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mother diagnosed with Huntingtons at 80 years old

My mom is from a large family. 2 years ago she developed a slight shaking in her hands. She was a master quilter and retired at age 78. Within a matter of months she lost control of arms and legs, we were shocked to see her flailing movements and could not swallow and clearing her throat all the time. Doc said Huntington chorea and gave her Haladol. Now she has dimensia and weighs 85 pounds. She had 12 siblings. My psychiatrist claims there are antidepressants that can cause this in elderly patients. She also had recently beeb two a nurse practitioner who gave hee the wrong dose of thyroid meds plus antidepressant 6 weeks prior to the fall that put her in the hospital whef e we were shocked to see this rapid decline in her health. Thoughts anyone?
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351246 tn?1379682132

I am sorry to hear about your mother. It is very difficult o assess what could be wrong with your mother. She may also have suffered a stroke. The symptoms can also be side effect of drugs but loss of function of arms and legs can also be due to nerve compression in the upper spine. Several viral infections of the nerves like transverse myelitis or Gullian Barre syndrome is also a possibility. It is important to get proper investigations done like MRI of brain and neck, vitamin B12, EMG, nerve conduction study etc. Please discuss with a neurologist. Hope this helps. Take care!

The medical advice given should not be considered a substitute for medical care provided by a doctor who can examine you. The advice may not be completely correct for you as the doctor cannot examine you and does not know your complete medical history. Hence this reply to your post should only be considered as a guiding line and you must consult your doctor at the earliest for your medical problem.
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Avatar universal
Hi, I am so sorry your Mom is going through this, and I know the  pain and distress this brings you and the family. When your mother was diagnosed with Huntington's Disease, was her DNA tested for the mutated gene that causes the disease? The results should give a CAG count that should offer some insight and confirm its a correct diagnosis. Also you mentioned all het siblings, did any of them ever display any symptoms. If it is HD it is very rare to have such a late onset and even more rare to deteriorate so quickly. I would urge you to continue to explore all possible causes with the Dr's.  If they leave it as confirmed Huntington's Disease then my personal advice to you is to speak to a specialist regarding your own genetic risk that HD would imply. Whatever the cause, best wishes to your Mom & you. X  
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