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Related terms: Presenile Dementia, SDAT, Senile dementia Alzheimer's Type, Alzheimers

U.S. Dementia Rates Seem to Be Falling, Study Finds

Posted 2 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 10, 2016 – U.S. seniors may be developing dementia less often and at later stages of life, a decades-long study suggests. More than 5,000 people followed for almost 40 years starting in the mid-1970s experienced an average 20 percent reduction in their risk of developing dementia, the researchers said. At the same time, the average age at which the participants fell prey to dementia rose, from about 80 in the late 1970s to age 85 in more recent years, added study author Dr. Sudha Seshadri. She is a professor of neurology at Boston University's Alzheimer's Disease Center. Despite these findings, the United States still faces a dementia crisis with the aging of the baby boom generation, Seshadri noted. As many as 5.2 million Americans 65 and older are estimated to have Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia. And these numbers are expected to rise with the ... Read more

Related support groups: Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Diagnosis and Investigation, Arteriosclerotic Dementia w/ Depressive Features, Lewy Body Dementia

Head Injuries Tied to Buildup of Alzheimer's Plaques, Small Study Finds

Posted 9 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3, 2016 – Suffering a traumatic brain injury may lead to a buildup of Alzheimer's-type plaques in the brain, including in regions not typically affected by such plaques, a small new study suggests. Building on previous research indicating traumatic brain injury (TBI) may be a major risk factor for dementia, researchers found that moderate to severe head injuries led to an accumulation of amyloid plaques in the brains of nine middle-aged study participants over months or years. A buildup of amyloid plaques in the spaces between nerve cells in the brain is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. "More and more evidence suggests brain trauma can trigger long-term processes that may be harmful, suggesting the window for treatment after a head injury may be much greater than previously thought," said study author David Sharp. He is a National Institute for Health Research ... Read more

Related support groups: Alzheimer's Disease, Head Injury, Head Injury with Intracranial Hemorrhage, Head Injury w/ Intracranial Hemorrhage and Loss of Consciousness, Head Injury with Loss of Consciousness, Head Imaging

Anxiety Meds Like Valium, Xanax Won't Raise Seniors' Dementia Risk: Study

Posted 9 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3, 2016 – Taking one of a class of anti-anxiety pills that includes Ativan, Valium or Xanax does not increase older adults' risk of dementia, a new study finds. However, experts note that these drugs – collectively called benzodiazepines – can have other side effects and should still be used with caution. As the study authors explained, some prior research has suggested that use of the medicines may be associated with increased risk of dementia. However, other findings have contradicted that finding. To look further into the issue, a team led by Shelly Gray, a professor of pharmacy at the University of Washington in Seattle, studied more than 3,400 people aged 65 and older. All did not have dementia at the beginning of the study. The benzodiazepine use of each patient was assessed, and each was then followed for an average of seven years. During that time, 23 percent ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Xanax, Anxiety and Stress, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Social Anxiety Disorder, Diazepam, Dementia, Temazepam, Alzheimer's Disease, Restoril, Librium, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion

Seafood Might Protect Brain in People at Genetic Risk for Alzheimer's

Posted 10 days ago by

TUESDAY, Feb. 2, 2016 – Seafood lovers, a new study delivers good news on two fronts: Mercury found in fish doesn't lead to mental decline, and for certain people, a diet rich in fish might stave off Alzheimer's disease. Researchers who examined human brains confirmed that people who eat more seafood have more mercury in their brains. But, they found no link between higher brain levels of that neurotoxin and the kind of brain damage that is typical of Alzheimer's disease and dementia. "Everybody's saying seafood has so many health benefits, but everybody's afraid of the mercury," said lead study author Martha Clare Morris, professor of nutritional epidemiology at Rush University in Chicago. "We saw absolutely no evidence that higher levels of mercury in the brain were associated with any of the neuropathologies associated with dementia," she said. The researchers also found that eating ... Read more

Related support groups: Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Fish Oil, Lovaza, Vitamin/Mineral Supplementation and Deficiency, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Omega-3, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Omacor, Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids, MaxEPA, Restora, Animi-3, Marine Lipid Concentrate, EPA Fish Oil, Mi-Omega NF, Sea-Omega, Prenatal DHA, Sea-Omega 70, Vascazen

Weight Loss Starting at Midlife Tied to Later Dementia Risk in Study

Posted 11 days ago by

MONDAY, Feb. 1, 2016 – Declining weight from middle-age years to late life may be a sign of impending dementia, a new Mayo Clinic study suggests. People who lose weight over decades appear to have an increased risk for losing memory and thinking skills – called mild cognitive impairment – which can lead to dementia, including Alzheimer's disease. A loss of 11 pounds every 10 years may indicate as much as a 24 percent higher risk for loss of mental ability, researchers found. "Unintended weight loss may be a signal to examine whether to increase efforts to engage in lifestyle measures that are beneficial to mental function," said lead researcher Dr. Rosebud Roberts, a professor of epidemiology and neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. About 5 percent to 15 percent of adults who show early loss of mental ability progress to dementia, Roberts said. For the study, Roberts and ... Read more

