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whaat73

Newly diagnosed PD and sudden inability to speak

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Good morning,

 

My mother is 66 years old. She was diagnosed last month with PD. She also has Essential Tremor and was diagnosed with that in 2001. As far as the PD diagnosis goes she was referred to a movement disorder neurologist when she presented with a resting tremor in her right hand. So far that has been the most pronounced motor symptom she has. She was placed on Azilect and Amantadine. These medications made her nearly catatonic at times as well as exaserbated PD symptoms she didn't even have, or at least weren't noticeable up to that point. She was weaned off the Azilect over 5 day period and the Amantadine dosage was cut in half. She continued to have terrible side effects and her hands, legs and feet began swelling. The doctor had her sto the Amantadine a week ago yesterday (Wed). Her symptoms have improved and she was back to her old self, minus the resting tremor.

 

Last evening I was at her house for about 2 hours. We talked and laughed and the evening was a typical one for her (she lives next door to us). I was about to leave when she asked me if I needed her coat to walk back home. I told her no thank you and she replied with slurred, garbled, inaudible, speech that was somewhat hard to hear. I thought she was playing a joke on me until I saw the horrified, scared look on her face. I walked her to the couch and called my husband who is a first responder. He checked her for signs of a stroke and she didn't have any except the sudden slurred speech and inability to communicate well. We decided to take her to the ER. Long story short, they did a CT scan and it was negative. So they attributed this to the PD and started her on a low dose of Sinemet and sent her home. Her speech has not improved over the past 6 hours.

 

Her other medications are Primidone, Propranolol, and Bupropion.

 

My question is this: Is it common for PD patients who have never had speech problems to suddenly, in mid conversation, have slurred, garbled, inaudible speech? In a matter of a seconds she went from her regular self to a scared, frail person unable to speak. And if this does happen, is this permanent or is there help for it? I'm sorry for going on for so long but I wanted you to have some background knowledge on my mom. Thank you for any help/advice you can offer.

 

Sincerely

Dina E.

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Dina, in an 86 year old a CT scan is not enough to rule out a stroke (this would be more typical for a stroke).  I would likely recommend you ask her doctor to consider a MRI.

 

Also, in an 86 year old with Parkinson's like symptoms and some issues tolerating medications you also have to consider Lewy Body Disease.

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Hi Dr. Okun

 

Thank you for your quick reply. My mother is actually 66 and not 86 so I wanted to ask you if that changes your recommendation? Thank you ago for your quick response. Especially on Thanksgiving. I hope you have a wonderful holiday. ????

 

Sincerely,

 

Dina E.

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I am so sorry, my error.  My recommendations are the same, but Lewy Body dementia would be less likely.  Have a great holiday.

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Thank you Dr. Okun,

 

The fact that you answer questions for us, and on a holiday, means so much to those of us who are scared and sad for our loved ones suffering. I am truly grateful to you. Thank you again.

 

Dina

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