MS and Mental Issues

Hi all, I wondered if anyone might be able to help? My wife’s mum has had MS for the past 20+ years, and has in the main chosen not to speak about it. I believe that was her own way of coping with things, or the way she felt was best for her personally to cope with it.

For that reason, I don’t have as much information as I might like so please pardon my ignorance in certain areas.

I believe it is PPMS (she has never taken any medication for it and doesn’t have relapses - the MS has slowly developed over time).

She has always carried on her life as normal as possible, but in the last two years or so it has become increasingly difficult for her to get around and so she decided she would have a wheelchair a few weeks ago. Of greater concern however is that over the last 6 weeks she has been having very serious confusion, going from high to low - whilst not in control of what she was saying, believeing she was time travelling, refusing to take medication/get dressed and so on. When she did speak she mainly spoke about the past. Then occasionally, just for a few hours she would be back to her normal self - but would the suffer from panic attacks.

She has also been getting bad UTI’s…which she has suffered from for a few years now I believe (she has very recently started to be catheterised daily by the district nurses).

We hoped it may be the UTI’s causing the confusion, but she is now clear of one and is still suffering from what I would imagine you would call some form of psychosis. She has been put on several types of medication to try and treat it, none of which seems to be working. Again I don’t know what the meds are, but they have changed them several times in the past few weeks to try and find something which works.

To cut a long story short, due to the worsening and the increasing frequency of the ‘psychotic episodes’ it has been impossible for her to stay at home unfortunately, as my father-in-law is no longer able to cope, and I think she may have been a danger to herself.

She is now in hospital, and is no longer speaking, eating or drinking.

One of my (many) concerns is that this ‘confusion’ may just be a temporary thing that can be treated in the longer term, and I don’t want her to ‘give up’. I can’t even begin to imagine how she must be feeling, but I wondered if anyone else has had experience of this and might be able to offer any advice?

Was there any treatment which helped?

Any useful suggestions would be very much appreciated.

Many Thanks in advance.

Hi Richrara,

Wow so sorry to hear this.

My hubby has PPMS also and diagnosed in 2003. Up till last year he also had to have self catheterisation done myself as he has tremors in his hands. The confusion when they have UTi’s can be terrible and the key is to reduce any high temp and treat with antibiotics and drink drink…Since Hubby had a Suprapubic inserted last year his Uti’s have reduced and if he does have them less symptomatic. I really believe that if she has a really bad infection then the hospital should give her IV Gentramicin and this usually kills whatever is there. She must however keep drinking. My hubby knows that I say this all the time and it probably gets on his nerves.

Wishing her well



my wife went through an extremely bad psychotic episode a few years ago and was hospitalised for a couple of months and like your mum ended up not eating or talking. Although she has made a partial recovery she has never been the same since.

However please take the advice from Caz and get the hospital ckeck, check and check again for UTI’s as quite often they don’t pick them up until they are extremely advanced.