1. Kate P

    Kate P Registered User

    Jul 6, 2007
    565
    Merseyside
    Hello all - I'm glad for those who had a "better than expected Christmas" and feel for those of you who had a hellish time - I think we were somewhere in between!

    Well, yes I'm back on here. I blame myself - I try to back away to give dad some "alone" time on TP and all hell breaks loose!

    Well you may wonder why I'm asking about memory loss in AZ when my mum has FTD - however, questions are now being asked about my aunt (my mum's sister).

    There seems to be real problems with her short term memory and my cousins tell me it's been building up over a couple of years. Obviously I have advised them to see her GP or write to him if he won't see them (although they all live at the other end of the country to us and their mum).

    There are constant memory problems everyday - not so much with remembering where her keys are or things like that - but that she cannot recall a conversation minutes after having it. It's not that they're having to jog her memory she just has no recollection of having the conversation. They had all arranged to come to my house for a party on Boxing Day several months ago but she just couldn't remember it no matter how many times they reminded her - up to four times a day on occasion! It seems like quite an extreme memory loss to me for it to be depression or something like that.

    I think I just find it impossible to believe - it would surely be an enormous co-incidence for my aunt to have early on set AZ and my mum to have FTD?

    Can the memory loss in AZ be this extreme without too many other symptoms? What else would you expect to see?

    I just can't believe it...
     
  2. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    17,000
    SW Scotland
    Dear Kate,

    Welcome back!:)

    Your aunt's symptoms do sound like AD, but as Nada says, there are other possibilities, and it's important for your aunt to see a GP as soon as possible.

    What concerns me is that, as your cousins live so far away, is this going to be another responsibility for you? You really have enough to cope with already.

    I know you wouldn't walk away from it, you're much too caring, but you really have to sit down with your cousins and spell out to them what may be involved. Don't let them just assume that you'll cope. (Not trying to denigrate your cousins, but people who haven't been closely involved often just don't realise the implications).

    I hope for all your sakes that it turns out to be something treatable. Please keep in touch, and let us know.

    Glad you Christmas was not too bad.

    Love,
     
  3. Kate P

    Kate P Registered User

    Jul 6, 2007
    565
    Merseyside
    Thanks for the support.

    Hazel - my hubby gave me and dad the same advice - I think they'll do fine and will absoloutly step up - my younger cousin has been to take mum out a couple of times over Christmas to give my dad a break so I'm sure they'll do fine. I think they just want us to guide them as to what to do - actually I think they want us to tell them it can't be but...

    I'm sort of joining them in that mind set I must admit - me who has always been so harsh to those in denial is now wanting to lose herself in denial - just goes to show you never know what's round the corner. It would just be lovely if for once that thing around the corner was something pleasant ... ho hum, life goes on!

    I think the thing that is throwing me is that I had several conversations with her all of which seemed "normal" if you'll pardon me using that word. If her AZ was so bad that her memory was as stated above I would have thought her conversation would be slightly stilted? I guess I'm making that assumption based on the fact that my mum can't talk at all but FTD is very different isn't it?
     
  4. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    39,439
    A past stroke can cause something like this, or at least it did for my mother. Not so seriously debilitating that the person can't function, but entire conversations that go AWOL. In fact, I sometimes wonder what my mother's friends though about me in the period between her first unknown stroke and her subsequent ones, because I know she told at least one person that I "never" called her when I was ringing every other day (at least).
     
  5. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london

    Can happen in family .


    My mother brother had Alzheimer's .

    My mother sister had VD .

    I was very surprised to find out that my mothers brother had Alzheimer's when we visited him in Spain .
    His wife was looking after him he died 3 years ago .
     
  6. christine_batch

    christine_batch Registered User

    Jul 31, 2007
    3,388
    Buckinghamshire
    Hello Kate,
    So nice to hear from you again.
    At the beginning, Peter had lost his memory completely. Did not know his name, date of birth, everything. So from the time of diagnoises, I worked for 8 months solid getting him to remeber his name et cetra. Playing one of his favourite c.d. over and over again for 3 months, with me singing along to the songs. As you can imagine I began to hate the c.d. until one day he started to sing a few bits of the song. Peter never remebered marrying me, to him I was someone there to look after him. The strangest thing was, he remembered his step-children and Grandchildrens names quite quickly. Also he never called me by my name. The Consultant was quite amazed that Peter had regained some parts of his memory.
    It was just another form the Consultant (who was also research) came into recognising, and although he was full of praise of what I had done, I did not want praise, just for Peter to have remembered me would have been brilliant.
    So this illness brings forth so many different parts to it and we can only deal with it one day at a time.
    I wish you all the best. Christine
     
  7. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    69,537
    Kent
    Dear Kate,
    This is a tragedy for you and your family in more ways than one. I`m so sorry.
    All you can do is support your cousins with your experiences and encourage them to get specialist attention for their mother as soon as possible.
    There is no certainty it is Alzheimers, so the sooner a diagnosis is made, hopefully it will be for the better.
    Love xx
     
  8. Nell

    Nell Registered User

    Aug 9, 2005
    1,170
    Australia
    #8 Nell, Dec 29, 2007
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2007
    Dear Kate,

    Your aunt sounds just like my Mum. Her dementia is largely characterised by the inability to remember anything for even a few minutes at a time. At other times she remembers things that you would just as soon she forgot!!

    There are constant memory problems everyday - not so much with remembering where her keys are or things like that - but that she cannot recall a conversation minutes after having it. It's not that they're having to jog her memory she just has no recollection of having the conversation. They had all arranged to come to my house for a party on Boxing Day several months ago but she just couldn't remember it no matter how many times they reminded her - up to four times a day on occasion! It seems like quite an extreme memory loss to me for it to be depression or something like that.

    My Mum can hear the same thing 4 times in 4 minutes (literally!) and not remember. This is exacerbated by tiredness, stress or any heightened emotion.

    At the same time, Mum can follow most things quite logically (such as news on TV, etc.) and still plays Scrabble like a demon!! Other characteristics of her dementia include:


    * having very confused understanding of time - she is still fine with daily time (night, day, meal times, etc) but cannot manage periods of time. Told me today that something happened "more than 30 years ago" - actually happened about 10 years ago. Also often asks me about people she knew as a girl whom I've never met and is surprised when I tell her I don't know them

    * has limited understanding of logic - gets quite confused over anything that requires logic or deduction. For example: cannot think of "pros and cons" - just gets an idea in her head and wants it - cannot reason.

    * gets obsessive over certain things which remain the obsession until replaced by something else. Currently wants to give away all the items in particular cupboard. She won't be happy till I've removed them all.

    * unable to consider (in any real sense) how her actions affect others. She is still very caring and polite - always thanking others. But hasn't got any genuine grasp of others needs or wants. For example: gets upset if she rings up and I have to tell her I cannot talk because I'm going to work. Says things like "you work too much" - meaning "I want to talk to you!"

    Mum can still manage all her self care, but takes a LONG time to bathe, dress, etc. She cannot organise herself in any way (that is a logic process) and needs to be helped to organise herself.

    I do hope for you and your family that your aunt does not have a diagnosis of dementia, but it does sound quite a lot like Mum.
    I don't know whether it is a blessing or a curse, but Mum's deterioration has been very slow. This is good in some ways, but makes it hard for her (and us) in others.

    Thinking of you.
     

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