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    Family History Has Complex Role in Alzheimer's Risk
    Byroney_WebMD_Staff posted:
    "The role of family history on a person's risk for Alzheimer's disease appears to be more complex than previously recognized, a new study shows..."

    "Now a new study shows that people can still get the kind of brain changes linked to Alzheimer's if they have a family history but don't carry ApoE4, the gene thought to increase Alzheimer's risk."

    So I supposed that sort of falls under the good news/bad news category for us with close family members. What do you think?

    Life isn't a matter of milestones but of moments. - Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
    mymyrt responded:
    Hi, Byroney (and Carol). Haven't been on in a long time, but I have to comment on the good news/bad news category. It seems that there is different data from different studies presented almost weekly now on AD and genetic risk. I get really frustrated by wondering what can be done or should be done by those of us with parental AD. I'm sure I am not alone in being so terrified of AD, and in watching my mother's decline, it continues to destroy me. There is no closure for us who have cared for parents and/or spouses. But there is definitely terror of the future. I wish with all my heart that we didn't have to live in fear of this monster. It makes one feel that we're just here, waiting to die. Sorry to sound so dispirited, but it's impossible to be positive when you know your risk is so much higher since Mom or Dad has/had AD.

    I wish everyone well.

    davedsel57 replied to mymyrt's response:
    Hello, Joan.

    I fully understand your concerns. You need to realize that you can live without terror of the future. It is a matter of choosing how to deal with the situation. I would encourage you to discuss your feelings with a competent therapist.
    Click on my user name or avatar picture to read my story.

    Blessings, Dave
    Byroney_WebMD_Staff replied to mymyrt's response:
    Hello Joan and welcome back. It's nice to see you again.

    I agree that when I see the articles and think of my grandmother, I do have a brief moment of "what if?" This is compounded because my mother-in-law had Alzheimer's too, so I wonder about my spouse getting it.

    However, I agree with Dave that if it is consuming your life and creating terror, a therapist or counselor may be a good person to talk all of this out with. You should not have to feel as if you're just waiting to die from Alzheimer's, and I hope some expert help can make a positive difference for you.

    My personal mindset about Alzheimer's is that if it's going to get me later, it's not going to have me now.

    Life isn't a matter of milestones but of moments. - Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
    cjh1203 replied to Byroney_WebMD_Staff's response:
    Hi Boyroney. I love this: "My personal mindset about Alzheimer's is that if it's going to get me later, it's not going to have me now." That's a great thing to remember.

    With the steady stream of news -- mostly scary, it seems -- about Alzheimer's, it is hard not to be concerned about it, especially if you've seen the disease up close.

    Worrying about it isn't going to keep it away, though, and only makes it harder to fully enjoy life now. What you said sums that up beautifully!

    Have a good weekend.


    cjh1203 replied to cjh1203's response:
    I see I gave you a new name in my previous post, Byroney -- Boyroney sounds like a kind of pasta!

    mymyrt replied to davedsel57's response:
    Hello, Dave. I have just read the replies by everyone, and wanted to comment to you personally. I've talked with both Byroney and Carol, who are wonderfully supportive, and have given me such good advice and TLC. I would love to think in terms of living each day as positively as possible. I have been ill for more than 20 years, and disabled for over 11. I am isolated due to my illness, the treatment by my mother's family over her placement, and the fact that I am an only child who took care of both parents. I see my psychiatrist regularly, but talking with a good therapist is not an option. Having worked in the mental health field for years, I've seen the good (very little) and the bad (lots) proffered by therapists/counselors. Talk therapy is not for me. Being sidelined by my health and spending a great deal of time alone lends itself to too much thinking, and I have always lived in my head anyway. There is no closure for the situation AD puts one in; I go through the stages of grief over and over again. I have a ponderous memory, and a high IQ, and feel that I am just losing time because I am unable to physically connect with the world. I am blessed with a wonderful husband who thankfully has a job, which again leaves me too much time alone. I appreciate your caring reply. I've never learned and probably never will learn how to live one day at a time. I'm envious of those who can and do. My mother is declining at a rapid pace, and seeing her destroys me every time I go. I cannot seem to get any semblence of normalcy in my life, and we have other stressors with which to contend. I have been a prisoner of others' needs for a long time, and if I could wake up tomorrow feeling well enough to wash dishes, or just to dress and go out for a while, I would be ecstatic. The loss of dignity for AD patients weighs heavily on my mind, and I realize that we are not promised another day. I appreciate the care in your post, and wish you the best.

    Byroney_WebMD_Staff replied to mymyrt's response:
    Thank you for sharing more of your story with us, Joan. It sounds like you're trying to balance a lot of things. I don't know if your husband has insurance or not, but I know my company's insurance allows for over the phone talks to a counselor. Perhaps that's an option available to you?

    That way, even if you were not feeling well enough to leave the house, you could still connect with someone to support you.

    I'm very sorry about your mother's decline. I had to take a break from seeing my grandmother at one point, so I can understand a little of what you're going through.

    Update us on how you're doing when you have a chance,

    Life isn't a matter of milestones but of moments. - Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
    Byroney_WebMD_Staff replied to cjh1203's response:
    Thank you, Carol. I'm glad is resonated for you, too. Like you said, those articles and studies can be scary.

    Yay, I'm a pasta! Hopefully I'll be a fun shape.

    Hope you had a good weekend,

    Life isn't a matter of milestones but of moments. - Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy

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