1. kayleigh999

    kayleigh999 Registered User

    Apr 6, 2007
    #1 kayleigh999, Jun 4, 2007
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2007
    Hi All

    Wonder if anyone can help me? My Mom 82 and has quite late diagnosed VaD and patchy AZ.

    Last few weeks has been saying her legs just are not working and are giving away on her.

    Doctor referred her back to vascular clinic where in the past she has had by-pass on legs and more recently angioplasty(?) the baloon down leg to open up artery. The Doctor there scanned her leg,said its all open and flowing and in fact discharged her so it is not that.

    My worries are that I know late stage of the illness leads to sufferers losing their ability to walk and I am wondering if this is the start? Mom has always been very active and loathes to sit down,unless she has too, and potters around doing little useful (or not so useful jobs :) ) She seems to be saying both her legs are giving away at the knees and is having trouble getting off toilet and now walks with a marked shuffle.

    Its saddens my heart to see her like this and although she is 82 and not AS mobile since her stroke 2 yrs since this is all very new.

    Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    #2 Grannie G, Jun 4, 2007
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2007
    Oh Kayleigh,

    I`m sorry I`ve no idea what might be the cause of the weakening of your mum`s legs and if the doctor can`t find anything wrong, we can only assume.

    I can only sympathize, with you, and with your mum, and hope someone manages to give you a reason.

    Love xx
  3. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    My mother's legs were giving way frequently for no apparent reason. She is now unable to walk at all, but I never did get an answer to "why". It did get worse after her strokes, and of course she has severe arthritis in her hip (hence being unable to walk now) but why a leg should suddenly give way with no pain is, I'm afraid to say, a mystery. The problem is compunded by the fact that they can't remember to "prepare" for the event: my knee sometimes gives way when walking downstairs, but I can rememebr that and hold on to the banister, but such preparation is almost impossible for some one who has memory issues.

  4. DeborahBlythe

    DeborahBlythe Registered User

    Dec 1, 2006
    Aids may help

    When my mum started to get more 'tottery' she was , at first, reluctant to do more than use a walking stick, which she had relied on even when she DIDN'T need it because it was a useful aid when out rambling with her friends. ( My mum has AD not VaD, She was always a very keen walker, gardener and even a PE teacher, amongst other subjects, in her younger days. )
    She later used a Zimmer frame but the problem was that she began to eat increasingly less and in her case a vicious cycle took hold, whereby she began to lose confidence and then exercise, or walk less and ended up losing any useful muscle tone. I really understand now the importance of that phrase " Use it or Lose it". I'm told that once the muscles waste away, they won't 're-grow'. I'm not sure how true this is and even now I wonder whether with physio my mum wouldn't have been able to keep upright for longer.

    My mum can just about move her legs very tentatively so there must be some residual muscles there but not enough to support her. ( And today she was wiggling her toes to the tune of The Blue Danube!) She really used to spurn wheelchairs until about a year ago, when she gave up and started to prefer being pushed around. It was easier for people caring for her too, but really, if you can keep your mum using her legs with the help of a stick, Zimmer or other walking frame, she will be less likely to end up bed bound or wheelchairbound for a while longer, as my mum more or less is now.

    Can you get an assessment done of her mobility needs, and try to get her some walking aids, if she hasn't already got these? She might also benefit from a frame with arm rests which fits around the toilet so that she has something to lever herself up by. Also a spare toilet seat which clips on to make the seat higher so that she hasn't so far to rise from and drop down to. Also, if she washes at a basin, a perching stool to sit instead of stand at it. An OT usually does these equipment -type assessments and the equipment was supplied through them. See if you can get a physio to take a look at her too. Watch out for the shuffling gait and make sure there are no trip hazards around and reasonable footwear that won't add to the peril. Forgive if you've already got these issues covered. Kind regards
  5. Nell

    Nell Registered User

    Aug 9, 2005
    Dear Kayleigh,
    I don't know if it is only late stage sufferers who may lose their mobility. For my Mum mobility was one of the first things to go - she can still walk, but has to use a zimmer frame and is definitely unsteady on her feet. Otherwise her decline (considering she is nearly 85) is slow in my opinion.
    Don't know if this helps in any way . . . .??
  6. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    My mother quite suddenly ceased to be able to walk, I think from malnutrition/dehydration. She must have been able to walk when my brother took her to hospital, although she was shrinking she wasn't small enough for him to pick her up and carry her. I was so surprised when the nurse in the hospital asked me can your mother walk at all? Only a few days before that she'd been weeding the garden, putting the dustbin out, helping me hang the washing out. I thought, when they'd "built her up a bit" (which was what she was in hospital for)
    she'd be walking again.

  7. carol

    carol Registered User

    Jun 24, 2004
    My mother in law lost her mobility when she was admitted to hospital with c. diff. The previous week she was admitted to hospital with a urine infection, and was wandering out of the ward etc. home one day, then c. diff was diagnosed and she returned to hospital. After being very poorly and in isolation for 17 weeks, her mobility had all but gone. She is now in a nursing home, discharged from hospital direct into the nursing home, she is able to walk in a fashion with a zimmer and two carers, or with two carers, one either side - but they could never let go, they are holding her up. For several months in the nursing home they hoisted her, but now it is easier for them because she has also lost a vast amount of weight, to support her between two carers. My mother in law makes no attempt to get out of the chair, she sometimes slides down in the chair and sometimes when prompted can shuffle herself back into a sitting position, another time she just looks blankly at you, and two people have to rearrange her position.

  8. kayleigh999

    kayleigh999 Registered User

    Apr 6, 2007
    #8 kayleigh999, Jun 6, 2007
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2007

    Thank you all so much for your replies. It does help to read of other peoples experiences. She did go back to Docs yesterday for unrelated problem and my Dad mentioned her legs/walking and it was put down to her age and the condition. I will contact SS again for mobility aids and maybe this time she wont send them back like she did after her stroke because she was too proud to use them. I think now we have gone past that stage.

    I take her shopping sometimes and she is so slow and unsteady that I fear for her safety with impatient people and bikes and pushchairs whizzing past. Maybe it is my fault for trying to keep her independant and still see the outside world. A young Mom gave her a mouthful in iceland the other day because she was in her way,effing and blinding.I ALMOST lost my cool and had a real go back but no, I told myself to rise above it and play it down for Mom's sake.

    Take care all and again thanks for the replys, you are invaluable ,you lot are :)

  9. DeborahBlythe

    DeborahBlythe Registered User

    Dec 1, 2006
    Hello Karen,
    Never blame yourself for trying to maintain someone's independence. You are doing a grand job. The stimulation and exercise and 'getting about' is something your mum would have thanked you for in her 'former self.' As for the ignorant people in the shop, you did brilliantly to contain your annoyance. I doubt if I would have managed it. Love Deborah

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