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    Old 01-12-2005, 09:59 PM   #1
    mariahlw23
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    Thumbs up Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    I found this list on a different AD message board, and found it to be an invaluable resource. When I first started researching AD, every website/book/article had a stages list, most with 3 stages, but NOT ONE was the same. I was about ready to pull my hair out, when I found this little wonder. While it seems nobody adheres to one particular stage list, I was thrilled to find this one, as it made it much easier for me to try and narrow down where my grandfather is in his progression. Hope it saves the sanity of other newbies, as it did for me.

    …mariah…




    Stage 1 - NO SYMPTOMS OF ALZHEIMER'S ARE SEEN.

    Stage 2 - FORGETFULNESS: Very mild cognitive decline. For example, problems such as: vagueness of where familiar objects are, complaints about not remembering well, forgetting names once well known. There is however, no loss of abilities in social interactions or in employment situations.

    Stage 3 - CONFUSION EARLY STAGE: Mild cognitive decline. For example, problems such as: getting lost when traveling to a familiar location; noticeably lowered performance level at work; trouble finding words and names; little retention from reading; little or no ability to remember names of new people; loss of valued objects and trouble concentrating.

    Stage 4 - CONFUSION LATE STAGE: Moderate cognitive decline. For example, problems such as: decreased knowledge of current and recent events; loss in memory of personal history; decreased ability to handle travel or finances; and inability to perform complex tasks. Appropriate responsiveness to outside stimulation decreases sharply. Denial of any problem, and withdrawal from challenging situations are common.

    Stage 5 - DEMENTIA EARLY STAGE: Moderate severe decline. For example: the person can no longer survive without some assistance. Patients can't remember names of people or places in their lives. They may be disoriented about time and dates. However, they will require no assistance when using the bathroom or eating, but may need help getting dressed.

    Stage 6 - DEMENTIA MIDDLE STAGE: Severe cognitive decline. For example: the person may forget the name of the spouse and be unaware of events in his or her life. They are entirely dependent on others for survival. They may have trouble sleeping in a regular pattern.

    Stage 7 - DEMENTIA LATE STAGE: Very severe cognitive decline. For example: all verbal abilities are lost and he or she needs help eating and using the bathroom. Eventually they lose ability to walk, the brain appears to no longer be able to tell the body what to do.

     
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    Old 01-12-2005, 10:28 PM   #2
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Oh that list was GOOD !!! I've copied it and emailed it to my BIL .. because my MIL is at number 4 pretty definiately !!!!!!!!!!!

    Thanks heaps !!

    Cheers
    Sally

     
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    Old 01-12-2005, 11:15 PM   #3
    mariahlw23
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Good! Glad to hear it helped another. Here's hoping it helps many other newbies just beginning to try to stumble through this ridiculous maze.

    …mariah…

     
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    Old 01-13-2005, 12:56 AM   #4
    Martha H
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    This is very helpful! I think my Mom is at the beginning of stage 4.

     
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    Old 01-13-2005, 01:52 AM   #5
    mariahlw23
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    A souped up version of the above list…

    Global Deterioration Scale

    The Global Deterioration Scale (GDS), developed by Dr. Barry Reisberg, provides caregivers an overview of the stages of cognitive function for those suffering from a primary degenerative dementia such as Alzheimer's disease. It is broken down into 7 different stages. Stages 1-3 are the pre-dementia stages. Stages 4-7 are the dementia stages. Beginning in stage 5, an individual can no longer survive without assistance. Within the GDS, each stage is numbered (1-7), given a short title (i.e., Forgetfulness, Early Confusional, etc followed by a brief listing of the characteristics for that stage. Caregivers can get a rough idea of where an individual is at in the disease process by observing that individual's behavioral characteristics and comparing them to the GDS. (From geriatric-resources)
    _____________________________


    The Global Deterioration Scale for Assessment of Primary Degenerative Dementia

    Level 1 – NO COGNATIVE DECLINE: No subjective complaints of memory deficit. No memory deficit evident on clinical interview.

    Level 2 – VERY MILD COGNATIVE DECLINE (Age Associated Memory Impairment):
    Subjective complaints of memory deficit, most frequently in following areas: (a) forgetting where one has placed familiar objects; (b) forgetting names one formerly knew well. No objective evidence of memory deficit on clinical interview. No objective deficits in employment or social situations. Appropriate concern with respect to symptomatology.

