News Editor: Renato M.E. Sabbatini, PhD
Severe Memory Loss is an Early Indicator of Alzheimer’s Disease
A new medical study has shown that elder persons who have early symptoms of memory loss of unknown cause have a higher probability of developing Alzheimer’s disease (48 %) when compared with patients of the same age and sex without memory loss (only 18 % develop the disease). Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating condition, also called senile dementia, which can affect a large proportion of elderly individuals, and which is characterized by impairments in abstract thinking, judgment, orientation, etc. It’s most characteristic condition is a great memory deficit. The causes of Alzheimer’s disease are unknown, but it is associated with extensive death of neural cells in several parts of the brain. The diagnosis of early memory loss may be used to pay more attention to patients at a higher risk.
Source: The Lancet (1997;349:763-765)