dads unusual symptoms


Registered User
Aug 2, 2007
west yorkshire
hi everyone
just wanted to ask if anyone has encountered the following symptoms
this all started some time ago he collapsed in the bathroom and appeared to be having some sort of fit we called an ambulance and off he went to hospital after a cursary exam we were told he had been coughing to hard and this caused the collapse( bizzare diagnosis i thought) as a result he has had several episodes of this bloodpressure checks all fine cardiac checks all fine so no idea really why this is happening. he now complaines of headache and is more confused than normal and mum has to put him to bed he sleeps then is ok again. is this related to the alzeimers ? has anyone seen this in a sufferer


ps we did get told that seizures were common in the late stages


Registered User
Nov 28, 2005
Commenting on your Dad's symptoms is a bit difficult. However, I do think it was a peculiar diagnosis from the hospital and I would be asking more questions. If you have no success with the hospital medics, why not try a frank discussion with your Dad's GP. That will only be possible if he/she is prepared to talk to a patient's relative - that is more likely if your Dad is with you agreeing to your presence.

My husband has mixed dementia, ie. Alz and at least one minor stroke. No one has ever said to us that seizures are common in the later stages. Maybe other Tpers will comment on this.

Best wishes Beckyjan


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
sammie said:
ps we did get told that seizures were common in the late stages
Hi sammie

I've been looking for some information for you, and it does appear that the information may be correct. Look at this article:

It explains it like this:

An enzyme involved in the formation of the amyloid-beta protein associated with Alzheimer’s disease can also alter the mechanism by which signals are transmitted between brain cells, the disruption of which can cause seizures.
However, I think you should talk to your dad's GP, as he will know his history. I agree with BeckyJan, the hospital's diagnosis is unusual.


Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
I think any injury to the brain (and amyloid deposits surely should come under that category, although not as clearly as if the dementia was caused by strokes for example) can result in seizures. So often it seems that a diagnosis of AD is given which is subsequently changed to "mixed" (i.e. there is also vascular involvement). If there is any element of vascular damage I think seizures are a fairly common symptom, and in a cart before the horse situation, is used to ammend the diagnosis. It may be that after consultation with the GP this is what will happen in your situation. The problem is, there is so absolutely definitive way to diagnose AD in a living person, so additional symptoms are used to narrow the diagnosis (or more likely widen it). I would think the headache would also be indicative of vasular involvement, but you're going to have to talk to the GP about it.



Registered User
Feb 26, 2006

Mary sufered from a series of collapses which after hospitalisation and having a 24 hour heart monitor fitted was diagnose with arrrhythmia which is a brief stopping of the heart. I have since learnt to recognise an episode by collapse with a very weak fluttery pulse which suddenly recovered to a strong steady beat, this is often followed by vomiting. I now treat these episodes as no more serious than indegestion, although I am always ready to start resucitation if necessary.

It is only a matter of a minute or so that blood pressure and pulse returns to normal and it is easily missed as a consequence. Mary's longest recorded episode was 2.6 seconds and I was assured that if it had been 3 seconds she would have been fitted with a pacemaker.

I am not suggesting that you are experiencing the same problem but perhaps it is a possibility that should be explored as the cursery dissmissal of the problem is not good enough.



Registered User
Oct 9, 2003
Birmingham Hades
Hi Dick
arrhythmics is a general term used for abnormal heart rhythm.
The heart may beat abnormally or,either irregularly, or faster or slower than usual.
Mary it seems has the slower heartbeat.
I have the irregulary one known as Atrial fibrillation.


Registered User
Aug 9, 2005
My husband has been a life long asthmatic. He has chronic lung disease as a result. This means he often coughs long and hard.

On a few occasions (the most notable being once when he was driving the car :eek: ) he has passsed out as a result of the coughing spasm.

The doctor explained it like this:
because he has weakened muscles inside his chest, prolonged coughing can cause the heart muscles to elongate (or "drop"). This causes a sudden drop in blood pressure and he passes out (loses conscousness).

On the occasion it happened in the car, we ran into a tree! Lots of minor injuries but fortunately nothing major as he was driving slowly. Still, it was a terrible shock to us both!!

From your posts, it doesn't sound as if this is the same - but I thought it worth telling people in case there were any comparisons to be drawn.


Registered User
Jul 10, 2006
south lanarkshire

Dad collasped, his heart beat was slow (brachycardia) sp?

Consequentially, his Alz. Meds, Aricept, was stopped as sometimes a slow heart rate, is one of the side effects.

When he was in hospital a pacemaker was mentioned but as, he kept detaching all of the monitors, I think the medics decided that, if they couldn't monitor him, it would be too risky.



Registered User
Aug 2, 2007
west yorkshire
hi all

thanks for your replies:)

nell my dad had been suffering with bronchitus so there may be some truth in the coughing episode

skye i looked at the link you posted it was very interesting and thought provoking i will be bringing this subject up next time my dad see's the consultant i feel it is worth exploring

alfjess yes i noticed that it was a side effect of aricept ( which dad is taking) but i feel as many others may feel the benefits outweigh the side effects and would be reluctant to stop the tablets its just one of those things really.

dick g and norman my dad had one of those 24hr heart monitors on but as always happens he didn't have a turn whilst wearing it so it came back normal

jennifer yes i also wondered if it could be a result of mini strokes and i will ask this question when i get the chance of seeing the consultant it seems to me that alzeimers is a brain thing then mini strokes could be a significant factor

thanks again