Gransnet forums

Health

Worried about memory clinic appointment

(32 Posts)
granfromafar Mon 04-Mar-24 18:21:12

OH has an appointment tomorrow, after a wait of nearly a year. He had a CT scan about 10 months ago, which, to my surprise, didn't show any abnormalities. He was told 'nothing unusual for his age' (74). GP suggested a referral to the memory clinic, which has finally come round. His memory has got worse over the last year, and I have also noticed some behavioural changes. I'm expecting the worst (some form of dementia). I looked after my mother, who had Alzheimers in her latter years, so know what the future could hold. Maybe I'm jumping the gun, but can't help being concerned. Any words of wisdom from those who have been in a similar situation?

Whiff Mon 04-Mar-24 19:16:01

Sorry no words of real wisdom . My mom had dementia and cancer she lived with me the last 18 months of her life. When she forgot things but I knew she could still do them like brushing her teeth ,having a wash I talked her through what to do. Dementia took everything from my mom she died 4 months before her body and unfortunately became violent but it was out of fear she didn't know who she was where or who I was. She thought I was her mom. She insisted on wearing a pad but dementia took everything from my mom apart from knowing when she needed the commode. My mom never wet or soiled herself and I am proud of the fact when bed ridden she never had a sore on her body I made sure of that.

I know there is a drug that slows down dementia and Alzheimer's perhaps your husband will beable to have it if he has one of them .

Cossy Mon 04-Mar-24 19:24:50

No massive words of wisdom here either, other than just deal with things as, and when, they happen. Your husband may not have dementia, just poor memory and general grumpiness.

Wishing you both luck flowers

Jenz48 Mon 04-Mar-24 20:05:38

No words of wisdom but I was in a similar situation some months ago - convinced my DH would be diagnosed with dementia but the consultant called it mild cognitive impairment. DH was in fine form that day and made my concerns seem a waste of time. As time has gone on I am nearly 100% certain he has some form of dementia but getting to see anyone is virtually impossible. He has very few outward symptoms but having lived with him for 54 years he definitely has issues, but no one seems to see them or recognise anything untoward. I really sympathise with you and hope your health professionals are more helpful than mine.

granfromafar Mon 04-Mar-24 20:38:28

Thanks for the replies so far.
Jenz48, yes, it could be cognitive impairment but it's still hard to deal with on a daily basis. Let's see what tomorrow brings.
Cosy: You're so right!

granfromafar Mon 04-Mar-24 20:39:09

Sorry, Cossy. Flipping autocorrect!

Gossamerbeynon1945 Mon 04-Mar-24 20:50:55

My husband has severe aphasia, which from what I have ensures that he will get dementia at some stage. Earlier he had an affair with a work colleague. Don't know whether I should stay or go. I have AMD and will be blind soon.

kittylester Mon 04-Mar-24 21:07:05

I help on courses run by AgeUk which help the Carers of people living with MCI. Please see if anyone runs them in your area. MCI doesn't always develop into full blown dementia but often does.

Dementia is an umbrella term for all the different types there are. Alzheimers is one form of dementia as are vascular, lewy bodies etc.

nanna8 Mon 04-Mar-24 21:46:21

I know it sounds alarmist but both my husband and I have noticeably poorer memories since a couple of bouts of Covid. Really noticeable, we both search for words and forget peoples’ names. He is older than me and quite a bit worse. Just a thought.

granfromafar Tue 05-Mar-24 15:14:07

nanna8 - I have heard of people having memory issues after covid so that may be your cause. We have both had one mild dose each and don't think there was any deterioration afterwards.
The appointment was this morning, and after 2 hours of questions and a long memory test, there was no conclusion. Will have to wait another 2 to 3 months before seeing the clinical psychiatrist so will find out more then. He didn't do too badly on the memory questions, mainly stumbled on things like today's date, who is PM and which US president was assassinated in the 60s.
Thanks for the info, kitty, will look out for those courses. My late mother had Alzheimers, but as they say, if you know 1 person with Alzheimers, you know one person with Alzheimers, as each case can vary so much.

SeaWoozle Tue 05-Mar-24 22:54:09

I have no words of wisdom, except that I hope you get the answers you're looking for.
As an aside, does your DH have hearing loss? I'm partially deaf in both ears and sometimes I just CBA to keep trying to hear what people are saying, especially if they're mumbling or walking away as they're talking to me. Just a thought. I've also got a rubbish memory, but sometimes I do think that's because people tell me things and think I've heard, when I haven't. COVID has also made my hearing worse, I believe.

Wishing you all the best.

HeavenLeigh Thu 07-Mar-24 11:28:58

Sorry not really any words of comfort I looked after close family member with dementia it was controlled quite well with aricept given by the memory clinic try not to worry ( very hard not to) and good luck to you both

Fair2good Thu 07-Mar-24 11:34:57

We can’t even get an appointment for the memory clinic here. Despite telling the doctor my husband is forgetting the names of everyday items, let alone peoples names we have known for years, it’s just put down to his age and normal forgetfulness.

