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Question
Posted by: yolanda | 2004/10/23

alzheimer's disease

i've heard yesterday that my dad suffers from alzheimer's, he is still in the early phase, when do we tell him?

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Our expert says:
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Hello yolanda ;
There are no easy answers to a question like this. On the whole, where practical ( depending on how greatly he is already affected by this affliction ) prefer that the person be told as much of the truth as he can handle, told tactfully and gently --- I know that is what I would like in such a situation, if it were me.
But much depends on the person's personality, how they usually handle bad news and challenges ; and their present clinical state. And you can't "tell him" until you know as much as possible about the facts of t\what there is to tell, and what he may have been already told ( and whateer he might already know, accurate or inaccurate ).
Best approach would be to call and speak with the doctor who made the diagnosis and ask both what he actually told your dad, and what he recommends about what the rest of you should say about it, to your dad. Also ask what treatment he has recommended. These days there are some medicines which, though Alzheimers is incurable, can slow down it's progress for several years, which could be useful.

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