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If you think you have Alzheimer's, you just might be right, study suggests

Date:
February 21, 2014
Source:
University of Kentucky
Summary:
A correlation between self-reported incidence of memory loss and development of cognitive memory impairment later in life has been identified through a new study. The results are meaningful because it might help identify people who are at risk of developing Alzheimer's Disease sooner. "If the memory and thinking lapses people notice themselves could be early markers of risk for Alzheimer's disease, we might eventually be able to intervene earlier in the aging process to postpone and/or reduce the effects of cognitive memory impairment," the authors note.

A recent study suggests that self-reported memory complaints might predict clinical memory impairment later in life. Erin Abner, an assistant professor at the University of Kentucky's Sanders-Brown Center on Aging, asked 3,701 men aged 60 and higher a simple question: "Have you noticed any change in your memory since you last came in?"

That question led to some interesting results. "It seems that subjective memory complaint can be predictive of clinical memory impairment," Abner said. "Other epidemiologists have seen similar results, which is encouraging, since it means we might really be on to something."

The results are meaningful because it might help identify people who are at risk of developing Alzheimer's Disease sooner. "If the memory and thinking lapses people notice themselves could be early markers of risk for Alzheimer's disease, we might eventually be able to intervene earlier in the aging process to postpone and/or reduce the effects of cognitive memory impairment."

Abner, who is also a member of the faculty in the UK Department of Epidemiology, took pains to emphasize that her work shouldn't necessarily worry everyone who's ever forgotten where they left their keys.

"I don't want to alarm people," she said. "It's important to distinguish between normal memory lapses and significant memory problems, which usually change over time and affect multiple aspects of daily life."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Kentucky. The original article was written by Laura Dawahare. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Kentucky. "If you think you have Alzheimer's, you just might be right, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 February 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140221114124.htm>.
University of Kentucky. (2014, February 21). If you think you have Alzheimer's, you just might be right, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140221114124.htm
University of Kentucky. "If you think you have Alzheimer's, you just might be right, study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140221114124.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

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