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01/02/2012 06:36 PM

I need some help and in formation

Posts: 252


I am new to this group and I really am not sure what I wrong with me. I have been a member of the depression group for a couple of years now and it has helped a lot. But I have another problem that has been going on. I have been having trouble with my memory. I have been told it might be my depression meds or the depression it's self. I have also been told by my doctor that it could be I have had what she called diabetic Minnie strokes. I have no idea really what is causing it all I know is I get lost when driving I can't remember witch way to turn when I pull out of a parking lot I have just pulled into to get gas. I forget names of my family I have known all my life even my grand kids. And I see them almost every day. I have been in the same type of work for 15 years now and can't hold down a job because I have forgotten so much. 3 years ago I was making almost $25.00 an hour and now I can't keep a $13.00 an hour job. I have no insurance so it's almost impossible to find out what is wrong with me.

I'm not sure what I am asking for, I just know I need some help.


01/02/2012 11:12 PM
Posts: 4120
Group Leader

Hi and welcome, I wish I could tell you some easy way to tell what memory problems are caused by depression, which ones by meds, and what might be caused by actual dementia of some sort (like vascular dementia...which is what I think the diabetic mini strokes would probably be, if you have them and they are causing damage).

If you had insurance an MRI might show something if there was damage to the brain from mini strokes, but it doesn't always show up if the damage is minor, and nothing would show up if it was from depression or medication side effects. I am not sure it would be worth paying out of pocket for it if that is even an option (and I have no idea how much those things cost).

One thing you might be able to do is to have someone who knows you very well (probably a family member) try to start keeping some sort of record of how your depression is, how your memory is and any med changes over time. If you had some kind of record like that that showed the depression improving over time but the memory getting worse, but the meds increasing then you would probably have a med side effect. I would say to keep the journal yourself, but when I have taken meds that interfered with my memory at all (and mine was slight) it was a losing battle to remember to report it!

Of all the potential causes your doctor talked about, the most concerning is the possible mini strokes. If there is anything you can do to decrease your risk for that part I would certainly do so since the damage from mini strokes can sometimes be permanent, while memory problems from depression and usually medication side effects are more treatable.

It probably sounds outrageous but I have known some people who were misdiagnosed with Alzheimer's and actually put into a locked facility because they were functioning that badly, who turned out to have depression and medication side effects (not completely from depression meds, there were other health problems), but once those were improved they got back to being their normal selves and their ability to remember returned though that part of their lives has remained rather hazy. I hope that you too will have a recovery like that.


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