Alzheimer`s Disease/Parkinson / musculare

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Question
Hello Mary and Happy New Year..it is me again lol..as for my spouse he is stable psychically he is good with his LBD smiles alot and tells a lot of stories in sequence but that is ok for now he is good..the only other problem is falling 4 times in 2.5 weeks we are hoping that we can prolong the wheel chair as long as possible..
My question is about a friend I know her husband was diagnosed around the same time as Andr頵 yrs ago, he was diagnosed with Parkinson/muscular and also a rare cancer is this normal can cancer be a part of Parkinson disease or is just a coincidence that he also has the cancer?
Also what is the difference between LBD & Muscular? This man is starting treatment everyday in a few weeks after receiving an Mri if he can start the treatment, he is week, doesn't eat much his wife says he is skin and bones except his stomach I forgot to ask but the cancer may be there...she says they say he has no masks which is something I don't know anything about...
Maybe you can give me a little information about all this..hope all is well with you as for me I am as I said before in a Therapy Group every two weeks and I also started a Course on 3-D which I love, challenging but not more than dealing with LBD...
Sincerely
Joyce

Answer
Hi Joyce, I'm glad to hear your husband is feeling more content - but sorry about his loss of stability. As you know, repeated falls, dizziness and even fainting is a common problem for people with LDB. Fall related injuries are also common, so try to make sure he doesn't try to get up and walk without someone with him.
http://www.lbda.org/node/14

I'm not sure what kind of cancer your friend's husband has. There is a weird connection between Parkinson's and cancer - people with Parkinson's are more likely to get melanoma (a deadly skin cancer) and less likely to get other kinds of cancer than average - which means that if your friend's husband has some other cancer than melanoma, it's just a coincidence. Cancer itself often causes a fast metabolism and loss of appetite, which can cause physical wasting - and a distended abdomen may be caused by an accumulation of fluid from cancers - called ascites. Your friend would have to ask the doctor. She might also want to ask the doctor what he would do if it were his family member. If your friend's husband is very weak and frail, the treatment may cause a lot of suffering. I hope they would not propose putting him through it unless there was a very good chance of remission.

I'm not quite sure what you mean by "he has no masks". I wonder if they mean the mask like face that people with Parkinson's and Lewy Body often develop - it's a vacant/fixed stare commonly observed with Parkinsonís patients, accompanied with lack of expression and animation associated with emotion, such as smiling, frowning and grinning. It's a very blank, mask like face caused by facial muscles not working properly.  Think of Muhammad Ali (the boxer) in recent years. He has Parkinson's and his face is frozen.

There are some symptoms in common between Parkinson's and Lewy Body. Lewy body patients get the same slowed movement, rigid muscles, tremors and shuffling walk. There is also a distinctive form of dementia that can go with Parkinson's - about 20% of Parkinson's patients develop it.  

"Lewy bodies" are abnormal distinctive clumps of protein that develop inside nerve cells. They are seen in Lewy Body Dementia, Parkinson's Disease, sometimes in Pick's Disease, corticobasal degeneration and multiple system atrophy, and even a few more neurodegenerative illnesses. It's not completely clear if Lewy Body and Parkinson's are even different illnesse - there are lots of overlap common to all the illnesses that feature Lewy body formation. If  dementia shows up first, they tend to call it Lewy Body, and if the movement problem shows up first, it gets classed as Parkinson's. They might actually be facets of the same underlying process.

Not sure if this helped or not!

By the way, glad you are taking some time for yourself and reaching out to others in your shoes. Those are good healthy signs!

Mary  

Alzheimer`s Disease

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Mary Gordon

Expertise

Several years direct experience as caregiver for family member who died of end stage AD. Did lots of research and dealt with a lot of health care professionals and caregivers over the 7 years from diagnosis to the end. Used various care options from community based resources to increasing levels of institutional. Mother of three, two born during our loved one's decline, so I know what it is to be the ham in the sandwich, taking care of the older generation and the younger at the same time and trying to balance everyone`s needs. Ask me, I`ve probably been there, done that. We made lost of mistakes and learned everything the hard way - but you don`t have to! If I can`t answer your question, I`ll steer you to a place or person who can.

Experience

Currently a program manager for a large utility company. My Alzheimers experience comes from having the illness in our family. Out of necessity, we did a lot of research in order to understand the disease, plan for what might come next, and make the right decisions to help and support our loved one. Please note, I am a Canadian living in Toronto, and therefore am not the best person to ask about US regulations and insurance rules!

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