These past few weeks, I’ve been encouraged by some ALZ/Dementia news. Here are a few examples:
Healthy Man Gets 1st Alzheimer’s Prevention Infusion: An experimental drug called solanezumab may protect healthy seniors whose brains signal that they are at risk.
Where Alzheimer’s Begins: Columbia University researchers believe they have pinpointed where ALZ begins, why, and how it spreads.
Amlodipine is Racing to be the 1st Vascular Dementia Treatment: Amlodipine, an inexpensive drug approved for high blood pressure, could become the first ever treatment for vascular dementia.
Speaking of drugs
My mom’s Sundowning can get tense. Lately, we have been noticing that the lorazapam just isn’t cutting it any more. In fact, it may even be making things worse. As in increasing psychotic episodes. Not good. So, I called the doctor to ask if we could change her meds.
He happened to be on vacation at home this past week but he took the time to call me back. (Love this guy!) He suggested that we phase her off the lorazapam and begin her on Seroquel. We also just added a blood thinner as a result of her recent TIA. Added to that are drugs for high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Egads! That’s a lot of drugs.
And mom hates drugs. She distrusts doctors and balks at swallowing any pill. I don’t doubt that she equates the drugs with feeling confused. Rightly so, and now the new medication will most likely tire her. For a woman who paces from 3 p.m. to midnight, I’m wondering if she’ll make the connection. She surprises us sometimes. At a previous doctor’s appointment, when questioned about current events, somehow she remembered that Nelson Mandela had died. You just never know with this disease. Did the drugs help her remember? Or was it a fluke? There are some folks who believe that drugs for ALZ’s is pointless because they don’t cure anything. I’m all for anything that will help create as much of an enriching life as possible and for keeping our LO safe.
I’ve never written a poem about drugs before. But, I got to let it out. So, here we go:
Lost in your kitchen
When we are alone, you discard the mask
of meds. Wondering who you have become.
A pillow of feelings. A pipping egg,
incubating, waiting until you are
you again without the cushion of drugs
in your brain, without tau and tangles
and plaques and pills. We stand in the
kitchen and stare at your window sill
garden and you tell me you feel lost.
I cannot even bring myself to hug you
because in the midst of all this color
and confusion, I feel lost , too.
* A reminder that June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month