Hello LS318 ......
You mentioned you have a place to get testing done. I assume you mean testing for either alzheimers or dementia - and I would guess a psychologist or similar diagnostic doctor would be involved with the testing.
After you find out what the memory problem likely is, I would ask that doctor if there are any sources the doctor would recommend for telling your Father about the disease - video or otherwise. Maybe .... it would be possible for a medical person to tell your Father - if he has one that he trusts!
Proper diagnosis is first.
My Mother just recently (less than a month go) passed away from the end conditions of Dementia. The dementia, as well as, alzheimers is typically a disease spread over a long timeframe ... and is not cureable.
My Mother had it and hid it for years before it was diagnosed. Once it was diagnosed, it was already in advancing stages. The doctor refused her release from the hospital to go home - unless she had 24/7 care. So for the next 15-months, she did live at home with a fulltime caregiver service.
There came a point with her halucinations that she was back in the hospital - this time under the care of a psychiatrist for a month. Upon being released, the doctor said she would not be allowed to go home - even with a 24/7 caregiver. She now needed some care by an RN nurse. So she then went into an Assissted Living Home - specializing in Dementia and Parkinsons. She was ther for 16-months until she passed in January.
She was on Hospice for about her last 5-weeks while in the Assisted Living Home.
It is a very difficult thing to watch a loved one slowly deteriorate. I think initially, your Father will be sensitive to how he is told and by whom, if it is one of the memory diseases. And that may continue as he gets mentally worse. I think that depends on the person individually.
It is a very good idea to read as much as possible about it ..... BUT only after you know what IT is! So the diagnosis is so important.
By the way, my Mother was lucky enough not to have any major operations in her whole life - or cancer or any other major illness. My guess is that the Dementia may have started 10-years or longer ago!
One other thought - there might be a social worker thru a doctors office or hospital that could talk to your father after the diagnosis. It might be the best type of person to explain to him what would need to be told.
Peace and wellness
Rob & Gizmo