1. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Has anyone correlated a rate of decline in patients with AD or vascular dementia with either age or symptom progression

    Anyone have their own experience or views on this
    It seems to me that my 90 yr old Mother is going downhill pretty fast but its so hard to tell
    I do not live near but certainly theres been a huge change since Xmas
  2. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    My mother went downhill very rapidly in her last 10 days. She was 83. We don't know what caused her dementia.

  3. keen2108

    keen2108 Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Everybody seems to have different stories but my dad was walking around in March in his nursing home (he is nearly 80) and could sometimes hold a conversation of sorts. Wheelchair bound at end of April barely recognising me. Then bedridden in June and is currently still holding on but has lost his swallowing ability for the past 2 weeks. He has not had any food for weeks and only a few sips of water in the last week.

    I presume things like what drugs they are on help to decide how their illness progresses too. As they are so many combinations of treatment it would be hard to produce any guidelines as every case would be different.

    I expect someone somewhere may have done a study on a cross section of sufferers.

    Kind thoughts
  4. dmc

    dmc Registered User

    Mar 13, 2006
    hi helena

    my mum was diagnosed in february with a very progressive dementia, they told us she would only last about 12 months, her dementia is due to brain damage suffered in a heart attack 2 years ago she's 65, to be honest im not sure what stage my mum is at, or where she should be as its taking months rather than years to decline, at the moment she's in a hospital for dementia patients she's had a uti so she's not walking very good at the moment the only real change is her talking she seems to mumble now, in the last few weeks she's had hallucinations but that could have been the uti.
    i know ive read the different stages of dementia on this site but im not sure where perhaps that would be worth a look at to give you some idea of what stage your mum is at.
    take care
  5. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    I have searched the various lists of symptom progression and positively nothing makes sense at all where my Mother is concerned

    Given her age of 90 I wondered whether her decline would in fact be mercifully rapid
  6. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    I think looking at your family history is as likely as anything else to give you an idea of the rate of decline of a specific AD sufferer. By that, I mean that some families are considerably more long lived than others, and even with AD that genetic heritage comes into play. Looking at it logically, 90 is a pretty decent age for anyone - the body, no matter what medical care it's given, doesn't seem to be designed to continue to function much past that.

  7. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Even that does not help ........her mother died of bowell cancer age 69 and her father of stroke age 86
    her elder sister died years ago age 80 and her brother age 70

    i agree that one should not expect to live beyond 90 however knowing my Mother who has stuffed herself with cream ,chocolate, coffee etc most of her past 30 years and has had uncontrollable high BP for 20 of them she beats all the odds

    I cant eat cheese or a pizza without getting Gall stone attack
  8. Tender Face

    Tender Face Account Closed

    Mar 14, 2006
    NW England

    Helena, one of my biggest 'guilt monsters' is that I didn't recognise the first signs... very much like you I feel there has been a remarked change in the last six months with my own mother..... that 'steep' but variable decline - amongst other signs - is leading the docs to believe mum has VD..... I have put various 'problems' down over the last few years down to a fall (when she hit her head), at least one mini-stroke which was very apparent, depression, bereavement, general 'wear-and-tear', post- aneasthesia reactions, high BP, ageing (although mum is *only* 74) etc etc....

    I'm not sure how we can hope to 'measure' decline when no-one can be sure when the 'onset' really was...... let alone provide an accurate diagnosis, just a 'best guess' .......

    Sorry, not much help..... the vagueness of 'timescales' - past and present - in this horrible equation doesn't help anybody in the 'here and now', does it?

    But still, we ask the questions.... maybe the answers, if they're ever found, will help someone else someday.... if not us, just now.....

    Love, Karen (TF), x
  9. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    #9 Helena, Jul 9, 2006
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2006
    oh i can pin down the start ok

    5 yrs ago she drove out of a side turning across a main road and slammed into a brick wall ..........did not know how she did it ......kept in hospital but not investigated ...only found out 3 days after she was released !!!!!!!!!

    4 years ago she collapsed at Xmas Dinner Table ........BP non existant according to paramedics they thought TIA .......hospital said no .......GP said forget it !!

