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My husband was diagnosed 14 years ago by a neurologist. since then 6 or 7 neurologists have confirmed his diagnosis. He has been on medication and has had test after test and rehab . he has vascular dementia and alzhiemer's. Last month I went to see the neurologist who has been prescribing his medication for ten years and he says to me that he doesn't think my husband has dementia he thinks he is paranoid and doesn't like me. I almost fell off the chair. my husband cannot do a lot of the things he used to do. he cannot remember a lot of the people he knew. he mixes everything up and doesn't know what he is doing at times. I am stumped. by the way he is the only person who has. doesn't he realize this gives me false hope? the other doctors say he is wrong. I am angry if he felt this way why did he wait ten years? he says he bases it on the fact that he will not go for a psychiatric examination. does he realize how hard it is to get him to agree to see any doctor? I need advice. I have two doctors saying he is not capable of handling affairs, he is still working on last year's income tax. and an attorney who told me to handle the finances because he was being conned constantly and I was having to undo everything. has anybody else had this type of experience?

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my background is psychology. my husband does have dementia. my confusion is why is his doctor acting this when all the other doctors care that he is under agree with the original diagnosis. he has had 8 tias and strokes he has temporal lobe damage. my question is how does this doctor change his diagnosis after all these years when he is going down hill right in front of my eyes? my reality is that the doctor has a problem.? needless to say I am getting a new neurologist. thank you very much for your support at this moment. I was blaming myself for picking the doctor. ty very..
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The "average" life expectancy of someone with vascular dementia is about 4 years. For Alzheimer's it is 8 to 10 years. There are many many exceptions to this average, of course, but since your husband was diagnosed 14 years ago it is not surprising that the diagnosis is being re-evaluated.

Clearly your husband is cognitively impaired. Paranoia can certainly be part of dementia, but it can also occur outside of dementia. I think at this point it behooves you to get him in to see a geriatric psychiatrist, no matter what you have to do to get him there. You may get more clarity in the diagnosis and an adjustment to the treatment plan.

For the sake of finding your husband incompetent, it doesn't really matter if he has dementia or some other cognitive limitation. If he can't handle his affairs, he can't handle his affairs. How to get legal control of financial decision-making is something to discuss with the lawyer, regardless of your husband's diagnosis.

Why would a doctor treat a patient as if he has dementia for 10 years and then change his mind? Dementia tends to follow certain patterns and develop in certain ways over time. Perhaps he fit the pattern for the early stage but ten years later the changes are not consistent with the diagnosis. Perhaps some of the vast increase in our knowledge about dementia in the last ten years has influenced the neurologist. Or perhaps the doctor is slipping and has problems of his own! But the "second opinion" you need is from a psychiatrist, preferably a geriatric psychiatrist who has experience with dementia.

On the medical front, seek a psychiatric evaluation.

On the financial front, consult your lawyer about how to take charge of the household finances.
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What is your reality? Does husband exhibit classic sings of dementia? Memory bad, can't reason, messes up finances, needs help with simple tasks? It's been ten years? Regardless of what all these docs say if you have any understanding of dementia you will know if husband is affected. My Dad has refused any exams or testing for dementia but it's very clear to anyone he has all the symptoms.
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