I am an advocate of getting the thyroid checked when Alzheimer's disease or dementia present.
Alzheimer's Reading Room
My previous articles on this topic are the some of the most frequently viewed on this site. To get up to date read this article -- Alzheimer's, Thyroid and Hypothyroidism.
On our last visit to the doctor, I mentioned Rose's story about hypothyroidism. Our doctor then told me this recent experience he had with hypothyroidism.
Our doctor had a 94 year old patient that wouldn't respond to any treatment. He was more or less comatose -- lethargic and inert.
His eyes were open, but he wouldn't respond to anything. He was admitted to the hospital and given every test under the sun over several days.
After all the testing, the doctors decided as a last resort to give his brain an electric shock to see if he would respond. Before they could do that, our personal physician had to sign off on the paper work.
Our doctor went over to the hospital and examined all the tests. After doing so, he refused to sign off. Instead, he prescribed the thyroid medication. The very next day the patient started to respond, and after a few days he was back to his normal self. Voila! He returned to the world. He came back to life.
This story might seem far fetched but it is true. I wish you could have seen the smile on our personal care physician's face when he told me this story. He was ecstatic.
So once again, I recommend the following.
When your loved one seems depressed, or seems to be suffering from dementia, get a thorough check of the thyroid. Do not allow a personal physician to talk you out of this. The test is cheap, so cost is not an issue.
The Best Way to Find Solutions to the Problems that Caregivers Face Each Day
If you don't believe the importance of getting the thyroid checked, I suggest you go read Rose's story. Rose's story also contains an important lesson about how hard it can be to get to the bottom of an illness, or feeling ill.
You can also read about the wonderful change that my mother experienced once she started talking medicine for hypothyroidism.
Understanding Alzheimer's and Dementia
Alzheimer's Care and Communication
Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room