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delusion after heart attack

my ex mother-in-law,maybe in her mid 60's,had a heart attack this past tuesday,i am now imformed she has three blockages,and triple by-pass surgery has been scheduled for next tuesday,my ex came by last nite and was telling me about this.i am writing to see can you possibly put any light on the fact that she has become irrational,mean,delusional,parinoid etc.. she is carrying on conversations with people whom are not there.she has had alot of trouble over the years with her legs,she will not accept that she is in there as a result of a heart attack,she is certain she is there to get her legs cut off.she has pulledv her i.v. out repeatedly,she is totally irrational.before tuesday she has always been an intelligent, together woman.i am told they don't think she had a stroke,i am also told they haven't been medicating her with anything since tuesday night but blood thinners,she is in ICU i am told some patients have some "psychotic,like" reactions from being in there with no windows and all also she has'nt can't sleep since arriving there.she has made several crude,life threatening remarks one regarding a nurse etc... could you please shed some light on this for me to pass on to the family i would be so grateful i feel really bad for their hurt and having no reasonable explanation for her totally irrational behavior  
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367994 tn?1304953593
Depression After Heart Attack, and that doesn't not rule out a hospitalized heart patient.  It can be the same features as alzheimer syndrome as a result of insufficient blood oxygen supply to the brain.

What Should I Know? What is depression?

Depression is a mood disorder. The symptoms of depression include these:
Feeling depressed or sad, or crying often.
Losing interest in activities that used to be fun.
Changes in appetite and weight.
Sleeping too much or having trouble sleeping.
Feeling agitated, cranky or sluggish.
Loss of energy.
Feeling very guilty or worthless.
Problems concentrating or making decisions.
Thoughts of death or suicide.
5 or more of the above symptoms is not unusual and a nurse or a professional should interact with medication.
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Avatar universal
As a person formerly working in clinical psychology, this does not sound that good to me.  

IF she has a previous history of senility or psychosis, I can see the delusions and hallucinations (the people who aren't there) being brought out by the shock of becoming ill and by finding herself in a strange and unsettling place,  It is not unusual for someone with a significant underlying problem, whether or not it has emerged in the past, to (a) disconnect from reality, and/or (b) lose the inhibitions we all have developed to keep us from saying and doing just any socially unacceptable thing that comes to mind.  (She is, of course, angry at what has happened and her situation--so would I be--and with diminished inhibitions, what comes out is angry language that she would normally not even have considered saying aloud.)  Please tell your ex-husband that the nurses have heard it all before, they know it isn't personal and why it is happening, and he does not have to be embarrassed or apologetic to them about these manifestations.  Of course, if he wishes to, he can express his gratitude to them by acknowledging the difficult and excellent job they are doing.  

If there were no signs of such preexisting problems, and the doctor confirms that she has not had a stroke, I'm afraid I might suspect that she suffered anoxia, the lack of sufficient oxygen supplied to her brain, during or after the heart attack.  Damage to an oxygen-starved brain is likely to be heavily in the front, where intellectual ability, self control, and other analytical and management functions of the brain reside.  Whereas such damage is not reversible, the symptoms are likely to retreat and let her be more like herself when she is more accustomed to her surroundings and not so newly and shockingly ill.

You are good to help them in this situation.  You get a big star in your crown (if you believe in crowns, or stars) for this one.

Good luck to you all.  
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367994 tn?1304953593
It is not unusual and possibly expected that acute heart attack individuals have anxiety, confusion, delusions, paranoid thoughts and depression.  There is medication that should relieve the symptoms, relax and put to sleep.
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