1. tuffydawn

    tuffydawn Registered User

    Mar 30, 2015
    123
    my oh who is in denial is going to be refered to memory clinic any one tell me how their experince has been and how long the assessment takes
     
  2. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    5,736
    North East Lincs
    I don't think there is any straight answer to this. However I think it reasonable to contact your Memory Service and ask them. Why not speak to those who run the Clinic and ask what will take place?
     
  3. Risa

    Risa Registered User

    Apr 13, 2015
    483
    Essex
    In the area I live (Harlow) Mum had a referral in March but didn't get an appointment with the Memory Clinic until July. Before she saw anyone, they wanted her to have a brain scan to help with the diagnosis. If you think your OH might be nervous of having the scan, be sure to ask the Memory Clinic to provide a tranquilliser, We didn't realise this was possible and it would have saved having 2 attempts to get it done.
     
  4. Scarlett123

    Scarlett123 Registered User

    Apr 30, 2013
    3,802
    Essex
    Each time we went to the Memory Clinic, John was asked several questions such as:

    What day is it today? What month is it? What is the year? Who is the Prime Minister? Who is the President of the USA? Then he was told 3 words, and had to repeat them. He was then asked if he remembered them later.

    He was given a diagram to copy. A sheet of A4 paper was placed on the floor between him and the doctor, and he was asked to pick it up and put it on the table, in front of the doctor.

    He was shown a drawing of 2 animals, one was a penguin and one was something else, either a cat or dog and he was asked which one would prefer the cold weather. The first questions were always the same ones, each time we went. The others varied.

    I believe the possible score was 30. After the first couple of visits, I decided to pass the Receptionist a Statement, to give to the doctor, which explained how John had deteriorated from the last time, as this saved her asking me anything, and me fluffing about, trying to answer truthfully, without upsetting John.

    By the time he was at the final stages, he didn't answer anything correctly, and the doctor said "thank you John, you take care and we don't need to see you any more". John told her she had lovey legs, and gave her a kiss. :eek:

    When we got home, my daughter asked us "how did it go" and he replied "I passed with flying colours".
     
  5. Jennyc

    Jennyc Registered User

    Oct 3, 2011
    72
    Kent
    We are now "signed off" from the memory clinic and handed back to GP - not sure wh y, as others I see at Alzheimers carers' support group seem to continue to go year after year, but we went three times I think. Anyway, in this area, my husband and I were each seen separately, him for tests and me to say how I thought things were going, and then together for a short while. First test score was about 17 I think, then about 15 and finally about 12, when they said keep taking the medicine but we don't want to see you any more. He had a brain scan before his first appointment. Don't know if this helps. Nothing seems to have changed very dramatically over the last four years, only he forgets more, quicker, and now needs help dressing, and asks the same thing more often.
     
  6. 1mindy

    1mindy Registered User

    Jul 21, 2015
    539
    Female
    Shropshire
    Scarlett123 has it spot on for the questions. My OH went twice the second time they asked if he minded being asked a "few questions " he said he did mind so that was that. No questions ,no answers .
     
  7. tuffydawn

    tuffydawn Registered User

    Mar 30, 2015
    123
    I hear many mixed messages about the memory clinics and am nervous about the prospect IT will be enough of a struggle to get him there and if the questions are so basis as the date and time it will not reveal the extent of his problems and convince him that he has no problem at all
     
  8. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Moderator

    Dec 15, 2012
    8,077
    Yorkshire
    The questions only start off with 'basics' - but even the answers (or lack of) to those can be an eye-opener. They go on to try out responses to counting backwards, copying a diagram, drawing a clock face, remembering an address etc - so they check out lots of skills and abilities.
    I fear that whatever your OH's answers, they are unlikely to convince him of anything he doesn't want to accept or is no longer capable of accepting.
    But they will give you an idea of his state on that day and are a marker for the consultant.
    Seemed to me that visiting the Memory Clinic was just the way to a diagnosis to start the support ball rolling - but you'll still have to keep it in play and give it some hefty kicks at times.
    Don't be anxious- it is only a way to assess him and get help for you both.
     
  9. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    In our area, someone from the Alzheimer's society comes out to do a screening assessment before being passed over to the Memory Clinic. Then the person is seen by a Memory Clinic nurse. After that comes a CT brain scan, if required, before finally getting to see the Memory Clinic consultant.

    My Mum has gone through the first 2 stages and is currently awaiting a CT scan.
     
