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I hope a physician will reply to this. You could have listed this in the prayers and thoughts section, as well. Certainly, I and Barb will be praying for you. You have every reason to be scared. If I were in your shoes I would be scared, also.

The following information should be taken as coming from NON-PHYSICIANS. I hope that you will consider going for the test as soon as possible and that you will try to find the best specialist you can. Perhaps consider going to a regional teaching institution (such as a school of medicine). What the tests involve will depend on your symptoms. They should involve physical tests (blood tests, a complete physical exam, and perhaps some radiology) as well as a thorough interview, health history, and consideration of lifestyles. In an Alzheimer's seminar that Barb and I went to the speaker told about the necessity of interviewing NOT ONLY the patient but ALSO the family. You may even want to go for the tests WITH your friend, not only for support but also so the doctor can gain a better understanding of EXACTLY what is happening. There are VERY subtle nuances to the various conditions that may only be determined by a careful patient / family / physician interview. Moreover, it is our understanding that there are a number of other conditions that may mimic dementia when it may not be a dementia at all. Depression can often cause one to appear symptomatic. I guess what I'm saying is this: Dementia is a diagnosis that should NOT be made until you have been tested. Your friend is to be commended for risking telling you the truth. Obviously, this person cares for you and values your relationship. This is probably the best word your friend had to describe what he/she observed. But there are a number of things that can cause someone to appear as though he or she has dementia. It's important to have the tests before making a diagnosis.

I guess my hope and prayer for you is that the condition is not dementia and that it is readily treatable. Indeed, even with Alzheimer's, with early treatment, there are some medications that appear to slow the progress of AD. More are in the reasearch phases.

I hope this helps. I also hope that someone more knowledgable about the medical end of your question will respond. Finally, know that some prayers were said for you today (and in the coming days). Please take care and keep in touch.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Mike the Chap on 2001-04-13 22:35 ]</font>

Posted on 2001/4/13 22:31

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