Monday, November 01, 2004

Alzheimer Disease: Behavioral Manifestations

From tomorrow's New York Times:
Alzheimer's Steals More Than Memory
By DENISE GRADY
The New York Times
02 November 2004

It happened without warning, early one day last summer as they prepared to go out. Gloria Rapport's husband raised his arm to her, fist poised.

"He was very close to striking me," she said.

What had provoked him? "Nothing," she said. "I asked him to get in the car."

Mrs. Rapport's husband, Richard, 71, has Alzheimer's disease. His forgetfulness and confusion began about nine years ago, not long after they married. More recently, emotional troubles have loomed. Anxiety came first: he suddenly feared being left alone in the house. Outbursts of anger followed. The man she had always known to be kind and gentle could in an instant turn "cunning, nasty, aggressive, menacing," she said.

“The behavioral changes I've seen are absolutely frightening," she said. "I understand now why so many families institutionalize someone, because I was afraid of him."
[ ... Read the full article ... ]

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