After my mother died, I thought that the hospital people might want to check out her brain, dissect it for science or something. No, they were good.
The reason I thought about this was, according to the baby sister, the rapid change in my mother’s personality over the last six months of her life.
I came across this Daily Kos story about health care and politics, when this paragraph jumped out at me and pretty much slapped me across the face:
“Now, my uncle hasn’t been well for awhile. He’s suffered from an incredibly early onset of Pick’s Disease; which, if you’re not familiar with it, is like Alzheimer’s, but worse. Much worse. For instance, one of the ways you can differentiate between Pick’s Disease and Alzheimer’s is that with Pick’s people get incredibly hostile – argumentative, vulgar, violent – towards family members first and most aggressively, behavior they won’t exhibit or inflict on people they’re not familiar with.”
She wasn’t that young, 83 when she died, but she became really hostile to those she knew best. Yet she was seemingly a perfect angel to strangers, or those at her adult day care, e.g.
Of course, it doesn’t REALLY matter exactly what she died with – she died FROM the stroke. And she really doesn’t fit the full profile:
“Pick’s disease is a rare condition that causes progressive and irreversible dementia. This disease is one of many types of dementias known as frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Frontotemporal dementia is the result of a brain condition known as frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). If you have dementia, your brain doesn’t function normally. As a result, you may have difficulty with language, behavior, thinking, judgment, and memory. Like patients with other types of dementia, you may experience drastic personality changes.”
Whatever that caused the changes, I feel badly for my sister and her daughter. And, I suppose my mother too, although who knows how self-aware she was about processing things.
Seven years since Mom died. Still sucks.