if your Mom isn't a good candidate, then I wouldn't have it done.
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Well, she is home now and she has regained more of her faculties. I was worried mainly that she would wonder off, but my fears are alleviated more since I got her home. She really is not a social person and she was really uncomfortable in the hospital. She was a bit confused this morning when she woke up thinking she was home, but she soon realized she wasn’t. She has said many things to satisfy my concerns. She is acutely self-aware so this helps me at knowing she knows where she is and what’s she’s doing here. She was really happy to get in the house and see our dog. She was going to have her cataracts removed, but now me and my sister have opted to forgo that procedure because of the anesthesia’s effect on her. Maybe down the line later on, but I’m just not willing to take that chance having researched some much about its effect on the elderly and dementia. The doctor also wants to scope her again in 2 months for the ulcer, but again were going to opt out of that for fear of the anesthesia. This is what took Peter Falk to the advance stages. Thanks for all the input, it has been greatly appreciated.
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Anesthesia is always dangerous for the elderly and detrimental to their mental health if they have dementia. Some folks can bounce back, many cannot. It may take a while for her to get back to where she was.
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My mother had mild anesthesia two times when she had spinal blocks. Her mind was on another planet for 5 or 6 days the last time she had one. She didn't even remember those days. She returned to normal the next week. I hope it is this way for your mother.
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lpapagno, any time I have anesthesia my brain is in a fog for a couple of days. It depends on how long I was under. I remember reading somewhere for every hour one is under, it takes one month for each hour for the anesthesia to become totally removed from the body.
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DO NOT pick her up. Insist on talking to the discharge coordinator and get her to rehab for at least the 20 days allowed by Medicare. They are all too eager to push her out the door and say she is fine. You have a patient that needs 24/7 care.
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Anethesia is complicated; depending upon what kind, how long she was under, etc. Are you sure that you're going to be able to care for her at home? Are they recommending some rehab? If they are offering it, take it! It's a chance for mom to get stable before you go back to doing the caregiving; if she's entering a new phase of dementia, you may need more help than you've had in the past.
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