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Antifungal meds question
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 7:33 AM
Joined: 12/7/2016
Posts: 5

Hello...does anyone know if antifungal meds, such as the pill fluconazole or clotrimazole betamethasone cream, can affect a dementia patient's mind? My mother has become more difficult in the past week, and I don't know whether it's tied to the medication or just part of her dementia progressing.
Cecil J
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 8:46 AM
Joined: 4/18/2021
Posts: 52

The antifungal cream never seemed to have bothered my wife. Have you check for a UTI? These infections make my wifes Alzheimer's worse... it's like she goes to another stage.
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 8:52 AM
Joined: 12/7/2016
Posts: 5

Haven't been able to check for a UTI yet. Getting my mother to pee into a cup has been undoable so far. Thank you for the comment.
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 10:21 AM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21131

You can buy a toilet urine "hat" on line. This is what they use at my Urgent Care.

You can also check for side effects online. I use drugs.com but there are other choices.

A Uti can become very serious so please do get that checked out asap.

Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 10:43 AM
Joined: 8/22/2020
Posts: 3011

Hi Sunnysider, I think it would be extremely unusual for either of those meds to affect thinking in the short term.  If someone were on oral fluconazole for a long period of time, it can rarely affect liver fucntion, which could indirectly affect thinking--but even that would be a stretch.  The topical cream would be even less likely to cause problems.
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 10:45 AM
Joined: 8/22/2020
Posts: 3011

ps if they do end up treating for a UTI, be very cautious with quinolones like Cipro or Levaquin, they are commonly prescribed but also commonly cause confusion.  I took Cipro for food poisoning one time and didn't think straight for a week.
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 3:24 PM
Joined: 11/7/2022
Posts: 20

If your mom is on fluconazole and an antidepressant, definitely check  https://www.drugs.com/drug_interactions.html for interactions. Surprisingly, fluconazole is contraindicated against at least one commonly prescribed antidepressant, due to the risk of irregular heart rhythm.
TC unknown
Posted: Friday, November 18, 2022 3:32 PM
Joined: 11/18/2022
Posts: 2

I'm assuming her fungal infection is topical (on her skin). She may have worsening symptoms, due to discomfort and the resulting distraction. As far as concern about UTI, Google signs and symptoms of UTI, and watch for them. If noted, contact a doctor. They can use a catheter to obtain urine from her, if necessary.
Posted: Sunday, November 20, 2022 3:25 PM
Joined: 6/3/2013
Posts: 1226

The tricky thing about UTI in the elderly, especially those with cognitive impairment, is that there may not be any of the signs and symptoms that Dr. Google mentions.  Very commonly, a sudden change in behavior or regression in physical abilities, may be the only indication.  When this occurs, by default it is recommended that a UTI be ruled out as the cause.  And, as M1 mentioned, avoid cipro and levofloxacin to treat UTI, if confirmed, due to the potential for cognitive side effects.  

Fluconazole can cause an increase in fear and/or paranoia, but generally only in an overdose scenario, and not in situations where adequate kidney function is present to prevent accumulation. Make sure she is getting the right dose and ask her PCP whether she has adequate kidney function. 

Beyond that, you may be seeing progression of disease.

Posted: Sunday, November 20, 2022 3:36 PM
Joined: 4/2/2018
Posts: 6667

Sunnysider, you have excellent advice above. At least two of the posts are from people in the medical community. Please heed their warnings, and if you have a test for UTI, ask for a culture with it.
Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 8:42 AM
Joined: 8/22/2022
Posts: 18

Sunnysider, my guess is that your mother is currently dealing with fungal die-off symptoms. "Getting worse before it gets better" is a typical process towards recovery. I would encourage her to continue with the anti-fungal medications prescribed by her doctor, especially because I believe fungus in the brain to be the root cause of Alzheimer's/dementia.

I've been trying to bring awareness on this forum to just how bad and widespread the fungal problem is. A quick way to tell if fungus may be the issue is to check this list of Candida overgrowth symptoms:

Oral Thrush (white tongue, especially after meals)

Brain fog

General Tiredness and Fatigue

Recurring Genital/UTIs

Digestive Issues (bloated stomach and gas after meals)

Chronic Sinus Infections

Chronic Constipation/Diarrhea

Skin and Nail Fungal Infections

Joint Pain (pain, stiffness and swelling)

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 1:26 PM
Joined: 6/3/2013
Posts: 1226

If only it were so simple:  that fungus causes dementia. 

