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 Test for driving 
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Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 7:21 pm
Posts: 172
Location: Ohio
Post Test for driving
I've just heard from a friend who is experiencing some of the same things many of us are faced with especially with spouses. Her DH sees a neurologist who has told her DH that he may not drive. She claims that there is a test that "qualifies/disqualifies" those with dementia & that's the basis for telling her DH he cannot drive. Is anyone familiar with such a test? Before I google, I thought I'd check in with you. As usual, I come to this forum first:) Dee


Sun Nov 01, 2009 2:58 pm
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Joined: Sun Oct 21, 2007 4:18 pm
Posts: 835
Location: Acton, MA
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Dee, I checked into a "Driver Evaluation Program" at a rehab hospital. You need a Dr's order and it is a 3 part program, clinical assessment, road assessment and admission criteria. It costs around $450., they are very thorough. Frank didn't want to go, he said he'd never pass. I asked if that didn't tell him something, that he shouldn't be driving. I do keep the keys hidden, he doen't give me too much grief anymore but is still very unhappy about not driving. It's also a challenge to keep him off the lawn mower. I found the program by going on line for "Driver Evaluation". Good luck.

Take Care,
Gerry


Sun Nov 01, 2009 9:35 pm
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 4:28 pm
Posts: 758
Location: LA
Post Cease driving
Oh, it seems like another world ago when we were going through the trials and tribulations of getting Mr B. weened off everything with wheels. I do have memoriea but the one thing that caused him to really give up was the day that he wanted to take our two little grandchildren somewhere and they came running to tell their mother. She had already told them they could no longer ride with Granddad driving. She then offered to take them with her driving and Granddad riding in the passengers side. He agreed. They had a good trip and our DIL became our chauffer from then on... many trips to drs visits as well as pleasure trips. She has been such a blessing.

DrP

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"See this lady she's 85 but she's nice", This is the way my husband, Mr B., introduced me in 2006 to the people only he knew. Death due to pneumonia. Lewy Body Dementia diagnosed post mortem at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville Florida.


Sun Nov 01, 2009 10:20 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
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Excerpts from:
"Making the Connection Between Brain and Behavior: Coping with Parkinson's Disease"
by Joseph H. Friedman, MD
published 2008

Two simple indications of visuospatial orientation problems are reviewed by the author. First is the clock test. Ask the patient to draw the numbers of a clock in a circle. The author indicates that for most PD (Parkinson's Disease) patients the numbers are not correctly spaced around the circle. This is "illustrative of the problem, which is that PD patients do not interpret their geometric world with the same geometry as the rest of us." Second is the chair test. Many PD patients will misjudge where the seat is. "Some PD patients will attempt to sit down when the chair is not at the proper distance from their bottom, so that the patient places only half of their backside on the chair, sometimes not even that, causing a fall."

The problems of visuospatial orientation relate to one's driving ability. Patients with these sorts of problems don't make good drivers. They often drive too far to one side of the road.

The author, in the chapter on driving, discusses dementia. "The most dangerous problem for drivers is dementia. Demented patients are the ones most likely to get into accidents because they usually lack insight." A demented patient is unaware of what risks he/she is taking.


Sun Nov 01, 2009 10:39 pm
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
Posts: 4811
Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
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And...contact your local chapter of the Alzheimer's Association (alz.org) to learn about certified driving tests in your local area or state.

It's best if you supply the info to an MD, and have the MD order the test. This takes you out of it as the "bad guy."


Sun Nov 01, 2009 10:42 pm
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Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2009 7:21 pm
Posts: 172
Location: Ohio
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As usual :) all of you are spot on! From what little research I've done (CA has a state law addressing this)it seems that the dr. does a mini-evaluation ( like the clock) & says no driving. Not sure if I mentioned that the visit before last with the gero-psych, my DH failed the clock test miserably, but wasn't the least bit phased by that. (No insight)Anyway, I think I'll call before our next visit in 2.5 weeks & alert the dr. to this situation. Also there's a slight chance that our son will be here that week & the dr. has invited us to bring him along. We'll see how it goes. And thanks again for your responses. Dee


Mon Nov 02, 2009 11:02 am
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:30 pm
Posts: 976
Location: Henderson, Nv.
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Yes, Ca does have the test administered by the primary care physician. When my LO was first being evaluated the dr. told us that by law he had to report his dementia to various agencies including the dmv. Its really for the protection of all...the LO, the family and others.
Interesting about the chair...that was one of the things John had the most trouble with. We always had to watch that he was aligned properly to sit down or he would sit on the floor/fall down. His drawings of the clock would be sporadic but the last months he could not do it at all. Interesting. As Robin said: let the dr. be the bad guy. :)

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Dianne C.


Sun Nov 08, 2009 4:22 pm
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