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75 year old, had eye pain, confusion, severe headache. In ICU. Still has confusion, loss of memory, weird behaviour. Reason?

My mother whom is 75 and very very health consicous had a extreme onset of confusion Tuesday. She started having an eye pain, then confusion, speech was highly impaired and it was very difficult for her to get accross anything, severe headache. Again this was sudden. She would type on facebook and text and everything was a mess. She thought she needed to go to the eye doctor because she d been having eye heatlh problems which she has to receive shots for. She hasn t had a eye injection in three weeks now. When she arrived there she did not have an appointment they called an ambulance because she wasn t making any sense! She knew something was wrong and drove to the eye doctor with her hazards lights on. She arrived at the hospital ER and they immediately performed a cat scan and MRI which showed no signs of stroke . She arrived at hospital at 2:00 in afternoon. While in ER with her she did not know her name or any of childrens name! She didn t understand anything! She was so confused and complained of headache. She never slurred speach, she just was making sense. At 11:30 Tuesday night they put her in ICU and performed an EKG which confirmed AFIB heart rate. They gave her medicine to slow heart rate down. At 1:00 A.M. she still didn t know her name or her children s name. At 6:00 A.m. Wednesday she regained the ability to express her name and she knew who her children were. She remember s alot of what happend. Which I find amazing!! My mother reversed her diabeties high blood pressure and high cholesterol at age 73 two years and lost 100 pounds by eating everything right and excercising all the time. She has never swayed from her goal of being fit for the rest of her life since two years ago. Like I said she excersises and eats right all the time!! So the doctor s have been all over the place on what happened! Neorolgist first suspected minnie stroke but now they all say different things. One said she had a urinary tract infection , one doctor said she did not, one doctor put her on blood thinner and one doctor took her off. Now they are saying that her potasium, magnesium and sodium were too low and this is what has caused all of this. She is still in the hospital and it s now Thursday afternoon. I am confused because they seem to be!! My mother even pulled down her paints in the ER and used the bathroom on the floor. She would never do that!! So she was confused for 18 hours total not knowing who she was or who we were and severe headache, heart afib. It all started with the eye pain.... Can you help?
Asked On : Mon, 10 Dec 2012
Answers:  1 Views:  36
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Anesthesiologist 's  Response
first of all thanks for giving a nice history of events what all happened.Your mother is a 73 yr old diabetic,hypertensive, n had high cholesterol;but she was healthy n keeping fit.With these risk factors for stroke,sudden onset of head ache with eye pain ,confusion n impairment of speech wih EKG confirming atrial fibrillation any neurologist will first think of embolic stroke to brain vessels from heart or a form of transient ischemic attack TIA) n thats why she was put on blood thinners.But in old age electrolyte distubances like low sodium,potassium,magnesium can also lead to acute confusion n some times severe drowsiness may be the cause of defaecation at socially forbidden places.TIA would have resolved orthe electrolyte disturbances would have been corrected .hence she regained consciousness.
Answered: Thu, 7 Nov 2013
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