Last week I wrote that Dotty was suffering from her third urinary tract infection of the year. As it turns out she did not have a UTI. False Alarm.
By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room
There is a message here. I get emailed frequently with this advice -- you can buy strips at the pharmacy that can test for urinary tract infections.
Personally, I never considered purchasing them. Why? Because you can get a positive for a UTI and it might be something worse. Meaning you might have an infection that shows as a UTI but might be worse. I think its best to have the doctor check to make sure that there isn't another serious infection or other illness that needs to be addressed.
The strips wouldn't help us here anyway. In Florida, the law requires you to see a doctor before they can write a prescription. No more phoning it in to the pharmacist after a diagnosis over the phone. I would suspect this is becoming a common practice in most states.
So consider this. At the doctors office they dip the strip in the urine and then run the strip through a sophisticated machine. The results this time around were consistent with a UTI. However, they also put the urine in a test tube and sent it out for a more sophisticated test. It came back clean. No infection. This is why we had to then have a blood test to rule in or out other types of infection or illness.
Meanwhile, Dotty had been running a low grade fever for 10 days. Needless to say, she is dull and out of it and I'm concerned.
So now we had a chest X-ray and a blood test. Negative. Nothing in the chest or blood.
I'll mention this. I was shocked that Dotty had a urinary tract infection this time. Here is what I wrote in my previous article:
Dotty was not evidencing her normal urinary tract infection symptoms. This means there was no yellow river. No pee pee all over the place. In fact, we were doing extremely well on the pee pee o'meter.So as it turns out, I was kicking myself in the butt for all the wrong reasons.
I actually thought I messed up by not being more diligent on the previous UTI.
Now, I am not a doctor. My point on this one, Dotty was not evidencing the symptoms I have come to associate with a UTI. So I didn't think she had a UTI. I actually told the doctor at the time, I don't think she has a UTI. Then they ran the test and I believed what I was told.
Turns out that Dotty woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed this morning for the first time since late September. She was communicating away. Later on I decided she could go to the pool and get some sun. That worked wonderfully well as she went for the first time in a long time with her friend Josephine. Well, she met her there.
When I picked Dotty up she was all smiles and loaded with energy. She was even walking better than she had since late September when this all started.
Now for the bad news. The low grade fever is back this evening. The blood is clean.
So now we watch and wait.
I'll be very interested to see how Dotty is acting in the morning.
Official count, two urinary tract infections for the year.
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Bob DeMarco is the Founder of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. Bob has written more than 2,250 articles with more than 272,100 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.
Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room