Cognitive Decline...help

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JP, Nov 15, 2002.

  1. JP

    JP New Member

    I have been painfully aware of a cognitive decline for sometime now. I think it is different than what everyone calls the "fog." As little as 6 years ago I was able to get lost in a physics problem or spend hours at my computer writing scientific lab results, or reading, writing, and researching in the world of hard/life science. I also spent much of my time in soft science. I had a great passion for sociology too. Now, I can't stay focused enough to accomplish much of anything. I even have trouble following a new recipe. I need to read it several times.

    I am not completely diagnosed as yet. I do have Hashimoto's, chronic widespread pain from back injuries and FM. I take hormones for the Hashimoto's and they have not helped with my ability to concentrate. Two of my father's siblings have MS. I avoid being tested. Anyone with MS here?

    Does anyone have any ideas or have a similar experience. I have tried many of the popular antidotes to no avail. I would love to hear your thoughts.

    Thank you,
    Jan
  2. JP

    JP New Member

    I have been painfully aware of a cognitive decline for sometime now. I think it is different than what everyone calls the "fog." As little as 6 years ago I was able to get lost in a physics problem or spend hours at my computer writing scientific lab results, or reading, writing, and researching in the world of hard/life science. I also spent much of my time in soft science. I had a great passion for sociology too. Now, I can't stay focused enough to accomplish much of anything. I even have trouble following a new recipe. I need to read it several times.

    I am not completely diagnosed as yet. I do have Hashimoto's, chronic widespread pain from back injuries and FM. I take hormones for the Hashimoto's and they have not helped with my ability to concentrate. Two of my father's siblings have MS. I avoid being tested. Anyone with MS here?

    Does anyone have any ideas or have a similar experience. I have tried many of the popular antidotes to no avail. I would love to hear your thoughts.

    Thank you,
    Jan
  3. kellym

    kellym New Member

    I have Hashimoto's too! Just to let you know, my doc told me that despite how it feels, we do NOT have alzheimers and the brain damage is not permanent. I'm not sure if I believe her yet, but am trying to keep positive. Sorry that you, I, and all the rest of us have to endure this DD.
  4. karen2002

    karen2002 New Member

    I understand your frustration with this, Jan, as I too am having trouble coming to terms with this symptom. I cannot address how the MS and Hashimoto's, may attribute to this. I can affirmate that CFS/FM, have been the causitive factor, in my degressing cognitive skills.
    Short term memory, word recognition and application, reading comprehension, spelling all have been greatly affected.
    I place totally inappropriate words in sentences, and reverse the order of words in sentences
    an example: store clerks eyebrows raise in bewilderment, when asked where one can find "sanitary wings with pads", or I when I relate to my husband that our nauseated pet is "falling up" instead of throwing up.
    I have been married for 26 years, and when recently asked my name. I blurted out my maiden name, and was quite convinced I was correct.
    For those of us who cherish our intellectual abilities, this really "takes the pie" lol...or is it the cake?
    I really try hard to keep my sense of humor about this. I am trying therapies as well, and hope to come across something to reverse this.
    Karen
    "To the world you might be just one person, but to one person you just might be the world." author unknown
  5. pepper

    pepper New Member

    It is so discouraging for so many of us who prided ourselves on our brains. I used to belong to Mensa. They wouldn't let me in the door now, I am sure.

    I think it is really important to keep our brains working as much as possible. I started doing crossword puzzles for the first time in my life after I became ill. I do the easy ones but at least it is some sort of mental gymnastics.

    Concentration is one of my big problems too. (I have CFS, FM and Hashimoto's.) Most of the time reading is very difficult because of this. However, every now and then I have a period of a month or two when I can read, read, read, so I do and savour every moment.

    Because of the concentration difficulties, watching a one- hour TV show is next to impossible. I have found these
    solutions which help me feel better about the whole thing: 1) I watch a lot of news magazine shows like Dateline which require only a 10-12 minute attention at a time; 2) I tape shows such as movies or dramas so I can rewind when I find my mind has wandered and I don't know what has gone on.

