FROM OUR EXPERTS

  • Carol Bradley Bursack, Minding Our Elders
    Health Guide
    November 05, 2008
    Carol Bradley Bursack, Minding Our Elders
    Health Guide
    November 05, 2008

    The online test is a good start, but if you are truly concerned, it's good to have your mediations checked for interactions or side effects and nutrients like B12 checked as many things can mimic Alzheimer's or other dementias. Then a physician can determine if you should be further evaluated for Alzheimer's disease.

     

    Thanks for checking in,

    Carol

  • AFA Social Services
    Health Guide
    November 05, 2008
    AFA Social Services
    Health Guide
    November 05, 2008

    Diagnosing dementia in the early stages is important in order to facilitate proper treatment interventions.  The first step in addressing memory concerns consists of being educated about possible causes of memory problems and how to get properly tested. Proper diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease or other types of dementia is critical since there are other causes of memory problems that could exhibit the same symptoms.  For instance, memory loss can be caused by reversible conditions such as vitamin deficiencies, depression or thyroid problems. It can also be caused by irreversible conditions such as Alzheimer's disease. Clinicians can now diagnose "probable" Alzheimer's disease by taking a complete medical history and conducting lab tests, a brain scan and other neuropsychological tests. The sooner an accurate diagnosis of "probable" Alzheimer's disease is made, the easier it is to manage symptoms and plan for the future. Alzheimer's disease can be diagnosed with up to 90 percent accuracy. But it can only be confirmed by an autopsy, during which pathologists look for the disease's characteristic plaques and tangles in brain tissue.


    The Alzheimer's Foundation of America suggests that you speak to your primary healthcare provider about being tested--a face-to-face discussion and testing, rather than an online test.

    In addition, AFA sponsors National Memory Screening Day each year to provide free confidential memory screenings to the public, both those concerned about memory problems and those who want to establish a baseline score for future comparison. It is coming up on November 18, 2008. A memory screening is not used to diagnose any particular illness and does not replace consultation with a qualified physician or other healthcare professional. However, it is very helpful in order to test your memory, language skills, thinking ability, and other intellectual functions.  If the screening raises concern, it is vital to follow up with your doctor or other healthcare professional as soon as possible.  You can visit our website at www.nationalmemoryscreening.org in order to find a participating site in your area.   

  • Dorian Martin
    Health Guide
    November 04, 2008
    Dorian Martin
    Health Guide
    November 04, 2008

    Hi, William,

     

    Here's the link to Jacqueline Marcell's post on the dementia test:

    http://www.healthcentral.com/alzheimers/c/43/2643/free-test-early

     

    I'd also encourage you to contact your physician to learn more about testing. There may be other reasons for memory loss other than Alzheimer's so it's best to work with a doctor to determine what's going on.

     

    Take care and keep us posted!

     

    Dorian 


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