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My father in law has moderate dementia. Occasionally, he will try to do something and it is like his brain freezes. For example, he was trying to get a drink. He will lift the glass halfway to his lips and then suddenly stop. You can tell he is struggling with trying to raise the glass. He purses his lips like he is waiting for the glass to rise to his lips. He will stay in this position for a minute or two. Then all of a sudden, it is like it didn't happen, he will continue to raise the glass, take a drink and set it back down. I have noticed this when he is reaching for something, eating, etc. It is like his brain stops communicating with his muscles and he just is frozen there until the command can continue. Anyone know what this is called, or what is causing it? I have asked his doctor and I don't think I am explaining it correctly, because they don't have an answer for me on what to do or what it could be. Or maybe there is nothing we can do and that is why they are not addressing it. Thanks for the help once again!

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I agree with everybody comment, go gethim checked with neuro Doctor full examine of hisbrain.
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Could be just another Alz brain fart. Brain hits a blank spot and forgets what he was doing.

I really need to say this: My participation and posts are for informational purposes only. I assume no responsibility for accuracy.
Now I feel better {grin}
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No doctor on the planet should be scratching his head on this symptom. It's a common symptom of Parkinson's Disease. The cause is unknown. Dopamine may alleviate it.
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Sounds like he is not getting enough dopamine which regulates the autonomic responses. His brain chemicals are having trouble communicating and this is normal for a brain with dementia. Just love him and wait for his brain to start again.
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I agree about continuing consultations, and I think the getting a video of it is a great idea - a picture is worth a thousand words when you're trying to explain what's happening.

The automatic, everyday tasks we do, like drinking, walking, reading, everything… when you break them down into their component parts, they're actually quite complicated. When you pick up a glass of water and take a sip, you have to co-ordinate a complex set of physical and mental actions. Some of them are reflex, some of them are learned; but if any one of them is affected by brain problems the whole project can go awry. I'm not confident that this is a helpful way to look at it - I must admit I find it a bit alarming, sometimes - but on the other hand, as you say, it's best to know where you are.

What to do about it? While you're waiting for further medical opinions and possible alleviating medications, this is what I do when my mother gets stuck (stuck is a good word for it!): stand by and only intervene in a way that gives her a little extra time to recall what she needs to do. So with his glass, for example, if he looks as if he might drop it, just minimally hold it steady for him but don't take it away or do any more to help him to drink. The aim is just to buy them a little extra time, or provide the minimum prompt to let them complete a task by themselves. You're kind of bridging the neural gaps, so to speak.
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Good suggestions but you need a neurologist as suggested for a diagnosis. the Dr is not adressing it because he has no idea what is going on. You probably can get a diagnosis but it will involve expensive testing like MRI and CT scan. Is this expense something FIL with dementia can pay for, even specialized blood tests can cost hundreds and unless he has Medicaid Medicare will only cover 80% of the cost unless he has additional insurance and even then the insurance may refuse to approve some tests. Treatment of course will depend on the diagnosis and will also be possibly expensive and then there is the problem of a demented elder being or even wanting to be complient.
Pam's suggestions of absense seizures is a good one and without any tests this can safely be treated with anti seizure medications which will be inexpensive and not harmful. may make him sleepy. DO NOT LET HIM DRIVE.
A visit to a good neurologist is a good start and after that you can decide what if any further investigations would be helpful for FIL. You did not mentions tremors so parkinsons is unlikely so weigh the beneftits of extensive testing with possible treatments and go from there
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I agree it sounds like Parkinsons. If the doctor can't understand your description try getting a video of it. I think this calls for w neurologist.
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I have been told by the home that from time to time my mom can be walking and then suddenly she cannot move her legs. Very worrying
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Sounds like an absence seizure and he definitely needs a good Neurologist. A good workup would include brain imaging and an EEG.
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Sounds like Parkinson's disease. See what a neurologist says. Good luck. If a Dr is ignoring you, find another Dr.
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