    Level 3 – MILD COGNATIVE DECLINE (Mild Cognitive Impairment):
    Earliest clear-cut deficits. Manifestations in more than one of the following areas: (a) patient may have gotten lost when traveling to an unfamiliar location; (b) co-workers become aware of patient's relatively poor performance; (c) word and name finding deficit becomes evident to intimates; (d) patient may read a passage or a book and retain relatively little material; (e) patient may demonstrate decreased facility in remembering names upon introduction to new people; (f) patient may have lost or misplaced an object of value; (g) concentration deficit may be evident on clinical testing. Objective evidence of memory deficit obtained only with an intensive interview. Decreased performance in demanding employment and social settings. Denial begins to become manifest in patient. Mild to moderate anxiety accompanies symptoms.

    Level 4 – MODERATE COGNITIVE DECLINE (Mild Dementia):
    Clear-cut deficit on careful clinical interview. Deficit manifest in following areas: (a) decreased knowledge of current and recent events; (b) may exhibit some deficit in memory of ones personal history; (c) concentration deficit elicited on serial subtractions; (d) decreased ability to travel, handle finances, etc. Frequently no deficit in following areas: (a) orientation to time and place; (b) recognition of familiar persons and faces; (c) ability to travel to familiar locations. Inability to perform complex tasks. Denial is dominant defense mechanism. Flattening of affect and withdrawal from challenging situations frequently occur.

    Level 5 – MODERATELY SEVERE COGNITIVE DECLINE (Moderate Dementia):
    Patient can no longer survive without some assistance. Patient is unable during interview to recall a major relevant aspect of their current lives, e.g., an address or telephone number of many years, the names of close family members (such as grandchildren), the name of the high school or college from which they graduated. Frequently some disorientation to time (date, day of week, season, etc.) or to place. An educated person may have difficulty counting back from 40 by 4s or from 20 by 2s. Persons at this stage retain knowledge of many major facts regarding themselves and others. They invariably know their own names and generally know their spouses' and children's names. They require no assistance with toileting and eating, but may have some difficulty choosing the proper clothing to wear.

    Level 6 - SEVERE COGNITIVE DECLINE (Moderately Severe Dementia):
    May occasionally forget the name of the spouse upon whom they are entirely dependent for survival. Will be largely unaware of all recent events and experiences in their lives. Retain some knowledge of their past lives but this is very sketchy. Generally unaware of their surroundings, the year, the season, etc. May have difficulty counting from 10, both backward and, sometimes, forward. Will require some assistance with activities of daily living, e.g., may become incontinent, will require travel assistance but occasionally will be able to travel to familiar locations. Diurnal rhythm frequently disturbed. Almost always recall their own name. Frequently continue to be able to distinguish familiar from unfamiliar persons in their environment. Personality and emotional changes occur. These are quite variable and include: (a) delusional behavior, e.g., patients may accuse their spouse of being an impostor, may talk to imaginary figures in the environment, or to their own reflection in the mirror; (b) obsessive symptoms, e.g., person may continually repeat simple cleaning activities; (c) anxiety symptoms, agitation, and even previously nonexistent violent behavior may occur; (d) cognitive abulla, i.e., loss of willpower because an individual cannot carry a thought long enough to determine a purposeful course of action.

    Level 7 - VERY SEVERE COGNITIVE DECLINE (Severe Dementia):
    All verbal abilities are lost over the course of this stage. Frequently there is no speech at all -only unintelligible utterances and rare emergence of seemingly forgotten words and phrases. Incontinent of urine, requires assistance toileting and feeding. Basic psychomotor skills, e.g., ability to walk, are lost with the progression of this stage. The brain appears to no longer be able to tell the body what to do. Generalized rigidity and developmental neurologic reflexes are frequently present.

     
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    Old 01-13-2005, 02:18 AM   #6
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Oh oh ..I think Mom is in level 5 already. I can't leave her alone without fear of things that she might do ... she cannot take her 6 daily pills without help ..she invariably chooses inappropriate clothing ... she forgets to eat .. she cannot prpare food any more without help ... she confuses people (she now tells people her son lives in E, where her deceased brother lived from the 50s until the 70s, when her son actually lives in J ..she told everyone she spent Xmas with her son in E.) Yet she answered the doctor's 3 questions (what is your age, what day is it, who is the president) correctly so he said 'not Alzheimers, just old age." She is 96.

