20
   

Are you suffering from Alzheimer's

 
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 03:27 pm
The truth is Alzheimers disease is common, age related, and (usually detected in retrospect) the result of a continuous long-term process. If I am not mistaken roughly 1/3rd the population over 80 is affected by it to some degree, and the incidence increases rapidly with age. There are, as of today, no effective treatments for the disease, though there are some drugs that can provde some delay in the progressiojn at the early stages. There are some known genetic traits that predispose about 25% of the population to a much greater incidence of the disease, and another 25% to relative immunity, and there are effective laboratory tests available to detect those with these predispositions.. These have to do with vasriations in a type opf protein made by the neuronal cells in the brain.

There is also a growing body of evidence suggesting that repeated head injuries or even mild concussions can dispose one to the disease or accelerate its progress.

Significant progress has been made with pleuripotent stem cells, derived (interestingly) from normal human skin tissue. These are cells able, with various genetic techniques, to become various other type cells, such as neurons, or even heart muscle cells) Some new, promising treatments based on this technique are anticipated within two or three years.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 03:32 pm
@Ceili,
All's fine except that it requires locating a writing implement, right? Pen or pencil, quill pen - you name it, and I can't find it.
0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 03:34 pm
@Ceili,
Ceili wrote:

The classic test for Alzheimer's is to have the patient draw a clock face. It's the act of being able to place things where they should be. A person suffering from Alzheimer's can't do it.

That makes more sense than this (seeming) unscientific test.
Ceili
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 03:48 pm
@tsarstepan,
This test isn't all that different. It's not that hard to do. The only difference is that the picture is unknown before trying to figure it out. Even if it were blank, no moving bits, the colours and the shapes have a specific spots they must fit into. A person with "Oldtimers" would have a tough time with it because they can't figure it out.
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 04:02 pm
@Ceili,
The understanding of time is developed in childhood rather late but lost early in the stadium of dementia since acquired skills are forgotten in reverse order.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 04:16 pm
@georgeob1,
Interesting stuff there, georgeob. Some of which have been common knowledge for awhile, but it always helps to refresh our memory and with new info on the subject.

It's been said that if you "use it, you won't lose it," but I'm not so sure that's true. At any rate, my wife tells me to keep working it to challenge my mind.

Ceili
 
  2  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 04:21 pm
I've read and seen several things on tv that suggest Coconut oil is the next best thing in Alzheimer research. Take a spoonful or more, mix it in with your food and it's supposed to be a wonder drug.
Ceili
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 04:24 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
It's not so much understanding time, but being able to put the numbers in the right order, and in the right places in or around a circle. I guess remembering what a clock looks like. I think our youth are hooped though as so many of them don't know how to tell time the old fashioned way. It's all digital now...
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 04:24 pm
@Ceili,
That's good news; one of my favorite snacks is coconut ice cream.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 05:08 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
We all misplace our keys some times; that's normal. However, if you don't remember what the keys are for, you've got a problem.


What are keys?
0 Replies
 
firefly
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 09:49 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
It's been said that if you "use it, you won't lose it," but I'm not so sure that's true.

I think it is true with normal age-related declines in memory and cognitive functioning. You can lessen those with various games, puzzles, brain teasers, and just staying physically and mentally active. And there is research to back that up. So, your wife is giving you good advice.

But those things really can't do much to stave off the onset, or effects, of Alzheimer's, or any of the other dementias, because those are neurological and/or vascular in origin and progressive and irreversible in nature.

I'm not sure you should count on the coconut oil though.
http://www.snopes.com/medical/disease/coconutoil.asp
Just enjoy the ice cream.
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Mar, 2012 10:04 pm
@firefly,
One guy in our circle of friends, a physicist, has dementia. We had a party at their home last month, and he was repeating things to his son. Otherwise, he seemed okay.
firefly
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 12:17 am
@cicerone imposter,
That sounds like the very early stages of dementia. The repeating of things is due to short term memory loss, the person doesn't remember what they've just said, so they repeat themselves. If he's been diagnosed with dementia, he likely has other types of cognitive problems that just weren't apparent to you in a social setting and that haven't significantly advanced yet.

As dementias progress, the cognitive impairments get dramatically worse, there can be emotional changes and outbursts, there is the loss of ability to perform motor tasks and the person may become quite physically incapacitated--it's a progressive terminal disease that shuts down the body.
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/20/health/20well.html
http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_stages_of_alzheimers.asp
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 12:48 am
My grandmother had senile dementia.

My mother had Alzheimer's.

I had a cognitive test two years ago. Due for another one. These conditions.scare me silly.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 10:24 am
@firefly,
He's already been diagnosed for dementia. What I've noticed the past couple of years is that he's been more introspective and quiet. It was only last year that his wife shared the news with his/her friends about the dementia.

Kinda sad to see an old friend degrade so quickly. I've known him since the late 50's, and even shared an apartment with him in Berkeley. He's the one who's responsible for inviting me to San Francisco to a Christmas party where I met my wife.

Many in our social circle are having physical problems with old age, but he's the first to suffer from the loss of brain function.
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  2  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 10:34 am
@cicerone imposter,
There's a well known longitudinal study of cloistered nuns who were chosen as a study group because of the similarity of their daily lives and the lack of "vice" in their lifestyle. One key outcome was that the linguists tended to fare much better as they aged (avoided dementia-type issues) than the math/science types. As a statistician I find the data fascinating and a little scary, particularly since my accountant father succumbed to a dementia-related illness and my librarian mother lived to a ripe old age with her brain function fully intact.


I subscribe to an online program called Luminosity, which has a number of games and puzzles that are designed to work both sides of the brain and improve mental function/reasoning. It's fun and you can definitely see an improvement over time. The puzzle here is similar to some of the tasks I've seen there. There are other programs out there too that combat the "use it or lose it" issue by pushing you to use it all.
dalehileman
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 10:40 am
@cicerone imposter,
I don’t have the foggiest idea what I’m supposed to do with it or how it can possibly pertain to Alz’s

Does that mean I’m on my way
Miller
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 10:53 am
Quote:
you should see your physician about additional checking


What if he has this disease??
0 Replies
 
Miller
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 10:55 am
@georgeob1,
Wasn't there some sort of evidence for the role of damaged microtubules in the onset of this disease?
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Sat 24 Mar, 2012 11:30 am
@JPB,
JPB, I worked in accounting/bookkeeping during the duration of my "professional" career, but the handheld calculator or computer did most of the math. I think I'm safe! Mr. Green

I try to play with Sodoku once-in-awhile thinking it'll help me retain my mental health. It's numbers, but not really math. Rolling Eyes
0 Replies
 
 

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