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Dr. Vikas
Dr. Vikas, Doctor
Category: Medical
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Experience:  MBBS; MD
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My memory has gotten really bad which depresses me and makes my memory

Customer Question

I am 68y.o. My memory has gotten really bad which depresses me and makes my memory worse. I am on Prozac. I remain active in my community and church but am quite concerned. My mother and her four sisters all had Alzheimer's Disease.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr Bhumika replied 5 years ago.
Hi,

Are you on any other medications? Are you a diabetic or hypertensive?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I am on Crestor, Prilosed, Premarin, Vesicare, vitamins, and, of course, the Fluoxetine.

 

I am a RN but have been retired several years. I live with my husband of 49 years. In another area of our large home my son, his wife and two daughters live. Other family lives all around us. We get along well...are not an argueing family.

Expert:  Dr Bhumika replied 5 years ago.
Hi,

Have you seen a pscychologist?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Yes, for the extensive psych. testing

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am still waiting for Dr. Bhumika's answers. If she is not going to answer you are not to charge to my card or use my card for any other use.
Expert:  Dr. Vikas replied 5 years ago.
Hello Joylar,

Dr Bhumika has opted out from this question and that is why I am stepping in. Sorry for the delay.

Could you please tell me that

Currently you are on what dose of Prozac?

Are your symptoms of depression under control?

Are you feeling depressed, have lack of energy,?

What about your sleep and appetite?

Are you having problems in managing your day to day life because of your memory?

I will get back to you soon once you answer these questions.

Thanks
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I am on 80 mg Prozac daily. No, I don't believe they are under control, but strangely, I am able to be smiling and responsive with a friend or a group, or, for that matter, with my children and grandchildren. I am open with my feelings with my husband of 49 yrs.

 

I sleep well...in fact, too well. Lack of energy? That varies according to the job to do and the pressure behind it. I keep a clean, attractive home, well stocked kitchen and serve wholesome, tasty meals. My husband is very supportive, kind and gentle. I feel loved by him and by my five children, their mates, and the nine grandchildren. I have always been a leader, but am not as comfortable being so now. I do attend church and women's Bible Studies. I think I am probably less eager to speak up there, but the groups are small and younger women have many questions, so I either listen or respond to them.

 

You asked about appetite...about average or less, I would say. I fight with myself to avoid a "quick fix" with carbs/sugars for I know that is a temporary relief. I am within a few pounds of my ideal weight.

 

As for managing my day to day life... I can function but am quite forgetful and write notes to myself and keep an indepth calendar of activities. Sometimes I feel as if my head is full of mud and bells. I have a constant ringing in my ears...loud. Tomorrow I am visiting Beltone to see if I can get help from a hearing aid.

 

Expert:  Dr. Vikas replied 5 years ago.
Dear Joylar,

Many thanks for a detailed reply. In your case forgetfulness could be because of three reasons besides many other minor ones.

It could be because of

  • Dementia
  • Depression
  • Normal aging
As you have mentioned that your symptoms of depression are not adequately controlled first thing I would like to be ruled out is that it is because of Depression even though when you have a strong positive family history of Alzheimer's in your family.

From Clinical point of view, patients of Dementia are not very much concerned about their forgetfulness and tend to hide it. (One of the differentiating point between Dementia and Depression). Also you are having no problems in your day to day live and can manage things smoothly.

Forgetfulness is commonly seen in depressed patients and I guess if your depressive symptoms are adequately treated, things would be much better.

Of course forgetfulness is also a normal part of aging and nothing can be done about it but you are managing this problem very efficiently in my view by using notes and in depth calendar of activities.

In my view, you should discuss with your treating doctor about your depressive symptoms not being under fully controlled and once they are fully controlled I hope everything will be alright.

If you have any other query, please feel free to ask.

Best wishes
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you, Doctor. Your answers make a lot of sense. I had a medical friend suggest I take an extra dose of Prozac a day or two a week....or....prn, not to exceed once or twice a week. What do you think about that? Joyce
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I knew there was something else I wanted to mention. It seems like an hour or so after I take my daily meds I experience a mild anxiety that results in a lessening of my ability to remember. Do you see any med/meds that I, perhaps, need to question?
Expert:  Dr. Vikas replied 5 years ago.
You are most welcome joylar. Well in my view you are already taking Prozac in high dose that is 80 mg per day. If the current dose of 80 mg is not proving to be adequate, in my view you need to discuss with your treating doctor about it, and simply taking an extra dose of Prozac for a day or two per week would not be sufficient.

Well anxiety is another very common reason for lack of concentration resulting in forgetfulness. Antidepressants alone can control the anxiety symptoms so I guess no additional medicine is needed.Your doctor after doing clinical evaluation may add another antidepressant or change the current one. Since you are tolerating Prozac well, a good alternative would be to add another antidepressant in low dose which should solve the problem.
Dr. Vikas, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 2219
Experience: MBBS; MD
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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you so very much. You have succeeded in helping me sort through this thing in my mind and I feel better equipped to address it personally with my physician. God bless you.
Expert:  Dr. Vikas replied 5 years ago.
You are most welcome. Thanks for coming to JA. I wish you a early and speedy recovery.

Regards

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Dr. Vikas
Dr. Vikas
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MBBS; MD