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My Moms death certificate reads heart failure.

The brain controls our breathing and heart function. There is a good video on utube. Put in ALZ and pick the video with the yellow brain. ALZ is different then other Dementias on how it effects the brain but My Mom pretty much followed this video. The brain dies in stages. The last stage effects the heart and breathing. When that part of the brain dies, the heart no longer gets the message to beat. So the patient dies.
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WillyB Jul 2019
Pls clarify the Youtube site to click there are so many
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I don't see why not! The brain is the in control of all the systems in the body.

Alz and some other dementias (depending which kind of dementia) builds up a kind of protein on the brain. These proteins interferes with the neurotransmitters making it where the brain can not communicate with the other parts of the brain as well as with other body systems. Therefore, leaving two possible outcomes:

1) The brain can not communicate to the heart to tell the heart to beat or at what rate to beat.

2) The protein builds up and spreads to the brainstem where our breathing, body temperature, heart rate is controlled and the person just simply passes away.

However, Vascular Dementia (VaD) is where the person has a damage heart usually due to Afib or CHF and the heart muscle gets weak and cannot pump blood throughout the body; therefore causing the brain to strive of O2, in which case, the brain starts to die, this causing strokes doing more damage to the brain making it harder to communicate with the other systems of body.

Sorry to say, no matter what kind of dementia a person has it is a death sentence.

And yes a person can die due to a broken heart it is called "broken heart syndrome." Although resreachers are still trying to understand all the ins and outs of Broken Heart Syndrome.

I don' t know about the article, but I do know about the disease of Alzheimer's and dementia and the role it plays on the physical body.

I hope this helped!
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Look up Takotsubo cardiomyopathy. Basically it is heart failure due to extreme stress such as loss of a loved one, surviving some earthly catastrophe, or stressful caring of someone else. This may be what you are asking about.
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Can you reference the article?
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I do not know about this, although there are two things I do know, my grandmother died of a broken heart exactly one month after my grandfather died. I also know that the nurse in the Hospice told me when I was ready to let my father go I should tell my father that and he died less than 20 minutes later.
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The brain controls your nervous system and coordinates activities of organs. Nervous system and cardio system work together. The vagus nerve runs from the brain to the heart, so yeah, the brain can direct the heart to slow the heart rate or increase it depending on vagal tone.. For example, sympathetic activation increases the heart rate, forcing out a larger volume of blood with each beat with greater strength.. result is increased blood flow to tissues when preparing to flee from attack.

The brain can also affect the cardio system (heart) by sending neurotransmitters like epinephrine/adrenaline.
Luckily the brain also controls the nerve fibers of parasympathetic responses 🙂

tldr: Brain surgeons and neuroscientists say YES.
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No, it can't. There is no mechanism in the brain that can send signals to the heart to stop in those suffering with dementia or in healthy people. Extreme stress can stop the heart beating as in "broken heart syndrome." This occurs when a surge of stress hormones cause short-term heart muscle failure.
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CaregiverL Jul 2019
Then I should’ve been dead long ago from the extreme stress of caregiving for 92 yo Dementia mother. Maybe it’s the daily aspirin keeping me alive?
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I'm not sure about that article. What I have read is that with dementia, as the brain cells die, they prevent the body from functioning properly. That's why when certain parts of the brain die, the patient can no longer swallow, walk or speak. In End stage, the part of the brain that tells the lungs to breath stops and the person stops breathing. I'm no expert, but, this is my understanding. Maybe, a medical person with chime in and clarify.
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anonymous896861 Jul 2019
You’re right, you know the basics. 🙂

Autonomic nervous system is the impulses from the central and peripheral nervous systems to smooth muscle and heart/cardio.. with somatic (voluntary) to skeletal muscles it affects the entire body.
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No, often enough there is NOTHING to shut down a tough heart. Long after the elder refuses to eat or drink, clamps shut their jaws with determination, the heart will continue to beat, often with just minimal water it will continue to struggle on. The heart is simply a mechanical pump. It has an electrical system to trigger beats and it is a muscle that stays either more or less strong dependent on our genes and our care of our body. If the heart weakens you will begin to see the consequent circulatory changes, the swelling of feet and legs with right heart failure, the fluid making breathing more difficult with fluid not being pumped adequately in the case of left heart failure. So it just depends. But our heart couldn't care less if our world is one of dementia or not. Oliver Sacks wrote some fascinating pieces on the brain that is "not like our normal brain". My brother's own descriptions of his hallucinations related in all likelihood to early onset Lewy's Body Dementia are quite fascinating. Their world is a world, just not OUR world, and very scary for us when we cannot communicate over the barriers. But I have never heard of a brain telling a heart what to do in any manner such as you mention. If you come across the article again I would love to read it.
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