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Old 04-19-2004, 03:57 AM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 16
Kath833181 HB User
caught totally off guard

Hello, I am new. For about the last 7 years... my dad has been a bit "off" we suspected that he had something wrong with him but had no clue what. He had no personality but was otherwise wonderful. He could read, drive, do chores around the house. He is 77 now. He always got 21 or more on that tests they have for AH.

This January he got the shingles and it has been a rapid roll down hill, and I now believe -- all along -- it has been dementia. But the thing is that it has gotten so horrible in just a few months. He had seizures, he has shaking, and he can't even recognize me sometimes. This week he starting having "accidents" which I hope are related to diarerra. He also has trouble getting up and walking. Something he never had a problem with before. He can shave and get dressed but he has to be prompted to do it and then helped. He also doesn't seem to eat as much as before. And when he chews it is like he has forgotten what to do. But he does eat.

We are hoping we can get a few more months. My dad was hospitalized twice in 3 months for weeks or more. One time for a rash, one time for seizures, and one time we don't know. Each time he came back totally screwed up -- but did seem to get better after a return to routine. In the hospital an MRI showed a severe shrinking of the fronttemporable lobe.

Needless to say we are caught totally off guard. My mom can't take care of him that well and I work so I can only do so much. We have home health care insurance, up to a good amount.. and I am consulting with a lawyer this week to determine if we can get him into a nursing home on medicare if need be. Although I would prefer to keep him at home.

THere is a visiting nurse who I hope will help. My questions
(1) can we get someone to take care of him at home? Full time part time ? Who? I feel we need at least 6 months to make all the arrangements for a nursing home.
(2) Should I now start applying to nursing homes? Do they have waiting lists?

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