Showing posts from June, 2015

Finally meeting up with Kate Swaffer


Dementia drivers 'as dangerous as gunmen’

Dementia drivers 'as dangerous as gunmen’
From the daily Telegraph 

Tighter licence checks needed to avoid sufferers taking to the roads when they have become a danger to the public, doctors will be toldi Allowing dementia sufferers to drive without checks is as dangerous as letting them roam the streets with a shotgun, doctors will be told today. ADVERTISING DVLA officials, police and GPs are failing adequately to collect and share information, leaving potentially dangerous drivers behind the wheel, the British Medical Association (BMA) conference in Liverpool will hear. Dr Peter Holden, the GP who tabled the motion, said that under present arrangements only family doctors were in a position to stop dementia sufferers potentially “mowing down” pedestrians and other road users. He said: “I expect that this would only affect four or five patients per practice where this is an issue, but we wouldn’t accept four or five marauding gunmen. “There is no one test for dementia, but there …

Memory is a wonderful thing

Memory is a wonderful thing when it works well, but when you have a neurological  illness it causes all kinds of stress.

There are times when if feels embarrassing as you totally forget things which have just happened, or visits from friends and relatives, yet things from years gone by can sometimes come back easily.
The other day I was struggling to remember when I had seen my grandchildren last, but it was only last week, and that hit me very hard, because it felt like months ago.
I can look back at school days, scouts, hiking climbing etc and early days at work, yet the last few years are difficult to get my head round. 
If I am giving a talk, I need to write it down in advance, and these days it needs to be in larger letters so that I can see and follow it, yet sometimes I forget where I have got to unless I keep my finger in the line I am reading. 
You never appreciate your memory or anything else until it starts to disappear, by which time it's too late.

Alzheimer's breakthrough: New blood test '

Alzheimer's breakthrough: New blood test 'could predict risk up to 10 years before dementia takes hold'Single blood protein identified as a warning sign of Alzheimer's diseaseLargest study of its kind measured proteins in 106 pairs of twinsFound those whose thinking skills diminished the most over 10-year study had lower levels of an individual protein Hopes for new blood test which could be 'Holy Grail' of dementia research
A simple blood test could be developed to predict Alzheimer’s disease up to a decade before symptoms appear, scientists claim.
A breakthrough by British researchers has identified a single blood protein which acts as a warning flag for mild cognitive impairment - a disorder that is often the precursor to dementia.
In the largest study of its kind, the researchers measured more than 1,100 proteins in the blood of 106 pairs of twins. Tracking the 212 healthy adults over ten years, they found that those whose thinking skills diminished the most h…

Research and eyesight problems in neurological illnesses

Many thousands of people are living with Neurological illnesses these days and many of these people struggle with daily eyesight problems, which it seems is a knock on effect of these illnesses.
But this is only the start of the problem, because it seems that there has been very little research into this problem.
This leaves many people out on a limb, because many opticians simply do not understand this problem, and try to find another fix for the problem.
But this can cause extra problems as I found out to my horror. 
I struggle at times with blurred and double vision,and even though I was referred to an eye hospital, the problem was not sorted out. 
I ended up with a prism in my glasses, but only in one side. This caused so many bad headaches, that I stopped wearing them.
It felt as if one eye was straining to look through a jam jar bottom, and after a while I simply gave up.
Every time I went to the hospital I saw a different person with different ideas, so there was no way that this coul…

Memory problems and old photographs

It has been said on many occasions that it's good to show people with memory problems, old photographs taken when they were younger.

But I have heard other people argue the opposite, 
The reason being that the photographs could trigger old happy memories, which could cause the person to be fixated with that period, and may well then forget what is happening in reality.
I know that when so one shows me an old photograph, I try to remember who is there, and wonder  what happened to them, if they are people I have not seen for a long time
But could this cause extra problems for those with bad memory problems or dementia, and could it confuse these people even more. Could they then go on to think that all of these people are still alive, even though they could have died many years ago.
They could also cause upset, because these photographs may trigger an unhappy experience, which no one else knows about. 
I know from personal experience that old photographs can cause the imagination …

Survival in Frontotemporal Dementia Found To Be Increased in People With More Demanding Jobs

Survival in Frontotemporal Dementia Found To Be Increased in People With More Demanding Jobs MAY 22ND, 2015 DANIELA SEMEDO, PHDALZHEIMER'S NEWSNEWS0 COMMENTS
Findings from a recent study published in the journal Neurology revealed that individuals with more skilled jobs may live longer after developing frontotemporal dementia in comparison with individuals with less skilled jobs. Frontotemporal dementia is a condition that mainly affects individuals aged under 65 years and causes personality or behavior changes and language problems. “This study suggests that having a higher occupational level protects the brain from some of the effects of this disease, allowing people to live longer after developing the disease,” said study author Lauren Massimo, PhD, CRNP, of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania State University in State College and a member of the American Academy of Neurology. Results from this study add evidence to the “cognitive reserve” theory concernin…

Dementia should not just be thought of just an “older person’s problem

Dementia should not just be thought of just an “older person’s problem”, says CPFT’s Carolyn Fuller

According to the Alzheimer's Society there are 850,000 people in the UK who are living with dementia, of which about 7,000 are in Cambridgeshire – and all the predictions say that those numbers show no signs of declining. However some people may be surprised to know that dementia is not an illness that just "affects older people" indeed there are now over 40,000 people under the age of 65 in the UK who have been diagnosed with the condition. My current role as a specialist mental health nurse is specifically to support people aged under 65 who have been diagnosed with a progressive dementia. Recognising someone has dementia, particularly in younger people, is often not straight forward. It can start with a multitude of different changes such as altered behaviour, speech and language difficulties, changes in mood or motivation levels, balance and coordination difficulties, even…


I confess that I am very confused at present, because I no longer know who to believe as far as medical professionals are concerned.
My new  dementia consultant said that I did not have Lewy Body Dementia, but have Mild a Cognitive Impairment, because I did not deteriorate fast enough. 
Another consultant who I am seeing for my balance and Parkinson type symptoms, said he thought I did have a slow burning type of LBD, and has arranged for a personal second opinion, something the first doctor refused to do.
But it appears that a letter dated from 2009 has appeared and stated that I had an MRI scan which showed up problems in the Fronto Temporal area of the brain, and said something abut TIA which I now understand is a mini stroke etc,  However this letter was ignored by the hospital consultants at the time, even though it stated that I should be referred  back to see a neurologist. 
Now it's all come to light again, and I am wondering where I am going with this nightmare, as I no longer…