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An_250575 posted:
My sister has health issues and suffers from diabetes and congestive heart failure. She also get dialysis 3 times a week. Recently she had a heart attack and was down for 18 minutes . With the grace of god she has survived but now has some mental issues which are do to her heart attack. Her personality has severely changed . She suffers with confusion memory issues and now severe agitation and at times is combative. The doctors are going to start giving her medicines for psychotic episodes. One doctor says he doesn't see where her mental issues will improve, I just don't want to give up on her . What will these medicines do to her ? Its so hard to see her so confused . I am not sure if she has any short term memory . Much of what she says it scattered is and at times not true this is very sad. She has been very combative at the facility that she is in and has anger spells and crying spells . She is only 50 years old . I
ibex7 responded:
Hello An,

As a non-professional who has used psychopharmacal meds for over 30 years, may I send sympathy to your sister and to your family for her circumstance.
Most medicines for bipolar illness serve to bring long term stability to conditions of chemical imbalance in the nervous system.
I think it courageous of your sister's doctors to try to relieve her ppsychosis and allow her to find peace. God bless. Welcome to the board.
Joseph F Goldberg, MD responded:
Dear An,

Anoxic brain injuries (i.e., depriving the brain of oxygen), coupled with end-stage kidney disease requiring dialysis, can together cause devastating permanent changes in brain structure and function that can manifest with abnormalities of all brain functioning, including confusion, perception, organization, etc. Sometimes, psychiatric medicines can help to moderate the intensity of those neurologic symptoms (e.g., drugs such as Depakote, or antipsychotics, or beta blockers...and also avoiding medicines that can worsen the disinhibited behaviors caused by severe brain damage, such as benzodiazepines (eg, Xanax, Ativan)). Hopefully your sister's neurologist is providing the best care and management possible for a profoundly difficult medical problem.

Best wishes -

Dr. G.
sisters4ever replied to Joseph F Goldberg, MD's response:
Thank you for your knowledge. Today when I went to see my sister there was a complete turn around. She was sleeping deeply and was totally lethargic. She opened her eyes but there was a extreme blank look on her face. It was clear to see she was totally over medicated. I feel as if this is going over board. There has to be a happy medium. 2 days ago we were speaking today she cant even communicate with her.

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