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Not sure what is happening

Jenna14

New member
Feb 22, 2020
3
30
Bradford
My great-grandma was diagnosed with vascular dementia 3 years ago now, since Monday she as been very vacant, not eating or drinking. Today we've spoke to one of the care home assistants who said she's now having 'assisted feeding and drinking' my grandma (my great grandma's daughter) seems to think it's the chest infection and uti she has got that's causing this blankness she as got. Me on the other hand I'm not too sure. It's shocking to see she's just laid in her bed, staring at nothing she trys to talk but can't, she's sick when we try give her fluid etc. She can't be taken to the toilet as she's too weak. Is this nearing the end? I'm not sure or should I say we were not sure what we should expect?
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
5,286
N Ireland
Hello @Jenna14 you are welcome here and I hope you find the forum to be a friendly and supportive place.

You say that your great-grandma has a double infection and I can tell you that infections cause havoc in people with dementia. Is medication being given for this? If so, people can rally when recovery sets in and I hope that will be the case.

There is a Society Factsheet about this and you can read that if you click the 2nd line of the following link
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) and dementia (528)
PDF printable version

Now that you have found us I hope you will keep posting as the membership has vast collective knowledge and experience.
 

RosettaT

Registered User
Sep 9, 2018
436
Mid Lincs
Hi Jenna14 welcome,
As a general rule of thumb when my OH gets an infection he has 'blank' phases. Sometimes when I speak to him he just looks at me and totally ignores me, other times he just stares into space as tho' he has nothing going on in his head at all. I often have help him with his feeding too as he seems to not understand what eating is. He will sit for ages and just build walls with his weetabix but if I take the spoon he will eat no problem.
 

Hazara8

Registered User
Apr 6, 2015
416
My great-grandma was diagnosed with vascular dementia 3 years ago now, since Monday she as been very vacant, not eating or drinking. Today we've spoke to one of the care home assistants who said she's now having 'assisted feeding and drinking' my grandma (my great grandma's daughter) seems to think it's the chest infection and uti she has got that's causing this blankness she as got. Me on the other hand I'm not too sure. It's shocking to see she's just laid in her bed, staring at nothing she trys to talk but can't, she's sick when we try give her fluid etc. She can't be taken to the toilet as she's too weak. Is this nearing the end? I'm not sure or should I say we were not sure what we should expect?
As has been suggested here, a UTI when dementia is in place, can be extraordinarily alarming. Behaviour can range across a broad spectrum, embracing refusal, delirium, confusion, mimicking " end of life" and so on. Most certainly is the case that UTI's and dementia combined can be detrimental . But presentations such as you describe might well abate. I trust things will improve. The world of dementia finds a platform here, whereby direct experience and observation can often quell anxieties, when clinical factors or presentations appear to indicate otherwise.
 

Jenna14

New member
Feb 22, 2020
3
30
Bradford
Hello @Jenna14 you are welcome here and I hope you find the forum to be a friendly and supportive place.

You say that your great-grandma has a double infection and I can tell you that infections cause havoc in people with dementia. Is medication being given for this? If so, people can rally when recovery sets in and I hope that will be the case.

There is a Society Factsheet about this and you can read that if you click the 2nd line of the following link
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) and dementia (528)
PDF printable version

Now that you have found us I hope you will keep posting as the membership has vast collective knowledge and experience.
Thankyou For your reply and this in depth fact sheet, this is something I will give to my other family members for them to read. I will definitely stay and keep posting about my beautiful grandma as I think us as a family need somebody else's knowledge and experience to help us through this. We know very little about dementia apart from the things we've researched and because my gran as been doing so well I think we just didn't think about it (buried our heads). She is the head of the family, the strong one. The one everyone went to with our problems etc and now seeing her like this is shocking, scary and very very heart breaking. X
 

Jenna14

New member
Feb 22, 2020
3
30
Bradford
Hi Jenna14 welcome,
As a general rule of thumb when my OH gets an infection he has 'blank' phases. Sometimes when I speak to him he just looks at me and totally ignores me, other times he just stares into space as tho' he has nothing going on in his head at all. I often have help him with his feeding too as he seems to not understand what eating is. He will sit for ages and just build walls with his weetabix but if I take the spoon he will eat no problem.
Hi, and thankyou for you reply.. this is exactly what my grandma is like at the moment. She just looks at us as if she hasn't a clue who we are, then she was just staring and lifting her left arm up and down over and over again. Because she's on anti-biotics we needs to make sure she's getting enough food/water inside her so the medicine works but she's just not having enough. She trys to talk but she just stops mid sentence and goes back to staring again. She's too weak to be moved so at the minute she's bed bound so she can't go on her camode to the toilet so she's holding it in which is hurting her tummy. The doctor is coming out Monday I just hope someone helps her fast because this is heart breaking to see. X