From Normal to Lost Steps in Memory Decline

Mind-n-healthGal.1png Steps Toward Memory Loss

1. Normal aging
2. Mild Cognitive Impairment
3. Preclinical symptoms
4. Dementia
5. Alzheimer’s   60-80%    with dementia have Alzheimer’s type
…… Vascular       10-15%
…… Lewy-body   10-25%
…… Parkinsons

Understanding the causes of “memory loss” can be challenging for several reasons:
Mild Memory loss is a normal part of aging.
Terms describing abnormal memory loss are often used incorrectly.
A diagnosis of “dementia” is frequently misunderstood by patients.

Nobody knows what is causing the brain changes that lead to progressive memory loss
but we do know:
1.0% decline annually on neurocognitive testing is considered normal after age 65.
2.5% decline annually on neurocognitve testing is seen in Alzheimer’s Disease.
Mild memory loss with slower processing time is normal with age.
Progressively worsening memory loss, reasoning and thinking is not normal aging.

Normal Aging
Slower recall of information names and nouns
Increased effort to learn and store new information
Heightened susceptibility to distraction
Slower processing of new information
Greater difficulty multi-tasking
Normal cognitive testing

Pre-clinical memory loss
Silent phase: no measurable symptoms
Individual may notice changes
“Patient knows but doctor doesn’t”
Normal cognitive testing

Memory loss becomes disruptive
Difficulty with word recall
Missed appointments
Fully capapable of daily activities: dressing, eating, walking, talking, driving
Lower scores on memory and language tests
Normal scores on testing other cognitive domains

Significant loss of intellectual ability
Memory loss plus 1 or more other cognitive function
Interferes with daily activities
Low scores on memory testing plus one or more other areas of cognitive decline
Can be reverisble- rule out other causes
Subtypes of Dementia include
Moderately severe

Alzheimer’s Disease
Irreversible with  symptoms continue worsening over time
Impaired thinking, speech, reasoning
Disruptive changes in behavior, mood


orange jellies      Links to More Information

information on types of progressive memory loss


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