Why is cancer given so much support and dementia is ignored?

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AND no offfence to anyone whos suffered from cancer" Lots of ads on TV for cancer research or cancer support or charities i think this is great but why do we never see any ads for dementia help or support? and its true that people get more professional support for cancer than dementia? my mum was diagnosed a year ago and her own doc never calls to see why she hasnt been in or gives a hoot?

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I meant to say that in my husband's case.....meds could "NOT" touch the pain.
Last line should read......
"in our experience the type of suffering does not compare to that of cancer".
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Strictly from my own experience, cancer was much worse in every way. It is not my intent to downplay the horror of alzheimers but.........

My husband and I were extremely happy together. At age 49,. Bill was diagnosed with bladder cancer and we chased it round and round his body. Four years ago......... cancer finally killed him and the light went out of my life.
Watching Bill suffer in awful physical pain was torture.
For him and for me.
Meds could touch his excruciating pain. The cancer so compromised his digestive system that he was unable to metabolize pain meds. We had excellent staff and hospitals but they shook their heads sadly and said........"sorry" and then crept out of the room.
I compare that experience to.....
Fifteen months ago, I moved Bill's mother (Alzheimers into my house to care for her It's a given of course that our relationship is totally different. Soulmate husband vs MIL. Yikes!
Even so, addressing just the illness itself........cancer was far worse in our case.
My MIL is not in physical pain and I am not watching her writhe in agony. Can I say she is suffering emotional pain?........not so much. And a big thing here is that meds help her a lot - a far cry from physical agony.
Her world is mostly "all about her" A person could be bleeding on the floor beside the bed and her comment would be: "I want a cookie". or maybe " I'm cold." Alzheimers is horrible but in our experience, the suffering to be comparable to cancer.
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All good points but i suppose until we are ALL asked to sign a form that if we get this illness that we decide what happens to us things will not get better. My friends mum died after three years of lying brain dead in a bed my friend wanted the "peg" taken out but her siblings decided against it so docs decided 3 out of 4 they had no choice but to keep her mum "arificially" alive. My friend could tell even the docs found this heartbreaking and tried to convince the others to take out the peg but as you say the docs had to go with the majority decision. very sad i know my family would all agree to end this if that ever happened to my mum. I just feel that people get more support and help and sad to say sympathy when its "cancer" i know that cancer causes unbelievable pain and must be hard for anyone to see their parents like this but the suffering around dementia is just as bad and more longterm.
Lets just hope when most of us get older there will be an answer to this degrading illness. Sorry my point was that my friend has made a POA that if anything like this should happen to her that she would not be artificially kept alive. And shes only 35yrs old.
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Get a new physician.
Why is not Dementia studied?? It is, kind of....we have only just begun.... Why there are sites like this.
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Dusty and littledog hit the nail on the head. Follow the money. Huge money.
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Gees, I still have one more thing to say...sorry.

To add to the comments about prolonging life with Alzheimers, especially at a very older age and I'm talking about people who are in their 90s! I feel that if I suggested to the doctors we withhold pills, they'd call Department of Elder services! I was shocked when one psychiatrist, mentioned perhaps we should start to think about quality of life versus quantity! My mom wants pie, but she has diabetes. The doctor said to me let her have the pie. I still feel that if I let her have the pie and her blood sugar goes up, her kidneys fail more than they are failing, they'll put me in jail! That's how hard it is today. You're damn if you do, damned if you don't.

One example is recent. My mother recently moved in with me in another state. She saw a new physician who took her vitals, etc., etc. We made an appointment for two months. About a week or two ago, I got a phone call from the nurse stating the doctor wanted me to bring my mother in to recheck her blood pressure because she had just gotten the report from the doctor up north that stated her BP was lower (this was three months ago!) than it was when this new doctor checked it. She wanted to do a recheck.

I said, No, I'm not bringing her in (it's a 45 minute drive) and I'd check it myself. Since she has an appointment at the end of June anyway, why should we have to go all that way, have my mother upset (she hates doctors now) when the BP we were talking about wasn't really all that high in my opinion?

So, Thursday are the quarterly blood tests for A1C, kidney, etc., and the end of June for the regular quarterly exam. My daughter wonders why a person this age has to see the doctor so regularly, esp if she's not suffering. Her body is fine and at this rate, the doctors with their prescriptions and me with the diet could keep my mom going forever. But her brain is rapidly deteriorating. So I watch as she pretends to read her large print Reader's Digest (she has about 20% vision and I know she can't see it. I watch because she doesn't hear what's behind her, beside her, or in front of her. She nearly walked into a very huge book stand the other day. But 'I can see!'.....'I can hear!'...she just can't 'do' without aid.
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I don't know where you live, but here in AZ we have one of the most collaborative seven organizations and research institutes working on solving the Alzheimer's/dementia disease. There are walks for Alzheimer's and you can get their newsletter online just by going to alz.org. In 2050, there will be more people suffering from dementia than all the other ailments combined.
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To: Marialake: If only my own mother could express her feelings I should feel so fortunate. She believes that talking about death will result in death. She has signed only a health care proxy and that was done only after the state had taken over her care about a year ago, for about a month. It took me at least two weeks to gain control. The funny thing is what the state wanted to do is not what she would have wanted!

Your children are fortunate. Thank you so much for your post.
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Also, when I was studying elder care from the years 1995 through 2,000, my textbooks, which included psychology, sociology, bereavement, grief, etc., etc., were already connecting the dots. At the time, 'assisted living' was a new concept and people were starting to invest in the building of such facilities. One would have thought that in the fourteen years that have passed, we'd be further along than we are.

We're not. At least we're not there yet for those I would classify as middle-lower class income people. Sure, there are assisted living facilities for those who can afford large entry fees and larger rents each month, but not so much for those who are middle-lower income.

Money talks. Plain and simple. And yes, we are a capitalist society and I like it that way, however, it does tend to leave out the lower class, like my mother, who is of the WWII generation, i.e., 91. Her income is social security and my dad's retirement (141 per month) after having worked 50 odd years. She gets Social Security, i.e., $1300 plus change, of which money is taken out for medical care. Try living on that for a month. I can't. If it weren't for me, where would she be? Sure, Medicaid will take care of her, but in what type of facility and with what type of care? Horror stories abound. Not complaining, no need for an answer, just putting in my two cents here. She's comfortable here, she's well cared for with me, but I wonder about others.
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I'd like to add to this and ask, Why are sexual aids, i.e., Viagra and now we see meds for older women who are having problems with 'sexual intercourse (can you imagine having a child under the age of 5 hearing this and asking whomever he's in the room with, "Daddy, Mommy, what is 'sexual intercourse?"!) now advertised so outwardly by drug companies, but dementia ignored?

The reason is the drug companies make lots and lots of monies by developing and selling these drugs.

As for Cancer, it was the illness de jour for the past thirty years, so there are more and more drugs for this. In 1981, when my MIL was having symptoms of what I used to call 'Alzheimers' (everyone thought I was crazy at the time) there was virtually nothing written about dementia and/or Alzheimers. Today, it's more mainstream and drug companies are working on it because it's starting to affect the baby boom generation, the largest generation to come in the history of this country.

So, hopefully this will answer your question. It's all in the numbers and that includes the money numbers.

Each time I see ads for these sexual wellness medications, I wonder, What about those with MD, Parkinsons, Dementia, Alzheimers? What about those with diseases that we never hear of? And the answer always comes, it's about the numbers.
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