welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Friday, April 6, 2012

what to do, tour

i get this question a lot
what to do
my spouse parent friend aunt uncle brother neighbor may have
memory problems or dementia and i want to know what to do

they are embarrassed and are embarrassed to ask for help and
embarrassed to see the doctor for help

they are embarrassed to take the mental screen test if they cant
answer those questions that are being asked
i know
but i got over it
to have a tester ask you to remember those things and you cant
or to try to work a puzzle and you cant
its embarrassing especially if youve worked professionally at
a high level

sometimes the person wont do a screen test available on line
but you can do one on them

if there appears to be a problem it needs to be evaluated
remember sometimes curable treatable causes are found
that when treated can revert things back to normal
eg hypothyroidism or low vitamin b12
so they need to be evaluated

dont go in to the doctors office unprepared
you need to have something to hand to the doctor to point
them in the right direction for a work up

remember if you notice things or the patient does its there

here is an alzheimers 21 question  form questionnaire you can
fill out yourself and score it
put your patients name on it and hand it to the doctor
it becomes a part of their medical record
that cant be ignored

dont go in empty handed or you may be put off especially if
they are busy and
dont go in and at the last minute say on by the way we are
concerned he has dementia or has trouble remembering things
let that be the reason for the appointment

the patient needs a history and exam done
remember your looking for treatable stuff

the patient needs lab work
here is what they need
write this down and hand it to the doctor
it becomes part of the medical record
and has to be acted on
they need a cbc complete blood count, a metabolic profile that
has sodium potassium sugar or glucose bun creatinine-kidney functions-
liver function test  a tsh level a screen for hypothyroidism a b12 level
a syphilis test and a hiv test-remember we were all young once and these
things can show up years later as dementia
a urinalysis

most doctors will do some type of mini mental evaluation and
may send the patient for a more involved neuropsychological testing

a mri is needed to rule out strokes brain tumors masses increased fluid

if the patient has not had this work up then they have not had
enough evaluation done

if the patient does have mild cognitive impairment or alzheimers and
no matter how early it is
dont be afraid to start treatment
remember the meds ie aricept (donepezil) work better the sooner
it is started
it delays worsening symptoms better when its started early
in my case being on this medicine early may delay worsening symptoms
for five years before it quits working
thats five years thats very important to me and my family

dont go to the doctor empty handed
do the form
ask for labs-cbc metabolic profile tsh b12 level syphilus test hiv test
urinalysis and a mri
dont be bashful
go with them to the appointment and go into the exam room
with them
remember im speaking from the experience of being on both
sides of this story as the doctor and now as the patient

if you live in central texas and are interested in backyard
chickens do the funky chicken coop tour in austin
heres the link funky chicken coop tour

happy easter
well have fresh eggs for easter
they come out already dyed blue and brown or white

the organicgreen doctor

No comments:

Post a Comment