OurKid1 Thu 07-Mar-24 11:40:00

You have my sympathy and understanding. My husband (aged 71) was recently diagnosed with MCI, which we have been told may or may not lead to dementia. Like yours, his scans were "fine for his age." Following his diagnosis, he has been advised to keep his brain active and to keep physically fit, which he does. I am worried though as, like you, my mother had dementia and it was awful. I just hope that you get a reassuring diagnosis. The one thing I can say though is that worrying won't help. I try not to read too much into any mistakes he makes, but it is difficult, when you've experience of what it can mean. Sending thoughts and understanding. Feel free to PM me if you would like to. xx

Romola Thu 07-Mar-24 11:49:42

Does anyone here have any definitive information about drugs that can delay the progress of dementia?
One of my dear friends has been persuaded by her son to go to memory clinic, but it increases her anxiety, which is itself a symptom of dementia. She knows this.
She feels that a diagnosis would be helpful only if she could then be prescribed a drug that would really help her.

OurKid1 Thu 07-Mar-24 11:52:28

Romola

Does anyone here have any definitive information about drugs that can delay the progress of dementia?
One of my dear friends has been persuaded by her son to go to memory clinic, but it increases her anxiety, which is itself a symptom of dementia. She knows this.
She feels that a diagnosis would be helpful only if she could then be prescribed a drug that would really help her.

I used to volunteer with the Alzheimer's Society, assessing proposals for PhD studies into dementia. Yes, there are several drugs which, it's said, can help with symptoms. Rather than me tell you (and I may be wrong), I'd check the Alzheimer's Society website for updates. Also there's a Forum for anyone concerned which is very, very helpful.

DeeAitch56 Thu 07-Mar-24 12:14:23

OP I’m sorry to jump into your query but feel it maybe better to join an established thread as it’s so close to my situation than start another similar one
I’m following this thread as I too have concerns about my husband’s mental wellbeing, he’s 68 this year and since retiring at 66 he’s had two heart attacks and has developed worrying symptoms of memory loss together with other physical symptoms, About 2 years ago a casual acquaintance he knows who is a retired GP asked him if he was aware that he had an ‘intentional tremor’ in his hands and advised him to see his GP, DH also stoops, drags his feet, and often struggles to follow a WhatsApp conversation with friends for example, forget what I want to eat between me telling him and getting to the counter to order it we’ve told his gp but they don’t seem to to think there is a problem Whilst I don’t want to ‘which’ an illness on him I’m concerned about what to do next as I’m worried about him

lizzypopbottle Thu 07-Mar-24 13:27:31

granfromafar Is your other half on any medications? If so, read the leaflet that comes in the box, especially if he's on several different medications. Then read Dr James Le Fanu's book, Too Many Pills. It may give you food for thought.

nipsmum Thu 07-Mar-24 13:31:26

Sorry I can't give advice, but remember worrying about it never changed anything.

middleagednogrankids Thu 07-Mar-24 13:33:52

Hi, what a worrying time for you. I've had my Mum diagnosed with MCI and my Husband diagnosed with mixed dementia (Vascular and Alzheimer's.) All within the last year.
My Mum's memory is very poor, however she is still living independently with some supervision by us. She actually has a new partner after being widowed 5 years ago, he is very aware of her problems and it is a good relationship for both of them.
My husband has responded very well to the medication which treats the Alzheimer's. He is still very much himself. He is an upbeat sort of man, which helps a lot. We have even been told that he may stay as he is.
My Mum has had some crises when she has become confused, just on a few occasions.
What I would say to anyone in your position is-please be careful what you read. There are forums where people understandably vent about how hard having a loved one with dementia can be. However, I went through months of terror reading these things.
Our family are fortunate so far and I realise that things may get harder. But living for the now is, for us, a good thing.
Wishing You and Your Husband all the very best 💐

granfromafar Thu 07-Mar-24 13:57:56

Fair2good

We can’t even get an appointment for the memory clinic here. Despite telling the doctor my husband is forgetting the names of everyday items, let alone peoples names we have known for years, it’s just put down to his age and normal forgetfulness.

That is awful. There was a Panorama programme on recently which highlighted the long waiting times. We had to wait around 9 months from first seeing GP. So frustrating when we (the partner) know that something is wrong but there is no appointments available.

granfromafar Thu 07-Mar-24 13:59:39

Shelflife and Ourkid1: have pm'd you both.

dalrymple23 Thu 07-Mar-24 14:23:08

I have been reading some articles recently (James le Fanu) - both beta blockers (Bisopralol) and statins (of any sort) can affect the memory. When stopped for a couple of weeks, memory returned to full function. Also, someone else was assessed as having dementia but, in fact, there was a small growth on the brain (which was successfully removed) and all went back to normal.

Also, something as easily curable as a UTI can affect the memory and cognitive function.

Check everything before panicking.

Dinahmo Thu 07-Mar-24 14:30:38

A friend has recently been for the various tests for dementia. He is 80. His wife told the clinician that he forgets things and the response was that forgetfulness was quite normal in people of that age. He did have a brain scan which showed some slight deterioration but nothing to be worried about at the moment.

I'm always forgetting peoples' names, even actors and film stars who I've liked for many years. Everyone that I know who are around my age (77) including my DH forgets some names from time to time.

granfromafar Thu 07-Mar-24 14:37:18

That is really interesting, dalrymple1. OH and I both worked in the pharmaceutical industry (research) and I tend to look out for any side-effects mentioned in the literature. OH was on Atenolol, another beta-blocker, but has recently been taken off it. Like many others, he's been on statins for a while too.