Is anyone in Neurology?

  1. Hey everyone. Yesterday my uncle was diagnosed with Pick's Disease. He had a CAT-SCAN done and the person who read it said he hadn't seen one so advanced in 32 years. Does anyone know what the expected life expectancy is with this, on average? The Mayo Clinic's website says "Death by Infection" and my brother and I were trying to figure this out. The information online seems to be very limited, probably because this disease is very rare. I thought maybe someone might know something from experience... anything, really. I'm trying to dig for infomation online and it's not turning up the best results. It is my mom's brother and she's taking it very hard and I don't want to keep asking question after question. Help?

    Thank you! :flowers:
     
  2. Im so very sorry to hear this my prayers are with you and your family. Have you tried Web MD or Health Boards.com. Pics disease is a form of Dimentia (Alzheimers).
     
  3. I'm not in Neurology, but I did take a class while I was in college.

    From what I remember, Pick's disease is what used to be called FTLD, which (excuse me if I am not 100% correct) stands for Frontotemporal lobar degeneration. Basically...it's progressive dementia. From what I understand "Pick's disease" is a more specific than using just "FTLD" for diagnosis.

    I just looked in my old Neurology book, and it said

    Pick's disease can be diagnosed by seeing things called "Pick bodies". They cause neurons to swell up, making them look like small balloons. It's a relatively rare form of dementia, and many often confuse it with Alzheimers
     
  4. Thanks, ladies! I have looked up some information on Webmd.com and mayoclinic.com but everything is so, so limited. Thanks for the information you've been able to give me and the support, I really do appreciate it!
     
  5. I will ask my son, (who has been a technician in the U. of Iowa Hospital neuro-psych. clinic for several years) what he knows. He's not a doctor but he has lots of experience in this area. Can't guarantee how soon he will get info, tho.

    This is so hard--my sympathies.
     
  6. Thanks so much for the assistance Boxermom! I really do appreciate it. :smile:

    I figured if anyone knew through work or personal experience w/family it might be better. I've spent a lot of time searching online but it's so repetitive and none of the information is very clear.
     
  7. I know what you mean. About half his work is in the clinic where he sees patients and family members. It's interesting and heart-breaking to hear about the cases he deals with. I don't know the symptoms of Pick's but my father died from Alzheimer's Disease and I would never wish that on anyone.

    I'll get back to you as soon as I get info from my son. Best wishes for your family.
     
  8. My uncle is a Neuro-Surgeon, I will see if I can get in touch with him.
    Prayers to you and your family.
     
  9. Here is what my son wrote: Pick's Disease is one of the many variants of progressive dementia. Typically, the onset of symptoms are a bit younger than Alzheimer's. Symptoms are often like Alz. (memory loss, language difficulty, behavioral changes), however whereas Alz. symptoms tend to be a little more global, Pick's are a bit more "focal"(note from me:I think that means specific??). The atrophy shown on scans tends to be more localized to frontal and anterior temporal lobes. So, with frontal atrophy a patient may show signif. behavioral changes such as obsessive-compulsive behavior, perservering behavior, problems w/ decision-making, problems w/multi-tasking, changes in emotions. With more temporal lobe involvement you see signif. problems w/language. Eventualy the whole brain will be affected, like Alz. The prognosis for life is typically a little shorter than classic Alzheimer's, around 5-15 yrs. survival from diagnosis.

    I don't understand all the terms he uses, but I get the idea. Since your uncle's case is very advanced, the prediction of life expectancy may not be accurate. I'm not sure if this is what you are looking for. I hope PinkSuadeSoho is able to help you, too.

    Best wishes to you and your entire family. Your mom must feel so helpless.
     
  10. Please thank your son for me, that was absolutely wonderful of him!

    Those symptoms actually sound exactly like my uncle...

    My mom is feeling that way, but she has 4 other fabulous siblings so the support system is there.

    You're a gem, boxermom. Thanks again!
     
  11. That would be beyond awesome. Any information would be great! Thank you!
     
  12. CaochKatie, I've been thinking about the phrase "death by infection". Maybe it means that the dementia weakens the patient over time and they actually may die from pneumonia or something similar, rather than from the dementia. My father who had Alzheimer's for at least 8 yrs (at first the symptoms are so gradual) died of pneumonia, and it was a very peaceful passing.

    Let's hope PinkSuadeSoho can add her uncle's expertise.

    (((hugs)))
     
  13. Probably the "death by infection" means aspiration pneumonia. Patients with advanced dementia can no longer swallow effectively so food or saliva (with accompanying bacteria) gets into the lungs and pneumonia results.

    I'm sorry to hear about your uncle.