Manifestations of Dementia Essay

1343 WordsDec 3, 20126 Pages
Manifestations of Dementia Melinda Godfrey GNUR543 St. John Fisher College Mrs. Yowell is a 90-year-old woman who is a resident of a long-term care facility. She was alert and mentally quite capable until about a year ago when she began to manifest signs and symptoms of dementia. A review of her medical records failed to document a thorough analysis of her dementia, but a diagnosis of “probable Alzheimer disease” was recorded. What are the common manifestations of dementia? The definition of Dementia is “a general term for loss of memory and other mental abilities severe enough to interfere with daily life. It is caused by physical changes in the brain.” (Common Types of Dementia, 2012). The first manifestations of Dementia…show more content…
Generally the patient will have trouble with speech and behavior. 4. Vascular Dementia – This form of dementia results from many strokes. When a patient has a stroke, the blood flow is interrupted to the brain and the result is brain tissue damage (Types of Dementia, 2011). These patients normally lose their cognitive ability before their memory. 5. Parkinson Disease with Dementia – Approximately 40% of patients with Parkinson’s disease will have dementia (Parkinson’s disease, 2011). The nerve cells in the brain that make dopamine are slowly destroyed leaving no way for the brain to send messages. What other potentially treatable factors might have led to Mrs. Yowell’s deteriorating mental function? There are many reasons that Mrs. Yowell may have impaired mental functioning (see Table 1). The first and easiest reason to rule out would be a urinary tract infection (UTI). A urine sample can show if there are white blood cells (indicating infection) present in the urine. The increased levels of bacteria in an elderly person’s body can cause toxicity which leads to the altered mental status (Midthun, 2004). Most noted changes are confusion, agitation and lethargy. Table 1 | | (Shadlen & Larson, 2012) | Secondly, Mrs. Yowell could have vitamin deficiencies. For example, if a patient has low levels of thiamine they can
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