I remember finding a tool on a canadian site years ago which gave an estimate, and I just googled 'alzheimer's calculator' and found another one.
I know it helps you going in to this if you have a realistic understanding of the duration and stages, but everyone is different. In our case, my SIL has proved the calculator wrong at every milestone - she reminds me of the Everready bunny
This will be quick as Im at work and busy, welcome to this board I read your
post about your mom moving closer to you and Im sorry for your situation. I decided to post a reply because of your last posting. I ask myself the same question on a daily basis. How much longer do we have to endure watching this happen to our mom as well as seeing her suffer, the answer (only God knows).... I wish I could tell you it will be over soon but it has been almost two and half years since mom's diagnosis medically as well as the time before that where we mostly overlooked the signs. Our Dad passed away from lung cancer and then it was really full blown. I kept my mom almost two years she has been in a NH now for nine months. I hate this dreaded disease and it just
continues to get worse all the time. All I can say is visit this post as much as
possible you will get strength here and all are welcome to vent etc.
Hi~ Mom2Mom, If you will go to Geriatric Medicine and then scroll down past Alzheimer's Assn on down to "Time-to-Death Prediction Calculator for Alzheimer's Disease, there specific questions that will be asked including age of patient, date of diagnosis, score on MMET test ~ the mini mental test neurologists use each visit, anda couple others. When you put in your answers it give you info regarding nursing home care time frame and potential expentency of life.
Some don't want to know, but even in stage 3/4 I wanted to know as I am such a planner. My husband is only 60 yrs old, retired at 58 because we knew the stress was causing problems, but was diagnosised this past spring after 18 months of going dr. to dr. with Alzheimer's Disease.
Just knowing a proximity of time has been helpful to me. They get their results from tests of many patients and have 25%, 50% and 75% patient results. I hope this is helpful to you, but as others have said, it seems no two patients are alike. Ann
I found those predictor charts to be very much on the short side. I know they are based on statistics, but in my experience patients who come in to Alzheimer's without other major health issues live much longer than the charts indicate.
My mother has already outlived her statistical life expectancy by many years. She is probably in Stage 7, with Stage 6 having lasted a year or so. She will almost definitely pass on within months, but this is a result of her heart problems, not AD.
Probably without the excellent care of the NH she would be gone already. Mom is on thickened liquids (imagine coffee and juice the consistency of thin Jello!) and pureed food, and often someone feeds her a few teaspoonsful when she has lost all interest in eating.
The longer Mom spends in this unresponsive stage, the more I try to focus on the 'real' Mom, as she used to be.
AD is a long, long, slow disease - which has both advantages and disadvantages. We do have plenty of time to prepare ourselves mentally for the person's death, but we also have to stand by and watch this total decline taking place.
Our battle with my FIL was 6 years. He did not enter into a nursing home until 1 year ago and recently passed away. We were told there was no time line. All I can say is that once he got to the end, it was quick and we were all caught off guard.
My dad has had AD for probably about 12 years now. It took him many years to progress to the mid stages. I believe dad is a stage 5 now. He's had very little decline in the last couple of years. This has been a very slow process for him so far.
On the other hand, my dh's uncle has had it about 5-6 years. But the last 3 years has seen him go from early/mid stages to the end stages now and he has just recently entered a nursing home.
So really I think it can be very different from person to person and case to case. That's why I really don't believe much in those "guesstimates". But that's just my opinion.
Thanks so much for the hope of a longer life for Dan. I appreciate your knowledge. Dan's in stage 3/4, but if we stay home and have a routine of doing exactly the same things everyday. Meaning, eating at the same time, watching the news, going for a walk, all on que, he almost acts like "he's back to normal". Predictability takes all the stress away ~ is this familiar to others at this stage. I just find if we vary our lives in the least it makes the AD show with asking the same questions and not knowing what day it is.
So therefore, repetition is a positive thing for him. Ann
Routine and consistency are probably the most important things for an Alzheimer's patient. Any kind of change is confusing and can be frightening. When my mother was first diagnosed, my internist, who is also Board certified in gerontology, told me that keeping a stable routine was the single most important thing I could do for my mother. I have found that to be true.
Yes, I agree. We had my FIL say the blessing at Thanksgiving one year and immediately afterwards, he had a mini stroke! No more blessing saying for him!! Even if he watches lots of football all day and gets too stimulated, he will have a mini stroke. We try to keep him on an even keel, but my husband likes to argue, so it's not good for those two to be together much. I''m the one who takes him places and we get along good. He has dementia from mini strokes. He turned 87 on Jan. 1st, so, Bless his heart, is hanging in there. Good luck to all and a good 2007. C