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Mom went from walking to using a walker to a wheelchair in 6 months. Now she can barely life her feet up.

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Patience..... Hospice told me that the physical therapist could come in and massage his legs and get the blood flowing. His legs are so weak. I ordered a wheel chair so I can get him to the beach and let me continue with my walking. NOT ON SAND.... He is getting weaker but I want to get him out into the sun.
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My mom is going through this right now. And it is happening fast! A month ago she was of sound mind. Today she her dementia has kicked in full force! She was walking, then shuffeling, then walker and now wheelchair. Short term memory is the worst because she can't remember that she can't walk!! She has been in rehab since her last fall but they are releasing her this Saturday to come back to my home. I am beyond stressed about this. I keep having to take deep breaths or I think I might have a heart attack!! I do feel like sometimes it is my fault but the reality is it is not. It is a sick disease. She also has colon cancer. About the coconut oil. How do you give it to them? I use coconut oil for so many thing and am exited to give some to mom to see if it helps.
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US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health Drugs Aging. 1999 Jul;15(1):15-28.

Drug-induced cognitive impairment in the elderly.

Moore AR1, O'Keeffe ST.
Abstract

Elderly people are more likely than younger patients to develop cognitive impairment as a result of taking medications. This reflects age- and disease-associated changes in brain neurochemistry and drug handling. Delirium (acute confusional state) is the cognitive disturbance most clearly associated with drug toxicity, but dementia has also been reported. The aetiology of cognitive impairment is commonly multifactorial, and it may be difficult to firmly establish a causal role for an individual medication. In studies of elderly hospital patients, drugs have been reported as the cause of delirium in 11 to 30% of cases. Medication toxicity occurs in 2 to 12% of patients presenting with suspected dementia. In some cases CNS toxicity occurs in a dose-dependent manner, often as a result of interference with neurotransmitter function. Drug-induced delirium can also occur as an idiosyncratic complication. Finally, delirium may occur secondary to iatrogenic complications of drug use. Almost any drug can cause delirium, especially in a vulnerable patient. Impaired cholinergic neurotransmission has been implicated in the pathogenesis of delirium and of Alzheimer's disease. Anticholinergic medications are important causes of acute and chronic confusional states. Nevertheless, polypharmacy with anticholinergic compounds is common, especially in nursing home residents. Recent studies have suggested that the total burden of anticholinergic drugs may determine development of delirium rather than any single agent. Also, anticholinergic effects have been identified in many drugs other than those classically thought of as having major anticholinergic effects. Psychoactive drugs are important causes of delirium. Narcotic agents are among the most important causes of delirium in postoperative patients. Long-acting benzodiazepines are the commonest drugs to cause or exacerbate dementia. Delirium was a major complication of treatment with tricyclic antidepressants but seems less common with newer agents. Anticonvulsants can cause delirium and dementia. Drug-induced confusion with nonpsychoactive drugs is often idiosyncratic in nature, and the diagnosis is easily missed unless clinicians maintain a high index of suspicion. Histamine H2 receptor antagonists, cardiac medications such as digoxin and beta-blockers, corticosteroids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents and antibiotics can all cause acute, and, less commonly, chronic confusion. Drug-induced confusion can be prevented by avoiding polypharmacy and adhering to the saying 'start low and go slow'. Special care is needed when prescribing for people with cognitive impairment. Early diagnosis of drug-induced confusion, and withdrawal of the offending agent or agents is essential.
PMID: 10459729 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]



By Sarah Knapton, Science Editor
© Copyright of Telegraph Media Group Limited 2015
4:22PM GMT 26 Jan 2015

