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Thread: Parkinson's

  1. #1
    Spaceman Spiff
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    Default Parkinson's

    My mom was diagnosed with it several weeks ago. We had a feeling as we noticed the hand shakes for about 3 months now. She is not coping well. It's in stage 1 as of now and she is going to physical therapy classes several times a week to help. She's in her mid-70's. There's no known history of this in our family line so it's quite shocking that all of a sudden she's got it.

    Not sure what to do to help her other then spend more time with her to keep her distracted from it.
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    Exercise, walks, involvement. It's tough man, God bless Mom, I'm pulling for you!

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    My grandmother has dealt with it for years. It got so bad that she even quit playing cards w/ us b/c she couldn't hold the cards still long enough to see them. About a year ago, she had an operation where they put a "shocker" in her brain and the operating unit in her chest. It runs off batteries and comes with a remote for fine tuning. Essentially, it sends electronic charges to the area of the brain most affected by Parkinson's and alleviates the symptoms.

    It took her about 2 years to agree to do the procedure, but the Dr. finally convinced her. About a month later we all sat down and played cards again for the first time in years. Since having the procedure, she seems to be much more full of life and always has a smile. It's like she got her life back. The only downfall is that they have to go in to her chest and replace the battery every 2-4 years. For the impact it made on her life, I feel that it was well worth it and I think she'd say the same.

    Nobody wants to have brain surgery, but its something you might look into if its a major debilitation for her. Its the only "cure" I've heard of so far.

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    Here is a link to the Medtronic Deep Brain Stimulator. I believe these have been very effective.

    http://www.medtronic.com/your-health...pect/index.htm

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    Best of luck to you and the family. We dealt with this about 15 years ago with my grandmother, who had Parkinson's and dementia.

    Very interesting read on the brain stimulator. Medtronic is an amazing company.

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    It can be brought on by early stages of dementia and/or Alzheimer's. I had a friend with Parkinson's pass a couple years ago. He was in his 70's as well and the doctors said it was likely brought on by the dementia and early stages of Alzheimer's he was diagnosed with. So you don't necessarily have to have a family history. It's called idiopathic Parkinson's disease which means it doesn't really have a cause. It just happens and we become more susceptible to it as we age.
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    Bummer Ron. If you're fortunate enough to live nearby her, that's going to be a BIG plus.

    Good luck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Outfitter03 View Post
    Here is a link to the Medtronic Deep Brain Stimulator. I believe these have been very effective.

    http://www.medtronic.com/your-health...pect/index.htm
    Those are cool, but it sounds like she is a ways away from being considered for something like this.

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    If she hasn't already, get her, and yourself, on a good, faithful relationship with one pharmacy. Meds are going to be an important part of her therapy.

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    The unfortunate news is that your mom has been diagnosed with Parkinsons.
    The good news is that she has you for a son.

    Best wishes for your mom; may her load be light.
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    Hey Ron,
    I'm really sorry to read of your mom's condition. I can tell you from first-hand experience how debilitating a disease it can be. If you begin noticing that she coughs, even slightly, when she begins eating ask her to have a "swallow test" done. This will determine if she is losing the ability to swallow or not. My family learned the hard way that one of the areas PD can strike is in the area of swallowing. The good news is that if it is diagnosed early enough speech therapy can work to retrain the person to swallow.
    Good luck and I hope all goes well with your mom's treatment.
    Take care, Ken

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    Prayers and thoughts sent bro. Sorry to hear the sad news.
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    Spaceman Spiff
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    Thank you guys. This is a totally new arena for me, in fact, none of us has ever had to deal with something like this. It's big learning curve. As for now she is in the very beginning so it's not bad other then in her hands. But, we've talked about how bad this can really get.

    I do live close, less than 2 miles away so I'll spending more time with her and my dad. Luckily he is there and in great shape so she is in really great hands. But, I can see it wearing on my dad as well.

    Thanks again guys!
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    Sorry to hear about you mom. My wife and I took care of her Grandfather for a few years before his health deteriorated. He was 82 when he was diagnosed. He passed away at 90. It is a tough disease. Make sure she gets the help she needs.

    Good to hear you live close and your dad is still in good health.

    Prayers and Good wishes to you and your family.
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    Ron,

    I am sorry about your mom. Please keep an eye on your father as well since he's the primary caregiver, from what you described. Caregivers bear a lot stress over time and you and your family may want to look into a class regarding dealing with such stress.

    My mom has mild dementia, but within the last 6 months, has also developed severe cervical spinal degeneration and psoriasis. I live with her so that I can take care of her. My sister also helps out despite having to drive 50 miles each day most of the week. Yes, it's very stressful indeed.

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