Related support groups: Weight Loss, Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Cachexia, Lewy Body Dementia

Too Few Older Adults Tell Doctors About Memory Loss: Study

Posted 15 days ago by

THURSDAY, Jan. 28, 2016 – Do you worry that forgetting names, or where you put your keys, might be a sign of impending dementia? If you're like most older Americans, you don't bring this up with your doctor, a new study shows. Researchers who looked at federal government data on more than 10,000 people found that in 2011, only 1 in 4 adults aged 45 or older discussed memory problems with a health care professional during a routine checkup. In fact, the likelihood that a person would admit to a memory problem in a doctor's office visit actually declined with advancing age, says a team led by Mary Adams, of On Target Health Data in West Suffield, Conn. The findings were published Jan. 28 in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease. "Routine checkups are a missed opportunity for assessing and discussing memory problems for the majority of older adults," Adams said in a journal news release. ... Read more

Related support groups: Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Lewy Body Dementia

Brain Protein Might Offer New Clues to Alzheimer's Treatment

Posted 16 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 27, 2016 – A protein in the brain may hold a key to slowing progression of Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests. And boosting this protein might be as simple as increasing exercise and social activity, experts say. The protein is encoded by a gene called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or BDNF. Researchers found that seniors with the highest levels of BDNF gene function had a 50 percent slower loss of memory and thinking than those with the lowest levels. "What is cool about this study is that we have shown that BDNF, which is involved in brain cell survival, may protect against dementia," said lead researcher Dr. Aron Buchman. He is a professor in the department of neurological sciences at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. BDNF was protective despite the brain having plaques and tangles, hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease, Buchman said. "If you have high ... Read more

Related support groups: Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Diagnosis and Investigation

Computer-Based Test Aims to Predict Dementia Risk

Posted 21 Jan 2016 by

THURSDAY, Jan. 21, 2016 – A new computer-based test might be able to predict a person's risk for dementia, just by analyzing the information family doctors gather during routine visits, a new study from Britain suggests. Researchers from University College London have developed an algorithm that uses medical data to predict a five-year risk of dementia, according to a report Jan. 21 in the journal BioMed Central. The algorithm assesses factors like age, sex, social interaction, smoking, body-mass index, alcohol use, high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, irregular heartbeat (atrial fibrillation), aspirin use and depression, the study authors said. "We chose the particular factors as other research has shown in some people that they [risk factors] can be linked to an increased risk of dementia," said Kate Walters, director of the Centre for Ageing and Population Studies at University ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Type 2, Hypertension, Smoking, Atrial Fibrillation, Dementia, Smoking Cessation, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Diagnosis and Investigation, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Lewy Body Dementia, Arteriosclerotic Dementia w/ Depressive Features

Anesthesia After 40 Not Linked to Mental Decline Later, Study Finds

Posted 21 Jan 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 20, 2016 – Receiving general anesthesia for surgery after age 40 doesn't appear to raise the risk for mild thinking and memory problems later in life, a new study finds. Mayo Clinic researchers followed more than 1,700 people in Minnesota, aged 70 to 89, who had normal mental function when the study began in 2004. About 85 percent of the participants had at least one surgery requiring general anesthesia after age 40. The study participants were evaluated every 15 months. "The bottom line of our study is that we did not find an association between exposure to anesthesia for surgery and the development of mild cognitive [mental] impairment in these patients," study senior author and anesthesiologist Dr. David Warner said in a Mayo news release. Of the participants, 31 percent developed mild thinking and memory problems during the study period, but it was not associated ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Diagnosis and Investigation, Lewy Body Dementia

Dementia Drug May Lower Risk of Falls Among Parkinson's Patients

Posted 13 Jan 2016 by

TUESDAY, Jan. 12, 2016 – A widely used dementia drug shows potential in reducing the risk of falls among Parkinson's patients, new research suggests. "With the degeneration of dopamine-producing nerve cells, people with Parkinson's often have issues with unsteadiness when walking. As part of the condition, they also have lower levels of acetylcholine, a chemical which helps us to concentrate – making it extremely difficult to pay attention to walking," said study lead author Emily Henderson, from the University of Bristol in England. The study included 130 people with Parkinson's disease who had fallen in the past year. Half took the drug rivastigmine (Exelon), while the other half took a placebo. After eight months, those who took the rivastigmine capsules were much steadier when walking and 45 percent less likely to fall than those who took the placebo, according to the researchers. ... Read more