Over-the counter hayfever tables, sleeping pills or asthma drugs significantly raise the risk of developing dementia, a study has shown.
Taking a daily dose of pills like Benadryl, Piriton and Nytol, for at least three years, can increase the chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease by more than 60 per cent.
Researchers at the University of Washington said pensioners taking over-the-counter drugs should tell their doctors and stop taking medication immediately if it is not needed.
The drugs are known as ‘anticholinergics’ which work by blocking acetylcholine, a chemical involved in the transmission of electrical impulses between nerve cells. People with Alzheimer's disease are known to lack acetylcholine and it is feared the pills may exacerbate or trigger the condition.
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Dana, I learned in an Alzheimer's caregiving course a few years ago that there is another method to diagnose Alzheimers besides autopsy. It's through a spinal tap.
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Jess & Johnjoe, thanks for the coconut oil advice! Sounds promising.
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Interesting post, Sivasdad. Kudos to you in your persistence identifying his real condition. I wonder how many people are incorrectly diagnosed with AD. I believe the only truly accurate diagnosis of AD is autopsy. Someone correct me if I am wrong. I've been told to fight the Alzheimer diagnosis as they get "categorized". Oregongirl, I thought Johnjoe made a great suggestion to talk to your dad's doctor separately. Some doctors do not want to agitate patients by discussing in great detail what is potentially ahead of them when there is nothing they can do about it, especially if the patient doesn't pursue or understand the discussion. My own father still denies he has vascular dementia, denies he had a stroke, even though we have the hospital and rehab paperwork to prove it. It is hard for him to walk now but we ask him to try short trips and try to divert him because we know you lose it when you don't use it. His dementia has not been a constant downward plunge. He has plateaued a few times. Still eats well (with company) but we have to remind him because he has no natural hunger and time means nothing.
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My FIL (age 88) had mild dementia then went down hill rapidly - within 6 months, he could barely walk, complaining that his feet were sticking to the floor. It looked just like that too. Confusion, imbalance, falls, worse memory, urinary urgency. After several fumbled doctors visits we found out it was "normal pressure HYDROCEPHALUS". The fluid on his brain was not able to drain naturally and so his brain was under pressure. Everything was getting much worse quickly. He is 3 weeks post-op from getting a shunt put in his brain to drain the fluid continuously. The difference is night and day! He is walking confidently upright instead of needing a transport chair and also has much less urination urgency (it typically makes you incontinent). He is thinking clearer and involved in conversation again. Oh yes, they found a bladder infection while in the hospital so treated that too. Read about the symptoms online, it's pretty clear.

He's coming home from rehab tomorrow where he had 5-6 days of physical therapy where they evaluated what we could expect from him once he got home. We are looking forward to see how he does in this new state of mind and body!
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Hi Sendme2 help: I give coconut oil to My Mother Who's 86 years, and suffers from A/Zs these last 21/2 years. I give Mum a soup spoon full in Her food every day, + I take coconut oil Myself, as I'm dreadfully afraid of contracting this awful disease as well. ( HAS COCONUT OIL HELPED HER CONDITION?) Well I believe it has. When We Love Some One, We must TRY every thing.
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Sendme2help
We both take 2 tbs of virgin coconut oil at breakfast and supper. I use it cooking instead of butter or cooking oil. My wife usually sops up her oil with toast/bread, but we also use it on hot and cold cereal and as a salad dressing (with vinegar). I use it my coffee. Fruit smoothies work good. The oil is essentially tasteless and turns liquid at 76 degrees. I often take it straight from a spoon, but my wife doesn't like the oily feeling. An internet search for coconut oil recipes will turn up many. Dr Fife at coconut research center.org has good general info on the health benefits of the oil.

I credit it with significant improvement for my wife's dementia, not only balance, but also awareness and speech.
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Jess, what exactly do you do with the coconut oil, take some orally; use it for massage? My husband helps a patient with Parkinson's, who freezes up and cannot move.
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From a therapy point of view, I look at Alzheimer's as the lights are slowly (sometimes rapidly)being turned off in the house. Many times the brain centers that send out signals don't function. Other times the "bridge of nerves" going from the command center to the legs or arms is malfunctioning. The comments about each person being different . . .we can all agree on that. If there is another disease process, like Parkinsons, the motor skills are even more affected. Blessings to each one of you (us, as I am caregiving also) as you provide the best care you can with the time you have.
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Lilly, I'd be interested in reading the sources which attribute Alzheimers to various chemicals. I've wondered about that myself. Do you have specific sources?

What do you think the health care system should be doing to provide more usable research on Alzheimers? Do you think it's a funding problem? Do you think there should be more clinical trials?
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My boss' wife had Alzheimer's for 15 years and was always able to walk about, even going up and down stairs.... he use to bring her to the office once in awhile up until a couple months of her passing.... thus, that tells me every case could be different.
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Some days the progression seems to be very severe, but then other days, she will appear better, but I know it's only temporary. I know how people say their loved one lived with dementia for many years, but I don't think that is likely for some of the people I have seen. From what I have read, the decline from diagnosis to death with Vascular dementia is quicker than with AD. If it's mixed, I'm not sure what that would mean.

I don't ever think it's my fault or anything I have done though. I'm not a guilt ridden person. I think that is a blessing as I read that guilt causes many people on this site to feel terrible. Thank goodness, I don't have that.

