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How is Alzheimer's Disease Diagnosed?

Alzheimer's disease, a form of dementia. Diagnosis involves medical history, neuropsychological tests, and imaging studies.

  • 13 Feb 2024
  • 2 min read
  • 2 views

In the world of neurological disorders, Alzheimer's disease stands as one of the most challenging conditions. One of the most prevalent forms of dementia, Alzheimer's not only affects memory but also complicates cognitive functions, leaving an indelible impact on individuals and their loved ones. This blog focuses on methods for Alzheimer's disease diagnosis, its symptoms, causes, and treatment options.

Symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease

Trouble recalling recent events or conversations is the first hunch about the condition, which gets worse with time, giving rise to the following symptoms:

  • Memory Loss Initially mild, progressing to severe forgetfulness.
  • Difficulty in Problem Solving Struggling with tasks that were once routine.
  • Confusion About Time or Place Losing track of dates, seasons, or locations.
  • Impaired Judgment Poor decision making becomes apparent.
  • Difficulty Completing Familiar Tasks Everyday activities become challenging.
  • Changes in Personality and Behavior Mood swings, withdrawal, or increased anxiety.

Causes of Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer’s disease can snake its way in through many ways, including genetics and lifestyle factors, depending on the individual. Here are the common causes of this condition:

  • Certain gene mutations increase susceptibility.
  • Advanced age is a primary risk factor.
  • Family History A history of Alzheimer's in the family may elevate risk.
  • Trauma
  • Alcohol consumption and smoking 
  • High blood pressure
  • Poor sleep patterns 

Diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease 

Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis involves the following procedures:

  • Medical History and Physical Examination: a holistic walkthrough of symptoms and medical history, and the evaluation of overall health and cognitive functions are helpful in discerning whether someone has Alzheimer’s or not.
  • Neuropsychological Tests: Assessment of memory, language, and problem solving skills are also part of the diagnosis of the condition.
  • Imaging Studies: MRI and CT Scans rule out other conditions and reveal brain abnormalities. PET Scans are also important as they detect abnormal patterns of brain activity and narrow down the possibilities.
  • Biomarker Tests: Blood Tests are also part of the diagnosis procedure as they detect genetic markers or proteins associated with Alzheimer's.

Alzheimer's Disease Treatment

The treatment is determined on the basis of Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis and severity of the condition. The treatment procedure typically includes:

  • Medication: Cholinesterase Inhibitors are usually prescribed to improve communication between nerve cells. Memantine is also often used to help slow down the progression of the disease.
  • Therapeutic Approach: Apart from medical methods, people can also resort to therapeutic activities to enhance cognitive functioning. There are lots of behavioural practices available which are often recommended for managing challenging behaviours.

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Conclusion

The intricacies of Alzheimer's disease makes it imperative to go with a multifaceted approach, from recognising early symptoms to navigating the diagnostic process and implementing appropriate treatments. It is advisable for individuals and their families to seek professional guidance, fostering a collaborative effort towards understanding, managing, and ultimately, finding a cure for Alzheimer's disease. It is also important to create a supportive environment for a person with this condition and be extra secure with a health insurance plan to keep a safe distance from unnecessary complications and financial hiccups.

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