UTIs and Sudden Behavior Changes

doctor uses table to explain to patient

by R. Clinton for the Alzheimer’s Association Blog

Sudden Change in Behavior? Urinary Tract Infection Could Be the Cause

UTIs, or urinary tract infections, can cause changes in people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia. As a care consultant with the Alzheimer’s Association’s 24/7 Helpline, I often speak to people about possible urinary tract infections (UTIs). UTIs are common among people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and other dementia. This is attributed to age and partly due to increasing difficulty with hygiene and personal care.

Since the launch of ALZConnected, more than 98,000 individuals have registered for this free, online community for people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias and their caregivers.

If you search the Caregivers Forum on ALZConnected and type in “UTI”, you will pull more than 8,000 posts on our message boards.

When UTIs wreak havoc, we sometimes see message threads in which caregivers are in a state of panic about the symptoms. And for good reason — the symptoms are powerful and can actually mimic the end of life for some people. Getting a urine test may not be the first thing you think of when your loved one starts behaving so differently, but these changes often occur with a UTI due to fever and increased pain. When you see sudden behavioral changes, it is important to rule a UTI out and consult with a doctor.

>>Read full article