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Not diagnosed....but concerned I have cognitive issues appearing
nursekrs
Posted: Tuesday, June 12, 2018 6:09 PM
Joined: 6/12/2018
Posts: 1


Hello,

46 and have noted forgetfulness, word finding difficulties, distractability, etc...

I try to talk with friends...nurses...and they all just poo poo my concerns.

I am afraid to find out for sure and afraid to take the next step.

KS


Mimi S.
Posted: Tuesday, June 12, 2018 6:34 PM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7035


Welcome to our world, nursrks. I am so glad you found us.

My advice: Find the best testing site anywhere you can get to. This is usually a major medical center or university with a dementia department. An appointment may take a few months.

Doraiswamy and Gwyther have written a few books about the testing process. Do ask at your library. Did you know there are other cases of dementia symptomd?  Some re easioy fixable.

Meanwhile, do get involved in the Best Practicers life style:
1. Increase physical activitu.

 

2. Cognitive activities. A variety is best.

 

3. Maintain or increase socialization.

 

4. Mediterranean diet. No smoking and limited alcohol.

 

Do let us know what is happening.
Tink4495
Posted: Tuesday, June 12, 2018 11:46 PM
Joined: 5/2/2014
Posts: 758


Hi Nursekrs and welcome,

I am sorry you are having these issues. It is surprising that your nurse friends would poo poo these concerns. Like many medical personnel that are not up to date on dementia and cognitive issues, they don't realize it can happen to younger people and it happens a lot. 

Have you had a full medical blood workup lately? Many medical conditions can cause dementia/cognitive issues such as thyroid problems, vitamin deficiencies, etc, all which are treatable. Stress is also a big contributor. If you haven't done so already, get in to see your Dr and have some simple blood work done. Not sure of your age but these can also be caused by menopause and being premenopausal.

You need to be an advocate for your health and should always address concerns you may have. Wishing you the best,


Jo C.
Posted: Wednesday, June 13, 2018 11:21 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 10227


Hello nursekrs  and a very warm welcome to you.   I am sorry for what you are experiencing and can imagine the worry and stress this is causing.

The most important thing to tell you at this point is that there are many, many conditions that can mimic dementia but are not.

It is best to start with a comprehensive physical by a good Internal Medicine physician.  You will want it to be very detailed and in-depth.   Some of the conditions that can mimic dementia are:

UTIs, depression, hormonal imbalances, side effects from meds even if they have been taken without a problem for a long time, Lyme Disease, cardiac problems, thyroid disorder, vascular issues, toxic metal exposure, anemia, blood dyscrasias, sleep apnea, liver or kidney dysfunctions, hypoglycemia, diabetes, alcohol use, other brain conditions and many, many other conditions that can mimic.

You will want a very comprehensive physical with a full range of bloodwork to rule out all of the above and more.  A plethora of labs need to be done, and all of the above should be screened for and more which means you will probably have to advocate for these labs with the doctor as often the MD drops the ball by feeling not much is wrong . . . . but that makes them wrong.  You will also want at least an MRI; PET Scans are best for thorough information but they are costly and not all insurance covers them.  An EKG and Echo can also be part of a workup 

Once this is done, depending on what comes back, it may be time to see a good Neurologist who sees dementia patients as a routine part of his/her practice.   You can also opt to find a university med center that has an independent dementia clinic with a multidisciplinary group that do assessments, but they are not always easily found in all communities. 

Our primary care MDs are awesome at so much but they are NOT on the cutting edge of dementia and neurology.  You need an accurate physical screening as mentioned above, but for all things Neuro, it is by far best to see that specialist.  IF and I do mean IF dementia is found, you will need the specialist to make an accurate diagnosis for type of dementia.  This is crucial because treatment for one type can be contraindcated in another and even make things worse.

There is that book already mentioned that is a good primer for early days . . . it is, "The Alzheimer's Action Plan," by Doraiswamey and Gwyther of Duke University.  It covers SO much for new patients, it is worth reading.

Please do let us know how you are doing and what the exams tell you.  We will be thinking of you and we truly do care.

J.