    I know it is sad to lose an important part of "you" but keep working at it. Some of it will come back from time to time. Pepper
  6. sofy

    sofy New Member

    This has definately been the worst part for me. It is why I had to apply for disability. It got so bad that I could not read, pay or understand visa or phone bills. 2 yrs ago I had to hand over all my personal finances to professional managers and I cannot understand much of the statements. Had to close my business because of the stupids. Neurologist all is working fine and just had the cognitive testing done and waiting for the results. Am a little better now and suspect the no working, magnesium and wellbutrin all have a part to play in going from completely stupid to just pretty stupid. I would never be responsible for a child under 8 because I cannot know when I can think and when nothing works and I just stare blankely. If I was a Mother of a small child I would have to have continual help or give up being the primary care giver. Thank god I'm way past that awful fate. Life aint fair but I still have my sense of humor and the dog doesnt care if I'm stupid or too tired to brush my teeth so not all is bad.
  7. Kim

    Kim New Member

    Lots of flax oil, DHA (directly from algae), primrose oil, writing, exercising (I know some of you cannot tolerate even the easiest exercise). I also believe massage therapy clears my mind and reduces anxiety which helps with memory and concentration. My dx is chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, and major depression.

    I'm a collage professor and CPA and one day I was up at the board and couldn't spell ASSET. That was after I was out of work for almost a year so I thanked God that I was even well enough to return to work.

    God bless everyone.

    Kim
  8. klutzo

    klutzo New Member

    I believe I read recently in another post here that the cognitive glitches we have are now proven to be due to petit mal seizures. Anyone remember seeing that?
    Pepper - you might be surprised at your IQ. Have you had a neuropsychological evaluation? I felt the same way you did, and had the 6 hrs. of testing. Yes, I have brain damage, but my IQ is still Mensa eligible, much to my surprise. The defects are not present all the time. This is more like "Sometimers Disease" than Alzheimers!
    The previous posts had many good suggestions, and I also do the crosswords. My Neuropsychologist told me to do those, as well as to watch Jeopardy and play board games. I can't get anyone in this family to play games with me, but I do the other two things.
    I know that the major contributor to my cognitive decline was taking an SSRI. It got so bad that I made several errors totaling over $400 in one month in my checkbook, which had always balanced to the penny. When I stopped taking the SSRI (after reading Dr. Cheney's article about how taking them long-term can fry your brain), within a couple of months most of my cognitive ability came back. I still have trouble finding words sometimes, or talk like I'm drunk, but my checkbook is perfect again. This is something to consider if you are taking one of these drugs.
    Hugs,
    Klutzo
  9. pepper

    pepper New Member

    I have not had neuropsychological testing done but am considering having it done for interest's sake.

    My sister had it done to help get her Canadian govt disability. She scored in the 5th and 8th percentiles on the short memory tests and didn't star in the others. She'll find out in 6 weeks if she is "stupid enough" to stay home. We all think she is! lol

    And of course Jeopardy! I play it every night with my family when the show is on. Even in my feeble-minded state I still manage to beat them all almost every game! That does wonders for the self-esteem in the brains department!

    Pepper
  10. pepper

    pepper New Member

    You raise a very interesting point. I know some here run low grade fevers but my body temp. has always been below 97 degrees!

    I started Synthroid in July. I should take my temp for a few days and see if there is a change. However, I think my dose will have to be increased further after my visit with my endocrinologist next week. I will look for change.

    Pepper
  11. sofy

    sofy New Member

    This is the second time you have come might close to me and my troubles. Everyday I have unpredictible periods of intense inner cold that cannot be remedied any way except getting in a tub of hot water. I eat with an electric heater at my feet and still shiver. My temp is often low but I'm not real good at taking it that often. Have had it be as low as 95.6 in the am. i will definately pursue this as soon as I can figure out with who. Will see my gp next week and mention it to him but don't have much faith there so will have to do the new Dr. thing. Ugh, Im tired just thinking of the whole ordeal of seeking and waiting. Thanks for being so dilligent with providing such helpful and hopeful information.
  12. JP

    JP New Member

    Hi,

    Thanks for all of your replies. I hear so much about the fog and not so much about decline. I have a low body temp as well. It is many times at 96.4...something to research. I will read the O2 article as well. I breath fairly shallow much of the time.

    Again, thanks for your support and ideas!
    Jan

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