An elderly lady is suffering from severe memory loss. Her family are told there is nothing that can be done and the progression of this dreadful condition is inevitable.
Unconvinced by her poor prognosis, I asked for a list of her medication to see if this was drug induced memory loss, having seen these symptoms completely reversed in another elderly lady who was also being prescribed drugs for depression, anxiety, blood pressure and pain, after drugs were discarded.
The drugs she has been prescribed by her doctor, who she trusts, are Tramadol, Sertraline, also known as Zoloft and Propranalol. Each of these drugs are contraindicated in causing memory loss.
This begs the questions, are Doctors unaware of these harmful side effects? Or if they are aware, why are these drugs being prescribed to the infirm and vulnerable elderly population, when they are not suitable for this age group?
1. Tramadol, which has since been stopped, is contraindicated as a cause of memory loss and is an opioid, which can permanently damage the brain and hearing.
www.ehealthme.com/ds/tramadol/dementia/ 2. Sertraline is contraindicated in causing memory loss.
www.healthboards.com/boards/mental-healt...oft-memory-loss.html 3. Propranalol is contraindicated in causing memory loss, but even more concerning is that this drug has been shown to delete part of a persons memory and is often prescribed for blood pressure, without any concern about what it is doing to the brain and memory. Imagine a pill that can destroy your memories. It is being hailed as a selective memory blocker for people who have suffered a traumatic experience and more worrying it has also deleted older memories.
" Antidepressant Use on the Rise Among Patients With Dementia Evidence to support use in frail, elderly population is limited, Canadian researchers say.
by Michael Smith, North American Correspondent, MedPage Today
May 17, 2015
Note that this study was published as an abstract and presented at a conference. These data and conclusions should be considered to be preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.
The use of sedative antidepressants rose significantly over 10 years among patients with dementia in long-term care in the Canadian province of Ontario.
Note that guidelines generally warn against using antipsychotic medications to treat frail, elderly patients, leading physicians to consider other options, including antidepressants, benzodiazepines, antiepileptics, and cognitive enhancers.
TORONTO -- The use of sedative antidepressants such as tricyclics, mirtazapine, and trazodone rose significantly over 10 years among patients with dementia in long-term care in the Canadian province of Ontario, researchers said here.
Over the same time, the use of benzodiazepines fell sharply, while prescriptions for atypical antipsychotics decreased slightly, according to Akshya Vasudev, MD, of Western University in London, Ontario, and colleagues.
The finding about sedative antidepressants is concerning because there is limited evidence about their value in a frail, elderly population with dementia, Vasudev said in a presentation at the American Psychiatric Association (APA) annual meeting."
Gravity, Learn to live with it, because you can't live without it!
Definition of Drug-Induced Cognitive Impairment in the Elderly
Donna M. Lisi, PharmD, BCPS, BCPP, CGP, FASCP
June 14, 2000
According to DSM-IV, multiple cognitive deficits that occur with dementia only in the context of substance use are diagnosed as "Substance Intoxication" or "Substance Withdrawal." If the dementia results from the persisting effects of a substance (ie, a drug of abuse, a medication, or toxic exposure), "Substance-Induced Persisting Dementia" is diagnosed. Other causes of dementia (eg, "Dementia Due to a General Medical Condition") should always be considered, even in a person with substance dependence.
The essential feature of dementia is the development of multiple cognitive deficits that include memory impairment and at least 1 of the following cognitive disturbances: aphasia, apraxia, agnosia, or a disturbance in executive functioning. The cognitive deficits must be sufficiently severe to cause impairment in occupational or social functioning and must represent a decline from a previously higher level of functioning.
Dementia is a chronic, insidious, progressive, and often permanent form of cognitive impairment that includes impaired thinking, memory, and learning abilities and difficulties in daily functioning, problem solving, and emotional control (Table 1). Dementia occurs at age 60 in about 1% of the population; however, this increases to greater than 30% by age 85. Starr and Whalley make the following distinction: "Drug-induced dementias reversed by withdrawal of the offending drug are probably best thought of within the spectrum of delirious states, while dementias that are drug-related and persist when the drug is withdrawn are, de facto, drug induced." However, as they point out, a satisfactory definition of drug-induced dementia is lacking.
Drug-induced dementia may be a cause of cognitive impairment in about 12% of patients with a suspected dementia. In the elderly, this is distinguished from age-related cognitive impairment, where the decline in mental function is considered a part of the normal aging process. The relative odds of a drug-induced dementia increase as the number of medications consumed rises. The relative odds range from 1.0 with the use of 0-1 drugs to 9.3 with the use of 4-5 medicines.[18,20] Medication side effects accounted for 5% of reversible dementias in patients aged 60 or older in one study. The prevalence of drug-induced dementia in the general population is unknown.
Drugs may impair cognition indirectly by metabolic effects, such as hypoglycemia, by alterations of immunologic factors within the CNS, and by actions that interfere with synaptic transmission. Classes of drugs most often associated with the development of drug-induced dementia include benzodiazepines, antihypertensives, and anticholinergic agents.
