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Does anyone have any experience with Parkinsons?

FIs dad was diagnosed with this a few months ago when we made him go to the doctor. He was getting sorta shaky and always sounded sorta nervous when he talked. The diagnosis explained all of that. Dad had a really bad day yesterday, his driving was off (overshot the intersection, didn't know what to do, so he stopped in the middle and just looked around until he figured he should go...) couldn't find his truck even though he was standing next to it, ran into the door frame, missed his chair and fell on the floor...Dad thinks it might have been a small stroke, so he's going for an MRI sometime this week. I don't really know what I'm asking. I'm just scared and worried about him and FI.
"In the old days my ass would be in your back yard picking cotton, so excuse me if I don't put much stock in how f*cking awesome the old days were." -Nuggs

Re: Does anyone have any experience with Parkinsons?

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    This is a tough thing to go through.  Thinking good thoughts for you, FI, and his dad.
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    I don't have experience except what I've learned because of Michael J. Fox.  His diagnosis has really brought this into the media more than it was.  I'd suggest checking out some websites for more information.  And I'm sorry to hear what you are all going through.
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    He was having all that trouble from Parkinsons?  That's kind of odd.  It's good that he's going to the doctor.Here's the thing.  For a "geriatric" disease, this is one of the best you can have, because it's totally treatable.  Has he been on any meds for his Parkinsons?  He may be having some trouble adjusting.
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    ::big hugs::It's a really scary disease. I think the best thing your FFIL can do is educate himself about the disease. It sounds like his behavior is typical (from what I know), but symptoms are advancing. It's good that he's going for the MRI. Same thing goes for you and FI. Try to learn about it, so when these types of behavior come up, it won't be a total shock. And remember that he's still the same person, just acting a little differently now. He needs all the love and support he can get, and you guys need to make sure that you're taking time for yourselves to adjust to everything and just decompress.
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    Amoro, we don't know for sure that these things are from the Parkinsons. It could be from that, from the medication from it, or as he suspects a stroke (I don't know if Parkinsons can cause that or if its just something else wrong).Fi isn't doing so well with researching it. I tried doing it with him, but he's the type that wants to act like nothing is wrong.He was diagnosed very very early, so the prognosis was really good. We thought things would go so much slower than this. We had planned to move to Alabama in 6 months and now I don't know if that's such a great idea...
    "In the old days my ass would be in your back yard picking cotton, so excuse me if I don't put much stock in how f*cking awesome the old days were." -Nuggs
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    My grandfather has Parkinson's.  It's a really hard thing to watch develop in a loved one, so I'm very sorry. My grandfather has trouble with doorway's as well, it's something a lot of people with parkinson's have trouble with, here's a quote I found: "Narrow spaces pose a special problem to you, as persons' with Parkinson's have difficulty in judging spatial relationships.  Falls often happen when you navigate through doorways or through narrow passages." One thing that really helped my granfather was taking the supplement coenzyme q10, there have been some studies showing it delays the functional decline in those with the disease.  Hope this helps, let me know if you have any more questions or want my email.
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    FI's dad had Parkinson's and I believe it was a rough go for him.  A big thing for him was that he was always falling down.  He lived in a nursing home for a few years simply because FMIL couldn't help him up anymore.It was really hard on FI and the rest of the family because he wasn't himself for years.  He'd forget things, he became depressed, and he couldn't do any of the things he used to be able to do.  Unfortunately, he died from complications with Parkinson's, but there are medications out there that help a lot.  I would suggest reading Michael J. Fox's books.  They really go into detail about the disease and the symptoms he's had to deal with.I'm sorry that your FFIL has been diagnosed with this, but science has come a long way and there are some great treatments out there.Good luck and my thoughts are with you and your families.  
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    H's dad has Parkinsons, and it was diagnosed at a very early stage.  He hasn't had a lot of issues with his mobility, but he has had a lot of trouble with the medication itself, and because he hasn't been taking it properly, or caring for himself properly.  It's really important that you increase your fluid intake, and eat healthier, and H's dad hasn't been doing that.  He's been in and out of the hospital for dehydration because he refuses to take care of himself.SO, the best thing you can do, is make sure that he's doing all the right things, that he's being careful for the first month or so with taking the meds and driving.  Tell your FI that he can pretend it's not happening, but that doesn't change the fact that it IS happening.  Maybe you should make a quick reference sheet for him, highlighting all the thigns that you will notice now?
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    All I know is what FI has told me about this procedure where they surgically insert something in your brain.  I think this it is:In addition to lesioning surgery, many surgical teams now offer an alternative treatment called deep brain stimulation (DBS).  DBS surgery involves placing a thin metal electrode (about the diameter of a piece of spaghetti) into one of several possible brain targets and attaching it to a computerized pulse generator, which is implanted under the skin in the chest (much like a heart pacemaker).  All parts of the stimulator system are internal; there are no wires coming out through the skin.  To improve control of symptoms, the stimulator can be adjusted during a routine office visit by a physician or nurse using a programming computer held next to the skin over the pulse generator.  Unlike lesioning, DBS does not destroy brain tissue.  Instead, it reversibly alters the abnormal function of the brain tissue in the region of the stimulating electrode.  Although deep brain stimulation is a major new advance, it is a more complicated therapy that may demand considerable time and patience before its effects are optimized.He says it's really cool and his patients love how effective it is. 
