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Alzheimer's Disease: Symptoms And Treatment

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ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

Alzheimer’s disease, also referred to as senile dementia, is a progressive, chronic neurodegenerative disorder which causes brain cells or neurons to degenerate and undergo a mechanism of programmed cell death which is different from classical apoptosis. It is the most common cause of dementia and accounts to 60-80% of the cases. Dementia is characterised by a decline is memory and loss of other cognitive abilities like language, problem solving and thinking skills and can have a negative impact on the daily life of the patient. Another common early symptom of Alzheimer’s in amnesia. Other symptoms may involve reduced ability to register new information, decline in reasoning, complex and multi tasking, and decision making capabilities. The greatest known risk factor is increasing age with majority of the patients being 65 years or age and older. It is caused when beta-amyloid protein accumulates and disrupts cell to cell communication, causes inflammation and eventually may kill off brain cells. However, Alzheimer’s is not just restricted to old age. Millions of cases worldwide report the Alzheimer’s patients being under the age of 65. This is known as Early-onset Alzheimer’s. In the initial stages, the memory loss is mild but as time progresses the memory loss worsens and individuals might even lose the simple abilities to carry on a conversation or respond to stimuli. Post diagnosis, a patient generally lives for somewhere between 4-8 years but can also live for as long as 20 years. Alzheimer’s Disease has no known cure. However, treatments are available for the symptoms which may temporarily decelerate the worsening of the disease but the treatments can’t stop Alzheimer’s from progressing.

SYMPTOMS

  1. Decreased capacity to take in and recall new data, which can lead, for instance, to:

    • repetitive inquiries or discussions

    • misplacing individual assets

    • forgetting occasions or arrangements

    • getting lost on a commonplace course

  2. Hindrances to thinking, complex entrusting, and practicing judgment, for instance:

    • poor comprehension of dangers

    • inability to oversee funds

    • poor basic leadership capacity

    • inability to design mind boggling or successive exercises

  3. Impeded visuospatial capacities that are not, for instance, because of vision issues. These could be:

    • inability to perceive appearances or regular articles or to discover questions in direct view

    • inability to utilize straightforward instruments, for instance, to situate dress to the body

  4. Disabled talking, perusing and composing, for instance:

    • difficulty considering normal words while expressing, hesitations

    • speech, spelling, and composing mistakes

  5. Changes in character and conduct, for instance:

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    • out-of-character mind-set changes, including tumult, unresponsiveness, social withdrawal or an absence of intrigue, inspiration, or activity

    • loss of compassion

    • compulsive, over the top, or socially unsuitable conduct

On the off chance that the number and seriousness of indications affirm dementia, the accompanying components would then be able to affirm Alzheimer’s.

  • a continuous beginning, over months to years, as opposed to hours or days
  • a stamped exacerbating of the person’s ordinary degree of cognizance specifically territories

On the off chance that manifestations start or compound through the span of hours or days, you should look for prompt restorative consideration, as this could demonstrate an intense disease.

Alzheimer’s is in all likelihood when memory misfortune is a conspicuous indication, particularly in the zone of learning and reviewing new data.

Language issues can likewise be a key early side effect, for instance, battling to locate the correct words.

On the off chance that visuospatial deficiencies are most conspicuous, these would include:

  • inability to perceive items and countenances
  • difficulty understanding separate pieces of a scene immediately
  • difficulty with understanding content, known as alexia.

DIAGNOSIS

No particular test is sufficient to single out Alzheimer’s disease. Therefore, doctors may observe signs and symptoms, the patient’s medical history and carry out assessments like blood or urine tests, CT (computed tomography) scan or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan of the brain. Sometimes the symptoms might be related to inherited disorders like Huntington’s disease. Therefore, genetic testing may be done while recording family history.

After this, the diagnostician may eliminate other conditions and take an assessment of cognitive abilities and perform genetic testing.

1. COGNITIVE ASSESSMENT:

Basic questions about age, family relations, names, times or numbers or location might be asked.

2. GENETIC TESTING

The gene APOE-e4 is associated with people over the age of 55 years have an increased chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

TREATMENT

There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s disease. The death of brain cells cannot be reversed. However, treatments are available for the symptoms which may temporarily decelerate the worsening of the disease but the treatments can’t stop Alzheimer’s from progressing.

These treatments might involve drug therapy with cholinesterase inhibitors like

  • Donepezil
  • Rivastigmine
  • Tacrine
  • Memantine

Memantine, an NMDA receptor (a glutamate receptor and ion channel protein found in nerve cells) antagonist, may also be used, alone or with a cholinesterase inhibitor. Physical care is an important aspect of dementia care.

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Alzheimer’s Disease: Symptoms And Treatment. (2021, August 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 8, 2022, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/alzheimers-disease-symptoms-and-treatment/
“Alzheimer’s Disease: Symptoms And Treatment.” Edubirdie, 17 Aug. 2021, edubirdie.com/examples/alzheimers-disease-symptoms-and-treatment/
Alzheimer’s Disease: Symptoms And Treatment. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/alzheimers-disease-symptoms-and-treatment/> [Accessed 8 Dec. 2022].
Alzheimer’s Disease: Symptoms And Treatment [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2021 Aug 17 [cited 2022 Dec 8]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/alzheimers-disease-symptoms-and-treatment/
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