1. Expert Q&A: Protecting a person with dementia from financial abuse - Weds 26 June, 3:30-4:30 pm

    Financial abuse can have serious consequences for a person with dementia. Find out how to protect a person with dementia from financial abuse.

    Sam, our Knowledge Officer (Legal and Welfare Rights) is our expert on this topic. She will be here to answer your questions on Wednesday 26 June between 3:30 - 4:30 pm.

    You can either post questions >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll answer as many as we can on the day.

  1. helen.tomlinson

    helen.tomlinson Registered User

    Mar 27, 2008
    541
    It was time Alan had his eyes tested again and he had been saying something about his left eye but it was difficult to quite understand what was wrong. Alan did really well during the consultation and was able to read out the letters which, I must admit, surprised me. There were a couple of letters he struggled saying but overall he did better than he would have at any of the tests at the hospital!!!

    Anyway the optician said that Alan had a small cataract on his left eye but he felt it could be left for a couple of years before it would need an operation. I discussed with him whether it would be better to have it done now whilst Alan is able to benefit from it and in two years time it would be hard to assess how the dementia might have taken hold. Anyway the optician said he would fill out the form for Alan's GP which he did there and then.

    Now I'm really not sure. What do any of you think about the merits of having relatively non-urgent surgery now whilst Alan can understand what is going on against waiting to when it is necessary but who knows how Alan will be by then and what the affects of an operation will be then?

    The optician was really good and he understood when I said that it was important that Alan be given every chance to have the best possible life for as long as possible. Alan still enjoys reading although, of course, it is slower now than it was but better that not being able to at all.

    Look forward to your opinions and possible experiences.

    Love Helen
     
  2. Tender Face

    Tender Face Account Closed

    Mar 14, 2006
    5,379
    NW England
    Hi Helen - my mum has had a cataract for some 18 months or more .... both opticians and doctor over successive visits and tests have suggested that while the eyesight in her 'other eye' is good there is no point putting her through any procedure (even though I understand cataract removal is now considered relatively minor) that she does not absolutely need ......

    Then again, mum no longer reads ..... :(

    A quick hurrah for opticians :) - I have found them to be absolutely amazing with mum - one discreet mention of 'memory loss' and I have witnessed them pull out every stop of 'bedside manner' imaginable to help her through the tests! Yup - they should report to GP - but hopefully he/she will look at the picture holistically and help you both to decide whether action is needed now or not ......

    Love, Karen, x
     
  3. helen.tomlinson

    helen.tomlinson Registered User

    Mar 27, 2008
    541
    Thanks Karen, that's really helpful. I do find these responsibilities quite daunting at times - making decisions for someone else. Of course Alan was consulted and part of the process but he didn't really understand what it was all about. I know it's my responsibility to do the best for him and to do this I need information.

    Thanks again

    Love Helen :) :)
     
  4. Canadian Joanne

    Canadian Joanne Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 8, 2005
    15,982
    Toronto, Canada
    Hi Helen,
    My mother has cataracts in both eyes but my mother had stopped reading and even watching television a long time before diagnosis - years in fact. Because of the post-surgical requirements - not touching her eye, etc. - and after hearing the specialist's opinion that it would only marginally improve her quality of life, my sister and I decided against the surgery.

    However, if my mother had still been reading, I would have gone for it. My opinion only.
     
  5. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    68,674
    Kent
    Hello Helen.

    Unless there is a danger of complications, most cataract surgery is done using local anaesthesia. It might be adviseable for you to check if this would be the case for Alan.

    Dhiren recently had a mole removed with a local, and had no ill effects whatsoever.

    He does have cataracts and is still reading. He has had the cataracts for over five years. He can still read in an electric light, which is more than I can do. I would not consider cataract surgery for him now, because I know he would be unable to cope with the after care.

    The after care is a complex timetable of drops, scrupulous hygeine and the necessity to sleep with an eye patch for about three weeks.

    So in Alan`s state of health now, It might be worth considering.
     
  6. lesmisralbles

    lesmisralbles Account Closed

    Nov 23, 2007
    5,543
    Mum had her's removed not long ago

    Hi
    You have to be so clean.
    Not rub the eye, keep the patch on and be so, so clean.
    Barb
     
  7. helen.tomlinson

    helen.tomlinson Registered User

    Mar 27, 2008
    541
    Hi All,

    Thanks. I reckon that Alan would be able to cope with the after-care now but I can see that it could pose a problem later on. He is very good at letting me take care of him in these ways. If I tell him a certain thing needs to be done he trusts me and lets me do it. I can foresee that this might easily change and then the option would be taken away. Thanks I think I have decided and it will help me when talking to the medics about it.

    Love Helen
     
  8. sue38

    sue38 Registered User

    Mar 6, 2007
    10,856
    Wigan, Lancs
    And so say all of us! Our optician is great with my Dad. How is that people not trained in denentia can be discreet and sensitive and the so-called professionals can be so crass?
     
  9. helen.tomlinson

    helen.tomlinson Registered User

    Mar 27, 2008
    541
    Hi Sue, I wonder that myself sometimes. At first I put it down to the Neurologist saying "he has FTD and there's nothing that can be done". That was my very first experience. Things that followed all seemed to be showing me that their attitude came from an underlying belief "that nothing can be done". I was new to it and learning and these were my first impressions.

    However, I knew that plenty could be done and the lady who came to visit us from the Alzheimers Society confirmed that plenty could be done.

    I reckon the most helpful professionals can be those who haven't been told "there's nothing that can be done".

    Love Helen
     
  10. sue38

    sue38 Registered User

    Mar 6, 2007
    10,856
    Wigan, Lancs
    Hi Helen,

    I always squirm when the mental health doctors use the word 'Alzheimers' and 'dementia' in front of my Dad. But the last doctor after 'assessing' my Dad started to go on at length to me and my mum about his condition and what the future holds for him. This time I said quite forcibly "I don't think you should be talking like this in front of my Dad". "Why?" he replied, "Can he understand me?". To which I replied "er... yes", whereas I should have screamed "You're the 'flipping' expert, what do you think?" :mad::rolleyes:
     

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