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My grandmother was diagnosed....

So, my grandma has always been a litttle off. She was too good to ever be seen by a psych. Never would she do that. Well she's too old to have a choice now, and she's going to have to go to a different assisted living home if she doesn't behave. Well, I was told today that she was diagnosed w/ a mood disorder. I gave my mom a book called, Bipolar a guide for patients and families, (it was for her to understand me, unfortunately she was thinking about my grandma) she asked the pdoc if my grandma was bipolar. She had said a lot of the symptoms fit, but the pdoc said no it's not bipolar, it's a mood disorder, she goes from happy to sad to fits to laughing to crying to angry to over and over. So anyway they put her on Depakote.

What I'm asking w/ all of that is this......what exactly is a mood disorder if its not depression, and it's not bipolar? Mood disorder is a blanket statement to me, it's seems vague. Am I wrong?

5 Responses
505907 tn?1258372940
  You'll have to get an answer from someone like lLADVOCATE to make scientific sense but I have met people like this - heck! I've been interred against my will in a psych ward with people that exhibited these symptoms - and I wondered how we had the same disorder. Figure out your own information and don't believe everything the people with degrees tell you - out of hand. God gave you your OWN brain so keep on using it.
585414 tn?1288944902
I could give you some information on bipolar but I can tell you (and remember many of these places don't meet medical standards so its not something that doctors or psychiatrists would disagree with) that adult homes and nursing homes often misuse mental health diagnosis and medications (especially anti-psychotics) as "behavioral control". She may very well have bipolar but it still concerns me. Have her see a psychiatrist outside of the facility and let them make an independent decision and from there you might try to find out if there's a way for her to live in the community with a home attendant even if she does need medication for bipolar.
Avatar universal
She can't live by herself, as she is not well, I don't know that her Medicare would pay for a home attendant for her amount of care. She needs to have assistance available. She was thought to have dementia when she was seen by the first doc or NP or whatever (sorry I don't have the info). When you say behavior control, I think maybe, because they say she doesn't cooperate with them at all, and she was going to have to go to a different home for Alzheimer's/Dementia patients. Then they had a doctor or NP or someone come in and said that they don't believe that its dementia, what it was they believe it is a mood disorder and compulsive disorder and she would probably even out w/ Depakote. So I am extremely confused, as to if they really want her to stay, as it is a private pay place. Do they want her there for her money, drug her, keep her money and rent flowing. I mean they could probably fill her apt. right after she left w/ another person. I just don't know, I'll run this by my aunt and mom and have them send in a private doc, or see if this one that came in was a private. Thank you so much ILADVOCATE!
585414 tn?1288944902
I would suggest speaking to a psychiatrist not associated with the facility. These facilities can use antipsychotics for behavior control and psychiatrists themselves are against that. An independent psychiatrist could do an evaluation. Antipsychotics are overused in the elderly but if someone has bipolar then that's different. A qualified psychiatrist would know. They generally are used with caution in a person with dementia. It states that in a black box warning label. I know that Namenda is used in dementia and if its psychosis from Parkinson's Zofran has shown good results. Speak to a neurologist about that which is another form of doctor she should see. As for whether she can live on her own its hard to say. Try to find some form of coverage that will help her have a full time home health aide. Medicare generally pays for home health aides when a person gets out of the hospital but Medicaid covers it full time and there are other forms of health insurance as well. I would suggest speaking to your local independent living center:
about this. An advocate can write up a Pooled Trust (for free) and it takes a lawyer for a Supplemental Needs Trust (who would probably charge) but both can be helpful to legally shelter assets. You can also google "Community Choice Act". That will likely be passed relatively soon. There was an elderly woman in my neighborhood who had Alzheimer's and advanced dementia and lived with a home attendant and she lived a longer, happier and healthier life (within the limits of her severe disability) than she would have in a nursing home. There are ways to acheive that...
Avatar universal
Thanks, I will definitely talk to them about that. I will call my aunt, I think they are very weary of all of this, and feeling overwhelmed...
When it comes to the role reversal and the fact that my grandma was not a very loving, caring mother to my mom and aunt, it has been hard for them to do all of these things for her and her be so combative, and so mean. They are trying to help her, and I think maybe when they here that finally a doctor (or whoever) is telling them what they have thought all of their lives they are feeling a bit of relief, and maybe a bit of weight off their backs. That is just my un-educated, un-professional, analysis of their behavior!!! After analyzing my behavior for my entire life, I've gotten pretty good at analyzing others as well! I would agree that her living at home would be better for her, that is what my husband and I, as the main advocates for our disabled daughter, fight for our daughter constantly. The ability to be home w/ us, and not be institutionalized. The U.S. has come a ways, but still has a ways to go!
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