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Old 04-12-2007, 09:33 AM   #1
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Question about diagnosis

My husband's grandfather was diagnosed 3.5 years ago with Alzheimer's disease. We haven't seen one bit of decline in him but figured maybe his case was just "slower moving." Well, then he went to the ER for some reason and they started running tests. A doctor came to see him to discuss the results and grandpa told the doctor he had AD. The doctor asked him who told him that and grandpa said his primary doctor did. So the ER doc asked how long ago and by what tests did they determin it and grandpa said 3.5 years ago and he didn't remember the exact tests or if there were ANY, but that they did an X-Ray or CT scan of his brain and had determined it had "shrunk." The ER doc said, "You don't have AD."

Grandpa is on some medication for AD and is convinced that he has the disease. From what we can tell, he is occasionally forgetful but he still seems like his old self. And who doesn't get forgetful with age, right? I've told grandpa I think he needs another opinion...

I don't know anything about the disease but does it seem weird that he was diagnosed with this and nothing seems to have changed? Does the disease move slowly like this?

Thanks in advance for any responses.

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Old 04-12-2007, 11:27 AM   #2
Martha H
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Re: Question about diagnosis

Be glad if it isn't AD! Mostly it does move slowly, but noticeably. As far as I know there is no definitive test to diagnose it until after death, but MRI and CT Scans are used to rule out OTHER causes of dementia such a blood clots or bleeding or tumors in the brain.

If your Dad accepts that he has AD but does not show any worsening, he may not have it. In my experience people with this condition do not believe it! They think they are perfectly rational, and what is the matter with everyone esle out there? My Mom had an argument about which color traffic light means stop and which means go, and she was sure she was right . (she was not.)

Just be happy your Dad is OK. Maybe you could contact the doctor who orignally diagnosed it and tell him or her that your dad has not changed at all in all those years. Getting a second opinion is always a good idea.

Good luck!

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