Friday, July 10, 2009

July 10, 2009

I am starting this blog to help me remember the details of Memaw's care. I have made several attempts to keep this data organized. With every doctor's visit I realize the information was written down, in a journal at home, or in my memory. Unfortunately, I usually didn't have the journal with me or my memory wasn't working fast enough for the doctor's questions! Technology seems to be my friend and is always accessible! I am hoping this blog will help me keep all information in one place and provide access for family to keep updated.

Memaw was diagnosed in April with dementia. The diagnosis started with a trip to the emergency room because she was having trouble breathing. She had also fallen 2 times. Her blood pressure was high (stroke level). Memaw has had high blood pressure since I have known her. (I married her son in 1981!). She is a lovely, sweet lady. She had never been hospitalized (except to have children) until 3 or 4 years ago. It is hard to remember exactly when, which is why I am starting this blog.

Looking back, we realize all of the hospital visits began with the same symptoms, a phone call from her saying she couldn't breathe. Gary, my husband, would call 911 and start heading to her house about 15 minutes away. I would stay on the phone with her until the paramedics would arrive. In the beginning she would be hospitalized for several days. Tests would be performed and heart medications adjusted. This happened maybe once a year. Since, late 2008 she has been hospitalized 4 times. The symptoms were the same...she couldn't breathe. In April she had a harder time. This time she also had fallen 2 times. She could barely walk. Once again she was admitted to the hospital. She became very needy and Gary had to stay with her. Unfortunately, he was in charge of payroll at work and he couldn't stay the next day. Too many people were counting on receiving paychecks! I took off work to stay with her and listen to the doctor's reports. I will report on this in another blog.

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