I do wonder about how I was initially so pleased that I have showed up on my cousin's door step and insisted she come to the door. I could have just left, but I stayed for over an hour to get her to the door. If I had not stayed, I don't think she would have made it through the night. I got her medical attention, food, fluids, cool air, and into a facility. I wonder if my rescue was that wise. I saved her, but to a life that she never envisioned. She has few memories, can't walk, is double incontinent, and will never get any better. I don't feel guilty, because I did what I thought was right at the time.
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Hello Oregongirl, My own Mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's two years ago, and I noticed that the Geriatrition would not answer My query's in the presence of My Mum, so I made an appointment to see Him on My own. Alas the Doctor gave Me plenty time, and He answered all My questions thoroughly. He was really very helpful to Me, and even posted Me a book on the disease. My advise make an appointment to see the Doctor on Your own, then You will get all the Info You kneed.
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Our Health care system is not providing the public with ethical scrupulous medicsal research on Alzheimers. The medications are not helping and instead are causing more problems. The chemicsls in our food, water, medications cosmetics, hygene products are causing alzheimers disease and many other illnessess.
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Sunnygirl....You are right. I think the time has come for a wheelchair. He cannot hold up his weight. He sleeps all the time. He seems to be going downhill SO FAST. Does anyone feel like it is your fault that they seem to be going down so fast? I believe I am doing everything I can do. He has short (and I mean short) term MEMORY LOSS. But his long ago memories are solid. His speaking has gone downhill in two days. His appetite is almost nil. But, because he is so forgetful, he will eat even tho he may not be hungry. BUT then suddenly, he will wake up and stay awake for a couple of hours. His lips are moving but I hear no sound. He talks to the wall. He is not the man he was even a week ago. I hope he goes and does not stay like this for years.
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It is my understanding that most dementia patients will eventually lose their ability to move at all. My loved one has Vascular dementia mixed with AD. She went from a cane to a walker, to a wheelchair within 3 months. She was falling a lot, had terrible balance and then just got to the point she was not able to carry her own weight. She does use her feet quite well to propel herself along in her wheelchair. Most of the time she has lost the memory of how to use her hands to propel the wheels. She can do it, if I show her, but she will forget within minutes.

Sometimes, the progression can occur quickly, especially, with Vascular. While being in the wheelchair is not ideal, it does offer her the chance to avoid falls. When she was walking, her balance was so poor that she would fall over very easily. She sustained a fractured spine and hand when she was trying to walk. Sometimes, it's just too risky and isn't safe.
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to oregongirl, maybe its about time to change to a new doctor, they are supposed to be helpful, sounds like he does not car.
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Well, we have the most unusual Parkinson doctor. When we visited him yesterday I wanted more answers. Do you find that the doctors just won't discuss the situation in front of the patient? I see he is getting worse and today we are going to his primary doctor regarding his cough. Last night it was horrible and this morning he is NOT coughing. The doctor is going to think I am an idiot. But, I was worried about phenmonia. I finally (in front of the Parkinson doctor), said, I really want to know more about where he is at in this disease. SILENCE... Very nice Dr., but I just don't get the silence. (See you in 3 months). WHAT?
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My wife went from walking, to shuffling, to needing a walker, in about 9 months. The neurologist prescribed Namenda, and about a month later, we started coconut oil. Two months later,she is back to walking without help, although still needs a handrail for steps.

My personal view is the coconut oil was a major factor in the improvement.
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I am not sure that it is a technically defined result of Alzheimer's Disease, but I can tell you that losing the ability to walk and losing practically all his motor skills is what happened to my father during the progression of this disease.

We kept Dad at home as long as possible. My mother, my husband, and I shared caregiving responsibilities. After about three years, his walking started to decline. He shuffled. He stumbled. Even with his walker, he fell. Eventually, he could no longer walk. The three of us got to where we couldn't lift him anymore. We couldn't get him out of his chair and onto the toilet or turned over in bed to clean him. He became immobile and incontinent. Many other symptoms of the disease manifested, and we had to place him in a care facility. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do! He died of Alzheimer's Disease after one year in the care facility. I truly hate this disease (as I do all diseases).

I will be thinking of you and your family at this difficult time.
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My mom had Lewy body dementia and Parkinsons. her motor skills declined rapidly. She did get physical therapy in the home in an effort to keep her legs and arms as strong as possible. Once she was no longer able to stand, care taking became a two person job. There are exercises a physical therapist can show you to do each day to help. Good luck.
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My with alz used to be a great dancer(country style) now just shuffles seems to enjoy it but that is another part of this terrible journey.she is in a home now but is having a difficult time adjusting and wants to be in bed a lot.very hard on me as I sleep less than when I had her at home and it's so lonley
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I believe it is, my Mother has Frontal Temporal Dementia and also does not pick her feet up and has a bad shuffle. We have never used a walker because she can not focus enough to not be a danger. We use a wheelchair now anytime we are out and about for extended times.
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