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Problems with speech

(10 Posts)
BlueSky Fri 05-Jun-20 10:04:32

I'm in regular contact with my cousin who told me once before that she had an episode of not finding words. Yesterday she sent me a very jumbled up message saying it was happening again and she couldn't put a sentence together. I found it quite alarming but she said it has happened before and cleared after a while. I urged her to contact her GP at least. It seems to me like a TIA, she's 71 and on medication for epilepsy.

Jane10 Fri 05-Jun-20 10:07:31

Certainly sounds like a TIA. She should speak to GP

MiniMoon Fri 05-Jun-20 10:38:32

She sounds exactly like my Dad who had several TIA's on the way to developing vascular dementia.
He never became terribly confused, but lost his words, and would whistle when he couldn't remember the word he was searching for.
A GP needs to be consulted.

CherryCezzy Fri 05-Jun-20 11:43:43

I could be a TIA but there are other possibilities that I can think of but more information is required to assess whether this is the case.
You say that your cousin is on epilepsy medication. May I ask whether she has epilepsy or whether she is on that medication for another reason?
May I also ask how long she has been on this medication?

Besides a TIA two other possible reasons spring to mind:
a) she may be experiencing a side effect from the medication, either an early reaction if the medication has been recently prescribed or because she has been on the same medication for a prolonged period. It can be a side effect of some epilepsy medications.
b) if she does have epilepsy it is possible that she has developed aphasia. This is not uncommon, although the % of people with epilepsy who are affected is not high.

It does worry me when you say that she left you a jumbled up message. You do not say if it was a spoken or written message. If it was a written message it is less likely that she was experiencing a period of aphasia since it can be "worked around" in writing. If it was in writing it is much more indicative of a TIA.

I do suggest that medical advice be sought as soon as possible.

BlueSky Fri 05-Jun-20 13:09:28

Cherry your answer is very I formative. She's been on anti epilepsy medications since she was a teenager. She has the minor sort, i.e. She doesn't collapse to the ground just absent for a short while. Yes it was a written message as she lives abroad, it didn't make much sense. Hoping to hear from her today and hopefully she has called her doctor. Thanks all.

Jane10 Fri 05-Jun-20 13:14:39

A TIA can cause dysphasia. (Aphasia would be total loss of language.) It happened several times to my grandmother after TIAs. Worrying at the time but resolved fairly quickly until the next time. Its a pity that it's not so easy to be assessed right now.

EllanVannin Fri 05-Jun-20 13:27:39

My nephew as a child used to suffer from petit-mal seizures and went through all kinds of tests etc. I don't know what the end result was but I know there were no warnings and down he went for minutes, no shaking or any other symptoms and when he came to he hadn't remembered anything. It wasn't diagnosed as epilepsy.

The specialist had said at the time he'd grow out of it which he did for most of his adult life then a few years ago, they started up again and at 6' 6" a hefty man to go down. He wasn't allowed to drive for a year and had another in the mean-time. Not sure what medication he takes. He's now 50.

EllanVannin Fri 05-Jun-20 13:33:08

I was very fortunate after my TIA just to have vertigo---for about 6 months in all but I battled through okay and hadn't realised I'd had one until a scan showed up. Possibly because I'm on blood-thinners and statins which saved me from a fate worse than death, which I'm forever grateful for.

TIA's can happen frequently without you always realising.

TrendyNannie6 Fri 05-Jun-20 13:40:52

It needs investigating, if it was me I’d have a word with the dr

BlueSky Fri 05-Jun-20 19:19:06

Thanks everybody I had a message from my cousin today and she thinks that yesterday she might have forgotten her medication. She seems OK today and won't be contacting her doctor. If it was me I certainly would but can't persuade her otherwise. Not sure what they could do in case of a TIA.