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Senior Health

Sudden halucinating in 87 year old mom.

05/22/2009

Question:

My Mom has many hesalth issues including, 25%ckidney function(no dialysis),High blood pressure,Post polio neuropothy,. Uses wheelchair and walker (10ft max.) had Nuclear medicine test on heart. See doc in 2 weeks for result. Has increased difficulty breathing and or catching her breath over last few months. Last 3 morniongs I have found her sitting in her room fully dressed. Halucinations each night getting worse and now she is very confused during day. This is such a sudden onset, that I was wondering if any of her health issues could be causing problems. I`m really getting worried.

Tks Loving daughter

Answer:

Your mom has lots of health issues and probably takes multiple medications. All of these factors could be causing the hallucinations and confusion. She needs to be evaluated for the hallucinations to see if anything can be done to treat her. If the hallucinations are not bothering her, it could be ignored. Sounds like these are occurring at night and could interrupt her sleep and she needs to be able to sleep. But if the hallucinations are causing her concern or functional problems, needs to be evaluated. You don't mention the results of the nuclear medicine heart test. If her heart is stressed from any conditions, this could certainly add to the problems with confusion, breathing, etc.

Suggest your mom be seen by her primary health care provider so that the most recent escalation in hallucinations and confusion can be evaluated, and perhaps, treated.

Thanks for your question.

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Response by:

Evelyn L Fitzwater, DSN, RN Evelyn L Fitzwater, DSN, RN
Associate Professor Emerita
Associate Director of the
College of Nursing
University of Cincinnati