  10. sleepless

    sleepless Registered User

    Feb 19, 2010
    3,223
    Female
    The Sweet North
    This is something I don't think I've ever heard before. Usually a GP would need to refer, surely?
    How qualified would the person from the Alzheimers' Society need to be in order to screen someone?
    Just curious.
     
  11. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    Yes, GP referred first, at my request. AS person ran some memory tests and added up the scores. Below a certain threshold, automatically forwarded to MC. Above that, records only sent for review (I think).

    It worked fine for us, Mum scored well in first section but the next lot lowered the average. I don't think I would have been so happy if she hadn't been forwarded for next stage.

    I do live in an area with a high % of elderly people. Maybe the MC have had to bring this in to cope with demand?

    The first 2 stages have taken around 6-8 weeks. I was told to expect around 5 weeks for CT scan. That was 2 weeks ago and we haven't heard anything yet.
     
  12. Scarlett123

    Scarlett123 Registered User

    Apr 30, 2013
    3,802
    Essex
    Sweetie, if that's the case, why don't you either type out a Statement, listing his problems, and pointing out that though he knows the date and time, there are many other problems, or ask if you can speak to the doctor privately, before he is seen. You could also telephone and speak to the doctor's secretary, asking if this could be arranged.

    I made a huge mistake the second time we went. On the journey, I told John, over and over again, the day of the week, the month, the year, who the PM was etc - cos I wanted him to do well. How daft is that! I came to my senses before we went in, but I needn't have worried, cos he'd forgotten everything I'd said anyway!
     
  13. Slugsta

    Slugsta Registered User

    Tuffydawn, I was worried about the same thing. As it happens, my mum has done quite well with date etc but the problem has been very obvious as the tests have progressed.
     
  14. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,709
    Female
    South coast
    Tufftydown, why not make a list of all the problems that he has and things that you are concerned about, then give it to the receptionist at the memory clinic?
    I understand your concern only too well - my OH has all sorts of problems but he has no problems with his short term memory and knows what day it is, who the prime minister is etc so he passes all the questions with flying colours. His main problem, however, is that his memory doesnt last - after a few days all he has is fragments. He cannot remember the experience of doing things although he can remember facts. The doctors are talking about fronto-temperal dementia now.
     
  15. LYN T

    LYN T Registered User

    Aug 30, 2012
    6,962
    Brixham Devon
    Another useful outcome of having a memory test is that it is normally repeated after a few months. In that way any progression of the illness could possibly be monitored. I know your OH has no diagnosis at the moment so this could be the first step in being able to get carers etc. Perhaps ask if you can speak to the Consultant on your own so that he/she gets the full picture.

    Take care

    Lyn T
     
  16. 1mindy

    1mindy Registered User

    Jul 21, 2015
    539
    Female
    Shropshire

    That was exactly tly as my other half be did well on some bits not on others.but he thought he had " passed "

    It's not.black k and white as we all know .
     
  17. stanleypj

    stanleypj Registered User

    Dec 8, 2011
    10,661
    North West
    #17 stanleypj, Sep 18, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2015
    You should at least be aware that it can take a long time for some people to get a specific diagnosis. My wife was referred to the memory clinic in 2000. After 3 or 4 years it was pretty clear that she had some form of dementia but despite numerous tests and three different scans she was only given a final diagnosis in 2011.

    I actually look back at those years as a bonus as there was some hope around and we carried on doing things we enjoyed without the full shadow of a firm diagnosis hanging over us.

    I know other people have found a quick diagnosis helpful.

    And it's also worth knowing that memory test scores can go up and down over the years.
     
  18. Jean1234

    Jean1234 Registered User

    Mar 19, 2015
    254
    I suppose you could say we were lucky because my OH was admitted to hospital for something else and the Doctor noticed his problems and arranged a brain scan while he was there and then asked our GP to refer him to the Memory Clinic because of the results. So we did everything the other way around.
    The Doctor at the clinic was marvellous and patient and yes did ask all the questions mentioned in the other posts and included the drawing and clock face. While we were there was the only time that my husband seemed to totally accept that he had AD, after the Doctor told us that that was the case, even asking how long he would have, which entirely threw me but since seems to have forgotten the fact or brushed it back under the carpet. We are expecting to see the memory clinic nurse three weeks after the clinic visit. And already have an appointment to go back to the clinic ar the beginning of November.
    Hope this helps you. I also add that my OH was in total denial that anything was wrong before our visit and I had to stress that we were following the hospital Doctors orders.
     

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