What kind of specialist should I be pushing my dad to see?
August 10, 2014 1:51 PM Subscribe
I recently saw my father for the first time in 2 years and over that time his balance and mobility have sharply deteriorated. I'm on the opposite coast and there are limits to what I can do to help, but one thing I had thought of was trying to go back and do a round of doctor/specialist visits with him. YANHD, but I would love to hear of ideas about where to start.
posted by Cocodrillo to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My dad is 78, and lives on the opposite coast from me in an isolated area without a whole lot of medical resources around. When I saw him a couple of years ago, he was starting to have some balance issues. Now, over the past couple of years, he's gotten significantly worse. He's dependent on a walker and cane and says he falls a lot. He's got some arthritis in his hands as well. He says one doctor told him he was just getting old; he has a new doctor but it's unclear whether he's gotten referrals to anyone or what the new doctor told him. He lives with a long term partner but she's had difficulty getting him to go see anyone or do anything about this. He drinks a lot and has done for years, and smokes as well. He stopped drinking for a month and says it didn't help, however. (He also needs dentures, but that's a different question.) I've got lots of longer term issues about whether and how much and how I can help, but my immediate question is what kind of care/referrals/specialist visits should I be pushing? Is this a neurologist, a cardiologist, or just a good internist to start with? Or something I'm not thinking of? History of heart disease and cancer (pancreatic) in the family if it is relevant; history of high blood pressure for him.