Diagnosis and Causes Archives

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What the latest research shows about the causes and detection of dementia: Testing for memory loss, contributing factors, and the growing burden of Alzheimer’s disease.

Herbal Remedy Ginkgo Fails to Stem Alzheimer’s Slide

Much has been made of the promises of the herbal remedy ginkgo biloba for keeping the memory sharp in old age. But a rigorous new study of the herb had disappointing results: ginkgo failed to prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s … Continue reading

High Blood Sugar Levels Tied to Brain Shrinkage

Older men and women who have blood sugar levels at the high end of normal appear to have shrinkage of the brain in areas critical for memory, according to a new report. The findings give new weight to concerns that … Continue reading

Delirium Spurs Alzheimer’s Decline

People with Alzheimer’s who are hospitalized often develop delirium, a period of acute disorientation that may last for days. Now, in the longest-running study of its type, researchers found that people with Alzheimer’s who develop delirium may show an accelerated … Continue reading

Delirium Increases Risks in Alzheimer’s Patients

A study of people with Alzheimer’s disease found that a hospital stay greatly increased the risk of further decline, including the need to enter a nursing home and an increased risk of dying. About half of those who were hospitalized … Continue reading

How the APOE-E4 Gene May Raise Alzheimer’s Risk

People who carry the APOE-E4 gene, the most common known genetic contributor to Alzheimer’s, are at increased risk of developing the disease, though having the gene is no guarantee that you’ll get Alzheimer’s. Now scientists are uncovering new clues about … Continue reading

Alzheimer’s Tied to Insulin Problems in the Brain

People with diabetes lack the ability to make or use insulin, a hormone that helps the body to maintain healthy levels of glucose, or blood sugar. Now researchers have found that problems using insulin in the brain may contribute to … Continue reading

New Imaging Agents Lead to Earlier Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

An imaging agent called florbetaben, the latest in a series of new dyes for detecting Alzheimer’s at an earlier stage, showed promise in detecting the brain plaques that are hallmarks of the disease. Earlier diagnosis remains an important goal for … Continue reading

Silent Strokes Linked to Memory Loss

About a quarter of older adults may suffer from so-called silent strokes, small areas of damaged brain cells that may contribute to memory loss, a symptom typical of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Taking measures to prevent strokes … Continue reading

Loss of Smell, an Early Alzheimer’s Sign, Reversed in Lab

A poor sense of smell may be one of the earliest signs of Alzheimer’s. Now, researchers have shown that the offending culprit may be beta-amyloid, a protein that builds up in a toxic form in the brains of those with … Continue reading

A New Type of Brain Scan to Detect Alzheimer’s Early

A new type of brain scan may help to detect Alzheimer’s early, using no radiation and at less cost than other techniques, researchers report. Doctors at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine have developed a form of magnetic … Continue reading