Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease is a type of Dementia. It is a progressive disease that causes degeneration of the brain cells that affects brain proteins consisting of plaques & tangles which leads to impaired cognitive, behavioral & social skills. While the exact cause is not yet known, most researchers believe Alzheimer’s is caused by several factors, including; genetics, lifestyle & environment.

Common symptoms seen in Alzheimer’s Disease that affect memory are forgetting recent events, misplacing items, getting lost, trouble finding words, repeating stories & questions.

Thinking and reasoning is often affected causing difficulty concentrating & multitasking making it hard to pay bills or manage money.  People with Alzheimer’s often lack judgment and may leave the stove on, or not dress appropriately for the weather.

Behavioral & personality changes are also common.  A person with Alzheimer’s may present with signs of aggression, combativeness, agitation, withdrawal, depression, paranoia, or delusions.

Alzheimer’s diagnosis is typically diagnosed by the doctor noting changes in many areas of cognitive and behavioral areas over a period of time and then labeling the changes as possible, probable or definite Alzheimer’s.  Conclusive diagnosis requires a brain biopsy which is only performed after a person has passed. There continues to be a lot of research and development in the area of Alzheimer’s treatment.

« Back to Glossary Index