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New member
Sep 17, 2007
South Glos
My dad is 78 and has recently had problems with slurring of his speech and excess saliva. He saw a neurologist at our local hospital who gave him a physical examination but no other tests. Then told him he needed new dentures! My dad has been to the dentist and he said he does not need new dentures surprise! He now has patches which are meant for motion sickness to dry out the saliva, he only put it on saturday but today when i phoned him he sounds worse and to me he sounded like he was having problems getting his words out and some I did not understand. His speech seems worse than when I saw him on Friday. I feel very frustrated because I think he has been fobbed off by the neurologist and should have had more tests. He is reluctant at the moment to go back to the doctors and press for more tests.
So I googled slurring and excess saliva and got ALS back. I am not wishing this on my dad but would like to know what tests we should push for and what symptoms to look out for. Does any of this sound familiar to anyone?
By the way we live in the UK in the west country.
Hi Ginger, welcome to the forum. I would have your dad checked as soon as possible for the possibility of a stroke. Considering his age, that would be my first concern since he has not had any of the other symptoms of ALS.

God Bless
Capt AL
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Hi ginger. Does your dad have any chewing or swallowing problems or just the 2 issues you mention? Welcome , but sorry you are worried enough to come looking for information such as this.

My Dad, (73) had similar symptoms. During the summer of 2007, he was having problems with sensitivity to smells and sinus issues. His doctor thought is was allergies or asthma.
As we got into Fall, he started having slurring in his speech. I too thought that he may have had a small stroke. We finally got him into see a Neurologist and he was diagnosed with ALS in January 2008.
Normally ALS symptoms start in a persons arms or legs first. It is uncommon for the mouth and throat to be affected first, but that is what happened to my Dad. My Dad can no longer speak or eat. All his food is now through a G-tube. He was able to eat solid food untill last September. It got too hard for him to chew and use his tounge so my Mom put his food in a blender and put it over white rice or mashed potatoes. In the last couple of months he could not even swallow that. ALS causes the nerves to his mouth and tounge to quit and he has too much weakness to use them.
I encourage you to see another doctor, preferably one that specializes in brain study. Hopefully you Dad does not have ALS but the sooner he can get diagnosed the sooner you can get treatment and the support he will need to make him as comfortable as possible.
It is not as uncommon as all that, I have bulbar and mine started the same way. I thought at first I needed to have my teeth checked. my gp told me I could have anything from a slight stroke right through to bulbar, so I was sent for tests. I would have more tests done in the hope that it may well bring up some other simpler explanation, there are a lot of other things they can rule out. Hope you find a better answer to his problems.
Hi guys. Ginger posted this post in Sept of 07. She never posted again. Every once in a while this happens. Makes me wonder what happens to these people. I wonder if her dad did have a stroke and that's why she never came back.

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