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Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer's Disease

Dr. Alois Alzheimer

Alzheimer's Disease is a single gene mutation which attacks the brain's nerve cells at a progressive, degenerative rate. It was discovered by Dr. Alois Alzheimer in 1906 when he presented a case history before a medical meeting with a 51 year old woman who suffered from a rare brain disorder. A brain autopsy discovered the plaques and  tangles that today characterize Alzheimer's disease. Patients with Alzheimer's disease sadly don't usually make it past 8 to 10 years after diagnosis.

 

You may be wondering what the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease are, there are a few different types, you have cognitive or intellectual, and there are major psychiatric symptoms. The Cognitive, or Intellectual symptoms are amnesia, aphasia, apraxia and agnosia. Also known as "The Four A's of Alzheimer's." Major Psychiatric symptoms are different, however. They include personality changes, depression, hallucinations and delusions. 

Man suffering from Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer's disease is a dominant gene. Which means you are more likely to get it if one of your parents had it. In fact, 15 percent of people over the age of 71 have Alzheimer's, that would be over 5 million people in the U.S. alone, in the whole world it would be around 1,125,000,000. 

Woman getting a brain scan.

A lot of people probably do wonder how you get tested for Alzheimer's disease. Doctors will actually take Brain Scans / Neuro-psychological tests. They do this by putting people into beds, and slide the bed into a scanner and the scanner will take pictures of their brains.

Brain scans of a normal brain, one with Mild cognitive impairment, and of course, one with Alzheimer's disease

Sadly, there is no known cure for Alzheimer's disease. They have been searching for one for over 50 years, however they have had no luck, they are still researching, but it's doubtful they will discover it in the next few years.