Related support groups: Parkinson's Disease, Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Exelon, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Rivastigmine, Parkinsonian Tremor, Parkinsonism, Lewy Body Dementia, Arteriosclerotic Dementia w/ Depressive Features, Prevention of Falls

Health Tip: Coping With Alzheimer's Disease

Posted 9 Jan 2016 by

-- While there is no cure for Alzheimer's disease, there are a handful of drugs that can help manage symptoms. Besides medication, there are things the caregiver can do to help a loved one with Alzheimer's cope. The Cleveland Clinic suggests: Make sure you're well informed about the disease. Read up about typical behavioral challenges, such as depression, agitation and wandering. Provide a stable, calm environment for the loved one. Help the loved one express emotions. Make sure the loved one adheres to a regular sleep schedule. Read more

Related support groups: Alzheimer's Disease

Poor Circulation in Brain Linked to Psychosis in Alzheimer's Patients

Posted 5 Jan 2016 by

TUESDAY, Jan. 5, 2016 – Psychosis, including delusions and hallucinations, affects about half of Alzheimer's disease patients. And researchers have set out to clarify the link between these two conditions. Canadian researchers said they found that cerebrovascular disease – a group of conditions that restrict the circulation of blood to the brain – appears to play a significant role in psychosis for those with Alzheimer's. About 19 percent of people with Alzheimer's living in the community (rather than in a nursing home) have delusions. Another 14 percent have hallucinations, the researchers said. Psychotic symptoms among people with Alzheimer's can cause added burdens on loved ones and caregivers. These symptoms can also speed up the progression of Alzheimer's disease, the study authors explained. For the study, the researchers analyzed autopsy data from more than 1,000 people who ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, Type 2, Hypertension, Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Alzheimer's Disease, Agitation, Psychosis, Insulin Resistance, Psychiatric Disorders, Agitated State, Pre-Diabetes, Diabetes Mellitus, Neurosis, Head Imaging

Stress May Boost Risk for Alzheimer's-Linked Thinking Problems

Posted 12 Dec 2015 by

FRIDAY, Dec. 11, 2015 – Increased stress could be a risk factor for the kind of thinking difficulties that can lead to Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests. However, the research did not prove that stress caused cognitive impairment or Alzheimer's. "We know that, in general, stress makes it harder to think clearly," said Dr. Gayatri Devi, a neurologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, who was not involved in the study. "But here's data showing that stress may put us at risk for developing diseases like Alzheimer's." The findings were published online Dec. 11 in the journal Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders. The study authors gave questionnaires to just over 500 adults, aged 70 and older, asking about how much stress they experience. None of the adults had signs of dementia at the study's start. The researchers followed these adults for more than three years. Each ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Alzheimer's Disease, Performance Anxiety

Seniors Who Head Back to School May Reduce Dementia Risk

Posted 11 Dec 2015 by

FRIDAY, Dec. 11, 2015 – Going back to school could help older people stave off dementia, a new study suggests. Taking college courses may boost brain functions, such as memory, decision-making and planning, the researchers said. The Australian investigators pointed out that their findings add to a growing body of evidence that healthy lifestyle choices – such as exercise, brain games and an active social life – may help slow age-related cognitive decline. "The study findings are exciting because they demonstrate that it's never too late to take action to maximize the cognitive capacity of your brain," lead researcher Megan Lenehan from the University of Tasmania in Australia, said in a news release from the American Psychological Association. "We plan to follow these participants as they age to see if college studies could help delay the onset or reduce the debilitating effects of ... Read more

Related support groups: Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Arteriosclerotic Dementia, Arteriosclerotic Dementia w/ Depressive Features, Lewy Body Dementia

Moderate Drinking May Benefit Early Stage Alzheimer's Patients

Posted 11 Dec 2015 by

FRIDAY, Dec. 11, 2015 – A couple of drinks a day may lower the risk of premature death in people with early stage Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study. The study included just over 320 people in Denmark with early stage Alzheimer's disease. Those who had two to three alcoholic drinks a day had a 77 percent lower risk of dying during the study period than those who had one or fewer drinks a day, the investigators found. "The results of our study point towards a potential, positive association of moderate alcohol consumption on mortality in patients with Alzheimer's disease," Sine Berntsen, from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and colleagues wrote. "However, we cannot solely, on the basis of this study, either encourage or advise against moderate alcohol consumption in [these] patients," the study authors concluded. The study did not prove a cause-and-effect ... Read more

Related support groups: Alzheimer's Disease, Alcohol Dependence, Alcoholism, Hangover, Diagnosis and Investigation, Acute Alcohol Intoxication, Head Imaging

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