Worried about sulpiride

Discussion in 'I have a partner with dementia' started by tigerlady, Nov 30, 2015.

  1. tigerlady

    tigerlady Registered User

    Nov 29, 2015
    My husband is in a care home and is very aggressive when it comes to his personal care - its takes 3 of them to shower him and he punches, kicks, tries to bite, swears and even spits when they take his clothes off but once the water is on him he mostly washes himself and is calmed down by the time he has the towels. When he was at home he often went for days in the same clothes until I summoned up the patience to persuade him to shower. I had to show him how to wash his hair and prompted him to wash and the whole process sometimes took 2 hours. I realise the care home don't have that sort of time - they have tried just one male carer rather than girls or women but that doesn't work either

    Now the care home have called for an assessment and the doctor wants to put him on sulpiride and I am so worried as it is an anti psychotic drug and I have lost so much of him already and I am concerned what effect it will have on him. I am still able to take him out for walks with our dog and visits to the pub or theatre, and I am worried this drug will change him more than the dementia

    He is on memantine and has had lorazapan before he is showered and that didnt have any effect, and basically he is a very private and proud man and he feels very threatened by lots of people taking his clothes off, and I dont think an anti psychotic drug will stop him feeling threatened but could really change him for the worse.

    Has anyone else had experience of this drug and of its effects?
  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    If you mean amisulpride, it was a drug my husband took to help his aggression and paranoia. It didn`t solve all problems but it helped.
  3. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    North Manchester
  4. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    I think you are right in questioning this. Antipsychotics are not good for people with dementia and should only be given as a last resort. You need to question if everything else has been tried first. If your husband is a proud and private man, of course he won't like what's happening now, and the staff should try a different approach to washing him. Unless you are incontinent, you don't need a shower every day. Maybe he would prefer a bath? Would he able to take off his clothes himself? If not, have the carers tried to make pleasant chit-chat or sing to him while they tend to him? Is the bathroom warm and inviting? Do they have to wear their uniforms while they shower him? There are lots of ways this could be addressed and if you have the time, buy or borrow "And Still The Music Plays" by Graham Stokes. He's a clinical psychologist, advising on how to treat dementia patients in care homes and hospitals, and he's found truly individual approaches to common problems in those settings. It's incredible and should be read by all care home staff.

    I know that some people here have had good experience with drugs as a last resort, and that's great, but if you at all can, try to avoid them.
  5. tigerlady

    tigerlady Registered User

    Nov 29, 2015

    thank you for your reply - the carers say that they have tried all approaches and as he has been there nearly a year they feel this is the only option. When he was in the unit at the hospital being assessed he did have baths there sometimes and I think he was better behaved then. The home he is in is a purpose built modern dementia unit and all rooms have ensuite shower/wet rooms - there are bathrooms but the baths are quite big industrial looking ones with hoists etc and not very "homely" but I did suggest to them that they tried that, but I don't think he would be able to get in a high sided bath and he certainly would not subject to a hoist - he still is very mobile but with a stiff knee. They say they have to shower him every other day as he has toileting "accidents" sometime, but he always lets me know when he wants to go to the toilet and lets me assist him. I asked if they prompt him every 2 hours or so, and they say they do, but there again, his pride might come into play then - not wanting strangers to know he wants to go to the toilet.

    I am going to get that book straight away

    once again, thank you and thanks to the others who have replied - I am so often in despair - it is such a cruel disease for a wonderful proud man to have - if only I could change places with him :(
  6. nita

    nita Registered User

    Dec 30, 2011
    Sulpiride is a different drug from amisulpiride. Sulpiride is not only used for psychosis but also for depression so this might be appropriate if your husband is not washing, etc. as it may be a symptom of that. I hope it helps. Unfortunately, it is all trial and error with this illness.

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