Fungus we know how to treat. 

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 1:50 PM
Joined: 8/22/2022
Posts: 18

I know it's hard to believe, but I think everything from dementia to the stereotypical "old person smell" can be explained by mold growth inside the body. I think the reason why this information hasn't gone "mainstream" is because fungus isn't just the source of Alzheimer's, but 100s of other age-related diseases as well.

Widespread knowledge and application of anti-fungals would cost the medical industry billions if not trillions of dollars. I can only speak from my personal experience, and try to encourage others to look into it and make their own conclusions.

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 2:33 PM
Joined: 6/3/2013
Posts: 1226

Oregano :  you are free to post your opinions. However, when you present your opinions as facts, you owe it to this community to cite your sources. Many people who come here are vulnerable, looking for hope, grasping at straws. 

Currently there is no scientific evidence to support your opinion. 

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 8:47 PM
Joined: 8/22/2022
Posts: 18

Marta, asking me to cite sources is a very good and valid request. Stating that there is no scientific evidence to support my opinion, however, is disingenuous and tells me that you haven't done so much as a google search.

I understand and respect your skepticism, and I know this is a very vulnerable community. I have seen dozens of posts on this forum that give new meaning to the phrase "living hell". There is such a cruel level of suffering going on here, that I wouldn't wish it upon my greatest enemy.

That's why I know this is where I need to be to raise awareness. Here are some scientific sources with excerpts from each. I urge anyone reading this to do their own research as well:

Fungal infection in patients with Alzheimer's disease


"In the present work, we have analyzed the existence of fungal infection in Alzheimer's disease patients. A proteomic analysis provides compelling evidence for the existence of fungal proteins in brain samples from Alzheimer's disease patients. Furthermore, PCR analysis reveals a variety of fungal species in these samples, dependent on the patient and the tissue tested. DNA sequencing demonstrated that several fungal species can be found in brain samples. Together, these results show that fungal macromolecules can be detected in brain from Alzheimer's disease patients."

Can Fungus Cause Alzheimer's?


"A Spanish research team conducted a study published in the journal Scientific Reports, suggesting that an infectious microbe may cause Alzheimer’s. Researchers analyzed the blood vessels and brain tissues of 11 deceased people that died with the disease. They found “several fungal species” in all of the deceased but no evidence of fungus in the 10 Alzheimer’s-free people they examined."

"Currently, most researchers believe that Alzheimer’s is caused by brain plaques built up by toxic proteins, but drug trials targeting these plaques have been largely unsuccessful, leaving some to question the relationship.

Researchers believe that the finding of several different fungal species could explain “the diversity observed in the evolution and severity of clinical symptoms in each Alzheimer’s patient.” Additionally, a fungal cause would explain the slow progression of the disease and the inflammation caused by Alzheimer’s, which is a natural response to fungi."

Infection of Fungi and Bacteria in Brain Tissue From Elderly Persons and Patients With Alzheimer’s Disease


"In the present study, we have examined fungal and bacterial infection in brain tissue from AD patients and control subjects by immunohistochemistry. In addition, we have documented the fungal and bacterial species in brain regions from AD patients and control subjects by next-generation sequencing (NGS). Our results from the analysis of ten AD patients reveal a variety of fungal and bacterial species, although some were more prominent than others. The fungal genera more prevalent in AD patients were Alternaria, Botrytis, Candida, and Malassezia. We also compared these genera with those found in elderly and younger subjects. One of the most prominent genera in control subjects was Fusarium. Principal component analysis clearly indicated that fungi from frontal cortex samples of AD brains clustered together and differed from those of equivalent control subjects."

Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2022 9:46 PM
Joined: 6/3/2013
Posts: 1226

Association does not prove causation - this is one of the tenets of scientific inquiry.
Posted: Thursday, November 24, 2022 9:36 AM
Joined: 12/30/2017
Posts: 1

My mother becomes very agitated when she doesn't get enough sleep.  


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