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  1. #1
    mom2binsd is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
    Join Date
    Feb 2003

    Default PSA on UTI and cognitive changes in older folks

    So the thread about post surgery complications reminded me how often friends of mine describe cognitive effects in their parents/grandparents as result of an UTI. Working with that population I forget many don't realize this.

    So, as a PSA for those of you with older parents/grandparents. If you notice a sudden change in personality/cognition, it is often a UTI, which in older folks can cause some very serious cognitive deficits, many of the families report "it was like she became crazy overnight". When we have a long term resident who has sudden change/seems off, the first thing we do is dip their urine, and often a UTI is the culprit. Both men and women are equally affected from my experience (15 years in long term care). I do a lot of education on recognizing the signs of a UTI and sequencing proper bathroom habits, something I didn't learn in grad school.

  2. #2
    robinsmommy is offline Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
    Join Date
    Jan 2005


    We saw this with my MIL. We thought she’d had a stroke, she was so out of it.

  3. #3
    MSWR0319 is offline Diamond level (5000+ posts)
    Join Date
    Jun 2009


    Yes! This happened to my grandma when she was in the hospital for her diabetes. They tried to blame her being in the hospital, having sundowners, etc until a nurse finally said let’s check for a UTI. Sure enough that’s what it was and she was fine after she was treated. I almost mentioned it in the other thread.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008


    This was true for my dad. He had Alzheimer’s, but when he would start to get aggressive or mean spirited, we knew to check for a UTI and it was always the cause.

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