DSM-IV also recognizes research criteria for "Mild Neurocognitive Disorder." This condition is defined by the presence of 2 or more of the following impairments in cognitive functioning, usually lasting for a period of at least 2 weeks: memory impairment as identified by a reduced ability to learn or recall information; disturbance in executive functioning (ie, planning, organizing, sequencing, abstracting); disturbance in attention or speed of information processing; impairment in perceptual-motor abilities; and impairment in language (ie, comprehension, word finding). However, this condition should not be considered if a patient meets the criteria for "Substance-Related Disorder," including medication-related side effects. "Substance-Related Disorders" include disorders related to the taking of drugs of abuse (including alcohol), the side effects of a medication, and a toxic exposure. Medications that cause substance-related disorders include, but are not limited to, anesthetics and analgesics, anticholinergic agents, anticonvulsants, antihistamines, antihypertensive and cardiovascular medications, antimicrobial medications, antiparkinsonian medications, chemotherapeutic agents, corticosteroids, gastrointestinal medications, muscle relaxants, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications, other over-the-counter medications, antidepressant medications, and disulfiram. Within this classification is "Substance Intoxication." This diagnosis requires the development of a reversible substance-specific syndrome caused by the recent ingestion or exposure of a substance and requires that the clinically significant maladaptive behavioral or psychological changes associated with the intoxication (eg, belligerence, mood lability, cognitive impairment, impaired judgment, impaired social or occupational functioning) are attributable to the direct physiologic effects of the substance on the CNS. In "Substance-Induced Persisting Amnestic Disorder," memory disturbance must not occur exclusively during the course of a delirium or a dementia, and it must persist beyond the usual duration of substance intoxication or withdrawal.
Delirium may be superimposed on dementia. Approximately 22% of ambulatory demented elderly have concomitant delirium. For any patient with a diagnosis of dementia who suddenly develops a change in mental status, delirium should be ruled out. The manifestation of delirium in a patient with dementia may be atypical. Even in demented patients, cognitive function may temporarily improve if an offending agent is removed. Delirium and dementia may be 2 places along a spectrum ie, if delirium is not reversed, it may evolve into dementia. Further, depression may mimic either dementia or the early stages of delirium.
Since coming off all drugs, the elderly lady is no longer bladder incontinent, she manages to clothe herself and bathe herself, she has completely regained her memory function and is holding a normal conversation without any problem with memory function.
During a conversation yesterday by phone, she was articulate and very upbeat. She even thanked me for tackling her Doctor.
This is a clear case of drug induced dementia and drug induced memory loss, just as I said it was. Now the disturbing question arises as to what the true intentions of the medical profession is, where these dangerous drugs are prescribed, when all contraindications state they do indeed cause Dementia and induced memory loss, along with leaving the very frail at risk of falls and worse? None of these drugs should be taken with other similar medications and yet, they are commonly prescribed as a cocktail.?
We are all truly shocked by the damage caused by these medications and even more shocked by her complete turn around.
She no longer has balance issues and has not had a fall since. Her badly damaged knee from a previous fall has still not been corrected. She has been like this for more than a year. Her knee bends acutely inwards, causing her foot to point acutely inwards, which negatively affects her ability to walk. I have advised her to have a knee brace fitted while she waits for her operation. This will prevent further damage to the tendons and should have been the first line of thought by her GP?
Her Doctor is beyond comprehension and I have advised her to get away from his as soon as possible.
While in hospital after yet another fall, I asked the nurses if they had seen any evidence of dementia since she stopped taking Tramadol only? None was their reply, saying all she had now was very mild confusion, possibly due to shock from her fall.
Yesterday she stated she does not take any medication, though I still need to confirm this.
Sertraline, Propranalol and tramadol all cause memory loss! How many more drugs prescribed to the elderly and infirm do the same or worse?
I presented the evidence about the drugs she was given to her GP and he dutifully ignored it all. He even called the lady to ask her to make me stop questioning his actions? I presented the same evidence to the nurses and doctors while she was in hospital and still the drugs were given to her?
Some of her family were convinced by her Doctor that she should be placed permanently in a nursing home. This line of thought was abandoned due to her astonishing recovery.
If you know of anyone who has been diagnosed with dementia or memory loss, please research each and everyone of the drugs that they have been prescribed!
Add each drug name together with "drug induced memory loss" and/or "drug induced dementia" in your search engine and do it today!
Gravity, Learn to live with it, because you can't live without it!
HEALTH NEWSDECEMBER 31, 2014 / 5:05 PM / 4 YEARS AGO
Elderly overprescribed sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs
5 MIN READ
(Reuters Health) - Doctors often prescribe potentially disabling tranquilizers to older Americans, particularly women, a new study shows.
Nearly 12 percent of 80-year-old women in 2008 used benzodiazepines, a class of sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs that the American Geriatrics Society says should generally be avoided in the elderly, U.S. pharmacy data revealed.
Benzodiazepines include alprazolam (brand name Xanax), lorazepam (Ativan) and diazepam (Valium) – “a little yellow pill” that the Rolling Stones dubbed “mother’s little helper” in the band’s 1966 rock classic.
“The study should be a call to action for us to think about why these medications are being prescribed so greatly in a very vulnerable group,” geriatric nurse Donna Fick told Reuters Health.
“These drugs have very dangerous side effects – falls, delirium, and they have been linked to dementia,” said Fick, a Pennsylvania State University professor, who was not involved in the current study.