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Old 10-16-2012, 02:37 AM   #1
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could this be dementia ?

My sister in law who is now 81 imagines she is to marry a doctor whom she went to see in the summer for a bite on her arm, she is so convinced she sits and waits for him to pick her up and take her out for a meal, she said he is buying a big house for them and to sell hers and keep the money,its unbelievable the things she go's on about him, i could write forever about how she thinks this is real,
what could it be that is wrong with her ??

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 07:17 AM   #2
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Re: could this be dementia ?

It sounds like she is having delusions. There are many many underlying problems that cause delusions. Her family needs to consult with a specialist to find out the cause of her delusions. Brain disorders can cause delusions, including all dementia, strokes, brain tumors, and seizure disorders. Other medical conditions can also be the cause, including infections, UTI, B-12 deficiency, fever, and others. It can also be caused by medication side effects or alcohol usage. Beyond the medical causes there are also mental and psychological disorders that can cause delusions. Because there are so many causes of delusions, you do need to get her to the doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

Love, deb

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 07:25 AM   #3
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Re: could this be dementia ?

I didn't realize it is not real until the last sentence! Anyway, if you are sure it is not real, then I think she may have dementia.

Although she may have other conditions as Deb mentioned, I would like to add that if she has moderate stage of Alzheimer's, she could misread the messages from the doctor and made up the stories.
My late FIL often made up his own stories when it came to his "ladies". Somehow he no longer was thinking properly and was in his own world and logic. He interpretted himself the signs from the girls or caregivers and thought they wanted to date him or marry him. One factor was he really wished to marry again because he depended in his late wife a lot for daily routines. He only wanted to sit there and write/work. He no longer worked for real and he wanted to date someone to get married. I think his brain was damaged so much that he read everything in the wrong way. He thought his lady friends would be his girlfriends.

Your SIL needs to be diagnosed by a specialist. Also if that doctor reminds her the stuff about marriage, don't talk about him or remind her or tell her it is not real. She thinks it is real so no need to argue with her. Stopping talking about that doctor may help and she may forget. Please distract her as well - take her shopping or to a park. We never corrected my late FIL because it was the way he thought. We just made sure the caregivers didn't go too far by playing along with it. Most mature caregivers try not to "play along" with it. Also one lady said no to him in person as well.

Hugs,
Nina

Last edited by ninamarc; 10-16-2012 at 07:34 AM.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 08:26 AM   #4
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
It sounds like she is having delusions. There are many many underlying problems that cause delusions. Her family needs to consult with a specialist to find out the cause of her delusions. Brain disorders can cause delusions, including all dementia, strokes, brain tumors, and seizure disorders. Other medical conditions can also be the cause, including infections, UTI, B-12 deficiency, fever, and others. It can also be caused by medication side effects or alcohol usage. Beyond the medical causes there are also mental and psychological disorders that can cause delusions. Because there are so many causes of delusions, you do need to get her to the doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

Love, deb

Thanks Deb,
The doc has arranged for a lady physichiatrist to visit her but she is so with it they have to make out its a mini stroke check up which she had 18months ago.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:57 PM   #5
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Mini strokes can be related to what is going on... or could just be a symptom of another problem which is also causing the delusions. You need to be sure the visiting psychiatrist knows of her behavior whether your aunt is showing that behavior at the time of the visit. Many of the causes of delusions are not illnesses that you can see as an infection, fever, or elevated BP. She can look and act normal enough in the moment for outsiders to be fooled. Be persistent... with your request for medical intervention. If headaches are present be sure to indicate such to the doctor. This can point to more strokes, brain tumor, or other brain conditions. If she is also being forgetful, not understanding numbers (bills/money), not understanding directions, then it could be dementia. Moment when she is "out of it" may also indicate a seizure disorder. If she is incontinent and has a shuffle when she walks this could indicate Parkinson.

So please give the doctor ALL of the symptoms you might have noticed beyond the delusions. I am sure the delusion since it is constant and so bizarre is what you are focused on but other more minor problems can give you an indication of what is causing the delusions. Also get a list of her medications and talk to her pharmacist about side effects to be sure it is not due to a medication.

Let us know what the psychiatrist says

Love, deb

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 01:41 PM   #6
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabriel View Post
Mini strokes can be related to what is going on... or could just be a symptom of another problem which is also causing the delusions. You need to be sure the visiting psychiatrist knows of her behavior whether your aunt is showing that behavior at the time of the visit. Many of the causes of delusions are not illnesses that you can see as an infection, fever, or elevated BP. She can look and act normal enough in the moment for outsiders to be fooled. Be persistent... with your request for medical intervention. If headaches are present be sure to indicate such to the doctor. This can point to more strokes, brain tumor, or other brain conditions. If she is also being forgetful, not understanding numbers (bills/money), not understanding directions, then it could be dementia. Moment when she is "out of it" may also indicate a seizure disorder. If she is incontinent and has a shuffle when she walks this could indicate Parkinson.

So please give the doctor ALL of the symptoms you might have noticed beyond the delusions. I am sure the delusion since it is constant and so bizarre is what you are focused on but other more minor problems can give you an indication of what is causing the delusions. Also get a list of her medications and talk to her pharmacist about side effects to be sure it is not due to a medication.

Let us know what the psychiatrist says

Love, deb

Thanks Gabrial,
Tonight for instance her daughter went for dinner after work,she has been going for years on a Tuesdays, but this time she said she could not get her dinner because this doc was coming to take her out for a meal, and it go's on, The physichaitrist has been well briefed on what she is going through and wanted to see her today but she put it off as she was seeing this doc again so its now arranged for Thursday,she seems to be getting worse,only to see her you would think she is fit as a fiddle and still drives.

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 01:45 PM   #7
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Perhaps you need to send her some signal that the doc is not coming. Don't know how well you know this doctor, but it may help if this person says something like a no to her.
The funny part is if she is told No, she may move on although she may get upset for a while... I don't know - do something to make her forget about the doctor. Tell her the doctor is not coming.

Nina

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Also sometimes it helps if you say some kind of tricky thing or even white lie.
Say you contacted the doctor and he cannot come. If a permanent no does not work and she may continue to remember this dating thing, then you may need to tell her no every once in a while using some tricks or white lies. Say something temporary like he cannot come as his car is broke and that kind of thing. Maybe she can join some adult day care center so she can have companionship in the center.

Take care,
Nina

 
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Old 10-16-2012, 06:04 PM   #9
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Re: could this be dementia ?

Driving? Do you think this is a good idea? With these delusions is she mentally competent to drive? I am sure she can operate the car. She can get in, turn it on, push the gas.... but does she know what to do when that car pulls out in front of her, or that child, or she get to that stop sign? What is she runs off the road or has a flat time. Those things take quick mental processing using reasoning and logic. Can she do that while she is deluding about that doctor she is going to find? I am glad she is fit as a fiddle physically, but it is obvious that her brain is not working right. Think long and hard before you let her drive. Ask the doctor if it is wise to let her drive in light of the delusions. Hopefully the doctor will be able help you figure it out Thursday...

Love, deb

 
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