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    That part in italics is from the National Parkinsons Foundation website.
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    That's great advice ladies, especially about the list for him, Amoro. Our biggest problem right now is that he lives 2 hours away. He does have a live in 'lady friend' and her family is near by. But no one on FFIL family is close by. We can't keep such a close eye on him. My mind is already racing. I had no idea it would progress this quickly, I thought since it was caught so early that it would slow things down. I don't want to put him in  a home, even if it put's mine and FI life on hold. We could either move into his old house that's right down the road from him and his lady friend, or we could move him to where FI lives and move him in with us. I just don't know what to do at this point (if it keeps progressing so quickly)
    "In the old days my ass would be in your back yard picking cotton, so excuse me if I don't put much stock in how f*cking awesome the old days were." -Nuggs
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    Well, H's parents live in Phoenix, and SIL lives in Louisville, so they don't have anyone nearby to take care of them either.  They're fine with it, even though H's dad isn't the best at taking care of himself.  Don't think that you need to take him right to a home right now.  It's okay.  I know it's scary, but you need to hold the emotional reaction in check, and think logically to do the best for your FFIL.   Everyone is scared right now, but you don't need to be.  Be firm, be constant and don't freak out, because that doesn't help anything. Everything is ok.  You have to deal with it as it happens, be prepared as you can, and understand that it's going to take a bit to get everything figured out and straightened out.  They're going to have to fiddle with the medication to get it right. 
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    Thanks Amoro, I really appreciate it. I'm not letting myself freak out in front of FI, just on here and to my mom. I'm trying to gather as much practical 'right now' information as I can to send to FI. He's going down there next weekend and hopefully he can find out if he's going to the doctor like he's supposed to and if maybe the medication is off.
    "In the old days my ass would be in your back yard picking cotton, so excuse me if I don't put much stock in how f*cking awesome the old days were." -Nuggs
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    Like Amoro said, definitely give it some time, it's still really early and they may need to up his doses of medication or completely change his meds. It took a while for my grandfather to get stable.He and my grandmother lived on their own in the poconos far from everyone, it wasn't until a couple weeks ago we moved them into an apartment closer to one of my aunts.  They still live on their own it's just better for them to be near family. 
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    If he has had a stroke getting medication is imperative ASAP.....having TMIs are an indication of a larger looming stroke....and medication can help avoid that ( taking a stroke buster within 2 hours of a stroke can remove lasting effects of stroke) ....I dont know about the spacial symptoms of Parkinson's but this sounds very unusual.....this sound like some age related dementia...I had 2 neighbors that had Parkinson's......the most visible symptom was shaking and medications seem to relieve them ...I think its Dopamine......but as the disease progressed the time between meds was shorter.... so sorry that you are experiencing this but sounds like yall are good advocates for him
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    My grandmother had Parkinsons and mild strokes, but I forget what they called them. I think there are drugs to help manage Parkinsons, but it is a debilitating, sad, frustrating condition. We ended up having to take her car away because she was always putting it in the ditch, and eventually she moved to the nursing home so that they could care for her because every adult family member worked full time. Dementia followed soon thereafter, but that is also hereditary in our family so I am not sure if it had anything to do with the Parkinsons. In the beginning it was not so bad, but I remember the shakiness, and it scared me as a kid. I am so sorry that you and your family have to deal with this. It can be very frustrating when a person can't do the things they once could. Often times they get angry at the world, and that can be very hard on families. There are treatments to slow the progression, though, so I'd suggest looking into them, as well as support groups for both FI's dad and his family. Usually a hospital can hook you up with the contact info for those.
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    My mom has Parkinson's.  It took them almost 18 months to diagnose, and for the first 15 of that, she really didn't get worse too quickly.  Then, 3 months before the diagnosis, her father fell, broke his hip, and eventually passed away.  She's an only child, and bearing the brunt of taking care of my grandparents was so stressful that she has deteriorated much faster than before since his fall.  It's very difficult to watch helplessly.  Right now the goal/milestone she has for herself is to still be able to walk unassisted at my wedding in 6 months.  I hope she'll be able to hold her grandbabies one day.  I really have no idea what to expect. The only thing I can tell you from my perspective is to be supportive of your FFIL, AND your FI.  Try to keep FFIL out of high stress situations, as much as possible.  Find out what medications FFIL is on & what restrictions go with them.  My mom now has a lot of food/drink restrictions that seem really random, but I know what they are so that I don't serve that to her when she comes over and so that we avoid as much of it at the wedding as possible.  (We're still having an open bar, even though she can't drink anymore.)  And - try to do the things he wants to do with him now, since he may not be able to do them all in the future.
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    sorry meant to say TIAs....in above post
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