1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

  1. Ali1964

    Ali1964 Registered User

    Nov 13, 2015
    3
    Hello I am new here
    I'll try and keep it brief I am 51 and over the past 2 years have been struggling with anxiety (well I think it was anxiety) things came to a head when I came back from holiday a few months ago and a work mate had left a list of stupid errors that she had uncovered I was horrified it's just not like me ..... Up until 2 years ago I was a we'll paid manager in control of a multimillion contact I did this job for over 10 years and left when my husband got relocated with his job. I quickly gained an equally good job but just couldn't do it I just couldn't grasp it and found it really difficult ... I came to the conclusion that I should just give the job up and take a lesser challenging post because at the same time I was having cognative therapy because I had a really stupid issue with supermarkets !!! I would go in and just could decide what I wanted and would panic to just go home ..... This was eventually sorted when I stared to take a small list of things I needed and would go two or three times a week instead of one big shop (nobody connected my job issues and the supermarket thing including me) i got a new job part time low level and not challenging at all. A few months passed and I suddenly found myself calling things "thingy" forgetting names of things and saying the occasional stupid things like "did you have a nice baby" "the program is nearly off" instead of finished etc etc things came to a head when six months ago I went on vacation and when I returned to work my colleague had left a huge list of errors .... I was horrified and instantly accused her of being a bully no way could I have made all those silly mistakes !!!! I then shocked myself by forgetting another colleague all together and didn't even recognise his name when told (I did remember him after about 5 min ) I've burned the tea so many times by getting distracted, panicked when driving because I couldn't figure out what a dash light was (was the usual engine light driven that car for 3 years) I find going down stairs a bit strange and feel like I could fall I could go on and on ...... Anyway went to the dr and he immediately referred me to the neurologist when I couldn't follow his direction when he was asking me to lift my arms etc (he asked me to lift my arms and I bent over instead ... Like an idiot) ... I went to the neurologist who was very good he listened and gave me a memory test (counting backwards from 100 by 7, named some items on his desk drew a shape and names some animals ) he told me I had passed with flying colours and if I had dementia I would not be able to tell him all my symptoms as I would be able to recall them ... Took some bloods and sending me for an MRI ( just to cross the ts and dot the is) he then said he would be discharging me as he didn't expect the MRI to show anything .... My GP said yesterday to just up the Prozac (been in that for 20 years) and contact NHS talk together thing as it was all down to anxiety ( I don't feel anxious..... Soooo that's my story and I would be interested to hear what anyone thinks !
     
  2. carol4444

    carol4444 Registered User

    Feb 5, 2014
    109
    All sounds a bit familiar. Have experienced a few of those problems, especially the 'thingy' words that just escape me now and then. Also the weird feeling going downstairs - I take everything a bit slower. I wander around busy car parks so carefully now instead of flying around like I used to. I am assuming that these symptoms are caused by menopause as I am in my fifties. I recall my mother telling me about similar problems. It will be interesting to hear other responses.
     
  3. LadyA

    LadyA Registered User

    Oct 19, 2009
    13,522
    Ireland
    Carol is right - I remember one of my stepdaughters being terrified that she was developing dementia, when she was going through the menopause. I would also be wondering about the Prozac though. Medication can affect us. And of course, stress and anxiety. During the final months of my husband's life, I locked myself out of the car often enough that I now carry the spare key always. After he died, I managed to lock the car with BOTH keys, and my house keys AND phone inside! Another day I had to pull off the road near a junction and sit there, and wait until I could remember where I was going! I really thought I was losing my mind. "Stress and anxiety " the doctor said. "it will pass ".

    But having said that, definitely keep an eye on things. Is your husband /family concerned? Certainly, do not keep your worries about this to yourself. If a family member can go with you to appointments, their input can be invaluable to doctors.
     
  4. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,739
    I have a few things the same - sometimes i just can't put a name to a face, i know them but can't remember exactly where from and then suddenly it comes to me but there is a delay. 'thingy' is a very familiar phrase that comes to mind frequently and I really don't like it one bit but again there is a delay! The other day i put the keys in the fridge!!

    My memory isn't as sharp as it was at work but then i'm often off in another place and not concentrating (stress)

    I have put mine down to stress - I hope i'm right - but like you I have a good memory for reporting things and i can comfortably pass the Food for the Brain memory test with a really good result so I don't think it can be dementia.

    Stress does some scary things. I also wondered if your family and friends have noticed it mine haven't.
     
  5. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,578
    Female
    South coast
    Stress and anxiety can definitely cause the things that you have described and I am glad that you got full marks on the MMSE, however I must say that concern (or not) from people around you is probably the best indication of whether there is a problem.
    The only reason I say this is that sometimes (and I stress that it is only sometimes) you can get full marks on the MMSE when there is actually something wrong. I know my husband did.
     
  6. LadyA

    LadyA Registered User

    Oct 19, 2009
    13,522
    Ireland
    This is very true. My husband was scoring very high on all the tests he was given regularly until he was well into the middle stages of dementia. I knew he had it, his GP knew he had it, and his consultant knew he had it. There were all sorts of other signs and concerns that raised flags about it. But he was still well able to score highly on the tests.
     
  7. Ali1964

    Ali1964 Registered User

    Nov 13, 2015
    3
    Firstly thank you very much for all your responses.... It's good to be able to chat and express freely what's in my mind. To answer a few questions .... Yes menopause would be a big factor however I had a total hysterectomy 6 years ago .... Lucky me . I have been on Prozac for 20 odd years and feel very comfortable with it the neurologist even said to increase it !! As far as other people noticing is a bit difficult we relocated two years ago and I don't see my friends or family often .... However the reason I ended up going to the Dr was my work colleague asked if I was okay as I was being a bit odd at times .... It was at this point I actually confessed to what was going on and asked her what she thought She was very honest and said she had been carrying me at work and often finished my sentences when I got stuck on words she also said it was alarming how my face was so blank at times !! This was the conversation that made me think back and a lot of past instances suddenly all came together .... Months previous I had misspelt my daughters name four times (password) and just dismissed it !!! As for my husband he works very long hours and is away for weeks at a time ... He's not very observant but he did remark that "something is not right" and it was strange me getting my words wrong. But I haven't really discussed my absolute fears of perhaps having dementia..... It's too scary X
     
  8. canary

    canary Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    10,578
    Female
    South coast
    Im trying to walk the tightrope between reassurance and concern here as I dont want to over-react and alarm you unnecessarily. If there are no problems showing up on the MMSE then usually it means that the symptoms are due to stress and/or depression. However, there are one or two things that strike me as being similar to my husband, especially the way your work mate is expressing concern (and I note that this is a lesser challenging post than the one you had previously worked in) and the way you couldnt follow directions.

    I would be cautiously optimistic, but if there are continued concerns I would go back to your GP. Neurologists do not always know very much about dementia, especially the rarer types and a referral the the memory clinic might be better. I would also push for a scan and neuropsychology testing.

    I genuinely hope it is stress.
     
  9. Ali1964

    Ali1964 Registered User

    Nov 13, 2015
    3
    Yes I too hope it is stress .... Which it probably is ..... I do appreciate where your coming from its easy to cause alarm unintentionally on a forum ..... I guess I'm the kind of "have to know everything" kind of person it's my nature to question everything I suppose after many years of coping with depression and stress ... This just feels different !! The good news is which I obviously failed to mention although the neurologist said I passed the memory test 100% and i didn't have dementia he is sending me for an MRI on the frontal lobes (don't really understand) so luckily I have the reassurance of having my brain looked at. I am sorry for your loss ... It must be difficult but very gracious to offer your knowledge and understanding.
     

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