Wednesday, June 24, 2009

We're off to DC for a few days to visit with Alan. Looking forward to a few days with him.

An infected tooth took me to the dentist today. A round of antibiotics for me and a root canal when I return -- what fun.

I finally got my medicine approved by the insurance company the doctor prescribed to help with my confusion. It has a few weird side effects but hopefully they will taper off.

More from the road.

Monday, June 22, 2009

I'm still dealing with the insurance company/doctor for the medicine he wants to give me for concentration. I hope it can get resolved soon. It seems like I have really really good days and really really bad days. I'm realizing more and more things I cannot do and that frustrates me. I've never felt like I couldn't do anything -- I might not want to do it, but I've always had that kind of attitude that you can do what you want or at least try. No I know that I can't even try. That's depressing for me.

On a lighter note, we are going to DC to visit Alan this week. His wife is visiting Taiwan with her sister and mom, so we are going to have some "just us" time. Don't have a lot planned but it's always nice to visit. Hopefully, I'll be able to do whatever it is we end up doing!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

It's been awhile. I've had a lot of things going on but not the concentration to put it all together. I went to the neurologist today and he prescribed some medicine to help with my concentration but my insurance company won't pay for it. So now, the doctor and the insurance company are duking it out -- and we'll see what happens.

Since I last wrote --
My brother is back in the hospital
I'm getting a cold -- summer colds are the worse
We've planned a trip to Cape Cod for mid July
We've planned a trip to the US Open Tennis Tournament in NY at the end of August
It's gotten really hot here -- going to be close to 100 degrees by Friday
I'm starting to raise money for this year's Memory Walk (and recruiting walkers as well)
Have met two more people in the Athens area with early on-set Alzheimer's
Turned down an opportunity to do something that I wanted to do -- but had to admit that I just
couldn't do it with Alzheimer's -- that was hard to do

There's probably a lot more -- but I can't bring those things to mind right now so I'll stop. It's late and I'm tired. I didn't get my nap in and I can tell.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Several people asked me to add this "followers" gadget to my blog. Not real sure about it but we will try it and see.

Monday, June 08, 2009

My niece took this photo of her dad (my brother) with her four month old son Oliver, when my brother was in the hospital. Thought it turned out well, so I wanted to share it.
Weekend was kind of slow. It's already getting hot here so we are having to adjust our lifestyle a little bit. It's not fun going out in the heat in the afternoon. My son and daughter-in-law spent the weekend in Boston at Jennifer's sister's graduation from MIT. Congratulations Christine!
Enjoyed watching Roger Federer win the French Open. I think the whole crowd was rooting for him. I also enjoyed watching native Athenian Tituss Burgess perform on the Tony Awards last night. Tituss has been involved with musical theatre for so long here in Athens and for quite some time in New York. He was featured in the Guys and Dolls performance last night. We are going to meet Jennifer and Alan in New York later on in the summer to see Tituss and to also catch some of the US Open tennis matches.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Gene Testing

Someone left a comment asking if I had gene testing. This question has been put to me two or three times this week, so I thought I would address it briefly. During my diagnosis process I had two spinal taps. An analysis of the spinal fluid showed that I carried one copy of the APOE 4 gene. APOE4 is associated with a higher risk of Alzheimer's. About a quarter of the population inherits one copy of the APOE4 gene. This increases their risk of developing Alzheimer's disease by up to four times. However, you can have the APOE4 gene and not develop Alzheimer's -- you are just at greater risk. There are other genes out there associated with Alzheimer's and I'm not sure how detailed my analysis got. It showed a high level of Tau (I think that is right). I am adding a link to a publication put out by the National Insitute of Aging/National Insititute of Health that can explain it a lot better than I can. Here is the link

Both of my parents died at a relatively young age (early 60's) and my father was adopted so we don't know anything of his family history. It's possible in looking back by me and my two brothers that my grandfather may have shown signs of what they called back then "hardening of the arteries" or a dementia but we aren't sure.

Doctors don't do genetic testing though just to see if you have the disease. I say that, but then I also know people who have found doctors to do it. If you're curious, have someone in your family that has Alzheimer's you should definitley discuss it with your doctor and make that decision together.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

A couple of quick notes to these photos. In the top photo is my friend Josh who was injured in Afghanistan. He was in town to speak at a Memorial Day Celebration. His arm is still in a brace and he is waiting for another surgery on his elbow. He had a moving speech and there was a great attendance at the event, despite rain was ready to pour down any minute.
The second photo is me and my new friend Bill Dotson. Bill made this walking stick for me. Bill was diagnosed with Early On Set Alzheimer's as well and doesn't live too far away. He read my post about needing a walking stick because of my balance and he made this for me. Isn't he sweet? Thanks Bill!
More soon -- I'm off to try to play golf before it gets too hot!