Alzheimer's Disease

Alzheimer’s disease is  a  degenerative, irreversible brain disease that progressively declines memory and cognitive functions that eventually alter the daily living activities. The course of Alzheimer's disease is usually ranges from 2-18 years associated with confusion and disorientation that become noticeable in late afternoon and night or commonly known as sundowner's syndrome. The first symptoms of Alzheimer's disease are most commonly appear on the age of early 60s.

Alzheimer's disease is one of the common mental problems among older people. This is also a common form of dementia. Dementia is resulted by a number of disorders that affect the brain. A person with dementia is manifested by collective symptoms such as impaired intellectual functioning—judgment, affect, memory, cognition and orientation.

Causes of Alzheimer's Disease

There is no exact cause Alzheimer's disease but it is believe that it develops due to a complex series of events that take place in the brain over a long period of time. The development of Alzheimer's is linked with certain factors that  include familial, environmental, and lifestyle factors.
One of the most features of Alzheimer's disease are the presence of neurofibrillary tangles and neuritic plaque in the brain diagnosed by an autopsy.

Stages of Alzheimer's Disease
  • Forgetfulness - Short-term memory losses
  • Confusion - A progressive memory impairment, disorientation, depression and confabulation
  • Ambulatory Dementia - Characterize by functional loses, language problems, impaired reasoning, depression and wandering of behavior
  • End Stage - Severe stage manifested by no recognition, minimal purposeful activities and immobilization.

Unfortunately, the treatment of Alzheimer's disease has not yet discovered, and eventually no specific measure to prevent it. The course of treatment is focus on different aspects such as slowing or delaying the disease,   managing Alzheimer's disease symptoms, and maintain psychological functions.

The following are the medical drugs usually prescribed by the physician in maintaining the psychological functions according to the severity of Alzheimer's disease.

Moderate Alzheimer's Disease

  •  Donepezil (Aricept®)*
  •  rivastigmine (Exelon®)
  • galantamine (Razadyne®) 
  • Memantine (Namenda®)*

* May use to treat severe Alzheimer's disease

The management of behavioral symptoms of Alzheimer's disease focus on the manifestations such as wandering, agitation, anger, and depression. These symptoms can be relieved by certain medications. There are also non-drug interventions for management such as provision of basic human needs and safety; assistance on daily living activities; engaging the patients in remembering activities and redirection of anger.


Medicare Supplements said...

While Alzheimer's patients suffer from increasing short-term memory loss, they often still retain much of their long-term memory. One of the best ways to engage with Alzheimer's sufferers in the early to middle stages is to ask them to tell you stories from their past. It is enjoyable and calming for them and usually very interesting for the listener.

Post a Comment

Let me know what you think. Thanks!

The Chapters Copyright © 2011 -- Template created by O Pregador -- Powered by Blogger