    I guess it matters little what category she is in, just that the worse it gets the more frustarted and upset I am ..last night she contradicted a story she told me last week (a neighbor's 53 year od son died of Cancer during Christmas week) and changed it to "Their son was diagnosed with 'arm cancer' ..that's why they were so upset." I tend to think it was the former but who knows? She can't remember. I notice that she makes up a logical (to her) expanation for any uncertainties, has a wonderful imagination ..and often sounds so believable that even I fall for the false reports ..

    It is a great strain on my nerves, while I also hold down a full time job ..

    Martha

     
    Old 01-13-2005, 10:31 AM   #7
    ForbiddenFruit
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    Question Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    My granny sounds like a Number 7 but the doctors haven't diagnosed her yet, though she meets all of what is said on number 7...so why can't the doctor figure that out!!?

    -ForbiddenFruit

     
    Old 01-13-2005, 10:47 AM   #8
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Hi all -

    I found these lists on-line and also found them to be very helpful. There is also a 3 Stage model that is too general and less helpful in my opinion.

    My mother was initially diagnosed by her GP as having dementia. I printed the 7 Stage list, circled all that applied to Mom and took it to his office - her diagnosis was changed to Alzheimer's immediately. That was no comfort, but did help me understand what was probably in her future so I could provide the help she would likely need and also prepare myself.

    I hope this becomes a "Sticky" at the top of this thread.

    Blessings - Barbara

     
    Old 01-13-2005, 11:36 AM   #9
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Thanks so much! My mom and uncle are showing signs of dementia. This really helps put things into perspective. Again thanks from a new member, Pat

     
    Old 01-14-2005, 12:06 PM   #10
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    My friend's mom is a 6 now.

    How long do the stages usually last or do they vary? I know death is inevitable after 7 is reached, but how long does it normally take?

    Thanks for any answers if anyone knows.
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    DD born 3/24/2005

    Last edited by siren1024; 01-14-2005 at 12:09 PM.

     
    Old 01-19-2005, 10:47 AM   #11
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by siren1024
    My friend's mom is a 6 now.

    How long do the stages usually last or do they vary? I know death is inevitable after 7 is reached, but how long does it normally take?

    Thanks for any answers if anyone knows.
    I was wondering the same thing!!
    How long does this take? Or does it vary by person?

     
    Old 01-26-2005, 05:52 AM   #12
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    O my, I am so glad I found this thread. My friends grandmom has Alz., from what I just read she is at a stage 5 to 6. Alot worse than my friend thought. I printed the two list for her. I know it may not be of comfort to her, but she does need to know how bad things are and are going to get.

    WHAT A HORRABLE THING TO HAPPEN TO ANYONE.

    My well wishes go out to everyone and anyone who is dealing with this.

     
    Old 01-27-2005, 09:44 PM   #13
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    I believe they vary. It depends on the person. My grandmother had dementia for 2 years, and went onto alzheimers, and it progressed within a week. But I know another lady who's had Alz. for years, and you would barely even know it.. And your friend may already KNOW how bad her mother is, but may just not wanna know or don't wanna face it. It's tough for people to deal with the fact that their parents have Alz. It's probably the toughest thing in the world..

     
    Old 01-28-2005, 07:00 AM   #14
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    My grandma has gone from stage 1 to 5 in less than a year. I fear it wont be long until she is totally gone. Just yesterday when I saw her she said she never knew she had grandchildren. So sad...

     
    Old 01-28-2005, 07:25 PM   #15
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    Re: Seven Stages of Alzheimer's

    Hello,

    My mother was 84 when we became worried about the clutter at her home and the things we could see she had forgotten. She when from stage 2 to 7 in two years. In stage 7 she forgot how to walk. She was in a wheelchair for the last 18 months and needed help with all daily activities. She never lost the ability to speak completely, but could only say "I love you, too" and "That feels nice." for about the last 3 months. She died at age 88.

    Alzheimer's patients decline at different rates, so this is just to give you an idea of what could happen with an elderly patient.

    Wishing you well - Barbara

     
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