Today's date: Tuesday June 27, 2017
   
column width padding column width padding
The Wellington Advertiser Masthead Logo

We Cover The County...
39,925 Audited Circulation

WEEKLY POLL   |   Community News   |   EQUINE   |   Schools & Buses

Facebook Slug
Enhanced_728x90
column width padding column width padding

Life-wise

by Ray Wiseman

Alzheimer's

The gerontologist’s words struck me with the force of a bucket of ice water, “Your wife, Anna, has probable Alzheim­er’s.”

For nearly a year, I feared hear­ing those words, since An­na’s short-term memory had begun to falter. This announcement struck me in a different way. This ex­pert had de­liver­ed a capital sentence on the woman I love. Oh, how often I had bragged that I had married her not just for her looks, but for her brains. She had kept me on time and organized for 50 years.

The ger­­ontologist recom­mend­ed Anna to a clinic in Lon­don. When I asked what further diagnostic tests and treatment they offered, they said, “None. You can diagnose Alzheim­er’s only after death. We’ll put her in a double-blind clinical study to evaluate a new drug.”

“Sorry,” I said, “She doesn’t want to become a guinea pig. We’ll look elsewhere.”

About then a doctor friend put us in touch with Klaus Potthoff, in Sweden, trained in psychiatry, who claims to have had success treating various kinds of dementia. He calls his program, Reversing Organic Dementia (ROD). Together with our doctor friend and the encouragement of our family doctor, they arranged a battery of tests to look for causes of memory loss, other than Alzheimer’s.

Within a few weeks Anna had several scans and tests, including two MRIs. The results showed brain deteriora­tion consistent with age and min­or strokes. A neuro-psychological test indicated she had problems with short-term memory only. All other brain functions appeared average or better. We could not have known that without the costly test, a pro­cedure that OHIP refused to fund.

Dr. Potthoff recommended we get a diagnostic test for Alzheimer’s used in Europe, but unknown in North America. We considered Swe­den until a local doctor agreed to oversee the test in conjunc­tion with a European univer­sity. Before that could happen, a change in Anna’s health caused local doctors to prescribe war­farin, making the Alzheimer’s test impossible. Dr. Potthoff’s program includes the typical medica­tions used for people with dementia, much of which our fam­ily doctor had already started. He recom­mended Anna take war­farin, a blood thinner, a key component of the ROD program.

Canadian doctors didn’t approve using warfarin for that, but prescribed it for an unrelated heart problem. We felt the Great Physician intervened. 

What happens to older people who experience memory loss or show symp­toms indicating Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia? They often don’t get appro­priate diagnosis that might identify treatable conditions. Nobody hears about treatments available beyond North America. The patients frequently deteriorate so that relatives have no option but to send them to terminal warehouses. 

Almost three years after all this started, Anna’s memory has not become noticeably worse. Most evenings will find us watching Wheel of Fortune. Anna sits there spitting out the answers to the word puzzles faster than I can and faster than the participants.

I often ask myself, how can I get her as a contestant on that show?    

 

 

 
 

Tell Us What You Think

Login to submit a comment

Comments appearing on this website are the opinion of the comment writer and do not represent the opinion of the Wellington Advertiser. Comments that attack other individuals or are offensive, unsubstantiated or otherwise inappropriate will be removed. You must register or log in in order to post a comment. For more information, read our detailed Comment Policy and Guidelines.

       

ReliableFord

Spacer

Wellington North Guide 2017-2018

COLUMNISTS

Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Barrie Hopkins
Bruce Whitestone
Ray Wiseman
Ray Wiseman
Ray Wiseman
Stephen Thorning
Stephen Thorning

Recent Columns

Bits and Pieces

  • Signature bonnet
  • Digital pantomime
  • Connect the dots
  • Generation gap
  • Little things
  • Tylenol kick
  • This Little Piggy
  • Nature's best
  • Canada's Business

  • The decline of civility
  • Irrational exuberance II
  • Speak up
  • An enduring register
  • A government assessment after one year in office
  • Gauge signals
  • Unpatriotic
  • Inevitable
  • Comment from Ottawa

  • The Syria question
  • Reflecting on 2016
  • Open, transparent combat mission?
  • Bad for businesses
  • Have your voice heard on electoral reform
  • Open and transparent?
  • Assisted dying
  • Leadership bid
  • Life-wise

  • Retirement
  • Canadas scarcity of calamity
  • Often we mirror our parents
  • Putting up with put-downs
  • A tale of two landlords
  • A letter from the campsite
  • Two shades of black
  • Precious memories
  • Queen's Park Report

  • Back to work
  • Merry Christmas
  • Remembering them
  • High-cost hydro
  • Six important issues
  • Emancipation Day
  • Great Lakes
  • Happy Canada Day
  • Special to the Advertiser

  • Death of JFK changed the world
  • Split Decision

  • Senior (high school) pranks
  • Quarry capacity quandary
  • Raising Ontario’s minimum wage
  • E. coli testing at GRCA beaches
  • High-speed rail transit
  • Uber transit in small communities
  • Disaster dilemma
  • Ontario’s new OHIP+ proposal
  • Staying Connected

  • It’s all about staying connected.
  • Stray Casts

  • Final lines: Its been great
  • Thorning Revisited

  • Elora parade continues Dominion Day tradition
  • Drowning of infant caused a sensation in 1888
  • The Browns: Elora’s outstanding horticulturalists
  • Elora led most places in tree planting in 19th century
  • James Gow’s lime quarry a major industry in 1900s
  • Guelph purchased Puslinch Lake property in 1903
  • Puslinch Lake: tourist site shrouded in myths, legends
  • Prohibition, guns, police chases in Mount Forest, beyond
  • Valuing Our History

  • Hustonville founded, thrived, vanished in 20 years
  • Lack of railway siding frustrated Fergus’ James Gow
  • Fergus mill made oat flour for Cheerios, other brands
  • Railway passenger service waxed and waned over the 1900s
  • Tanner’s woolen mill in Mount Forest burned twice in a year
  • Elora principal George Edgcumbe ended his career in disgrace
  • Peter Perry a memorable principal of Fergus High School
  • Fire gutted Fergus building owned by Robert Kerr in 1931
  • WriteOut of Her Mind

  • 24 hours
  • ...Or what?
  • Bottle it
  • Bird song
  • Flags up
  • Long weekends at home
  • Mom knows best
  • Chip trucks
  • column width padding column width padding column width padding

    The Wellington Advertiser

    News

    Opinion

    Community

    Deaths

    Digital Publications

    Classifieds


    Twitter Logo

    Free Press News Network Logo