    3 years ago she collapsed in greenhouse ......could not get up somehow crawled down path ......GP claimed it was the severe osteoporosis

    2 years ago .....claimed pigeons on the ceiling
    1 yr ago when sister called to take her out to a booked lunch ......Mother wandering about house with only an old sweater on
    xmas 2005 had to be lead to meals like a child
    Feb 2006 calls out 5 different mechanics claiming Garage have put something in her car .......AA man writes " batty old woman "
    march 2006 has not paid credit card bill for 4 months .......cannot memorise pin number
    june 2006 banned from driving by dvla .......cant work out a till recepit ,claimed dividend cheques were bills and wrote out cheques to cover them but refused to pay water /gas /electric bills
    July .........writing in diary not hers , financial stuff in chaos

    For months all paperwork has been spread around the house in total chaos
    She cant make herself understood
    dolly = door
    blocks= cheese
    least thing and for years she has been stroppy /bad tempered /argumentative
    and this is just the stuff my sister and I know about
  10. DickG

    DickG Registered User

    Feb 26, 2006
    Mary has suferred a steady decline for the past six years from moderate to severe, in the past month there has been a marked decline.

    I have come to the conclusion that with Mary there is no pattern and the rate of decline seems to be random.

    Incidentally I am sat with Mary whilst talking to you and have been subjected to repeated questioning about a variety of inconsequental subject, I have just put my headphones on and all has gone quiet!

  11. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    5 years ago my mother phoned me and said her house was full of poison and she couldn't stay there one more night. So she came over to my house (it was the last time she came here) for 2 nights, and we went and looked at the Anchor place near me but there was a 2-and-a-half year waiting-list and she said she'd be dead by then anyway.

    After those 2 nights she decided she'd better go back to her own house and "do the things that need doing" (a phrase we've heard a lot, she has since frequently complained that my brother and I "don't do the things that need doing", as he said I wish we knew what those things were).

    I don't know if the poisoning incident (flea powder) actually caused her dementia, it was certainly what she believed. I think there probably really were rats in the shed and fleas in the house but she had over-reacted, poured poison all over everything including the bed she was sleeping in, then suddenly in the middle of the night she decided she had poisoned herself and got up and dressed and walked to A & E (she could still walk further and faster than I could then) with the empty containers. The people at A & E contacted poison experts, said there was no antidote and sent her home. She then slept in her bed full of poison for another week before telling anyone.

    So the next few weeks were spent getting her house cleaned up and she threw away a lot of things and then said she knew she'd over-reacted and got a bit paranoid. We tried to get her to move but she wouldn't.

    The next 4 years seemed reasonably uneventful, she was slowing down gradually and there were more and more things she wouldn't do, but it was only last October that she made herself ill enough for hospital admission, and only on the 18th November that I first attached the label dementia to her behaviour.

    Once people realised it was dementia they started remembering peculiar things she'd done long ago.
  12. Tender Face

    Tender Face Account Closed

    Mar 14, 2006
    NW England
    Hi Helena, perhaps I didn't get my meaning across so well..... what I was trying to say is that I feel that often the 'onset' is so subtle it is barely noticable even by those seeing the 'sufferer' daily ... or easily attributable to other factors.... I can see you have 'significant events'...... we all here must have some 'painful moments', as I do, when what I thought was one thing turned out to be attributable to something more serious.....

    What a woman your mum is - was still driving at 85????!!! From a generation where generally women never 'took to the wheel' - can you hang on to that bit and remain fiercely proud of her????? I would be........

    As for paperwork.... could redecorate the house with mum's correspondence... only I'd arrange it artistically on the walls not all over the carpet as mum thinks fit!!!!

    Surely your mum IS making herself understood? If YOU know that 'Dolly = door' then she IS making some meaningful communication.....????

    Just thoughts,

    Love Karen (TF), x
  13. Helena

    Helena Registered User

    May 24, 2006
    Still driving at 90 ........but sans MOT !!!!!!!thank God I have got the car taken away .......she insisted the car keys were front door keys .......her driving was lousy 13 years ago and her car has been written off and resurected twice in 5 years .......whats left is currently on E Bay
    Not even sure the house is insured ......she wont let me near the paperwork
    As for making communication .........its a total guessing game I can assure you most of the time and her understanding is ZERO

    She certainly would make little sense to strangers on the phone never mind me or my sister

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