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My Mom is 90yo and in late Stage 5 to Stage 6 ALZ disease. As I'm setting up her meds for the day I ask myself why are we giving her all these meds. Why are we treating her high blood pressure, anemia, high cholesterol, low thyroid, dementia etc. The prospect of living long enough to die of ALZ disease sounds almost worse than dying of any of the number of chronic health problems that almost routinely affect the elderly. Does anybody else think this is nuts or just me? Don't worry, I won't stop Mom's meds because I know she would want to take them as the doctor ordered.

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We're with a geriatric doc now and mom's actually on a few more than she was with the old doc. Would love to take her off a few but as things are not crazy right now will wait to bring up the subject.
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Thanks to all of you for your input, much appreciated. I will be discussing this with her doc.
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Gradually, over the past few years, we have examined each and every prescription and finally, at this point, mom is not taking any prescription drugs. Several of them had side effects of dizziness and she was beginning to fall occasionally. She just takes some vitamins and minerals to supplement deficiencies and seems to be going strong still. Been a while since she's fallen. *Crossed fingers*

Her former doctor was a pill pusher, and I knew it. But she liked him and had been going to him for a while. When we moved her in with us, we got her a local doctor, a geriatrician, and we discuss the pros and cons and I like that, rather than him having a superiority complex, better living through chemistry attitude.

Talk to the doctor. Namenda and Aricept are not intended to be long-term treatments. You cannot cure dementia. I think I remember someone saying 3 years maximum? I might be wrong about that, but it's been several years since mom was on either of those. Feel free to disagree with me, won't hurt my feelings, LOL.
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Doctors often forget all the Rx's they have written and they absolutely will not stop Rx's written by other doctors. So you make a list of all the meds, with dosage, frequency and how long she's been on them. You go over them one by one with the primary MD and decide (yes YOU decide) which ones are NOT helpful.
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My 96 yo mother had a stroke on Monday. On Tues. the doctor ordered 15 tests to be run. I knew Mother's wishes and we refused all tests. I am with you. There is no need for some of those meds.
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I think treating the anemia or thyroid problems would improve her quality of life. The other stuff needs to be examined. If she is stage 6 I'm pretty sure anything to treat her dementia stopped working long ago. I was very resistant when my mom's new doctor started decreasing her b.p. meds and took her off cholesterol medications, I was afraid she would have a stroke and end up in even worse shape. To my surprise the doctor was right, mom just keeps on going like the energizer bunny.
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No, she's not being treated by a geriatrics doctor. She has been on this stuff for years for these chronic conditions. Her doc is very aware that we also believe less is best when it comes to meds. I think it is just very hard for him not to treat these chronic conditions. Years ago before Mom developed ALZ dz it was appropriate to treat these chronic conditions, but now I wonder. Thanks for your idea about the note. I think I might send him a letter before our next visit and let him know how Mom is doing and ask him about the meds. I have a hard time talking to him during the 15 minute office visit with Mom sitting there.
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Nojoy, I know exactly what you mean. My parents [mid 90's] are taking a whole array of different prescription pills plus a lot of over-the-counter vitamin pills... in my opinion it looks like way too many. And to think most of these pills do have some sort of side-effect..... then there are pills for the side-effects.

Next time your Mom is at her primary doctor, ask him/her if Mom needs all those pills. If your Mom takes multi-vitamin pills I would ask if those are really needed. Instead have your Mom take the vitamins that she is actually low on.
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Is she being treated by a geriatrics doctor? My mom's doctors' feeling is that less is more. Have a chat with her/him before her next visit, or send a note.
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