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Not getting any help or proper advice - MCI

Discussion in 'Memory concerns and seeking a diagnosis' started by mangoman, May 15, 2017.

  1. mangoman

    mangoman Registered User

    May 15, 2017
    Hi, after going to the memory clinic for tests in 2013 I was told I had Mild Cognitive Impairment. I also had a brain scan and they said there was a small amount of shrinkage but no signs of dementia. My life now is practically non existent, all i want to do is stay in bed as every thing I have to do takes me such a long time and becomes very frustrating & tiring. My GP sez my memory loss is due to depression & I am taking 20mg of escitalopram for maybe 2 yrs now. I also have a phychiatric nurse who visits me every 3 weeks and he just sez I must push myself to do things and go out etc. I also have ME so my energy supply is limited. Lately I definately feel my memory is even worse. My finances have gone to pot, i have no appetite, i dont get much enjoyment out of anything, my partner shouts at me everyday which just makes me more unhappy. Paperwork & reading letters is a big effort. I try to take an interest in my garden, i luv flowers. I have some friends on facebook. I use to love driving but now i hate it. My bf does all the meals. I hate peep giving me more info as it is extra stuff to remember and I just cant do it. If my bf asks me to do anyfin I have forgotten it in seconds. It just doesn't stay in my head. Then he gets angry with me. Does anyone have any advice of anyfing I can do to improve my situation either thru the nhs or practical ideas. Am I just in an in between stage of getting AD? I kinda feel as if i've given in, is this normal? I mentioned to my GP that i thought i had pseudo dementia but he said they would have picked that up at the memory clinic and that I just have short term memory problems. I am male of 60 yrs old and have had these memory problems for atleast 5 years, getting worse now.
    Any thoughts anyone?
    Thank you
  2. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    Hi and welcome to Talking Point.

    The first thing that occurs to me is that your symptoms could be due to your depression. The way you describe feeling is the way I felt before I found a decent psychiatrist to treat my depression. GPs are well meaning but in my view have no business prescribing for depression since these drugs are a very specialist field. So my advice to you would be to try to find a psychiatrist who actually knows about medications and options. I went through 5 drugs before I found one which treated my depression and also didn't produce major side-effects. The problem is, as I see it, is that I'm not sure just how you self-refer to a psychiatrist in the UK. I'm in the US and basically all I had to do is pick up the phone, make an appointment and then pay. But I'm reasonably certain that it's not so easy over there.
  3. Lawson58

    Lawson58 Registered User

    Hi mangoman,

    You really do sound as if you are in a mess and I think before you get yourself in a panic, you need to be thoroughly checked out and I mean a top to toe work over.

    Depression is a terrible thing and if that is the cause of all your problems then the treatment you have been receiving is totally inadequate, and in my humble opinion, the visits from the psychiatric nurse are useless. It is a waste of time telling someone with depression to get up and push yourself to get out.

    Been there, done that. All to no avail. My psychologist calls it 'the faking it till you make it' syndrome. If you go out and pretend that you are having fun then everything will sort itself out but that just doesn't work.

    And I don't agree with Jennifer that a GP shouldn't prescribe antidepressants but I do believe that your GP needs to know you well. My GP sent me to a psychologist and after a few sessions she got in touch with my GP and suggested antidepressants. Since taking them I have been feeling much better and I have not been near a psychiatrist.

    If you have been on antidepressants without a review then you need to insist on getting the proper help you need. Much of what you say is how I felt and it was pretty awful. And it can really cause difficulties in a relationship. He can't understand why you feel like you do and all you want is a bit of understanding and loving support.

    Would it be possible for you to ask him to help you with seeking help? You really need it.
  4. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    Actually I'm not sure we do disagree entirely. You had a psychologist to guide your GP in prescribing, I had a psychiatrist (who in the US is a medical doctor who has specialized and can prescribe). The thing is, though, both of us had the input of an expert, which with the best will in the world a GP cannot be in this field. Which is why, I think, mangoman has basically left to get on with it with a prescription that doesn't seem to have addressed his depression and (and in this I think we are in total agreement) visits from a nurse who has basically told him to pull his socks yup, which as we both know is completely beyond a person who is clinically depressed. I'm actually horrified that after 2 years this poor man doesn't appear to have had any real help.

    It's true that not all depression responds to drugs, but 2 years on the same drug with no real improvement shows a lack of knowledge on the part of the GP.
  5. Lawson58

    Lawson58 Registered User

    At the end of the day, I was lucky that my GP had the skills and knowledge to prescribe an antidepressant that was suitable for me without needing to try a range of medication, which was the point really.

    He has been my GP for years and knows me very well. I suspect that mangoman could respond well to some decent primary medical care before going down the psychiatric path which probably could take ages in UK.
  6. cragmaid

    cragmaid Registered User

    Oct 18, 2010
    North East England
    You have MCI and ME, both can be debilitating. I do think that, after taking the drugs for 2 years, perhaps it is time for a rethink.
    I wonder if some CBT ( cognative Behaviour Therapy) might help you. This might help you to retrain some of your more confused thinking patterns. I know that with ME especially, it is awfully easy to slip into a way of thinking that tells you, "no effort is easier than some effort because I just get things wrong and I can't do it". This coupled with a lack of energy and drive puts you into a situation where you hibernate constantly.

    Please go back to your Doctor and ask for a new assessment of your physical and mental situation.

    Write notes, keep a diary, make lists and tick of things as you complete them. Set yourself manageable goals, such as get up and dressed by a certain time each day. Check your Bank Balance every Thursday....small but attainable targets.
    Your partner is trying to help, but perhaps needs more advice too. Go to the GP together.

    Good Luck.
  7. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    South coast
    Hello mangoman and welcome to Talking Point.

    The symptoms you describe could, indeed, be due to depression, but I remember my husband (with Frontotemperal dementia) was originally mis-diagnosed with depression as he could answer all the memory questions correctly. Could you ask to go back to the memory clinic for them to recheck you? I would also get your partner to read this link and see if any of it rings bells.

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