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Old 11-16-2011, 02:19 AM   #1
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Question Fast moving AD

There is a case in my circle of friends here, a woman who was fine 3 months ago, then started acting 'strangely' and is now in a locked unit of an Alzheimer's Disease nursing home. No one I know has ever seen AD move this fast. Until 3 months ago she was still the sole caregiver of her handicapped daughter. Do any of you know of such a thing? It is very scary. The only more rapid type of Dementia I ever heard of is Kreuzfeld-Jakob's Disease, or Mad Cow Disease. But this has not even been suspected in her case. The lady is in her 60s.

Any information woud be appreciated.

Greetings to all my caregiving friends on HB!

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Old 11-16-2011, 11:40 AM   #2
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Re: Fast moving AD

That is fast!! And I hope she has a had a complete medical work up including brain scans and a referral to a neurologist. A tumor or subdural hematoma are the only two things I can think of and the subdural hematoma would have been quicker than 3 months.

I do know that Mom seemed to be doing ok until the weekend that Dad ended up in the hospital. Her's seemed to be a quick downward turn from that point when in fact it was her ability to cover up her inabilities prior to that point. That weekend was like hitting a wall.

I guess my question is what happened at that time.... and what medical evaluations she has had.

Love, deb

 
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Old 11-16-2011, 01:03 PM   #3
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Re: Fast moving AD

Good thoughts. I will tell my neighbor and find out what has been done. A couple of months ago the doctor diagnosed Alzheimer's Disease, and she was put in a nursing home. Just a few weeks later the NH said she was too far gone for their facility - wandering into other people's rooms, taking stuff, going outside - and needed to be in a place with a locked unit. I assume she has had all those tests but maybe I am wrong. I found out this morning that she is 62 years old. She is the sister in law of my friend ...

Martha

PS nothing traumatic happened except her husband retired, maybe she was pretty bad before then and he didn't notice???

Last edited by Martha H; 11-16-2011 at 01:05 PM.

 
Old 11-16-2011, 02:19 PM   #4
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Re: Fast moving AD

That could be possible Martha. I know that Mom was able to hide her inabilities for a long time. Even a year after diagnosis in 2006, some were saying she's "not that bad". She did go to AL for 18 months but that wasn't a good placement and they we were told they needed a more secure placement. To an outsider it looked like she dropped off the cliff between February and April of 2009... when in fact she had been on a slow decline since 2004. At some point it just hits what I call "Critical Mass" when the denial drops away and you have that OMG moment. Throw in the move to a facility which completely threw her off balance. She was functioning at home on past knowledge without having to create new memories. In a new living arrangement she lost her ability to function. I wish I knew how many times we admitted someone to AL only to find out quickly that they are not able to function in their new placement. The family assured us they were "fine" at home My best is this is probably what has happened. Hubby being home all day caused him to notice and it snowballed from there.

I would still insist on a head CT for potential tumors or bleeds

Love, deb

 
Old 11-18-2011, 08:30 AM   #5
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Re: Fast moving AD

I spoke to my neighbor today and found out that this lady was hospitalized for a week when her bizarre behavior first began around 3 months ago. They did CT scans and MRIs, reviewed her history and what medications she was on or went off, etc. Nothing suspicious was found which could have explained her condition. Hr fmily says she was acting perfecty nrmal until that sudden onset. They even checked her for poisoning, nothing. It's a mystery.

Martha

 
Old 11-18-2011, 01:30 PM   #6
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Re: Fast moving AD

That is a mystery Martha..... I have never heard of such a quick onset without some extenuating circumstances... I do wish they could find something...

Love, deb

 
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Old 11-18-2011, 02:44 PM   #7
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Re: Fast moving AD

Was she taking statin drugs for high cholesterol? It has been documented to have caused some mental health issues. Most doctors don't acknowledge this, however. So sad

 
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Old 11-18-2011, 02:51 PM   #8
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Re: Fast moving AD

Rud, I am very aware of the cognitive losses related to statin. I had my merry trip down that lane some years back. Usually it begins when you start taking the statins and it more resembles MCD rather than full blown dementia. It also abates after the medication is stopped. It was also a gradual decline rather than a rapid drop off. After a number of months I did notice trouble remembering names/facts and some personality changes. But within a week after stopping the drug most of the symptoms were gone. I truly doubt it would create a situation bad enough to need a locked unit in 3 months.

Love, deb

 
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Old 11-18-2011, 03:01 PM   #9
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Re: Fast moving AD

I fear they are only doing custodial care. I find it all very strange and unsettling. If it were my relative I would be yelling for answers.

The only thing I ever heard of that goes this fast is Kreuzfeld-Jakob's Disease or mad cow disease. Bovine encephalitis I think it's called. Caused by a prion in the blood, transmitted from infected cattle through eating the meat, it is the reason I am not allowed to donate blood here --having lived in Europe and eaten beef during those years before beef was tested for that disease. It could still be lurking in my blood (and my whole family's) but as time goes by it is less likely. We all have something we have to live with, don't we!

Martha

Last edited by Martha H; 11-18-2011 at 03:02 PM.

 
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Old 11-18-2011, 07:13 PM   #10
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Re: Fast moving AD

I do remember the scare of that disease. I am with you... if it was my relative I would be demanding answers. I would want to know so I could be sure it was not something reversible. This one has been on my mind since I read it and I can not come up with anything... just strange!

Love, deb

 
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Old 11-18-2011, 09:26 PM   #11
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Re: Fast moving AD

Truly bizarre, Martha.

I'm with you--the only thing I can think of would be one of the prion diseases (TSEs) or some weird hereditary variant. How awful for the poor lady & her family!

(I'd be standing next to you and Deb, demanding answers)

~Kren

 
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